Pumpkin Roll

Learn how to make a classic pumpkin roll with this simple recipe and step-by-step photo tutorial.  Be sure to check out the video tutorial at the bottom of the post too!

Learn how to make this classic pumpkin roll recipe with a step-by-step photo and video tutorial! It's easy to make ahead of time, it's filled with a heavenly cream cheese filling, and it's always a crowd favorite!! | gimmesomeoven.com

Hey friends!  I’m popping back in to edit this post — three years after it originally aired here on zee blog — because I have two Very Important Pumpkin Roll updates to share with you.

First, we now have a fancy new video tutorial to go along with this recipe now, which I’m very excited about.  Because, of all the recipes on this blog, I have received probably the most questions from you all about the “roll” part of this recipe.  It’s one of those that’s harder to explain with text and pictures, so I’m happy to say that you can now watch the whole process in about 1 minute in the video at the bottom of this post.  Yessss!

Second, I need to let you all know that I have actually completely changed my method for how to make a pumpkin roll since I originally posted this three years ago.  The recipe is still the same.  But the old use-a-powdered-sugar-covered-towel-to-roll-up-the-cake method always used to weird me out a bit.  (<– I mean, I always used clean towels, but still.  The potential for towel fuzzies or smell seeping into the take always used to weird me out, and trying to flip the cake was hard, and all of that sugar always made such a mess!)  So I did a little experimenting, and as it turns out, you can absolutely — and very easily — roll, unroll, and roll this cake up again using a single simple sheet of parchment paper.  Mind = blown.  It’s SO much easier and doesn’t make a mess, and the pumpkin roll is as delicious as always.

So if you love pumpkin rolls as much as I do, you’ve gotta try it!  ♥ 

Learn how to make this classic pumpkin roll recipe with a step-by-step photo and video tutorial! It's easy to make ahead of time, it's filled with a heavenly cream cheese filling, and it's always a crowd favorite!! | gimmesomeoven.com

Now, with all of these healthier recipes on the site nowadays, I feel the need to disclaim — or maybe I shouldn’t feel the need — that this recipe is for a classic, granulated-sugary, AP-floury, buttery, cream-cheesy, traditional pumpkin roll.  That’s right, no healthy shortcuts here.  Because on on the one or two occasions a year that I get to eat a pumpkin roll, I want the real deal.  So this falls fully in the “indulgent” category of this blog, but I can assure you that I enjoy every single delicious bite.  Tradition, baby!  :)

But now, to break with tradition just a bit, here’s my more “modern” method for how to make a classic pumpkin roll.

Begin by mixing up a simple pumpkin cake batter.  You can either do this in a large mixing bowl by hand, or with a stand mixer.

Then lay a piece of parchment on a 15 x 10-inch baking sheet, leaving some extra room on the long (15-inch) sides so that you can easily lift the cake out after baking.  I like to sprinkle a little bit of water on my baking sheet to help the parchment stick and stay in place while I pour on the batter.  Then spread the batter evenly on top of the parchment.

Learn how to make this classic pumpkin roll recipe with a step-by-step photo and video tutorial! It's easy to make ahead of time, it's filled with a heavenly cream cheese filling, and it's always a crowd favorite!! | gimmesomeoven.com

Then get ready.  Because as soon as the cake comes out of the oven, run a knife around the short (10-inch) sides of the pan to loosen the cake.  Then grab the sides of the parchment to lift the cake out of the pan (careful not to burn yourself), and place it on a flat heat-proof surface.  (You may need to use oven mitts since the cake will still be very hot!)

Learn how to make this classic pumpkin roll recipe with a step-by-step photo and video tutorial! It's easy to make ahead of time, it's filled with a heavenly cream cheese filling, and it's always a crowd favorite!! | gimmesomeoven.com

Then very carefully roll the cake — I prefer rolling short end to short end — until it forms a complete roll.  Transfer that to a wire rack and let it cool completely to room temperature, seam-side-down so that they cake does not unroll.  Then while the cake is cooling, whip up your cream cheese filling.  You can either do this by hand or in a stand mixer.  Just be sure that your ingredients are room temp so that they’re easy to stir!

Learn how to make this classic pumpkin roll recipe with a step-by-step photo and video tutorial! It's easy to make ahead of time, it's filled with a heavenly cream cheese filling, and it's always a crowd favorite!! | gimmesomeoven.com

Once the cake has cooled, place it back on a flat surface and gently unroll it until the cake is mostly flat again.  Then spread the cream cheese filling out evenly on top of the cake, leaving a 3/4-inch border around all sides of the cake so that the filling doesn’t spill out while the cake is being re-rolled.

Then go ahead and roll the cake back up again, carefully peeling off the parchment paper as you roll until it until it is released.  Then wrap the finished pumpkin roll tightly in plastic wrap, and refrigerate it for at least an hour.

Learn how to make this classic pumpkin roll recipe with a step-by-step photo and video tutorial! It's easy to make ahead of time, it's filled with a heavenly cream cheese filling, and it's always a crowd favorite!! | gimmesomeoven.com

Once the cake has chilled a bit (especially that filling), remove and unwrap it when you’re ready to serve.  Then lightly dust the entire roll with powdered sugar, and slice it up!  I like to take a small slice off of both ends before serving, just in case the cream cheese didn’t completely fill those edges, to make it extra pretty.

Learn how to make this classic pumpkin roll recipe with a step-by-step photo and video tutorial! It's easy to make ahead of time, it's filled with a heavenly cream cheese filling, and it's always a crowd favorite!! | gimmesomeoven.com

Then voila — your beautiful pumpkin roll will be ready to enjoy!

Learn how to make this classic pumpkin roll recipe with a step-by-step photo and video tutorial! It's easy to make ahead of time, it's filled with a heavenly cream cheese filling, and it's always a crowd favorite!! | gimmesomeoven.com

Time to rock and pumpkin roll!  ;)

Pumpkin Roll

A classic pumpkin roll is always a crowd favorite!

Ingredients:

Pumpkin Cake Ingredients:

  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2/3 cup pumpkin puree
  • optional: powdered sugar (to sprinkle on at the end!)

Cream Cheese Filling Ingredients:

  • 1 (8 ounce) brick cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1 cup powdered sugar, sifted
  • 6 tablespoons butter, softened
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions:

To Make The Pumpkin Roll:

Preheat oven to 375° F.

Whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, cloves and salt in medium bowl until combined.

In a separate bowl, whisk eggs and granulated sugar for 1 minute until thick. Add in the vanilla and pumpkin, and whisk until just combined. Fold in the flour mixture with a rubber spatula, and stir together until just combined.

Line a 15 x 10-inch jelly-roll pan with parchment paper, leaving an extra 1-inch of parchment sticking up on both 15-inch sides of the pan so that you can easily lift the cake out after baking.  (If you'd like the parchment to stick to the bottom of the pan more easily, sprinkle a little bit of water on the pan and then press the parchment paper on top of it.  You can also lightly mist the top of the parchment paper with cooking spray for easier cake release afterwards, although it's not required.)

Spread the batter evenly into prepared pan.  Bake for 13 to 15 minutes, or until top of cake springs back when touched. Carefully lift the parchment paper and cake out onto a flat (and heat-safe) surface.  Then slowly, use your hands to roll the cake -- rolling from the short end to the short end -- until it is completely rolled up.  Transfer the cake roll to a wire rack, and cool until it reaches room temperature.

While the cake is cooling, make the cream cheese filling (see below).

When the cake has reached room temperature, transfer the cake roll to a flat surface, and carefully it until it is flat again (or mostly flat, it's ok if the ends curl up a bit). Spread the cream cheese mixture evenly over cake, leaving a 3/4-inch border on all sides.  Then carefully re-roll the cake, gently peeling away the parchment paper as you roll until you can completely remove and discard it. Tightly wrap the pumpkin roll in plastic wrap and refrigerate at least one hour.

Remove and unwrap the pumpkin roll and transfer it to your serving dish. Lightly dust the pumpkin roll on all sides with powdered sugar, if you would like.  Then slice* and serve.

If you have leftovers, just re-wrap the pumpkin roll in plastic wrap and store in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.

To Make The Cream Cheese Filling:

Whisk together cream cheese, powdered sugar, butter and vanilla extract until smooth. If the filling is too thin, add more powdered sugar. If it is too thick, add a half teaspoon or two of water.  (You want a medium consistency so that the filling is easy to spread, but not too warm or thin that it will ooze out of the cake when you're rolling it up.)

*If you want the cake to be pretty on the very ends, I recommend slicing off about 1/2-inch of the cake on both ends before serving.  Then you'll definitely see those pretty cream cheese swirls!

Recipe slighty adapted from Libby's.  Edited September 2016.

If you make this recipe, be sure to snap a photo and hashtag it #gimmesomeoven. I'd love to see what you cook!

Learn how to make this classic pumpkin roll recipe with a step-by-step photo and video tutorial! It's easy to make ahead of time, it's filled with a heavenly cream cheese filling, and it's always a crowd favorite!! | gimmesomeoven.com

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Comments

1 3 4 5
  1. Susan — November 23, 2016 @ 10:07 am (#)

    I just made this for Thanksgiving and my cake also cracked as I was peeling it off the parchment. Are you supposed to roll it IN the parchment right after coming out of oven? This was not clear to me, so I tried to peel it away from the parchment and roll it and it started cracking. It’s kind of sad looking, actually, but I will still serve it. Also the filling did not seem to be nearly enough. Overall, I think I flopped this recipe but sounds like I am in the minority. I might be a one-and-doner for pumpkin rolls !

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — November 23rd, 2016 @ 10:42 pm

      Oh no, we’re so sorry Susan! As soon as the cake comes out of the oven, you’re supposed to run a knife around the short (10-inch) sides of the pan to loosen the cake. Then grab the sides of the parchment to lift the cake out of the pan (careful not to burn yourself), and place it on a flat heat-proof surface. (You may need to use oven mitts since the cake will still be very hot!) We’re sorry you did this and it still cracked for you. We have found that rolling them very slowly RIGHT after they comes out of the oven helps. Also just unrolling and re-rolling it nice and slowly. But sometimes these boogers just crack anyway. :(

  2. Cindy Gary — November 23, 2016 @ 11:57 am (#)

    I had made this in the past but the old recipe I had told you to flip this out of the pan onto a towel dusted with powdered sugar. No parchment paper was suggested and this was very hard to do, many times it was a dust storm of powdered sugar when I would flip the cake onto that. For that very reason I stopped making it, I just wanted you to know the parchment paper idea is genius! I am inspired to make this again, as it is delicious and is very festive for the holidays. Thank you for posting it!

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — November 23rd, 2016 @ 10:43 pm

      You’re so welcome, Cindy — we hope you can give this method a try sometime soon! :)

  3. Lee McKeon — November 23, 2016 @ 5:58 pm (#)

    After seeing a picture of the pumpkin roll and watching your tutorial, I decided to give it a try for Thanksgiving dessert. Now, I consider myself to be a pretty good cook but never ventured to making a roll cake of any sort, it intimidated me! But I just finished making it, it’s in the fridge now, and even though I haven’t taste tested the cake itself, I can just tell it’s going to be a complete hit with my family. The filling (which I did taste test, of course!) is delicious and the cake itself was nice and moist. It was so easy following your instructions you’d think I made this many times before! So, if there’s anyone reading this comment who might be scared of trying it, just do it! Thank you, Ali!

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — November 28th, 2016 @ 12:39 pm

      Thanks for sharing with us, Lee, and for giving this a try! We hope you enjoyed it! :)

  4. Christina — November 23, 2016 @ 8:33 pm (#)

    Just made this today for Thanksgiving tomorrow. Followed the recipe exactly, and it turned out amazing!! (I might’ve already had a test slice).
    Thank you, you made this recipe very easy and approachable, this was my first time making a “roll” style cake. The video was also a big help! Will definitely be making this for years to come :)

    • Ali — November 24th, 2016 @ 1:15 pm

      Awesome!!! So glad to hear it!

  5. Karen Gladish — November 24, 2016 @ 6:43 am (#)

    Do we need to oil and/or flour the parchment paper prior to pouring the batter onto the paper?  Excited to try this recipe!

    • Ali — November 24th, 2016 @ 1:14 pm

      No need to oil the parchment. :-) Enjoy!!

  6. Brooke — November 25, 2016 @ 8:14 am (#)

    Thank you so much for posting this delicious recipe! It was so good and as my first attempt at a traditional pumpkin roll, I was so proud of it! The parchment paper (which I use for just about everything!) made an easy and flawless roll! I added crushed walnuts and cinnamon to the top of the cake before baking and a bit more butter and powdered sugar to make the filling more like icing – but your recipe is what did it! :D It was a total hit at our Thanksgiving yesterday, and I will definitely make this again! Happy Thanksgiving!!

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — November 27th, 2016 @ 8:58 pm

      You’re very welcome, Brooke! We’re so happy you enjoyed this and that it was a hit on Thanksgiving! :D

  7. Mary — November 25, 2016 @ 11:07 am (#)

    Making this now doing for Our Thanksgiving dinner tomorrow when all could be together

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — November 27th, 2016 @ 8:54 pm

      We hope everyone enjoys it, Mary!

  8. Mine — November 25, 2016 @ 1:24 pm (#)

    I saw this and wanted to make it right away. Had friends over and I made a double batch. Cut down on sugar for the dough and the filling. Also, didn’t use butter for the cream cheese filling. Turned out really light and GREAT! Thank you. I think I will make this one of my regulars…

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — November 27th, 2016 @ 8:58 pm

      We’re so glad to hear that — thanks for giving the recipe a try! :)

  9. Lisa A — November 29, 2016 @ 2:18 pm (#)

    I tried leaving a comment/question when I made my pumpkin roll, but I’m not seeing the post, so here goes again. When I made mine, I took it straight from the oven and rolled it, still in the parchment. I then let it cool to room temperature, about an hour. When I went to unroll it so I could add the filling, it began cracking, and the further I got to the middle, the warmer the insides were (obviously) and the more it cracked. Should I have let it cool longer? The cake was quite moist, so I doubt that’s why it cracked. We still thought it was delicious, but it certainly wasn’t pretty! It was more folded than rolled. :/

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — December 7th, 2016 @ 12:24 pm

      Hi Lisa! We appreciate you giving the recipe a try, and for sharing your experience. We’re sorry this cracked! :( It sounds like you did everything right and the cake had more than enough time to cool. Unfortunately sometimes these little boogers just crack anyway. We’re glad you enjoyed the taste and we’re sorry it didn’t quite behave for you!

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