Pumpkin Roll

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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. Jennifer Smith — July 14, 2016 @ 8:14 pm (#)

    I hope you don’t mind, but I enjoyed your pumpkin recipe so much, that I put a link to it on my new blog. I can’t wait for Autumn :)

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — July 15th, 2016 @ 10:15 am

      We’re so glad to hear that Jennifer — thanks for giving the recipe a try, and for your sweet shout out on your blog!

  2. Jenn — September 16, 2016 @ 8:13 am (#)

    Thank you so much for bringing this recipe back to the front! It looks delicious, and like the perfect fall treat for a family get-together. Can’t wait to try it!

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — September 16th, 2016 @ 1:09 pm

      You’re so welcome, Jenn — we hope you love it!

  3. Laura (A Beautiful Plate) — September 16, 2016 @ 9:35 am (#)

    Beautiful! One of the prettiest pumpkin roll cakes I’ve ever seen! :) 

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — September 16th, 2016 @ 3:12 pm

      Thank you, Laura! We hope you can give this a try sometime this fall! :)

  4. Britt @ Sweet Tea & Thyme — September 16, 2016 @ 12:10 pm (#)

    Your photos are such goals, girl! This looks like I need to make it for the next church feast. Thanks!

  5. Susan — September 16, 2016 @ 2:13 pm (#)

    Interesting about the towels.  I always use a dish towel for things like that (so no fuzzies) and always wash my towels (actually all my laundry) with unscented detergent, and don’t use fabric softener for drying.  So your issue never occurred to me.  I remember many, many years ago making apple strudel with homemade dough, and lay the dough out on the sheet, manipulating the sheet to flip/roll the strudel.  I like your new method.  One day I’ll have to give in and bake this pumpkin roll…

  6. DD — September 16, 2016 @ 7:50 pm (#)

    WOW! Your photos are amazing! I wish I had a slice of this right now :) I will be making this. Pinned!

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — September 18th, 2016 @ 10:08 am

      Thanks for your comment, DD — we hope you enjoy this! :)

  7. Lynn — September 16, 2016 @ 10:52 pm (#)

    You’re hilarious – love it!!

  8. Kelly — September 17, 2016 @ 7:53 am (#)

    I’ll definitely try this one! Cross fingers this roll part is gonna work :)

  9. Aretha — September 18, 2016 @ 2:37 pm (#)

    I love this idea of the parchment paper. Our church used to make about 200 pumpkin rolls for a fund raiser every Thanksgiving. We always used paper towels because the cloth towels didn’t seem sanitary. I’m definitely going to try the parchment paper. I think I’ll dust the cake with powdered sugar before rolling it up. Thank you. 

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — September 18th, 2016 @ 6:46 pm

      Thanks for sharing with us, Aretha!

  10. Annie — September 18, 2016 @ 4:36 pm (#)

    I attempted this recipe but my cake came out too soggy and when i rolled it the cake kept breaking, also i used aluminum. Should i try adding more flour? and switch to wax paper?

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — September 22nd, 2016 @ 12:34 pm

      Hi Annie! We have not tried this with aluminum or with wax paper (we use parchment), so we would start there — that should solve your problem!

  11. Karen Huttis — September 19, 2016 @ 9:24 am (#)

    I have been using the parchment paper for this for years! So much easier. 

  12. Del Barnes — September 19, 2016 @ 1:57 pm (#)

    Can you use 100% pure canned pumpkin?

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — September 20th, 2016 @ 9:12 am

      Hi Del! Yes, you don’t want to use canned pumpkin pie filling. We hope you enjoy this!

  13. Maria — September 19, 2016 @ 7:13 pm (#)

    Hello, totally gorgeous pumpkin roll!!  Wow, I have always been a huge fan, but have to admit, mine look horribly sad in comparison to yours!!  I will have to follow your tutorial this year!!  

  14. Sharon — September 20, 2016 @ 5:41 am (#)

    This looks amazing and I will definitely make it for our upcoming family gathering. Can it be made ahead of time (about 1 week) and frozen? 

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — September 20th, 2016 @ 9:57 am

      Thanks, Sharon — we hope you enjoy! And yes, you can freeze this for up to a month.

  15. Amanda — September 20, 2016 @ 5:13 pm (#)

    Has anyone ever tried pumpkin pie spice instead of all of the spices?? 

  16. Amanda — September 21, 2016 @ 9:36 am (#)

    My 10 year old daughter made these yesterday and they came out perfect!! One questions… how do I keep
    from eating them all?????????

  17. Lisa — September 21, 2016 @ 10:02 am (#)

    I’m a mom of 5 young children and I’m always looking for short cuts lol can I use a boxed pumpkin bread mix and bake it the same way? Thank you :)

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — September 21st, 2016 @ 10:57 am

      Hi Lisa! We can’t vouch for that because the texture will be a bit different, but we think that should probably work okay — we think it’s definitely worth trying! We hope you and your kiddos enjoy! :)

  18. Rachel — September 21, 2016 @ 11:26 am (#)

    I need to make one of these right now! And probably a few extra for later… 

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — September 22nd, 2016 @ 11:35 am

      Hehe! We hope you enjoy the recipe, Rachel! :)

  19. Sue — September 22, 2016 @ 7:53 am (#)

    Thanks for the tip on using the parchment paper.  I had one towel that wasn’t fuzzy that I used.  I will definitely try the paper.  Thanks.

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — September 22nd, 2016 @ 12:26 pm

      Sure thing, Sue! We definitely find the parchment paper method a lot easier! :)

  20. c manley — September 22, 2016 @ 9:56 am (#)

    i use a sprayed cookie sheet to cook cake on as soon as it comes out of oven i put a towel on it to steam rolls right up after i put on the filling very easy and a lot more simple than this recipe i give away about 20 every christmas make all in one day’

  21. Cathy — September 22, 2016 @ 8:51 pm (#)

    I make at least a dozen pumpkin rolls every holiday season, and I am really anxious to try the parchment paper idea. Thanks!!

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — September 25th, 2016 @ 11:57 am

      We find it’s so much easier — we hope you think so too! :)

  22. Brenda — September 23, 2016 @ 8:42 am (#)

    My grandson loves pumpkin so I’m gonna try to make this for him. It looks delish ….thank you for sharing

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — September 25th, 2016 @ 3:05 pm

      We hope you and your grandson enjoy, Brenda! :)

  23. eugenia — September 25, 2016 @ 10:52 am (#)

    Hi I originally thought this roll might be filled with ice cream. Can this roll be done with ice cream and then frozen? I love all of your ideas and I cook everyday because I love it. I am a trained cook and come from a long line of cooks. Great to find your site via FaceBook today.
    Eugenia

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — September 25th, 2016 @ 2:47 pm

      Hi Eugenia! Ooh, that’s a good question. We haven’t tried it with ice cream, so it’s hard to say for sure. The only thing we would be concerned about is the cake is a bit delicate and spreading cold ice cream on it might cause it to break (so if you try it, we would make sure it’s softened ice cream). Let us know if you give it a shot! :)

  24. Barbara McCarthy — September 26, 2016 @ 7:42 am (#)

    This is a great recipe…I like to make 2 or 3 at a time..eat one and freeze the others..comes out of the freezer tasting just as great as when eaten fresh….

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — September 27th, 2016 @ 10:39 am

      Thanks for sharing with us, Barbara — we’re glad you enjoyed it (and yes, these freeze up so well)! :)

  25. Belinda — September 26, 2016 @ 11:20 am (#)

    Going to try this today. My mom has a co worker allergic to cinnamon so I am going to omit that part. She wants a pumpkin roll but thanks to allergies she doesn’t get to have it. Hopefully it will still come out great! :-) This will also be my first attempt at doing this lol

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — September 27th, 2016 @ 10:57 am

      Awesome, we hope you and your mom enjoyed it, Belinda! :)

  26. Deedee Barnes — September 26, 2016 @ 12:25 pm (#)

    Made this last night. It was awesome. I colored the cream filling orange for the fall. One question: does anyone have the nutritional values for this recipe?

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — September 27th, 2016 @ 11:16 am

      We’re so glad you enjoyed it, Deedee (and how fun that you made the filling an orange color)! :) As for the nutritional value, we unfortunately aren’t sure. We currently are not publishing nutrition facts on the site, as the nutrition calculators available are not 100% accurate, and we never want to publish anything that might be misleading. However, a lot of our readers love the My Fitness Pal nutrition calculator, so feel free to try that for an estimate. We hope that helps!

  27. Fran — September 26, 2016 @ 2:01 pm (#)

    Any adjustments needed for elevation (above 5000 feet?)

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — September 27th, 2016 @ 12:29 pm

      Hi Fran — good question! Yes, we would probably make a couple of adjustments just to be on the safe side. We would decrease baking soda or baking powder (1/8 to 1/4 tsp), add an extra egg or egg yolk, and increase the flour (1 Tbsp to 1/2 cup). The cake may also need some extra time in the oven (just monitor it). We hope all of this helps! We love these two sites for references:

  28. Marian — September 27, 2016 @ 5:05 am (#)

    with the parchment paper still on when hot – doesn’t the cake sweat and become moist

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — September 27th, 2016 @ 12:50 pm

      No, we haven’t had any issues with that. We hope you enjoy!

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