Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Snack Cake

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a fork in a piece of Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Snack Cake

This super soft pumpkin snack cake has a hint of pumpkin pie spice with chocolate chips in every bite. We call it snack cake because it’s not super sweet – just sweet enough (and only 160 calories per square) to justify a slice with a late afternoon cup of tea. It’s a great afternoon pick-me-up! (But we like it for dessert too!) It can also be used as the base cake for my Pumpkin Spice Trifle if you are looking for a special dessert to take to a fall event or just want to make your family a delicious treat.

a piece of Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Snack Cake on a white plate

Yup. All the pumpkin. It’s here, and I can’t get enough.

chocolate chips and pumpkin on a white table

We’ve been testing these pumpkin squares for a few weeks, looking for just the right balance of super flavorful, moist and light. Anyone and everyone we know has taste tested these, and this version was the solid winner.

unbaked Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Snack Cake in a white baking dish

Sliced into little squares, this pumpkin chocolate chip snack cake is a super handy thing to have on hand. It keeps great for three to four days at room temperature and is perfect for grabbing on the go or for a little something sweet after dinner. It’s the sort of thing that should be in the cake equivalent of a cookie jar.

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Snack Cake on a cooling rack

Lighter than a blondie, more moist than most cakes, snack cake is just the right name for this 8 x 8 beauty.

I was so excited to share the finished recipe that I quickly whipped it up for some friends we had over on Sunday. However, between the toddlers underfoot and the certainty that I knew this recipe in and out, I spooned an entire can of pumpkin puree into the bars (the recipe calls for 3/4 cup). When I realized my mistake, I slid the pan in the oven and crossed my fingers. And they came out great! Dense and creamy – almost like fudge. No photos of that version, but the lesson is: even if you get distracted and add a whole can of pumpkin – carry on. You won’t be sorry.

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Snack Cake on a brown table

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Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Snack Cake with a fork
4.50 from 18 votes

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Snack Cake

This super soft pumpkin snack cake has a hint of pumpkin pie spice with chocolate chips in every bite. We call it snack cake because it's not super sweet - just sweet enough to justify a slice with a late afternoon cup of tea. (But we like it for dessert too!)
Prep: 45 minutes
Cook: 30 minutes
Total: 1 hour 15 minutes
Servings: 16 servings

Equipment

  • Mixing Bowls
  • Stand or Handheld Mixer
  • 8x8 baking dish

Ingredients 

  • 1 Egg + 1 Egg yolk
  • 1 cup All-Purpose Flour
  • 1 tsp Pumpkin Pie Spice
  • 1/2 tsp Ground Cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp Baking Soda
  • 1/2 tsp Salt
  • 1 stick (1/2 cup) Unsalted Butter, at room temp
  • 1/2 cup Granulated Sugar
  • 1/4 cup Dark Brown Sugar (light brown sugar will work as well)
  • 1 tsp Pure Vanilla Extract
  • 3/4 cup Pumpkin Puree (not pumpkin pie filling)
  • 2/3 cup Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips (plus a few for sprinkling on top)

Instructions 

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  • Line an 8 x 8 baking dish with parchment paper and / or spray it with nonstick cooking spray.
  • Whisk together egg and egg yolk. Set them near the oven as it's heating up (the eggs should be about room temperature when you add them to the batter).
  • In a small bowl, whisk together flour, pumpkin pie spice, cinnamon, baking soda and salt.
  • In the bowl of a standing mixer or with a hand mixer, beat butter until creamy. Add granulated sugar and brown sugar and beat on high until light and fluffy, ~2 minutes.
  • Add egg, egg yolk and vanilla and mix until combined.
  • Add pumpkin puree and mix on medium until combined (the mixture will look lumpy and slightly broken).
  • Add dry ingredients in two increments, mixing on low between each addition. Add 2/3 cup chocolate chips and stir to combine.
  • Pour batter into prepared pan and smooth the surface out with a spatula (it will be quite thick). Sprinkle a few chocolate chips over top.
  • Bake until the cake is just set in the middle, 30-35 minutes (see note).
  • Let cool completely in the pan before slicing into squares.

Notes

This cake is even better (and more moist) after a day or two. Store it in a sealed container at room temperature.
In my thin metal baking dish, these cook in exactly 30 minutes. In my thick ceramic baking dish (shown in the photos above), the cake takes about 35 minutes.

Nutrition

Serving: 1g | Calories: 119kcal | Carbohydrates: 21g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 3g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 11mg | Sodium: 119mg | Potassium: 83mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 13g | Vitamin A: 1806IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 15mg | Iron: 1mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Author: Jess Smith via Inquiring Chef
Calories: 119
Keyword: chocolate chip recipe, easy cake, pumpkin, snack cake
Like this? Leave a comment below!Jump to Comments

Molly and Clara loved making this snack cake as well as the many other baked goods we have coming for you this fall! Their only change would be to double the chocolate chips. And add sprinkles. And maybe frosting…

Baking with Molly and Clara

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About Jess Smith

Jess is the recipe creator and photographer at InquiringChef.com. She spent nearly a decade as the Chief Recipe Developer for the award-winning meal planning app Cook Smarts. Her colorful, healthyish recipes have been featured in popular online publications including Parade, Hallmark, and HuffPost.

4.50 from 18 votes (15 ratings without comment)

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8 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    Well, you were right about the flavor improving over time. Day one, I thought “Meh, I’ll eat it, but I won’t be making it again.” Day three, “This is actually pretty good…” Today is day four and it is delicious! I put a note on my print-out to make it a couple days before I plan to serve it. Really glad I took a chance and doubled the recipe (using three whole eggs rather than two whole and two yolks; and baked for 50 minutes in a 13 x 9 glass baking dish).

    1. Yes! Some recipes just end up working out that way – I can never predict it, but it’s always good to know if they work best a couple days ahead. So glad to hear it worked in the 9×13 too!

  2. I made this and it is delicious. I used two whole eggs and changed the butter to canola oil. It was sweet and super moist! Added a drizzle of frosting and it was devoured. Thanks for the recipe!

  3. This looks delicious. I don’t know how overlooked this post a couple years ago. What a cute picture of your little helpers! I want to make this snack cake to share for fellowship time at church soon. (Otherwise I’d eat it all myself.)

  4. 5 stars
    I love choco chip.whenever my mom makes the cake, I am eaten all choco chip and for this fighting with my brother. I loved it. I am excited to make it and mix lots of choco chip.yummyyyyyyyyyy………

  5. 5 stars
    Pumpkin spice cake is the perfect epitome for October! So glad that I found this recipe. I was just thinking of baking a chocolate cake for my nephew’s birthday this coming weekend, but I think he’s going to love this way more! Thak you for sharing, keep posting more, all the love from Nepal! xx