1 yellow cake mix
1 Tablespoon Pumpkin Pie Spice
1 block cream cheese, softened
1 can sweetened condensed milk
1 cup pumpkin puree
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup toasted nuts (optional)
2-3 cups marshmallows (fun shapes look very cool)
sprinkles for decorating
Prepare cake according to package directions adding 1 Tablespoon Pumpkin Pie Spice to the dry mix. Pour cake into a greased and floured 9X13 pan and bake according to box directions. Set aside to cool. When cool cut or break up the cake into 1ish by 1ish squares.
In a bowl combine the cream cheese, sweetened condensed milk, pumpkin and vanilla. Beat for several minutes until well combined and light and fluffy. Set aside.
To toast the nuts; melt 1-2 teaspoons in a heavy bottom skillet til melted and bubbly. Add in the chopped nuts along with a generous pinch of salt. Stir the nuts constantly to coat with butter. Don't step away from the nuts. They can go from toasted to burnt in a flash (Yes, I speak from experience) The nuts are toasted when they take on a rich color and they give off a rich aroma. Remove from heat.
To assemble the trifle, In the bottom of a bowl put a layer of cake chunks, top with the cream cheese mixture, next a sprinkling of nuts and a layer of marshmallows, repeat these layers till your bowl is full or you run out of ingredients. It looks best if the layers are distinct around the edge of the bowl. Top with a generous amount of sprinkles. Place in the frig to set for an hour or more. You can make individual trifles in small cups as well.
Use this recipe as a jumping off point. Change up the layers as you wish. Butterscotch pudding also works well as a layer. Broken up pretzels add a salty bite as well