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Colossal Caramel Apple Trifle Recipe

Colossal Caramel Apple Trifle Recipe

As a pastor's wife and state auxiliary leader, I host many large gatherings. Whenever I make this "punch bowl cake", it makes a big impression, I return with an empty bowl every time!" -Deborah Randall Abbeville, Louisiana
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 40 min. YIELD:42 servings


  • 1 package yellow cake mix (regular size)
  • 6 cups cold milk
  • 3 packages (3.4 ounces each) instant vanilla pudding mix
  • 1 teaspoon apple pie spice
  • 1 jar (12-1/4 ounces) caramel ice cream topping
  • 1-1/2 cups chopped pecans, toasted
  • 2 cans (21 ounces each) apple pie filling
  • 2 cartons (16 ounces each) frozen whipped topping, thawed


  • 1. Prepare and bake cake according to package directions, using two greased 9-in. round baking pans. Cool for 10 minutes before removing to wire racks to cool completely.
  • 2. In a large bowl, whisk milk, pudding mixes and apple pie spice for 2 minutes. Let stand for 2 minutes or until soft-set.
  • 3. Cut one cake layer if necessary to fit evenly in an 8-qt. punch bowl. Poke holes in cake with a long wooden skewer; gradually pour a third of the caramel topping over cake. Sprinkle with 1/2 cup pecans and spread with half of the pudding mixture.
  • 4. Spoon one can of pie filling over pudding; spread with one carton of whipped topping.
  • 5. Top with remaining cake and repeat layers. Drizzle with remaining caramel topping and sprinkle with remaining pecans. Refrigerate until serving. Yield: 42 servings (3/4 cup each).

Reviews for Colossal Caramel Apple Trifle

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_nlfPA User ID: 1879224 243755
Reviewed Feb. 13, 2016

"I made this for my niece's bridal shower and it was a hit with all of the ladies. I love to make it for company because not only does it look pretty but tastes just as good."

sweet5red User ID: 6986791 53529
Reviewed Nov. 20, 2012

"OMG this was so huge.. but i used cherry pie filling instead of apple and didnt use the spice. it litterally filled my bowl to the top.. made this for Thanksgiving desert. which is weds for us since i work the holiday and i used a white cake mix instead of yellow pretty contrast with the cherry pie filling but yes use a BIG bowl.."

karynabd User ID: 3076290 130529
Reviewed Nov. 1, 2012

"This was a huge hit at work. made it for a coworker for her birthday. and every one just loved it. only problem i had is that it is huge I have a 9" trifle bowl and after the first layer i put the second cake and it was at the top. so after some creative thinking i make a makeshift extention and was able to add rest of layers."

bfrazier12 User ID: 6887821 51862
Reviewed Sep. 26, 2012

"Look delicious"

gingerriss User ID: 4959883 60941
Reviewed Sep. 3, 2012

"It was alot of work and alot of product and I just felt it didnt have enough bang to it. Don't get me wrong it had a great taste to it but just felt like I was expecting more."

j.kathleen.mcdonald User ID: 2435826 56490
Reviewed Aug. 10, 2012

"I have made this 2-3 times, and I love it, except for the cake, I made it diabetic friendly, and no one knows I have used sugar free ingredients. Getting ready to make it again for a food/games night tomorrow night. Plan to make it for our church homecoming again, too!"

Cornwall User ID: 1529365 130526
Reviewed Apr. 9, 2012

"I've made this a few times and it's excellent. I usually make only half or in two separate bowls."

Khasaundra User ID: 6197518 56486
Reviewed Sep. 29, 2011

"It was a lot but it all disappeared fast."

j.kathleen.mcdonald User ID: 2435826 56485
Reviewed Jul. 21, 2011

"I make this for our church Homecoming in September, using no sugar added ingredients, it is awesome!!!"

linsvin User ID: 1584655 60939
Reviewed Jul. 13, 2011

"I had a hard time finding a punch bowl with the bottom even half as large for the cake. Decided to cut recipe in half and baked the cake in a 13x9 inch cake pan. Eyeballed the portion for layering and it fit perfectly. Got rave reviews for a summer BBQ. Personally I would make this in the fall. It's taste reminds me cool crisp days, not hot July. It was very good though and I would definitely make this again. Super easy!"

vh651 User ID: 3624236 77576
Reviewed Jun. 7, 2011

"This is one of my most asked for desserts. I made it for a Thanksgiving get-together and everyone raved about it. Everyone demanded the recipe. Even the youngest kids asked for a second helping."

Ladyslipermn User ID: 5307700 130521
Reviewed Feb. 24, 2011

"This was so easy to make,it was very good."

Kasey007 User ID: 2359369 77570
Reviewed Jan. 28, 2011

"This was a hit for a large cookout. Be prepared for requests for this recipe!!"

REsther User ID: 2186238 205872
Reviewed Nov. 20, 2010

"This recipe is wonderful. It's easy but it makes too much for us. I split the recipe and it was plenty. It would be enough for a very large gathering otherwise. Try it, it's great!"

patmarkham User ID: 3491693 53526
Reviewed Oct. 28, 2010

"Looks as good as it tastes. They licked the bowl clean - no need to worry about left-overs."

linmel06 User ID: 3885016 91334
Reviewed Sep. 15, 2010

"I made this for a party and everyone asked for the recipe! It made a huge bowl. Make sure to serve to a lot of people- once it is dug into, it becomes a bit of a mess and leftovers are no good."

sunnigirl User ID: 1045184 130517
Reviewed Sep. 8, 2010

"I'm going to make this for our family gathering on Sunday..I'm going to use 2 pkgs french van and 1- cheesecake for the puddings..and probably add 8oz of cream cheese to it (always better with cream cheese :) also add some cool whip to it so it looks fluffier..I'll probably also be adding a candy bar of some type, instead of pecans..I'm sure with the changes i"ll be giving it a 5* rating :)"

chirey User ID: 1371783 53525
Reviewed Sep. 6, 2010

"I was so dissapointed with this recipe. It tasted like cake, cool whip and cold apple pie filling. Boring. Couldn't taste the caramel and the nuts were not that noticable. I was looking for a caramel apple flavor and the dessert fell short of my expectations. I took it to a Labor day picnic with my family, who are not shy about voicing their opinions of food, and not one of the 8 who tried it gave it a thumbs up. Best response was "it's edible". I love taste of home and brag about it and the recipes all the time but this is not one I would suggest. (I did cut the recipe in half but did so with all ingredients so that shouldn't affect its outcome)"

bettycrockerjr User ID: 170075 51861
Reviewed Sep. 1, 2010

"DELICIOUS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I'm making it this Labor Day for a neighborhood barbecue-I know they will love it (I've made it previously, but not for this crowd!)"

gmasheri User ID: 2050235 57627
Reviewed Jul. 18, 2010

"Why not share the 'secret' changes???"

dolphingirl2 User ID: 4989574 51854
Reviewed Apr. 29, 2010

"this looks good!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!"

Suelon User ID: 269823 57626
Reviewed Apr. 16, 2010

"I made this for a block party and everyone loved it! I bought a punch bowl at Goodwill to put it in and left it with the hostess so she could make her own."

hill95 User ID: 686814 131493
Reviewed Nov. 19, 2009

"Love it...though I did make a couple ingredient changes, I use Heath bits in place of the pecans and a couple other secret changes. Everyone LOVES it though!"

ssstome User ID: 2989727 144786
Reviewed Oct. 20, 2009

"So good! Never have left overs. Hve cut the recipe in half and it's just as good."

86county User ID: 2212728 91083
Reviewed Jul. 9, 2009

"This recipe makes alot! Was very easy to substitute sugar free ingredients as well with a great flavor. Would make again but cut in half."

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