Pumpkin Orgasmo: The Greatest Holiday Dish Since Turkish Delight

I'm self aware enough to admit that if 3 siblings and I went into a magic wardrobe leading to Narnia, I would hands-down be the Edmund of the group: the jerky snot who runs off, betrays his people and ruins everything. 

Just like Edmund, while on my self-absorbed fairy-bender, I would run into the White Witch. To get win me to her side she would do some of her albino house-elf magic and offer me a snack. An enchanted snack consisting of anything my cold, pouty heart could think of.

Now, C.S. Lewis' Edmund chose Turkish Delight, which I have to assume is authentic English fare and therefore unfit for human consumption. So here's where I am better than Edmund (but still in desperate need of Aslan #BecauseMetaphor).

If I was snowbound with a rumbly belly in the land of always-winter-but-never-Christmas, I would look right into that witch's face and demand my tummy's desire: Pumpkin Orgasmo.

I come to you today, not as Edmund, but in the role of the White Witch (a title that nails me on at least 1.5 out of 2 facets), to bestow upon you this gift. But rather than getting the Jesus-lion crucified, it is the culinary equivalent of proof that He is good and loves us all. #BecauseManna

Brace for afterglow.

I first had this dish 6 years ago. A friend brought it to our annual friendsgiving potluck and it stole the show and my heart. I think she called it "pumpkin cobbler," and that was just fine, but it didn't go far enough. So I rebranded this sexy baby with a far more descriptive surname (note: when I take this to church or school Thanksgiving feasts, I tend to let it just be "cobbler" because of, you know, propriety/cowardice). But I assure you, the orgazz can't be silenced.

I secured the recipe from my buddy, adapted it a little bit, and now I make it 3 or 4 times a year to insane fanfare. This is by far the lowest investment / highest reward dish in my arsenal. It really is stupidly delicious and just bananas easy to put together. 

It tastes just like October, November and December mated with heaven and this is their sprog.

You can even make most of it ahead of time and refrigerate until you're ready. I mean, now or later, an orgasmo never disappoints.

What's that you say? You hate pumpkin? Mmmkay. Yeah, me too, usually.  I actually loathe pumpkin pie. But when in Narnia, everything is different.

I need you to just roll with it. 

Trust me. 

When people say they won't try my pumpkin orgasmo because they aren't pumpkin fans, I have an almost physical panic rise up inside of me. I have to resist the urge to bodily grab them and force them to eat some. Focus on the orgasmo, I want to say, not the pumpkin.

So if you're hurting for something to impress your in-laws, to wow an office party, or put a neighbor to culinary shame...this is it. I am giving you the magic. Use it only for good.

Ingredients (serves 15-20):

3 eggs, beaten
1 (15 oz.) can  pure pumpkin (not pie filling)
1 (12 oz.) can evaporated milk
1 cup sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1 ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 (18 ½ oz.) package yellow cake mix
1 ¼ cup butter, melted
1 cup chopped nuts*

*walnuts, almonds, or pecans work great--or any combo of them

1. preheat the oven to 350° (unless you want to make it ahead and cook the next day or so)

2. In a mixing bowl, combine the first 8 ingredients (eggs through vanilla) and beat until mixed

3.  Pour mixture into ungreased 13x9 inch baking pan or 2 pie dishes (if you are making ahead stop here and refrigerate until your ready to cook it...just gently re-stir the mixture when you get it out of the fridge, it will be in liquid form)

You will get to this point and think, "nuh-UH! that chick is a liar. This looks like runny cold mud liquid!" Yes, yes it does, my friend. But have faith. Believe in the magic.

4. Sprinkle the cake mix evenly over the top of the liquid mixture (don't push it down or mix it in--let it just sit on top all light and ladylike). Use fork tines to gently rake the cake powder to all the corners and crevices where it needs to go. Don't sweat any clumps. It's so forgiving, yall.

5. Melt the butter until it's all liquid.

Yeah, I know. his is a tad obscene.  A picture is worth a thousand words...or, you know, 412 thousand calories.

6. Drizzle the butter evenly all over the cake mix 

Again, just get the butter generally well-spread all over. Dont get fussy about the drier or puddling areas. butter is a friendly fella. very eager to just make itself at home and spread out (like it does in my arteries and on my booty) and it will mingle in the oven.

7. Bake at 350°.  If you are using a 9x13" dish, set timer for 45-55 minutes, if using two pie dishes, set for 30-35 minutes.

8. Prepare thy nuts. For this batch I used 1/2 cup walnuts and 1/2 cup almonds. I have used pecans before too and they are awesome but were too expensive lately. One time jesse even added some heath bar crumbles (secretly, and only told me after) to the nut mixture and it was still great.

You can use a food processor or blender, but this little hand chopper is way easier to clean and perfect for little jobs.

From many...one. unite the clans!! chop until you can't tell the individual nuts apart and they are nice little crust-worthy shards. Do the whole bunch of them.

9. When your cooking time is almost done, open the oven and shake the container or rack a bit. if the middle of the mixture is still super liquidy/jiggly, let it cook a few minutes more. You want to leave it in until it is pretty stable. 

**It might look like the edges are "burnt" but they aren't. This brown edge crust is actually the most delicious and kind of the best part...tastes like a heavenly candy bar. So dont be afraid when it gets brown at the edges as you wait for the center to firm up. Our new hack is to eat the edges and then put it back in the oven to create new edges.

10. top the mixture with nuts

11. Pop the dish(es) back in the 350 oven on the top rack. bake for 10-15 minutes more until the nuts brown up and toasted a little bit.

 The house should smell like golden perfection at this point.

 Get out some seasonal flair and serve that baby up!

 I took a bite right out of the gooey middle

 Guaranteed satisfaction.

You'll have what she's having?  You should hope so.
. .


  1. You had me at "pumpkin"... just kidding, you had me at orgasmo.

  2. She's not kidding ladies, it's a mouth orgasm! (hmm... I feel like I shouldn't say that.) My Mom makes this. She opted to take another dessert to the church Thanksgiving dinner last week and there was almost a riot. People love this. We call it Pumpkin Dump Cake. We don't even melt the butter. We just put little slabs of it on the top. It does its thing in the oven.

    You can actually make all kinds of "dump cakes." Or cobblers, if you will. Peach, strawberry, cherry, pear. Put the cobbler filling in the pan. Store bought pie filling in a can works. Put the cake mix on top. Put the butter slabs on top. And voila! Homemade cobbler, ya'll.

    1. i refuse to call it "dump" anything, erica. though it is pretty similar to the dump cakes/cobblers my mom has made in the past. i never thought of that. orgasmo is on a whole other level though, i maintain! :)

  3. ditto...best "cobbler" i've ever tasted.

  4. Is this still tasty if it's not warm? Like....if i had to travel three hours with my dessert made for a family potluck, or do you recommend waiting to make this when I can eat it fresh out of the oven?

    1. this baby reheats like a dream. for your scenario, i would say to do everything through step 9. pack up the warm, nutless dish into the car, and then top with your chopped nuts and pop in a 350 oven when you get there. the nut-cooking time will toast the nuts AND rewarm the gooey underneath parts too.

  5. Oh, SNAP! A new recipe for Thanksgiving! Thanks for sharing :)

  6. Thank you for sharing! Was going to make sweet potato casserole...now I am making this instead :)!

  7. I made this today and it got rave reviews. Now I'm wondering what it would taste like with a spice cake mix instead of yellow cake? I just might have to try it :). Thanks for the recipe!

  8. Love the idea! But WAY too much butter!!! Can't even eat it...

    1. More for me! :) I have a hard time making this and seeing just how much butter goes I it so I can understand. Do you have a good alternative to the butter?

  9. I've been making this for years - always to great reviews!! I add the nuts prior to drizzling the butter and then bake. Once it cools, I top it with Cool Whip and serve. Most requested dessert (aside from my carrot cake) at my house!!