Pumpkin Spice Eclair Cake w/Chocolate Frosting {No Bake}

Eclair Cake is one of those desserts I see often at potlucks, family gatherings, and is a personal favorite of mine. If you are not familiar, it’s a no bake dessert that is made up of just a few simple ingredients: graham crackers, vanilla pudding, cool whip, and usually chocolate frosting (but I’ve also seen it with chocolate pudding on top).

Pumpkin Eclair Cake top

I decided to make this dessert for a church dinner, and as I was getting my supplies from the grocery store, I spied this…

pumpkin spice pudding

HOLD THE PHONE! Pumpkin Spice pudding?! I immediately scooped up several packages, and then the idea of substituting the pumpkin spice pudding for the vanilla pudding, and using cinnamon graham crackers instead of regular in the eclair cake came to me. It sounded seasonal and delicious…and it was!

Pumpkin Eclair Cake IngredientsI realized too late that the milk was left out of the picture, but I used skim. You could use any kind you like, and I don’t see any reason why you couldn’t use almond, soy, etc., but I’ve never tried it.

Pumpkin Eclair Cake CollageAs I mentioned, I made this to take to church, so I couldn’t get a picture of the inside of the cake after I made it. However, I assumed I would be able to quickly (and discreetly) take a phone pic after people started cutting into it. Well, that didn’t go according to plan. When I got to the dessert table, it was gone! Only some crumbs of frosting remained, and someone even came along and licked the spoon before taking it to the kitchen :-) Luckily, I had snagged a few bites from one of my children’s plates, so I can attest that it was very tasty.

I usually make this in a 9 x 13 pan, but on this occasion, I made 2 8 x 8′s  - one pumpkin spice and one regular eclair cake. (The regular cake was also eaten before I got to the dessert table!) The following recipe is for the 9 x 13 size.

Pumpkin Spice Eclair Cake with Chocolate Frosting

Ingredients

  • 1 box Cinnamon Graham Crackers (you will have some leftover)
  • 2 boxes Instant Pumpkin Spice Pudding mix
  • 3 cups milk
  • 1 container Cool Whip
  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon (optional)
  • 1/4 tsp. allspice (optional)
  • For Frosting -
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

Instructions

  1. Mix 2 boxes of instant pudding with 3 cups milk. Stir until it begins to thicken.
  2. Fold in container of Cool Whip.
  3. Line a 9 x 13 pan with single layer of graham crackers.
  4. Spread 1/3 of pudding mixture on top of crackers.
  5. Place another layer of graham crackers on top of pudding.
  6. Repeat layers, ending with pudding mixture.
  7. Place in refrigerator to chill while making frosting*
  8. For the Frosting
  9. Mix sugar, cocoa and milk in a medium size pot.
  10. Bring to a boil over medium heat - stirring the entire time with a wooden spoon.
  11. Boil for one minute (still stirring!)
  12. Remove from heat and add butter and vanilla.
  13. Mix until it just starts to thicken - don't let it thicken too much or it is difficult to spread over cake. Pour over pudding layer of cake. Icing will 'set' on cake.
  14. Time Saving Tip - If you do not want to make homemade icing/frosting, you can take a store-bought can of frosting, heat in the microwave, and pour over cake.
  15. Allow cake to chill in refrigerator for about 4 hours or overnight before serving so the graham crackers can soften and create a cake like texture.
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I like to divide my pudding into thirds when layering my eclair cake, but if you want a thicker pudding layer, you can just divide it in half, ending with graham crackers on top. I’ve made it both ways, I just prefer a thinner pudding layer. It’s an easy dessert that always goes over well! What do you like to bring to potluck/cover dish dinners?

KimM is a contributing writer for Eat at Home. She lives in NC with her husband, three children, and 2 fur babies. You can find her blogging about her kitchen adventures at Makin’ it Mo’Betta

Easy Peanut Butter and Jelly Ice Cream Cake

I am a huge fan of anything peanut butter and jelly.

And I’m an even bigger fan of anything involving ice cream.

So this dessert was right up my alley.  I guess that explains why I thought it up.

It’s really easy to make too.  You start with a package of ice cream sandwiches.  These get layered with peanut butter and raspberry jam.  Then frost the whole thing in Cool Whip.  I love a recipe that’s assembly-only.

If you need to make a dessert ahead of time, this one is perfect.  It gets stored in the freezer and tastes even better after a few days frozen.

Here’s what you’ll need to make it:   [Read more...]

Apricot Delight Jello Salad

We’ve been having a debate at our house about whether this is a salad or dessert.  I call it a Jello salad.  My daughter agrees with me.  She says if it’s a salad then she can eat dessert later with a clear conscience!  I like her line of reasoning.

What do you think – salad or dessert?

Either way, it’s fantastic and perfect for Easter.  The apricots and pineapple add fruitiness to the jello.  And it gets topped with a creamy topping made from the fruit juice.  You won’t want to skip the topping.  It’s a cooked custard with Cool Whip folded in.  The topping makes this dish special.

I will say that the original recipe (given to me by my mom years ago) called for shredded cheddar cheese on top of the creamy topping.  I didn’t care for the cheese though, so I leave it out.  The cheese might move it more firmly into the salad category though.

Here’s what you’ll need to make it:   [Read more...]

Peanut Butter Brownie Pie (with Sugar Free Option)

Recently, I had a big family gathering to go to at my Grandmother’s house. She asked if I would bring dessert. My response, of course, was ‘I’ll bring two!” (which turned into 3….any excuse to bake!) The one I wanted to share today was definitely the most popular, based on how quickly it disappeared!

If you follow me over at my blog, Mo’Betta, you probably know that my husband has Type II diabetes. He is currently diet controlled, but that often means foregoing dessert. (He follows a low carb diet.) Also, my grannie was just told that she has “the sugar”….which in Southern grandma speak means she has also developed Type II diabetes. So, I wanted to have a dessert that she and my husband could enjoy. After discovering this recipe from Kraft, I knew I could easily substitute the ingredients to make this a very low sugar dessert.  I’m going to post both options.

Peanut Butter Brownie Pie (with low sugar option)

Ingredients

  • 1 pkg. brownie mix (8x8 size) *I used Pillsbury Sugar Free Brownie Mix
  • 1 pkg. (4-serving size) Jell-O Vanilla Instant Pudding *I used sugar free/fat free pudding
  • 1-1/2 cups cold (skim) milk
  • 1/2 cup smooth Peanut Butter, divided *I used Smart Balance
  • 1 cup thawed Cool Whip Whipped Topping *I used sugar free Cool Whip

Instructions

  1. Prepare brownie batter as directed on package; pour into 9-inch pie plate sprayed with cooking spray. Bake 30 min. or as directed. Cool completely. Scoop out center, leaving a 1/2-inch-thick rim around edge and thin layer of brownie on bottom. Reserve removed pieces.
  2. Beat pudding mix and milk with whisk for 2 min. Add 1/3 cup peanut butter; mix well. Stir in Cool Whip. Spoon into crust; top with reserved brownie pieces. **I did not read the directions well, and used the entire container of Cool Whip. The pie was nice and rounded and tasted delicious. So it is a boo-boo I will repeat ;)
  3. Microwave remaining peanut butter in microwaveable bowl on HIGH 1 min.; stir. Drizzle over pie. Refrigerate 2 hours or until pie is firm.
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My family really enjoyed this pie (those that actually got a piece!)  Next time I will know to make 2!  It is not completely sugar free…as the milk contains natural sugars and the peanut butter has a little added sugar.  However, it was pretty low.  I didn’t calculate the nutritional stats, and they will vary depending on the products you use.  The nice thing about this pie was that everyone who tried it loved it, diabetic or not!

Kim of Mo’Betta – 40 year old married mama of  3 – ages 11, 9, and 4.  I started blogging as a way to journal my adventures in the kitchen as I learned to cook and to meet the needs of my food allergic son (nuts & eggs), diabetic husband, or my waistline! And don’t even get me started on how picky my kids’ taste buds are…

Ingredient Spotlight: Frozen Whipped Topping 2012

I have to say, I am looking forward to this Ingredient Spotlight.  Why?  Because it’s all going to be desserts!

I can’t wait to see the recipes you have to share.   I’ve already sneaked (did you know the past tense of sneak is not snuck?) out to the kitchen to snitch a taste of a new dessert that uses this ingredient.  It needs to freeze before it’s ready to eat, but I’m having trouble waiting.

Here are some other desserts I love that use frozen whipped topping:

It’s your turn to share recipes that use frozen whipped topping.  Link up as many as you like, just be sure to link back to Eat at Home.  You can use the button below if you like.

 

 

Peanut Butter Fluff Pie – a Freezer Friendly Recipe

Last week, I told you I had two new pie recipes for you.  Both have a chocolate graham cracker crust.  And both are fantastic, especially for summer.

This Peanut Butter Fluff Pie is easy to make and there are two ways to serve it – cold or frozen!

The filling has a perfect peanut butter flavor.  It’s not too rich or too sweet.  Placed in the refrigerator, the consistency is that of a thick, fluffy pudding.  When the pie is frozen, it’s still soft enough to serve straight from the freezer.  It’s a great dessert to make ahead of time so you have it when you need it.

The key ingredient is COOL WHIP whipped topping.  I found the recipe in an old church cookbook.  There were actually three recipes for the pie, each a little different.  I took the best of all of them to make this version.

Here’s what you’ll need:  [Read more...]

Caramel Pumpkin Cake

Every once in a while, I make something that bumps to the top of my list of posts.  This is one of those recipes.

The cake is the same recipe I use for Pumpkin Sheet Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting, but baked in a 9×13 pan so it’s thicker.   While it’s still hot from the oven, poke it full of holes and pour warm caramel sauce over the top.

The caramel soaks into the cake, infusing one perfect fall flavor with another.  Amazing!

Here’s what you’ll need: [Read more...]

Homemade Whipped Topping aka Make Your Own Cool Whip

A few weeks ago, on Ingredient Spotlight, we shared frozen whipped topping recipes.  Loy, one of my readers who you get to meet next week, shared a recipe for homemade whipped topping.

I’d never thought about making my own whipped topping before, but the idea was intriguing.  And when I decided to make this cake, I knew this was the time to experiment (aka play) with the recipe.  The result is light, subtly sweet and creamy.  I really wished I could have added a hint of vanilla, but I didn’t want to use extract.  I wanted to keep it pure white and I also was unsure about messing up the proportions of liquid.

Later, I thought about using vanilla infused sugar.  You can do this at home just by putting a vanilla bean in sugar and leaving it there for about a week.  (I must try this soon.)  I think the vanilla flavor would greatly enhance the taste of the whipped topping.

Here’s what you’ll need to make it: [Read more...]

Lemon Cheesecake Dessert

Still looking for a dessert for Easter?  Here you go!

This is the “cheesecake” I grew up with.  Unlike the real deal, this one is light with a hint of lemon.  It’s also no-bake, so it’s easy to make.

Here’s what you’ll need: [Read more...]

Ingredient Spotlight: Frozen Whipped Topping

I wouldn’t really eat a big bowl of Cool Whip like what you see in the photo.  At least not without a strawberry to dip in it.

Frozen whipped topping is such a great ingredient for making desserts.  I scheduled this for right before Easter because this ingredient makes such cool, refreshing desserts that seem perfect for springtime.

Of course, you can also use it to make rich, decadent desserts.  Either way is delicious.

Here are some of the recipes I have that use frozen whipped topping: [Read more...]

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