This time of year dinner party dessert tables are laden with pies; apple, bourbon pecan, mincemeat (can anyone tell me EXACTLY what that is??), the list goes on and on.  Additionally, to the gluten-free party-goers, a decent gluten-free pie crust is difficult to come by.  To spice things up a bit, when invited to a holiday gathering, I rely on my trusty crowd-pleasing sidekick: 

bundt. cake.

Really, it’s difficult to mess up a bundt. This past Saturday for an annual friend Thanksgiving party, I looked at what was leftover in my fridge and settled on, Pumpkin Cranberry Spice Cake with Candied Orange Peel.  It was moist, decorative, and best of all gluten-free!


1/2 lbs unsalted butter, melted

4 large eggs

3/4 cup sugar

2 cups packed pumpkin

2 tsp Pure Vanilla Extract (Orange and Almond Extracts also work)

2 2/3 cups Gluten-Free Flour blend (I use Pamela’s for most cake recipes)

2 tsp Ginger (fresh grated if you can)

2 tsp Cinnamon, ground

1/2 tsp Cloves, ground

Cranberry Filling

1 cup fresh whole cranberries

1 cup water

1/2 cup orange juice

1/3 cup sugar

1 tsp Pure Vanilla Extract

2 Tbs orange peel

Candied Orange Peel

Peel of 1 whole orange, julienned

1/4 cup sugar

1/3 cup water

1 tsp fresh ginger grated


Pre-heat oven to 350, butter & flour a standard-size bundt pan.

Mix butter, eggs, and sugar in a stand-mixer or with a hand-held blender until just combined.  Add pumpkin and vanilla, mix to combine.  Add remaining ingredients, stir to combine.  

Add all ingredients for cranberry filling into a medium-size sauce pan, and put over medium-high heat.  Stir until sugar dissolves. When it begins to boil, reduce heat to medium-low and cook until sauce thickens, stirring occasionally.  Strain the majority of the liquid from the cranberries, reserving the liquid for cranberry glaze.

Pour half of the pumpkin batter into the prepared bundt pan, then ladle cranberry filling evenly into the pan.  Add remaining batter and bake for 35-40 minutes, or until golden brown and it begins to pull away from the side of the pan. Allow to cool completely before inverting on to a cake plate.  

While cake is cooling, combine all ingredients for the candied orange peel into a small sauce pan.  Stir until sugar dissolves and all orange pieces are coated. Keep over medium-low heat until orange peel becomes translucent at edges, continue to stir so it does not stick to the pan, or burn. Additional water can be added if it appears to evaporate too quickly.  I recommend taste testing the peel to ensure that the sugar has been absorbed and it is no longer bitter.

For cranberry glaze (optional), combine 2 cups of confectioner’s sugar with 1/2 cup of the reserved cranberry liquid.  Whisk until smooth, add additional liquid if it is too thick, but be careful not to add too much as the glaze will quickly become too watery.

Invert cake onto dish, spread glaze onto top of cake and sprinkle with candied orange peel.  Serve with a smile!

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