Colossal Caramel Apple Trifle Recipe
Colossal Caramel Apple Trifle Recipe photo by Taste of Home
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Colossal Caramel Apple Trifle Recipe

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4.5 25 43
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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.
MAKES:42 servings
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 40 min.
MAKES: 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).
Originally published as Colossal Caramel Apple Trifle in Taste of Home February/March 2004, p39

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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!"

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