This easy pumpkin crisp recipe features a pumpkin pie filling layer toped with a crumbly cake topping. Add some chopped pecans and drizzle with coconut whipped topping for the ultimate pumpkin dessert!
I personally think eating pumpkins is something I do quite well. We all need to have a calling in life…who knows, that might just be mine! So I’ll begin the pumpkin eating tradition with this recipe for vegan pumpkin crisp.
I tested this vegan pumpkin crisp dessert several times to get it right. It was the crumble topping that really set it apart and added the special touch I was looking for. Because it’s made with a cake mix it’s more like pumpkin crisp dump cake. In fact, it reminds me of this chocolate dump cake recipe. That means it’s easy to make, another added bonus!
Why This Recipe is a Winner
- Using coconut milk in the pumpkin pie filling keeps this dessert rich and delicious
- Brown sugar adds a rich, caramel-like flavor to every bite
- Using a yellow cake mix for the crust keeps this dessert delicious and easy to make.
You can find the full printable recipe, including ingredient quantities, below. But first, here are some explanations of ingredients and steps to help you make this recipe perfect every time.
Here are the ingredients you’ll need for this recipe:
- Pumpkin puree — You’ll need 1 15 oz can of plain pumpkin puree
- Full-fat coconut milk — I look for coconut milk with at least 12–15 grams of fat
- Brown sugar — You can use light or dark, or make homemade brown sugar
- Granulated sugar
- Spices — We’ll use both ground cinnamon and pumpkin pie spice in this dessert.
- Yellow Cake Mix — Look at the ingredients to make sure the cake mix is made without eggs or dairy (You can also use Spice Cake Mix)
- Vegan butter — My favorite is Earth Balance
- Chopped pecans — This is optional, but adds a great touch.
What Pumpkin is Best for Pumpkin Crisp?
Pumpkin puree is made from the flesh of a squash, typically a smaller pumpkin than those you for jack-o-lanterns. It’s cooked and then mashed into a thick puree. You can make this yourself from scratch or buy it canned in the baking section of most grocery stores. Look for plain pumpkin puree or solid pack pumpkin, rather than pumpkin pie filling which oftentimes has other ingredients in it, like spices and sugar.
How to Make Vegan Pumpkin Crisp
If you are wondering how to make this creamy pumpkin crisp, you’ve come to the right place. Just follow these instructions and you’re good to go!
- Combine the pumpkin pie filling together in a bowl and pour it into a baking dish.
- Sprinkle the cake mix equally across the top of the pumpkin mixture.
- Drizzle the top of the cake mix with the melted vegan butter.
- Top with chopped pecans.
- Bake for 40 minutes until the topping is golden brown.
- Remove from the oven and let it cool for 10 to 20 minutes.
- Serve warm.
Step One: Make Pumpkin Pie Filling
This is a pumpkin crisp with sweetened condensed milk in the filling. Because we’re making this dairy-free, we’ll use a simple coconut milk condensed milk which works perfectly. Here’s how to make it:
- Combine Ingredients — Combine the pumpkin puree, coconut milk, sugars, cornstarch, and spices in a bowl. Stir vigorously to combine. If your coconut milk is somewhat solid, you can use a mixer or food processor to make this step faster. Or, heat the coconut milk in the microwave for 20–30 seconds to make it smoother.
- Pour — Pour the pumpkin mixture into the prepared baking dish.
Step Two: Crumble Topping
- Sprinkle Cake Mix — Open the box of cake mix and distribute it equally across the top of the pumpkin mixture.
- Drizzle Butter — Drizzle the top of the cake mix with the melted vegan butter. Then top with chopped pecans.
Step Three: Bake
Remove the dish from the oven and set it aside to cool for 10–20 minutes. Be sure to serve warm slices with a dollop of favorite non-dairy ice cream, like Vegan No-Churn Ice Cream or this Coconut Whipped Cream.
And this recipe allows me to add another one to my list of 100 Things to Do with Chickpeas. I know. Chickpeas. Who’d have thought? But it works. If you don’t believe me, maybe you’ll just have to make this recipe for yourself. Of course, you could also just ask my family.
Does pumpkin crisp need to be refrigerated?
You should refrigerate your pumpkin dessert bars to preserve it and keep it fresh. It will keep up to 5 days in the fridge.
What can I substitute for cornstarch?
If you don’t use cornstarch in your recipes, you can substitute arrowroot powder or tapioca starch.
If you love these pumpkin crisp bars, here are even more pumpkin desserts to try!
Vegan Pumpkin Crisp
Pumpkin Pie Filling
- 1 Package of Yellow or Spice Cake Mix* (see notes)
- ½ cup vegan butter melted
- ½ cup chopped pecan
For the Pumpkin Pie Filling:
- Preheat your oven to 350°F/175°C. Prepare a 9×13 baking pan by giving it a light coating of vegetable spray.
- Combine the pumpkin puree, coconut milk, sugars, cornstarch, and spices in a bowl. Stir vigorously to combine. If your coconut milk is somewhat solid, you can use a mixer or food processor to make this step faster. Or, heat the coconut milk in the microwave for 20 to 30 seconds to make it smoother.
- Pour the pumpkin mixture into the prepared baking dish.
For the Crumble Topping
- Open the box of cake mix and distribute it equally across the top of the pumpkin mixture.
- Drizzle the top of the cake mix with the melted vegan butter. Then top with chopped pecans.
- Bake for 40 minutes until the center is set and the topping is golden brown.
- Remove the pan from the oven and set it aside to cool for 10 to 20 minutes. Serve while still warm with a dollop of your favorite non-dairy ice cream or vegan whipped cream.
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The nutrition information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator and should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.