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Pumpkin Roll

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This classic pumpkin roll recipe is made with a delicious pumpkin cake and heavenly cream cheese filling…and it’s surprisingly easy to make. See the video below for a visual on how to assemble your pumpkin roll!

Classic Pumpkin Roll Recipe

Happy fall, everyone! In honor of the calendar officially flipping over to the new season this week, I thought I would bump my favorite fall dessert recipe to the top of the blog again.

Yep, I’m talkin’ about a good, old-fashioned, deliciously-indulgent, classic pumpkin roll. ♡

I have had a tradition of making pumpkin rolls every fall for at least a decade now, and always look forward to the cozy, comforting, delicious fall vibes that they bring. But I have to say that this year, during our first September living abroad, this small tradition has been especially nostalgic and comforting.

Even though it now requires making a special trek across town to the one store in Barcelona that sells canned pumpkin puree, plus an extra trip to a different store to purchase a brick of “Philadelphia” (the name for cream cheese here in Spain, so cute), and some major tinkering with my tiny Spanish oven — the rhythms and feels and smells and flavors of this ritual feel just as familiar as ever. And the second I slice off a beautiful round of that perfectly-paired pumpkin cake swirled with cream cheese filling, it tastes just delicious as ever. And the world feels wonderfully, magically, comfortingly small for a moment. Feels like fall.

Anyway, if you also happen to have a nostalgic craving hit this season for a classic pumpkin roll, this recipe has been my go-to for years. It calls for all of the classic ingredients (thanks, Libby’s!), but it’s updated with my method for rolling up the cake in parchment paper, which I have found to be simpler and more reliable than the classic towel method. If this is your first time making a pumpkin roll, don’t fear — it’s much easier than it may seem. Plus, I’ve included a handy step-by-step video below to take any of the guesswork out the equation. And if your friends and family are anything like mine, they are going to love it.

Let’s make a pumpkin roll!

Classic Pumpkin Roll Recipe | 1-Minute Video

Pumpkin Roll Ingredients:

To make this classic pumpkin roll recipe, you will need the following ingredients:

  • Flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, eggs, vanilla, granulated sugar: For the base of the pumpkin cake.
  • Pumpkin pie spiceFor seasoning the cake. (You can either use store-bought pumpkin pie spice, or I’ve included measurements for ingredient amounts for ground cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg and cloves.)
  • Pumpkin puree: I have always used store-bought canned pumpkin puree, which is super simple. But you are welcome to make pumpkin puree from scratch, if you prefer.
  • Cream cheese, powdered sugar, butter and vanilla: For the cream cheese filling. I told you it was indulgent. ;)

You will also need:

  • 10 x 15-inch jelly roll panThe specific size of the pan is important here, so that the cake can be nice and thin.
  • Parchment paper: I like to buy these pre-cut sheets, but you can also definitely cut your own.

Pumpkin Roll Ingredients

How To Roll A Pumpkin Roll

Cream Cheese Filling for a Pumpkin Roll

Sprinkling Powdered Sugar On A Pumpkin Roll

How To Make A Pumpkin Roll:

Alright, let’s begin with the pumpkin cake. Simply:

  1. Make your pumpkin cake batter. You can either do this in a stand mixer, or by hand in a large mixing bowl. Whisk together the dry ingredients until combined, and set aside. Then in a separate bowl, whisk together the eggs and sugar until thick. Stir in the vanilla and pumpkin puree until combined. Then fold in the dry ingredients until they are just combined, being careful not to overmix the batter.
  2. Transfer batter to the baking sheet. Cover your jelly roll pan completely with parchment paper, leaving some extra room on the long (15-inch) sides so that you can easily lift the cake out after baking. (If the parchment paper is sliding around, just sprinkle a few drops of water underneath it, which will help it to stick to the pan.)  Then spread the batter evenly on top of the parchment.
  3. Bake. This part goes quickly since the cake is so thin.
  4. Remove cake from pan. This part needs to move quickly, so be ready. As soon as the cake comes out of the oven, run a knife around the edges of the pan (if needed) to loosen the cake. Then carefully grab the edges of the parchment paper to lift the cake out of the pan and slide it over to a flat, heat-proof surface. (I recommend using oven mitts since the cake will still be very hot.)
  5. Roll the cake. Then holding onto the parchment, carefully roll up the cake — from short end to short end — until it forms a complete roll. (See video above for an example.)  Transfer the rolled cake to a wire cooling rack and let it cool completely to room temperature, seam-side-down so that they cake does not unroll.

While the cake is cooling, make your cream cheese filling. To do so, simply:

  1. Stir together your ingredients until smooth. It’s ok if there are a few tiny lumps of cream cheese. But in general, you want the filling to be pretty smooth. Also, it’s crucial that your ingredients are all room temperature so that the cream cheese filling can be nice and sturdy. Otherwise, the filling will be too thin and will ooze out of the pumpkin roll. (If it seems too thin, just add more powdered sugar.)
  2. Refrigerate until ready to use. To keep it nice and fresh.

Once the cake has cooled, it’s time for the fun part. To assemble your pumpkin roll:

  1. Gently unroll the cake. Place the cake back on a flat surface and gently unroll it until the cake is mostly flat again, going slowly so that the cake doesn’t break. (If it does a bit, don’t worry, it will still taste delicious.)
  2. Spread on the cream cheese filling. Using a spatula, 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.
  3. Re-roll the cake. Then go ahead and roll the cake back up again, carefully peeling off the parchment paper as you roll until it until it is completely released.
  4. Wrap the cake. Wrap the finished pumpkin roll tightly in plastic wrap, and refrigerate it for at least an hour until chilled.
  5. Dust with powdered sugar. When you’re ready to serve the cake, remove and unwrap it. Then lightly dust the entire roll with powdered sugar. Then…
  6. Slice and serve!  I like to take a small slice off of the ends just before serving, to reveal those beautiful swirls and make it a bit prettier. Then voila! Your homemade pumpkin roll will be ready to enjoy!

Classic Pumpkin Roll Recipe

How To Store + Freeze A Pumpkin Roll:

Great news! Pumpkin rolls keep well in the refrigerator and freezer, so they’re the perfect dessert to make ahead of time if you’d like. To store your pumpkin roll, wrap it up tightly in plastic wrap. Then you can either refrigerate it for up to 5 days, or freeze for up to 3 months. If you choose to freeze the pumpkin roll, be sure to let it thaw in the refrigerator for 1 day before serving. (If you try to warm it up in the microwave or oven, it can dry out.)

The Best Pumpkin Roll Recipe


Love this pumpkin roll recipe? Be sure to try these other dessert rolls too:

How To Make A Pumpkin Roll Recipe

Enjoy, everyone!

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Classic Pumpkin Roll Recipe

Pumpkin Roll

5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star 4.8 from 155 reviews
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 35 minutes
  • Yield: 0 About 8-10 servings 1x


This classic pumpkin roll recipe is made with a delicious pumpkin cake and heavenly cream cheese filling…and it’s surprisingly easy to make.  See the video above for a step-by-step visual tutorial for how to assemble your roll.



Pumpkin Cake Ingredients:

  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice (*or see below for substitution)
  • 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


To Make The Pumpkin Roll:

  1. Preheat oven to 375° F.  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.)
  2. Whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, pumpkin pie spice and salt in a large mixing bowl until combined.
  3. 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.
  4. 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.
  5. While the cake is cooling, make the cream cheese filling (see below).
  6. Once 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.
  7. 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.
  8. If you have leftovers, just re-wrap the pumpkin roll in plastic wrap and store in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.  Or freeze for up to 3 months.

To Make The Cream Cheese Filling:

  1. Whisk together cream cheese, powdered sugar, butter and vanilla extract in a mixing bowl 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 do not already have a jar of pumpkin pie spice, you can use the following:

  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves

**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 is very slightly adapted from Libby’s.  Cooking time listed above does not account for cooling time.

Pumpkin Roll Recipe

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532 comments on “Pumpkin Roll”

  1. Such a quick and easy recipe, thank you. A terrific use for leftover cooked pumpkin too.
    We love it.

  2. I would love to know if you have the strawberry version of this recipe. I have made this one for years. I tasted a strawberry version at a friends party but was unable to get the recipe. Thank You Sarah

  3. Made this for my home group and it was awesome. The only change I made was to double the spices. Very simple and everyone raved about it!

  4. Very good

  5. Good Day!

    I made this yesterday for a dinner party that I was attending. It came out amazing – a big big hit. Everyone of the guests had 2 slices =)

    I made 2 adjustments to the recipe – cause I always seem to need to “make them my own” somehow…

    1) I added pecans to the cake part. I bought pecan pieces and added the whole package – about 1/2 cup.
    2) Since there was leftover pumpkin puree from the cake recipe – I added about 1/2 cup of that to the filling. It worked great!

    Thanks for a great recipe!

  6. This was so much fun to make and was delicious!!!! I had vanilla ice cream with it! Can’t wait to make it again!

  7. This is so very delicious! I now make it every year for Thanksgiving and sometimes for Christmas too. Everybody loves it.

  8. We make this every year!!! The parchment method is a game changer…so much better than messing with towels.

  9. Please – does anyone know if it is possible to freeze these to use at a later date?

  10. Can you make several to freeze.

  11. I’ve always made this. My recipe didn’t have nutmeg and had more cinnamon in it. May have to try this recipe. Also may have to try the parchment paper but keep thinking of it sticking over the dish towels but can try and give it a shot. My family has loved the pumpkin roll since I introduced it years ago over any pumpkin decert.

  12. Great video! I plan to make this recipe!

  13. Thank you made my first one hopefully my family will love it. Want to try red velvet.

  14. Made it was very good the recipe is definitely a keeper.

  15. i spray the parchment par with a littlebutter spray (Pam)

  16. This was delicious and not difficult to make.

  17. I don’t even bake, but I made these for the ladies at work and they could not stop raving about them! Thanks so much! It was super easy!

  18. Made it! It was delicious! My husband can’t get enough!

  19. This looks delish! What’s your opinion on freezing it? I was thinking of making a couple and freezing one for a later date. What do you think?

  20. Simple easy to make & very, very good

  21. Can you freeze it for later? Can you use fresh pumpkin?

  22. I followed this recipe EXACTLY like the video and my pumpkin roll was PERFECT! Delicious and my family LOVED it! I will definitely do this over and over especially for the holidays coming up. Thank you for the video that definitely helped.

  23. OMG, this is the best I’ve ever tried. This is a HUGE hit. Haven’t made it myself yet, but tried it from a friend who made it and I would die for this. Thank you for sharing such a wonderful recipe!

  24. Can you use can of pumpkin or does it have to be puree

  25. I love this recipe! I’ve made it 3 times in the last two weeks! But I’m having a problem with the cake cracking every time! How long would you suggest cooling? I know you said to wait until the cake is cooled to room temperature, but is there a specific amount of time you generally allow? I don’t know if i’m not waiting long enough or what the problem is, but I want it to look as pretty as yours does. Thanks for your help, can’t wait to try it again!

  26. Last year I found your recipe, made 4 tolls for Thanksgiving and Christmas. I loved it and delicious! Thank you!

  27. Made this roll last week. Awesome! Delicious and so easy to make. Now making it again for Thanksgiving instead of pumpkin pie, which I love!

  28. Fabulous my family and friends loved it!

  29. I hope to try this recipe out really soon because it sounds super. I’ll let you know later what my family thinks of it.

  30. Oh my goodness, I have been making pumpkin rolls for years with the damp powdered sugar covered towel…why have I never thought of this? My son just put his request in for pumpkin roll for Thanksgiving..sure gonna give this a try..thank you!!

  31. My cake came out sticky, do you think I can put it into a warm oven?

  32. Do you think I can make the day before?

  33. Easy and delicious. !!!

  34. I make pumpkin rolls every year, they are my favorite and I found this one to modify the one I’ve been making and like it a lot!! But ever time I unroll my cake to fill it will the filling, the cake cracks and it frustrates me. Is there any way to avoid the cracking?

  35. Made this today…my cake was a little things in spots so my filling kinda oozed out but was still pretty tasty!!?

  36. Do you have a chocolate cake roll recipe you like? I would love to have both at my table.

  37. The first time I made this recipe I used a Wilton pan, let it bake for 15 minutes and had no problems with unrolling. Tonight I used the same pan you suggested, baked for 15 minutes, waited for it to cool but when I went to unroll it the cake cracked in 2 places. What could have happened?

  38. I have been making these for years, and this new method of no towel roll up has revolutionized the process for me! This is the first time I’ve had zero cracking, plus NO MESS! Thank you for posting this! Proof you can teach an old dog new tricks. ?

  39. Thank you for the video…so helpful!

  40. Just made this after seeing the video recipe on Facebook, it was delicious and not as difficult as I expected. I might be having a slice or two for breakfast right now.

  41. Made it this morning… Yummy…It’s in the fridge cooling. I cut off a half inch on both ends, which hubby picked up and ate. He loved the filling. I am making an extra one for our daughter who loves this jelly roll but doesn’t have time to bake with her work schedule. I will freeze it and give it to her on Thanksgiving to take a home. Very good!!! Easy to make…Outstanding!

  42. Thank you for this I always used the towel to roll up.. And idea use little water keep parchment paper in place
    So much easier Again thanks

  43. I love this recipe! Last year, a day before thanksgiving my sister and I were first timers in making pumpkin rolls and this recipe was very easy to follow. We will definitely continue on this recipe this year as well. Our family and friends loved it and are asking us to make them again this year, so a big thank you for this delicious recipe!?

  44. I want it all! Looks soooo good!

  45. Made this for thanksgiving yesterday and everyone LOVED it!

  46. I’m not a big fan of pumpkin… Do you think I could replace it with apple in this recipe?

  47. o my,the best recipe ever!!!!!!!!!

  48. I actually did a web search to see if there was a way to make pumpkin rolls without using that yucky towel method. I’M SO HAPPY I FOUND YOUR PAGE! I’m about to start making my rolls now and I’m not dreading it like in past years. Thank you so much.

  49. Fantastic recipe — I substitute gluten-free flour and it comes out great every time. Family fave!

  50. Legit speechless, this pumpkin roll recipe looks unreal!!! I prefer healthy food. And pumpkin may reduce cancer risk, protect the skin, boost your mood and other! Thanks for sharing Ali!