Pumpkin Roll

This pumpkin roll recipe is easier to make than you might think, and filled with a delicious cream cheese frosting.

Homemade Pumpkin Roll -- simple to make, and filled with a delicious cream cheese icing | gimmesomeoven.com #dessert

There are a few things that make this Fall different from years past:

1) The Kansas City Chiefs are winning.  Like, winning, people.  7-0!!!  Friends of mine who have never been into football are now clearing Sunday afternoons for the games.  (And if they are not, here’s why they should!) Henry even dressed up this weekend cheer them on.

2) Parenthood has now moved to Thursday nights, and I’m starting to watch the first season of New Girl (although I’m still not sold on the fact that it’s, like, thebestshowever).

3) I got a big poofy winter coat.  With a hood.  With fur.  Which means that I shall hereby no longer be complaining of the arrival of cold weather.  (Well, we’ll see.)

4) I finally learned how to make a pumpkin roll.

Homemade Pumpkin Roll -- simple to make, and filled with a delicious cream cheese icing | gimmesomeoven.com #dessert

It’s true.  I have made pumpkin cake, pumpkin cupcakes, pumpkin barspumpkin muffins, pumpkin beer bread, pumpkin milkshakes, pumpkin dips, and the list goes on and on.  But somehow I had never attempted the illustrious pumpkin ROLL.  So this year, I decided it was time to learn.


Year Of The Pumpkin Roll, baby!

Homemade Pumpkin Roll -- simple to make, and filled with a delicious cream cheese icing | gimmesomeoven.com #dessert

It turns out that the process was quite a bit easier — and speedier! — than I expected.

For those who have never tried a pumpkin roll, you basically bake a very thin sheetcake on parchment paper.  Then as soon as it is pulled out of the oven, you invert it onto a towel (I just used a regular dishtowel!) that has been generously sprinkled with powdered sugar.  I repeat — generously.  You don’t want the cake to stick to the towel.  That’s bad news bears.  Then you simply roll the cake into a scroll, and let it cool in that position.  Then when you’re ready to add the heavenly frosting, gently unroll the cake and slather it on.  Then roll it back up and pop it in the fridge until you’re ready to cut it.

For those who want a nice clean cut, I highly recommend cutting this the way I cut cinnamon rolls — with dental floss.  Simply place a piece of floss under the cake where you want to cut, wrap it around until the ends meet, then give a quick tug and it will slice the cake without making it flat on the bottom.  Voila!

I pretty much stuck to the classic Libby’s recipe, with a few modifications in the spices, but it was so pretty that I had to share it with you.  Happy pumpkin rolling!

Homemade Pumpkin Roll -- simple to make, and filled with a delicious cream cheese icing | gimmesomeoven.com #dessert

Pumpkin Roll

A classic pumpkin roll is always a crowd favorite!


Pumpkin Cake Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup powdered sugar (to sprinkle on towel)
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp. ground ginger
  • 1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp. ground cloves
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2/3 cup pumpkin puree

Cream Cheese Filling Ingredients:

  • 1 (8 oz.) brick cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1 cup powdered sugar, sifted
  • 6 Tbsp. butter, softened
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract


To Make The Pumpkin Roll:

Preheat oven to 375° F. Line a 15 x 10-inch jelly-roll pan with parchment paper. Grease paper with cooking spray. Lay out a thin, cotton kitchen towel so that it is flat, then sprinkle it generously with powdered sugar.

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

In a large bowl using an electric mixer, beat eggs and granulated sugar on medium speed until thick. Add in vanilla and pumpkin, and beat until combined. Stir in flour mixture until just combined. Spread evenly into prepared pan.

Bake for 13 to 15 minutes or until top of cake springs back when touched. Immediately loosen and turn cake onto prepared towel. Carefully peel off paper. Roll up cake and towel together, starting with narrow end. Cool on wire rack.

When ready to add filling, carefully unroll cake and remove the towel. Spread cream cheese mixture evenly over cake. Immediately re-roll cake. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate at least one hour. Slice to serve.

To Make The Cream Cheese Filling:

In a large bowl using an electric mixer, beat 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.

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

Homemade Pumpkin Roll -- simple to make, and filled with a delicious cream cheese icing | gimmesomeoven.com #dessert

Leave a Comment:


  1. Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar — October 23, 2013 @ 6:28 am (#)

    Definitely trying this! Super tasty and fun to make!

  2. Kristi — October 23, 2013 @ 6:31 am (#)

    I have never made a pumpkin roll out of fear of messing it up. I have faced some of my cooking fears this year, so maybe the pumpkin roll will be next :)

  3. Tieghan — October 23, 2013 @ 7:24 am (#)

    Not gonna lie, cake rolls of any kind totally scare me! I just cannot see myself getting it right, but you do make it sound so easy! You did any awesome job, Ali! It looks so pretty and perfect!

  4. Stephanie @ PlainChicken — October 23, 2013 @ 8:27 am (#)

    I’ve never made a cake roll of any kind. I am so intimidated! Your Pumpkin Roll looks wonderful and you make it sound easy. I may have to give it a try! I hope mine is as beautiful as yours!

  5. Sommer @ ASpicyPerspective — October 23, 2013 @ 8:53 am (#)

    Looks great, Ali! I really need to make this!

  6. Liz — October 23, 2013 @ 8:54 am (#)

    All I want is a warm coat! :) And maybe a pumpkin roll. Looks delicious!

  7. Abby @ The Frosted Vegan — October 23, 2013 @ 10:43 am (#)

    This looks lovely!! I can’t believe you hadn’t made one yet, but what a good one to check off of your list : )

  8. Alice // Hip Foodie Mom — October 23, 2013 @ 1:04 pm (#)

    LOVE this pumpkin roll!!! I’m going to try this recipe! and love Parenthood and New Girl- two of my FAVE shows!

  9. Leah | So, How's It Taste? — October 23, 2013 @ 1:39 pm (#)

    This looks just perfect! I need to make one, too!

  10. Vicki Hammons — October 23, 2013 @ 3:19 pm (#)

    Good afternoon,
    I’ve never had this but my youngest daughter raves about one she had somewhere. I, too, thought it would be slightly difficult to make. Hopefully, I’ll be making this at Thanksgiving. Thank you for sharing:)

  11. Georgia @ The Comfort of Cooking — October 23, 2013 @ 3:34 pm (#)

    Such a fall classic! I think this is the year for me to finally try a pumpkin roll. Love your easy recipe, Ali!

  12. Marie @ Little Kitchie — October 23, 2013 @ 6:56 pm (#)

    This is just fabulous!

  13. Maria — October 23, 2013 @ 8:54 pm (#)

    We just started watching New Girl on Netflix! It’s funny, but you know what the best show ever is:) Your pumpkin roll is perfect!

  14. Nutmeg Nanny — October 23, 2013 @ 9:38 pm (#)

    This is so fantastic!! I love this pumpkin roll recipe :)

  15. Tracey — October 23, 2013 @ 10:14 pm (#)

    This settles it, Ali – I need to come to your house for photography lessons. I’m always in awe of your gorgeous shots, and this post is no exception :) Love a good pumpkin roll!

  16. Laura (Tutti Dolci) — October 24, 2013 @ 12:53 am (#)

    Beautiful roll, such a classic!

  17. Tiffany @ Triple Crème Decadence — October 24, 2013 @ 6:06 am (#)

    This looks moist and delicious! I’d love to eat this with a chai tea latte. :)

  18. Adele — October 24, 2013 @ 2:40 pm (#)

    Hi Ali! This looks delicious! Did you add the ginger and nutmeg when you added the cinnamon and cloves?

  19. Charmaine — October 24, 2013 @ 3:29 pm (#)

    I’ve seen cake rolls before and I never knew how they were done but after reading your recipe may have to try this for Thanksgiving.

  20. Alexe @ Keys to the Cucina — October 24, 2013 @ 4:21 pm (#)

    Wow your pumpkin roll looks amazing, I wanna eat my computer screen :)

  21. Chung-Ah | Damn Delicious — October 24, 2013 @ 5:57 pm (#)

    How gorgeous is this?! It’s absolutely perfect! And thanks for the dental floss tip!

  22. Gaby — October 24, 2013 @ 8:11 pm (#)

    Pumpkin roll is impossible to resist! Love the idea of using dental floss to cut the pieces perfectly!

  23. Cheryl — October 27, 2013 @ 4:53 pm (#)

    First off, the pumpkin roll is beautiful! Just perfect and pristine, and your super clean photography adds this almost Japanese element to the image that I LOVE! Second, I never would have thought to chop using dental floss! And I thought I was pretty crafty.. tsk tsk. Awesome tip.


  24. Mercedes — October 28, 2013 @ 5:34 pm (#)

    This looks perfect Ali! For some reason I have been too afraid to try a roll cake, but I am dying to get over my fear!

  25. Jendi — October 31, 2013 @ 9:07 pm (#)

    Congrats on mastering the pumpkin roll! I’m like you – I thought it would be a lengthy difficult process. Maybe I’ll try one this year too…maybe.

  26. Janet — November 2, 2013 @ 2:30 pm (#)

    Looks beautiful – but the ‘Method’ for making the Pumpkin Roll does not include three ingredients listed above: nutmeg, ginger & vanilla.

  27. Janice Heinzle — November 7, 2013 @ 12:07 pm (#)

    I make these every year. I have a tip- make it easy on yourself. Put a lot of powdered sugar on the baked pumpkin roll itself, then, put your towel over that, place another cookie sheet on top of that, and turn over. You can then proceed to roll up pumpkin roll with the towel. Very easy. Keeps powdered sugar from flying everywhere.

  28. Cindy — November 10, 2013 @ 3:24 pm (#)

    This looks great! Do you know if it can be made ahead of time and frozen?

  29. Beth — November 12, 2013 @ 9:12 am (#)

    Looks great. Do you roll it the long way or the short way? ( is the resulting roll 15 or 10 inches long?)

  30. Doreen — November 20, 2013 @ 2:58 pm (#)

    I make pumpkin roll bread and muffins every year for Thanksgiving. It is such a wonderful dessert for the season. One thing is that I do not like pumpkin at all so I use butternut squash instead and it comes out incredible.

  31. mikki curran — November 25, 2013 @ 11:58 am (#)


  32. Deb Kehr — November 26, 2013 @ 11:30 am (#)

    I’ve made these for years; made 18 this past weekend with help of a good friend. They’re in the freezer ready for holiday gift giving. We deliver some before Thanksgiving & some Thanksgiving morning. I didn’t see here, but I sprinkle 3/4 cup chopped pecans on my cake prior to baking. You’re right, looks much harder then it is.

  33. Susan — December 8, 2013 @ 9:04 pm (#)

    I just made this yesterday, and my boyfriend pretty much ate the whole thing! (Maybe I shouldn’t be saying that haha…) but seriously! This was so good! I made another one tonight because I’m having friends over. Thank you so much for the post! Found this from google recipe search.


  34. Julie — October 23, 2014 @ 1:25 pm (#)

    Unfortunately my first pumpkin roll was an epic failure. I think the error occurred because of mixing the eggs and sugar until thick…I think I over did it. Once I mixed in the flour mixture the batter was quite thick resulting in a tough cake. I swear I wasn’t aiming for a decorative paper weight! I seriously thought the issues would be rolling the cake but in my case it wasn’t. Well “fortunately” I refuse to throw in the towel and will be giving this another shot. I will master this!! Wish me luck!!!

  35. Laura @ Laura's Culinary Adventures — October 29, 2014 @ 7:43 am (#)

    I have never made a pumpkin roll, but it is one of my favorite desserts!

  36. Rosemary Dismang — November 2, 2014 @ 11:11 am (#)

    Made the punkin roll and served it at a party, since then I have made 6 more for friends. I will be making some as gifts for Xmas.
    Ladies those of you who are afraid of this recipe don’t be sounds hard but not.Try it. It is well worth the time.

  37. Bertha — November 9, 2014 @ 11:08 pm (#)

    I just made this! It is simple and delicious.

  38. jo kirby — November 27, 2014 @ 2:54 am (#)

    I am just getting ready to put the filling on, happy thanksgiving
    & GOD bless all of us

  39. Brittany L — November 27, 2014 @ 9:18 am (#)

    This is cooking right now. So far so good but I’m so nervous!!!

  40. Stacy @Stacy Makes Cents — December 22, 2014 @ 7:18 pm (#)

    Made this for our family Christmas get-together. Big hit! I didn’t get to bring any home. :-) I used to make them all the time, but couldn’t find my recipe. So glad I found yours!

  41. Lillie Breaux — September 15, 2015 @ 6:50 am (#)

    Love this recipe and easy to do.

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — September 15, 2015 @ 10:59 am (#)

      Thanks Lillie, we’re happy to hear that! :)


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