Pumpkin Gingerbread Trifle

A Note from Tony:
This recipe from my mother-in-law, Marilyn Anstett, was inspired years ago by an episode of Paula Deen’s show. Paula’s recipe used a packaged gingerbread and pudding mix, but Marilyn is a terrific home cook and when she’s cooking for the holidays everything is made from scratch. So she adapted Paula’s recipe to suit her needs. Paula’s recipe can be found on the web and is a good alternative if you are short on time. 

Marilyn Anstett’s Pumpkin Trifle

 Serves: 8 to 12

Gingerbread Recipe

½ cup shortening
2 tablespoons sugar
1 egg
1 cup dark molasses
1 cup boiling water
2 ¼  cups flour
1 teaspoon soda
½ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ginger
1 teaspoon cinnamon

Pre-heat oven to 325°F.

Grease and flour a 9×9 baking pan. Cream the shortening, egg and sugar together until well creamed. Blend in the molasses and water until incorporated. Add the dry ingredients and blend in, beating until smooth in texture. Bake for 45-50 minutes.


½ cup sugar
2 tablespoons cornstarch
½ teaspoon salt
2 cups milk
2 egg yolks slightly beaten
2 teaspoons butter
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 can pumpkin pie filling
½ cup brown sugar
¼ teaspoon cardamom or cinnamon

Mix sugar, salt and cornstarch in a saucepan over medium-low heat, and gradually stir in the milk. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until the mixture thickens and boils. Boil for one minute.

Gradually stir half of the mixture into beaten egg yolks, then blend into hot mixture in the saucepan. Boil one minute more, stirring constantly. Remove from heat, stir in the butter, vanilla, pumpkin pie filling, sugar and cardamom. Cool at room temperature for about 1 hour.

Whipped Cream: Pint of whipping cream, whipped until holds firm peaks, add ¼ cup sugar and 2 teaspoons vanilla. Whip the cream again to incorporate the ingredients, about 1 minute more.

To Assemble the Trifle:
Use a large trifle or punch bowl – glass is preferred as it will better showcase the beautiful layers of the trifle.

Start by crumbling the gingerbread. Layer the Gingerbread along the bottom of your bowl, then follow with the Pumpkin Pudding, followed by the Whipped Cream. Repeat this process until you reach 1 inch from the top of the bowl.

Cover and refrigerate overnight before serving. This will help to the trifle to ‘set up’ and the flavors will reach the desired intensity. Serve the next day for best results.

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