Marbled Pumpkin Bundt Cake ~ this is my classic spiced pumpkin bread recipe swirled with deep chocolate and topped with a thick bittersweet ganache ~  because even humble pumpkin bread has a delicious dark side — who knew?

Chocolate and pumpkin is an epic combination, if you haven’t experienced it, this Marbled Pumpkin Bundt Cake is a great excuse to take the plunge.  There’s something about the spicy warmth of cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg and allspice, paired with bittersweet chocolate that is about as sophisticated as it gets.
I got the recipe for my original chocolate chip pumpkin bread years ago from my friend Jennifer.  Jennifer and I have long since lost touch, but her pumpkin bread has become a family tradition.  We start making it every September…sometimes even in August if the spirit moves us and it marks the start of the new season, (funny how a recipe can be more enduring than a friendship.)  It’s never let me down in all these years, it’s truly foolproof.  The spices are perfectly balanced, the cake is always tender, it always rises nicely, and pops right out of any pan.  For that reason I’ve rarely fiddled with it…until today!


wet ingredients
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie filling)
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/4 tsp each of nutmeg, cinnamon and allspice and ginger

dry ingredients
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • for chocolate batter
  • 1 Tbsp unsweetened dark cocoa powder
  • 1/2 cup bittersweet or semi-sweet chocolate chips, melted

  • 2/3 cups heavy cream
  • 2 cups bittersweet chocolate chips

  1. set oven to 350F
  2. Spray a nonstick bundt pan lightly with cooking spray and dust it lightly with flour.
  3. Whisk the wet ingredients together in a mixing bowl, making sure the eggs are well beaten, and set aside.
  4. Whisk the dry ingredients together and make sure the baking soda is well distributed and not lumpy.
  5. Add the dry ingredients to the wet, mixing just until everything is completely combined. Remove 1 cup of the batter to a small bowl, and add the cocoa powder and the melted chocolate. Mix well.
  6. Spoon the two batters alternately into the budnt pan. Don't worry about getting it completely even. When all the batter is in the pan, take a chopstick or other thin implement and swirl the two batters together.
  7. Bake for 30-45 minutes until the top springs back when lightly touched and a toothpick comes out with out wet batter clinging to it. The cooking time will vary depending on your particular bundt pan and your oven. My cake took just over 30 minutes. Check on the early side.
  8. Let the cake cool on a rack for 15 minutes, then loosen the edges and invert.
  9. To make the ganache, heat the cream until it just comes to a simmer. Take off the stove and add the chocolate. Let sit for 5 minutes without disturbing. Then stir until everything is thick and glossy and all the chocolate has melted.
  10. Spoon, pour, or drizzle over the cake.
This recipe makes a little bit extra ganache, never a problem in our house, but you can reduce the cream to 1/2 cup and the chocolate to 1 cup for a smaller batch.
I used Hershey’s Special Dark cocoa powder in my Marbled Pumpkin Bundt Cake, it is formulated to be extra dark and gives my cake that deep rich color.

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