Fall is definitely in the air ... on the internet ... and in my kitchen! One of the best things about Fall is all the pumpkin goodness. I am not gonna lie, Spring may be my favorite season (I love watching the flowers bloom and the weather seems perfect) .... but by far, Fall has some of my favorite foods and flavors - and is a close second in terms of my favorite season!
I learned a very valuable lesson earlier this year - apparently they don't stock canned pumpkin year-round at our local Wally World .. or any other store here in Eastern NC for that matter. I have never lived in such a place. I went to buy canned pumpkin in February of this year and was told "it's a seasonal item" .... really?! This year I am stock-piling it like it's nobody's business. I will not make the same mistake twice.
Poke Cakes are not new to the scene .... they've been around for awhile. I've seen tons of variations, but I've never seen a Pumpkin Spice Poke Cake .... and that's exactly what I'm sharing with you today! If you love pumpkin and spice, you are going to *L*O*V*E* this cake. It's like eating pumpkin pie in cake form!! Soooo good!
Oh, and if you live in a weird place like Eastern NC, where they don't sell canned pumpkin year-round, you might wanna stock up too .....
Spray a 9x13-in. baking pan with cooking spray and set aside.
Place the cake mix, pumpkin and eggs in a large mixing bowl. Mix on low speed with an electric mixer for 1 minute. Stop the mixer and scrape down the sides of the bowl with a spatula. Mix on medium speed for another minute or two or until the mixture looks well combined. Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Level out with the spatula.
Bake for 30 minutes or until toothpick inserted near the center tests clean. Remove from the oven and allow to cool while you prepare the pudding mixture.
Using the handle part of a wooden spoon, poke holes in the cooled cake. There is no set number of holes, but you want plenty of nooks and crannies for your pudding to fill. In a large mixing bowl, combine the pudding mixes and milk. Whisk until the pudding mix completely dissolves. Pour the pudding over the cake - filling the holes as best you can. Level out the pudding and gently push pudding into the holes to fill. Cover your cake pan with plastic wrap and refrigerate for about 2 hours or until the cake has cooled completely and the pudding is set up.
Remove the cake from the refrigerator and spread the whipped topping evenly over the top of the cake. If desired, top with pumpkin candies to decorate.