I will present a new method to constrain the quantum effective action of gravity, inspired by recent results from causal dynamical triangulations (CDT). After a short introduction to CDT, I will start from a parameterisation of the effective action to calculate correlation functions for observable quantities. Matching these correlators to CDT data allows to reverse-engineer the couplings which describe the effective dynamics. As a concrete example, the autocorrelation of spatial volume fluctuations is considered. The comparison to CDT data suggests the existence of non-local interaction terms, which might have interesting phenomenological consequences for the interpretation of dark energy.