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Bobby’s Lighter Caramel Cake

By Bobby Deen


Difficulty: Medium

Prep time: 15 minutes

Cook time: 15 minutes

Servings: 15


  • 1 (8 oz) package reduced-fat cream cheese
  • 1 1/2 cups confectioner's sugar
  • 1/4 cup fat-free caramel sauce
  • 4 tablespoons chopped and divided pecans
  • 1 cup (not self-rising) cake flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3/4 cup packed divided light brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup canola oil
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1 3/4 teaspoon divided vanilla extract
  • 2/3 cup plus 1/2 cup for filling reduced fat milk
  • 2 tablespoons all purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons butter


To make the frosting, with an electric mixer on high speed, beat the cream cheese, confectioner’s sugar, and caramel sauce until blended. Stir in 2 tablespoons nuts. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.

Preheat the oven to 350 °F. Spray a 9-inch round cake pan with nonstick spray.

Line the bottom with wax paper; lightly spray with nonstick spray.

To make the cake, whisk together the cake flour, baking powder, salt, and baking soda in a small bowl. With an electric mixer on medium speed, beat the 1/2 cup brown sugar, oil, and granulated sugar until smooth. Beat in the egg, egg yolk, and 3/4 teaspoon vanilla. Alternately add the flour mixture and 2/3 cup milk, beginning and ending with the flour mixture and beating just until blended.

Pour the batter into the pan. Level batter by holding pan 3 or 4-inches above counter dropping it flat onto counter. Do this several times to release air bubbles and assure a more level cake.

Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, 25 – 30 minutes. Let cool in the pan on a rack 10 minutes. Remove the cake from the pan and let cool completely on the rack.

Meanwhile, to make the filling, combine 1/4 cup brown sugar and 2 tablespoons flour in a small saucepan. Whisk in 1/2 cup milk; bring to a boil. Boil until the mixture just begins to thicken, 1–2 minutes whisking constantly. Remove from the heat; stir in the 2 tablespoons nuts, butter, 1 teaspoon vanilla and pinch salt. Let cool completely.

Split the cake layer in half with a long serrated knife. Place the bottom layer, cut side up, on a serving plate. Spread the filling evenly over the layer, leaving a 1/2-inch border. Place the remaining layer on top, rounded side up. Spoon the frosting over the top, allowing it to drizzle down the side of the cake. Refrigerate until set.

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