Pumpkin and Gingerbread Trifle

Laurel Randolph
  • 40 mins
  • Prep: 10 mins,
  • Cook: 30 mins
  • Yield: 10 servings

Fall is the season for all things pumpkin and gingerbread, so why not combine the two flavors for the ultimate fall dessert? Moist and spicy gingerbread is cubed and layered with pumpkin pudding and topped with fresh whipped cream. It's a dessert that's full of warm spice and just enough sweetness, and is pretty enough for a party.

If you own a trifle dish, then you'll have a beautiful centerpiece—but don't worry if you don't own the titular serving dish. Trifles are also lovely stacked into all sorts of glasses and jars for a single-serving dessert. Just make sure that whatever you use is clear so that you can see the layers.

The gingerbread recipe is based on King Arthur Flour's recipe, but you can use your favorite recipe, a boxed mix or a pre-made bakery gingerbread. Dark and spicy work best, since the pudding and whipped cream lighten things up. You'll have a few squares left over to have with tea the next morning.

What You'll Need

  • For the Gingerbread:
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon allspice
  • 1 cup buttermilk or 1/2 cup plain yogurt and 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted and cooled to room temperature
  • 3/4 molasses
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • For the Pumpkin Pudding:
  • 1 (15-ounce) can plain pumpkin puree
  • 1 1/2 cup cold milk
  • 1 (3.5-ounce) box instant vanilla pudding
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • For the Whipped Cream:
  • 8 ounces heavy cream
  • 2 tablespoons packed powdered sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract

How to Make It

For the Gingerbread:

  1. Grease a 9" square pan. Preheat the oven to 350 F.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, ginger, cinnamon, baking soda, salt and allspice.
  3. Add the buttermilk, melted butter, molasses, water and egg. Mix until well combined.
  4. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 30-35 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out with clean or with a couple of crumbs and the cake is starting to pull away from the edges of the pan.
  1. Let cool completely. Slice the cake into small squares except for one 2" row. Reserve this cake for another use.

For the Pumpkin Pudding:

  1. Combine the pumpkin puree, milk, vanilla pudding mix, maple syrup and cinnamon in a large bowl. Beat with a hand mixer for 2 minutes until well combined and thickened.
  2. Chill until ready to use.

For the Whipped Cream:

  1. In a medium bowl, add the heavy cream, powdered sugar and vanilla. Beat with a hand mixer until stiff peaks form. Chill until ready to use.

To Assemble:

  1. Fill the bottom of a trifle dish or the bottom of each glass using half of the gingerbread squares, pressing down lightly to keep all of the pudding from running to the bottom.
  2. Spoon half of the pudding on top. Add the rest of the gingerbread squares on top, then repeat with the remaining pudding.
  3. Top with the whipped cream. Cover and chill for at least an hour before serving, or make up to a day in advance.