Bobby’s Lighter Pumpkin Crunch

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Bobby’s Lighter Pumpkin Crunch

By Bobby Deen

Bobby’s Lighter Pumpkin Crunch

461 Fewer Calories
47g Less Fat

1 (15-ounce) can pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie mix)
1 (12-ounce) can fat-free evaporated milk
3/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 eggs whites
1 large egg
1 (16-ounce) package sugar-free yellow cake mix
1/2 cup chopped pecans
4 tablespoons cold butter, cut into small pieces


Preheat the oven to 350°F. Spray a 9 x 13-inch baking dish with nonstick spray.

Whisk the pumpkin puree, evaporated milk, sugar, and cinnamon in a large bowl until well mixed. Add the egg whites and egg, whisking until well blended.

Scrape the batter into the baking dish. Sprinkle the cake mix evenly over the batter to cover completely. Scatter the nuts and butter pieces over top.

Bake, uncovered, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with a few moist crumbs attached, 45 – 50 minutes. Cool on a wire rack.

Servings: 16
Prep: 10 min
Bake: 50 min
Difficulty: Easy
Per Serving: (1/16 of cake) 252 Cal; 5 g Protein; 8 g Tot Fat; 3 g Sat Fat; 3 g Mono Fat; 42 g Carb; 2 g Fiber; 13 g Sugar; 125 mg Calcium; 1 mg Iron; 257 mg Sodium; 22 mg Cholesterol


Even though Aunt Trina serves her pumpkin crunch with cream cheese frosting, our lighter version is so good we didn’t miss it. If you want to indulge, serve with a small scoop of sugar-free butter pecan ice cream or a little reduced-fat non-dairy whipped topping sprinkled with a little cinnamon. 

Original recipe courtesy Paula Deen:  Aunt Trina’s Holiday Pumpkin Crunch
Lightened Up recipe courtesy of Bobby Deen and the Paula Deen Test Kitchen

Bobby Deen is the younger son of celebrity chef Paula Deen. Like older brother Jamie, the Savannah resident has helped shape the Deen media empire with a series of highly successful commercial collaborations, ranging from three best selling cookbooks to the series Road Tasted on the Food Network, and the award winning Lady and Sons Restaurant in Savannah. On a personal side, he was also named one of People Magazine’s Most Eligible Bachelors in 2007.

Read More From Deen Bros.

Read More From Deen Bros Take it Lighter.

Read More From Bobby Lightens It Up.

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Leave a Comment

Reader Comments:


This is delicious and my family loved it! After trying this lighter version I simply cannot imagine the "original" version being better! I'll stick to this lighter version as any place I can cut back on I believe is a good thing - especially a dessert tasting this yummy!

By Connie on February 26, 2014


I love your recipes keep them coming you are amazing! Can we substitute spendable or another sugar substitute? I can not find the sugar free cake mix though any ideas on where I can find it?

By Rhonda Peevy on September 22, 2013


Love your show, Bobby, but you always say a serving size is what ever fat,calories is but never say how many servings in a recipe or what size is the serving.

By arlene oliver on February 10, 2013


My guests couldn't eat this cake...and I probably shouldn't have even served it since it looked as bad as it tasted. The cake mix did not get absorbed, the butter chunks melted in little spots instead of spreading more evenly, and the flavor was just average. My friends were wishing that I would quit trying to make something more healthful and just make delicious dishes. But I still appreciate the Deen Bros and their commitment to healthier fare! This recipe was shredded, though.

By Karin on February 05, 2013


Can Splenda be used instead of sugar? This recipe has to many carbs in it for me.

By susan on November 14, 2012


Hi i am deaf so dr tell me have little high sugar so it good bobby light pumpkin crunch cake

By Iris Yolanda Cox on November 10, 2012


Thank you!!!!***** Looks delicious! !!!!!!******

By Dixie Crabtree on October 24, 2012


The Carb count is wrong. It doesn't have 2 grams of carbs. It has at least 16 grams.

By Linda on October 23, 2012


Hey Bobby - Love you and Paula Deen. And, I was with you till I got to the Sugarfree (Aspartame) cake mix, ice cream and whipped toppings. Aspartame can trigger "Asparbesity" in children and adults - and a whole lot more. The megalithic artificial sweetener industry is "feeding" us a ton of misinformation when it comes to the safety and efficacy of their products. The absence of Calories does not equate with healthy and good-for-you. Diabetics are the most insidiously deceived and affected by the junk science put forth by Industry to sell a product. We offer a free test for diabetics to prove Aspartame affects the blood sugar levels in an adverse manner. Blood sugars are not controlled by use of Aspartame. Quite the opposite, but the American Dietetic Association (Registered Dieticians) will not tell you this, because they take millions from the Sweetener companies, such as tmNutraSweet. And tmNutraSweet writes their fact sheet on sweeteners. Please reevaluate your support of artificially-sweetened ingredients in foods. I can help with peer-reviewed studies from trusted corporate-neutral Scientists, showing adverse reactions, including 7 types of Cancers: Brain Tumors; Breast Tumors; Uterine Tumors; Lymphoma; Leukemia; Pancreatic Cancer; Kidney Cancer; Seizures and so much more. -- Respectfully, Mary Nash Stoddard/author Deadly Deception Story of Aspartame (Odenwald Press 1998)

By Mary Nash Stoddard on October 23, 2012


NEVERMIND on my last question i see it!

By Sonja Reifsteck on October 23, 2012


I would like to know the complete nutritional value for this recipe, can you please tell me where to find that. What about replacing the sugar with splenda? Gail - I just bought a sugar free cake mix at walmart of all places!

By Amy on October 23, 2012


Could you tell me how many pieces this should be cut into to get that caloric count please?

By Sonja Reifsteck on October 23, 2012


I curious to know. Is there some reason why you didn't use Stevia or Truvia instead of Sugar, to make the calories even less. This sounds delicous, but still to many calories. I love pumpkin. Thanks for making some lower calorie recipes.

By Lisa Smith on October 23, 2012


On the Bobby's lighter pumpkin crunch it calls for sugar free cake mix. I haven't seen it in the stores. Were do you buy it? Thanks

By Gail on October 02, 2012


I was just put on a salt free diet. Its wonderful Ive lost 15 pounds. I have run out of ideas. I was wondering if you had any good salt free recipes. I would really appriciate it. Thank you very much. I was wondering if you had any salt free, no sodium recipes. I was put on this diet by my doc. I had been putting alot of weight on. With this diet I have lost 15 pounds. Iam hoping to loose more. Same recipes every day gets boring. Thank You Esther Rodemack

By Esther Rodemack on September 10, 2012


Love the recipes, Wheres the cookbook?

By margaret foster on July 28, 2012


I am a Type 2 diabetic. I have found an ALL NATURAL sweetener that is made form Acai Berry and Kiwi fruit. It looks like sugar, tastes like sugar, dissolves like sugar and has NO AFTER TASTE!!! IT DOES NOT SPIKE BLOOD SUGAR. You use this product 1:1 just like sugar. It has changed my life. If you are interested, contact me via email Thanks Chuck

By Chuck Degan on January 18, 2012


This is SO EASY to make, and I've heard from people that don't like pumpkin-tasting things that they LOVE it! I actually throw in a little ground cloves, too, as my family loves the full pumpkin spices, haha. Thank you so much for this quick, easy, and tasty recipe!!

By JKJesser on October 31, 2011


I like that you post the nutrition counts I am diabetic and I can subsitute some of the ingrediants in these recipes. Thank You

By Anonymous on October 24, 2011


I make something similar called pumpkin pie cake. I leave out the nuts because of people I know who has nut allergies. I may test out this recipe just to see if it tastes similar to my recipe. I use fat free evaporated milk as well. I love pumpkin desserts and it's nice to see Paula's recipes lightened up for those of us who cook and eat healthy. Thanks Bobby--love watching you and your mom cook together! smile

By Therese on October 10, 2011

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