Pumpkin & Chocolate Oreo Layer Cake


This Brown Butter Pumpkin & Chocolate Oreo Layer Cake is made up of a moist chocolate layer sandwiched between two layers of brown butter pumpkin cake dotted with flecks of Oreo.  The cake is then topped with a black cocoa cream cheese frosting enhanced with the nutty flavor of brown butter, then coated with Oreo cookie crumbs.  The cookie crumbs give this Oreo Layer Cake its lush velvety appearance and is sure to leave your guests mesmerized with delight.  


This Brown Butter Pumpkin & Chocolate Oreo Layer Cake is a moist chocolate layer sandwiched between two layers of brown butter pumpkin cake dotted with flecks of Oreo.  The cake is then topped with a rich brown butter cream cheese frosting & then coated with Oreo cookie crumbs.

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This Brown Butter Pumpkin & Chocolate Oreo Layer Cake is a moist chocolate layer sandwiched between two layers of brown butter pumpkin cake dotted with flecks of Oreo.  The cake is then topped with a rich brown butter cream cheese frosting & then coated with Oreo cookie crumbs. Well. . .the holiday season is upon us and I have been frantically dreaming up all kinds of cakes and cookies for you.  As a matter of fact, I have so many cakes and cookies floating around in my head that I have to admit that my baking schedule may be a wee bit too over ambitious.  Then again. . . when is it not?This Brown Butter Pumpkin & Chocolate Oreo Layer Cake is a moist chocolate layer sandwiched between two layers of brown butter pumpkin cake dotted with flecks of Oreo.  The cake is then topped with a rich brown butter cream cheese frosting & then coated with Oreo cookie crumbs. While you might be well aware of my love affair with any and everything sweet and decadent, you might not know of my polar opposite passion – fitness.  Exercise really is how I stay grounded and conquer the effects of stress.  Which. . .let’s face it, the hustle and bustle of the holidays has the tendency to bestow truckloads of stress upon us. That makes staying active all the more important this time of year.

So in between batches of pretty, little cookies and cakes, I found myself dragging my nearly always weary body to the neat and tidy gym or the gritty and hardcore crossfit box (the term that is used for a crossfit gym because it usually is in a nondescript warehouse).  Well. . . that was until one chilly night about a month ago.

This Brown Butter Pumpkin & Chocolate Oreo Layer Cake is a moist chocolate layer sandwiched between two layers of brown butter pumpkin cake dotted with flecks of Oreo.  The cake is then topped with a rich brown butter cream cheese frosting & then coated with Oreo cookie crumbs.
This Brown Butter Pumpkin & Chocolate Oreo Layer Cake is a moist chocolate layer sandwiched between two layers of brown butter pumpkin cake dotted with flecks of Oreo.  The cake is then topped with a rich brown butter cream cheese frosting & then coated with Oreo cookie crumbs.
This Brown Butter Pumpkin & Chocolate Oreo Layer Cake is a moist chocolate layer sandwiched between two layers of brown butter pumpkin cake dotted with flecks of Oreo.  The cake is then topped with a rich brown butter cream cheese frosting & then coated with Oreo cookie crumbs.
This Brown Butter Pumpkin & Chocolate Oreo Layer Cake is a moist chocolate layer sandwiched between two layers of brown butter pumpkin cake dotted with flecks of Oreo.  The cake is then topped with a rich brown butter cream cheese frosting & then coated with Oreo cookie crumbs.
The temperatures had recently taken a dip, making it all the more challenging to convince myself to tug my black spandex pants up over my legs, smash the girls into a sports bra and push my hair back into a ponytail.  Worse, the days had become even shorter and were seriously impacting my circadian rhythm to the point it was screaming “abandon all thoughts of sweatin’ to the oldies and jump head first into an avalanche of warm and fuzzy blankets”.  But I ignored all of that because I knew my mind, body and soul would feel so much better if I simply dragged my non cooperative body to a session of Crossfit.This Brown Butter Pumpkin & Chocolate Oreo Layer Cake is a moist chocolate layer sandwiched between two layers of brown butter pumpkin cake dotted with flecks of Oreo.  The cake is then topped with a rich brown butter cream cheese frosting & then coated with Oreo cookie crumbs.In case you have never done or heard of crossfit, it is a high intensity exercise program that incorporates endurance, olympic weightlifting, mobility and gymnastics moves into one routine.  Quite frankly, it is the most challenging workout I have ever done. . .which is saying a lot since I’ve tried all different types of exercise programs at one time or another.
This Brown Butter Pumpkin & Chocolate Oreo Layer Cake is a moist chocolate layer sandwiched between two layers of brown butter pumpkin cake dotted with flecks of Oreo.  The cake is then topped with a rich brown butter cream cheese frosting & then coated with Oreo cookie crumbs.
This Brown Butter Pumpkin & Chocolate Oreo Layer Cake is a moist chocolate layer sandwiched between two layers of brown butter pumpkin cake dotted with flecks of Oreo.  The cake is then topped with a rich brown butter cream cheese frosting & then coated with Oreo cookie crumbs.
Before I left for the box, I checked the schedule to see what the workout of the day entailed.  Pheeewwwww!  I let out a sigh of relief when I saw It was an “easy” workout.  Now don’t get me wrong, there is NOTHING. . .and I mean Naaaaaaa-THING. . . easy about any crossfit workout.  No, when I say “easy”, I mean that yes, it would leave my lungs feeling like hot lava was flowing rapidly through them . . .but it wouldn’t be packed with highly technical olympic weightlifting moves – moves that I am still trying to learn.  Instead, there would be running outdoors. . .and lots of it.This Brown Butter Pumpkin & Chocolate Oreo Layer Cake is a moist chocolate layer sandwiched between two layers of brown butter pumpkin cake dotted with flecks of Oreo.  The cake is then topped with a rich brown butter cream cheese frosting & then coated with Oreo cookie crumbs.Given it was quite cold out, I would need to balance staying warm during the runs without being too hot during kettlebell swings, lunges and other indoor torture moves.  So, I chose to wear a long sleeve workout top.  But the minute I arrived at the box, the warm atmosphere had me regretting my wardrobe choice.  Well. . .that was until 20 minutes later.

You see, I was on the first run of the workout.  I always get a bit nervous about these runs because it’s dark outside and the area we run in is not exactly the best lit.  And to make matters worse, it’s surrounded by warehouses, uneven pavement, lots of gravel and sharp, rusty metal pieces.  It’s also notorious for rats and other such rodents. . .which I just so happen to have a fear of.This Brown Butter Pumpkin & Chocolate Oreo Layer Cake is a moist chocolate layer sandwiched between two layers of brown butter pumpkin cake dotted with flecks of Oreo.  The cake is then topped with a rich brown butter cream cheese frosting & then coated with Oreo cookie crumbs.So, the group tears out of the box and I hear the guy in front of me telling the girl next to him about some rat he saw scurrying towards the fence on a previous run.  “Oh great!!!  Way to start this run out on a positive note”, I thought.  After hearing that, I made it my mission to line up behind my friend Emily. . .that way if any rats decided to dart out, she would be the first in line to deal with their beady eyed wrath (I’m a good friend, aren’t I?).This Brown Butter Pumpkin & Chocolate Oreo Layer Cake is a moist chocolate layer sandwiched between two layers of brown butter pumpkin cake dotted with flecks of Oreo.  The cake is then topped with a rich brown butter cream cheese frosting & then coated with Oreo cookie crumbs.We were trucking along on our run, shimming down a narrow sidewalk, dodging crushed orange construction cones, shrapnel and the like.  Just ahead was the last corner we needed to take before we headed back to the box.  I was keeping a close eye on Emily so I would’n go flying into her.  Remember, this is crossfit. . .we don’t jog!   We run!  And it’s not just any run.  It’s a “you have a giant hunk of meat attached to your back and a sleuth of grizzly bears barreling after you” type of run.This Brown Butter Pumpkin & Chocolate Oreo Layer Cake is a moist chocolate layer sandwiched between two layers of brown butter pumpkin cake dotted with flecks of Oreo.  The cake is then topped with a rich brown butter cream cheese frosting & then coated with Oreo cookie crumbs.I was starting to mentally prepare for the next set of endurance exercises we were about to embark on when my foot was engulfed  by buckled pavement.  The next thing I knew I was tumbling towards the concrete desperately trying to keep my head up so that it too wouldn’t come crashing down.

My right hand was the first to hit the pavement.  Then my shoulder.  The next thing I knew. . . .krrrrrrrrrr. . . I was body surfing across the pavement with such velocity I was hoping and praying I wouldn’t slide right into the busy street ahead (or mow Emily over for that matter).  I could feel all the gravel and other bits littering the sidewalk scraping up against my skin.

“Oh my gawwwd!!  Are you alright?”  Emily shrieks.  She stops and helps peel my shocked body up off the concrete.  “I think so.”  Not quite sure what exactly had just gone down. . . well other than myself.  All I knew was nearly every body part was now throbbing and I had huge chunks of skin missing from my hands.

“I think I am going to pass out”, I tell Emily.  She gets a panicked look on her face.This Brown Butter Pumpkin & Chocolate Oreo Layer Cake is a moist chocolate layer sandwiched between two layers of brown butter pumpkin cake dotted with flecks of Oreo.  The cake is then topped with a rich brown butter cream cheese frosting & then coated with Oreo cookie crumbs.We get back to the box and I try my best to clean myself up and temporarily bandage my wounds.  I finish what I can of the workout. . .mostly as a distraction while I wait for the Mr. to finish up.  All I can say is I sure was glad fate had led me to putting on that long sleeve shirt that now was littered with tears and holes.

I’m now in physical therapy trying to heal my wrist and elbow.  Oh. . .and of course I am eating cake. . .and lots of it.  Because really, what could be a better distraction then cake?  Two pieces of cake perhaps?This Brown Butter Pumpkin & Chocolate Oreo Layer Cake is a moist chocolate layer sandwiched between two layers of brown butter pumpkin cake dotted with flecks of Oreo.  The cake is then topped with a rich brown butter cream cheese frosting & then coated with Oreo cookie crumbs.If you have browsed around The Road to Honey in the past, you might have noticed a cake that looks suspiciously familiar to this beauty (See it HERE). No, you are not going cuckoo for cocoa puffs.

Two years ago, a Chocolate & Pumpkin Oreo Layer Cake premiered on The Road to Honey.  It was a big hit back then and has continued to be a Road to Honey favorite since. But there is one problem.  Oreo has decided to keep the Pumpkin Spice Oreos all to themselves and they have not brought these fall inspired cookies back since.  Given this, I wanted to reinvent this Oreo Layer Cake using the original Oreos just to show you that it could be just as irresistible as the original.This Brown Butter Pumpkin & Chocolate Oreo Layer Cake is a moist chocolate layer sandwiched between two layers of brown butter pumpkin cake dotted with flecks of Oreo.  The cake is then topped with a rich brown butter cream cheese frosting & then coated with Oreo cookie crumbs.Just like the original, this Oreo Layer Cake starts with a super moist chocolate layer cake sandwiched between two decadent brown butter pumpkin layers.  Given I wanted to be able to see the gorgeous, little flecks of dark cookie, I decided to put the chopped up Oreos in the pumpkin layers.  The contrast really does give these layers a fun speckled appearance, doesn’t it?

A brown butter cream cheese frosting sprinkled with more chopped up Oreos separates the layers and also lends another textural element to this Oreo Layer Cake.This Brown Butter Pumpkin & Chocolate Oreo Layer Cake is a moist chocolate layer sandwiched between two layers of brown butter pumpkin cake dotted with flecks of Oreo.  The cake is then topped with a rich brown butter cream cheese frosting & then coated with Oreo cookie crumbs. The whole divine thing is then surrounded by a decadent layer of Black Cocoa Cream Cheese Frosting.    Now you could replace the Black Cocoa with your standard run of the mill unsweetened cocoa powder if you so choose, but why would you want to miss out on the intense decadence that is all things black cocoa?  The intense color that the black cocoa brings to the frosting also helps the cookie crumbs blend in better with the cake.

Now if your frosting skills are anything but stellar, you are going to love this next step which involves pressing the cookie crumbs into the frosting.  It really does give the cake a lush, velvet-like, black tie affair appearance. It’s a true showstopper.  And the best part. . . no skills needed, just a little patience.

So, let’s grab a slice of cake and a stress ball for a double dose of therapy.

XOXO-

Lynn

 

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This Brown Butter Pumpkin & Chocolate Oreo Layer Cake is a moist chocolate layer sandwiched between two layers of brown butter pumpkin cake dotted with flecks of Oreo.  The cake is then topped with a rich brown butter cream cheese frosting & then coated with Oreo cookie crumbs.
Print
Brown Butter Pumpkin & Chocolate Oreo Cake
Prep Time
2 hrs 5 mins
Cook Time
1 hr 15 mins
Total Time
3 hrs 20 mins
 
This Brown Butter Pumpkin & Chocolate Oreo Layer Cake is a moist chocolate layer sandwiched between two layers of brown butter pumpkin cake dotted with flecks of Oreo.  The cake is then topped with a rich brown butter cream cheese frosting and then coated with Oreo cookie crumbs.  The cookie crumbs give this cake its lush velvety appearance and is sure to leave your guests mesmerized with delight.  
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Servings: 14 servings
Author: The Road to Honey
BUILDING BLOCKS
  • 3/4 cup unsalted butter
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp cloves
  • 1 1/2 cups pumpkin puree, (not pumpkin pie filling)
  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 2/3 cup light brown sugar, (firmly packed)
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/3 cup buttermilk
  • 10-12 Oreo cookies, cut into pieces
For the CHOCOLATE LAYER:
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 6 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 1/2 cup strong brewed coffee
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 large eggs
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
For the BLACK COCOA CREAM CHEESE FROSTING:
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 16 oz cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar, firmly packed
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 1/2 cups confectioners sugar
  • 2 tbsp black cocoa
  • 24 Oreo cookies
THE COURSE
For the BROWN BUTTER PUMPKIN LAYERS:
  1. Preheat the oven to 350° F.

  2. Line two 9-inch round cake pans with parchment paper & butter & flour them.

  3. To make the brown butter: Melt the butter in a heavy bottomed sauce pan on medium heat. Continue to cook, swirling the pan occasionally to ensure the butter browns evenly. You will cook until the butter takes on a nutty aroma & turns a toasty brown color. Remove the butter from the heat & transfer it & the milk solids (brown bits that settled on the bottom during cooking) to a heat-proof bowl. Set aside & let cool for 15 minutes (the butter still should be melted). If this is your first time browning butter, you can read more about it HERE.

  4. Whisk together the dry ingredients (flour through cloves) in a medium sized bowl.

  5. Whisk together the remaining ingredients (pumpkin puree through buttermilk) & the brown butter until well blended.

  6. Combine the dry ingredients with the wet ingredients & stir until just combined.

  7. Fold in the chopped Oreos.  

  8. Divide the batter evenly between the two prepared cake pans.

  9. Bake for 25-35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.

  10. Cool the cakes in the pans for 10 minutes, then remove & cool completely on a wire rack.
For the CHOCOLATE LAYERS:
  1. Preheat the oven to 350° F.

  2. Line one 9-inch round cake pan with parchment paper & butter & flour it.

  3. Combine first 7 ingredients (sugar through salt) in a large bowl. Mix well.

  4. Combine the wet ingredients (buttermilk through vanilla extract) in a medium sized bowl. Mix well.

  5. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients & mix until just combined. Don’t overmix.

  6. Pour the batter into the prepared cake pan & bake for 30 – 40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.

  7. Cool the cake in the pan for 10 minutes, then remove & completely cool on a wire rack.

For the BLACK COCOA CREAM CHEESE FROSTING:
  1. To Make the Brown Butter:  Melt the butter in a heavy bottomed sauce pan on medium heat. Continue to cook, swirling the pan occasionally to ensure the butter browns evenly. You will cook until the butter takes on a nutty aroma & turns a toasty brown color. 

  2. Remove the butter from the heat & transfer it & the milk solids (brown bits that settled on the bottom during cooking) to a heat-proof bowl. 
  3. Allow the browned milk solids to settle to the bottom of the bowl, then place the bowl in the freezer.  

  4. Chill until just firm (15-20 minutes).

  5. Chop 6 of the Oreos into pieces.  

  6. Carefully scrape the butter from the bowl, taking care to leave the browned milk solids in the bowl.  Discard the solids.

  7. Meanwhile, sift the confectioners sugar into a medium sized bowl.

  8. In the bowl of a mixer fitted with paddle attachment, combine the brown butter, cream cheese, & brown sugar.  

  9. Beat on medium high until the brown sugar has dissolved & the frosting takes on a light color (about 2 minutes)

  10. Gradually beat in the confectioners sugar until the frosting is light & fluffy.  Note:  You will beat in the black cocoa separately below.  

  11. Beat in the vanilla until combined.  

  12. Place one round of cake on a cake plate & spread a layer of frosting on top of it. 

  13. Sprinkle half of the chopped Oreos on top & press into the frosting.

  14. Place a second cake round on top of the first & spread frosting on top of it.  Press the remaining Oreos into the frosting.  

  15. Place the final cake round on top.

  16. Beat the black cocoa into the remaining frosting.  

  17. Frost the rest of the cake.

  18. Pulse 18 Oreos in a food processor.  Continue pulsing until they form a fine crumb.  

  19. Press the crumbs into the top & sides of the cake.  To make this easier, I use a butter knife to scoop up the crumbs & gently press them into the cake.  

Recipe Notes

I used Oreo cookies but you could use any cookie that you like.  Keep in mind that you will want to use a cookie that contrast with the color of the cake.  

This Brown Butter Pumpkin & Chocolate Oreo Layer Cake is a moist chocolate layer sandwiched between two layers of brown butter pumpkin cake dotted with flecks of Oreo.  The cake is then topped with a rich brown butter cream cheese frosting & then coated with Oreo cookie crumbs.

14 thoughts on “Pumpkin & Chocolate Oreo Layer Cake

  • December 2, 2017 at 9:24 am
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    I think I just died and went to heaven! I really don’t care for pumpkin but now that you have combined it with oreo cookies all I can say is, Yassss please! I love how simple this recipe is. I’m not good with frosting cakes so adding crumbs would be perfect for me.

    Reply
    • December 2, 2017 at 9:35 am
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      Yes. . .April!!! It is the perfect way to give your cake a pro look without having stellar frosting skills. Also, if you aren’t keen on pumpkin, you could make all 3 layers chocolate. I would then use the vanilla oreos in the cake batter so that you still have those little flecks of contrasting color. Or you could leave the oreos out of the batter altogether and just keep the whole cake dark, dark, dark! That would look striking as well.

      Reply
  • December 2, 2017 at 9:44 am
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    This cake looks amazing and I really love your photography, especially the lighting and composition. Beautiful!

    Reply
    • December 2, 2017 at 9:47 am
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      Why thank you Tina. I’m getting more and more comfortable photographing in my new space. The light is so much easier to manipulate than in my previous space.

      Reply
  • December 2, 2017 at 1:25 pm
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    Your photos are gorgeous, I can’t believe how pretty and kind of sexy you made baking a pumpkin oreo cake look! I am no baker but I am totally inspired to make this cake, it sounds absolutely amazing!

    Reply
    • December 3, 2017 at 10:56 am
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      Ha! Ha! Well baking should always be sexy, now shouldn’t it Jenn? You should totally give this cake a shot. You won’t regret it. 😉

      Reply
  • December 2, 2017 at 2:02 pm
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    Now this is one amazing combo! This looks almost way too good to eat!

    Reply
    • December 2, 2017 at 9:32 pm
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      I was a little nervous cutting into it it was so pretty. But once the first slice was cut. . .the rest was history. 😉

      Reply
  • December 3, 2017 at 1:43 pm
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    This cake is just stunning, Lynn! And those slices… Drool! You can’t beat a bit of pumpkin and chocolate 🙂

    Reply
  • December 3, 2017 at 11:41 pm
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    Girl, this cake is out of the world decadent and all kinds of fabulosity all in one. Stunning pictures just like all of yours.
    And coming to this season of baking, it can be overwhelming and crazy for sure, and yes, working is the best way to stay sane and you are doing amazing. Love crossfit and haven’t done in ages. I have to get back to my running too, thanks for inspiring.
    Love your purple hair and have loads of fun baking, and even more enjoying the process. Love and hugs.
    xx

    Reply
    • December 4, 2017 at 8:24 am
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      Overwhelming is an understatement Asha. I have so many things that I want to experiment with and it is hard to chose where to start.

      As for crossfit, missing it like crazy right now and training my upper body for that matter (triceps, biceps and shoulders are my favorite body parts to work). . .Unfortunately, I am having difficulties getting my injuries to heal so my workouts are currently limited to running, jump roping, and ab and leg training. It’s hard to avoid overtraining when you are so limited so I am now going down to 3 days a week in the gym and focusing the other days on mobility. . .which definitely will impact my endurance. Not looking forward to that first week back at crossfit given this. Anyhow. . .I guess it is a good excuse to improve my flexibility and work on shoulder and ankle mobility (which I recently discovered is severely lacking).

      Glad you like the purple hair. It has received such a positive response. . .and since I work in the creative area. . .I thought why not have some fun.

      Reply

Grab a slice of cake & let's chat. . .