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The Great Indoors: PumPecApple dessert really stacks up

Host Tracy Briggs takes viewers on a culinary trip with the PumPecApple dessert – a pumpkin pie surrounded by pumpkin spice cake, pecan pie surrounded by chocolate cake and apple pie surrounded by apple spice cake – on this week’s episode of “The Great Indoors.” The Forum 2 / 2

In my family, I’m the one who brings dessert to most of our family celebrations.

It makes sense since my sister has always enjoyed cooking more than baking, while I like it the other way around.

So when the holidays approach, I’m always looking for new sweet treats to top off our meal.

This year I had help from my cousins on Facebook. One of them posted a suggestion for dessert this past Thanksgiving – something called the PumPecApple Pie Cake from the Three Brothers Bakery in Houston.

It’s an elaborate concoction that contains three kinds of pie and three kinds of cake, similar to the better known Cherpumple. But the PumPecApple contains pumpkin pie surrounded by pumpkin spice cake, pecan pie surrounded by chocolate cake and apple pie surrounded by apple spice cake.

At the bakery, the dessert sells for a whopping $175 dollars. But I knew we could do it more economically. In the end, I spent less than $25 on ingredients.

I revised the recipe a little based upon the kinds of boxed cake mixes available at the store. (Yes, I went there. I used boxed mixes. I also used canned frosting if I’m being totally honest.)

It was very time consuming – almost 5 hours from start to finish. (Although, if I had had more cake pans, I would have saved a couple of hours). The layers made the end product almost a foot tall and at least 15 pounds.

In my opinion, the spectacle of the concoction was more impressive than the taste of the cake itself – too many flavors competing against one another. It was dessert information overload.

The selling point is the craziness of it all – cutting into the cake and seeing six layers of dessert. It was something to see, as much a source of entertainment as sugar and carbs. To see exactly how I made the cake, watch our video at

I’m not sure I’ll do this again. It added a little fun to our holiday celebration, but I’m also a sucker for a simple pumpkin pie loaded with whipped cream.


1 box pumpkin spice or regular spice cake

1 box chocolate cake mix

1 box apple spice, caramel cake, or yellow cake

Caramel sauce

1 pumpkin pie, already baked

1 pecan pie, already baked

1 apple pie, already baked

3 tubs of cream cheese frosting


Mix cake mix. Pour about one cup of each of the cake mixes into three spring-form pans.

Put pumpkin pie, top down, in pan with spice cake batter. Pour the rest of the spice cake mix on top of pie so it’s completely covered.

Repeat this process with the other pie/cake combinations: pecan pie surrounded by chocolate cake, and apple pie surrounded by the apple spice, caramel cake or yellow cake. (I used yellow cake and added a little caramel sauce to the mix).

Bake pies at 350 degrees for at least an hour. Cool cakes completely.

Freeze overnight.

In the morning, place apple pie/cake on cake platter so pie is faced right side up. (Remember the pies were placed in the cake pan upside down, so you will need to flip the cake over on the platter).

Frost top of cake with cream cheese frosting. Place pecan/chocolate cake on top of bottom layer. Frost top. Place pumpkin/spice cake on top. Frost entire cake. Decorate by drizzling caramel sauce on top.

Watch ‘The Great Indoors’ with Tracy Briggs every Thursday on

Tracy Briggs

Tracy Briggs is a former TV anchor/radio host currently working as a features writer and video host for Forum Communications.

(701) 451-5632