DessertMalia Howe

Pumpkin Crisp

DessertMalia Howe
Pumpkin Crisp

Let me begin my little pumpkin crisp ditty by saying that I hate pumpkin pie. The texture is all wrong and I'm not a huge fan of nutmeg or allspice. We used to belong to a Gourmet Club during residency and one month (I think November 2007) we had foods that were all orange in color. It was my turn for dessert, and the recipe was for a pumpkin crisp. Gross, I thought. But I went ahead and followed the directions, and put the yuckiest-looking pan of slop into the oven that I could ever imagine. An hour later, however, I pulled out something beautiful (again, there's that magical oven transformation). When I tasted it I was in love. Buttery, rich, crunch of pecans, and the pleasantness of cinnamon without that other stuff that generally goes along with it in pumpkin desserts. Topped with real whipped cream (this is essential--seriously, take 2 minutes and whip your own), this dessert is magical and better yet, requires about 5 minutes of your life to prepare. It's my go-to holiday dessert, for sure.


  • 1 can pumpkin puree
  • 1 c. sugar
  • 1 c. evaporated milk
  • 1 t. vanilla extract
  • 1/2 t. cinnamon
  • 1 box of butter yellow cake mix
  • 2 sticks of butter, melted (I never said this was good for you)
  • 1 c. chopped pecans


Mix pumpkin, sugar, evaporated milk, cinnamon, and vanilla together. Pour into a 9 x 13 pan. Sprinkle with the dry yellow cake mix. Drizzle melted butter over the top and sprinkle with pecans. Bake at 350 for 1 hr or until golden and crisp. Serve warm with whipped cream or ice cream (I've done both--actually prefer the whipped cream here). This is great reheated a couple days later.