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The Best Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls

pumpkin cinnamon rolls in pan with frosting

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5 from 3 reviews

The best homemade Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls with real pumpkin baked into the dough, and a pumpkin pie spice filling. Soft, fluffy, gooey and delicious, plus a cream cheese frosting to finish. Egg free and vegan friendly.

Ingredients

Units Scale

Dough

  • 1 cup cashew milk (or your choice of milk)
  • 2 1/4 teaspoons rapid rise yeast (1 packet)
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar or coconut sugar
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, vegan butter or coconut oil, melted & cooled, plus more for greasing
  • 3/4 cup canned pumpkin purée
  • 3.54 cups unbleached all-purpose flour (or bread flour)
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt

Filling

  • 5 tablespoons unsalted butter or vegan butter, softened
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar or coconut sugar
  • 1/2 tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tablespoon pumpkin pie spice

Frosting

Instructions

  1. Mix warm milk: In a microwave safe bowl or glass measuring cup, heat milk for about 20-30 seconds. Allow temperature of mixture to reach 110F (or lukewarm). If it’s too hot it will kill the yeast. Add yeast and sugar into large mixing bowl of stand mixer and gently add milk. Stir until combined and allow to sit for 10 minutes, until top is foamy. If your mixture doesn’t get foamy, the yeast did not activate. 
  2. Make Dough: Once the milk and yeast mixture is foamy, add melted butter and canned pumpkin mixing low speed until combined. Add 1 cup flour, cinnamon, pumpkin spice and salt and start to mix on low speed. Then begin adding more flour, about 1/2 cup at a time. You will likely need about 3 1/2 cups. Dough should be elastic and start to pull away from the side of bowl when it is ready. At this time, change the attachment to the dough hook, and allow the hook to knead the dough on low speed for about 5 minutes. Dough should remain soft but not overly sticky – this is typically where I add another 1/4 cup of flour with the mixer running, then stop the mixer once the flour has mixed in slightly, reposition the dough and start the mixer again to continue kneading the dough.
  3. Rise: Lightly oil a large bowl and shape the dough into a ball. Place the dough ball into the greased bowl and cover with a towel. Let rise in warm environment until dough has doubled in size, about 45 minutes. TIP: Set oven to warm or preheated to 170F then turn off. Place the bowl in the warmed oven and allow to rise.
  4. Roll out & slice: Grease a 9×13″ baking dish with butter or coconut oil, set aside. Once the dough has about doubled in size, lightly cover rolling pin and a clean work surface with flour. Roll out the dough into a 15×9 inch rectangle. Be patient, and roll gently. Don’t use too much flour or your dough will be stiff. Spread on softened butter, sprinkle sugar and spices; gently pat to let sugar absorb into butter slightly. Using the heels of your hands and thumbs, gently roll dough into a long roll, placing seam side down. Use the floss method to slice rolls (this video helps for a visual) or a serrated knife to gently cut into about 1 1/2″ width. You should get about 12 rolls for a 9×13 pan. Place rolls in greased pan, leaving room to rise, and put the pan in draft-free environment. You can use the warm oven tip above. See notes below for overnight adaptation. 
  5. Bake: Once the rolls have risen again slightly (about 15 minutes), preheat the oven to 350ºF (take rolls out and wait for oven to get up to 350F). Bake cinnamon rolls for 20 minutes, until lightly browned. Then, if necessary, cover top of rolls with foil and bake for an additional 5 minutes. Covering the rolls for the last 5-10 minutes will prevent them from getting too brown on the top.
  6. Make the cream cheese frosting: In medium bowl using an electric hand mixer (or stand mixer with paddle attachment), beat softened cream cheese until light and fluffy. Add vanilla extract, powdered sugar and yogurt (or milk) and mix on low speed until combined. Spread on slightly cooled pumpkin cinnamon rolls. Best served warm – enjoy!

Notes

VEGAN – This recipe is already egg free, and can be made vegan using a dairy-free cream cheese and yogurt / milk for the frosting. Use a plant based butter for the filling and dough as needed.

OVERNIGHT METHOD – Prep the recipe up until you’ve sliced the dough, and place rolls in baking pan. Cover and place in the fridge overnight. Bring the pan out of the fridge about 45 minutes before pre-heating the oven. Place the rolls in the preheated oven at 350ºF and bake for about 25-35 minutes, until tops are lightly golden.

STORAGE – Store in an airtight container at room temperature for 1-2 days, or in the fridge for 5 days.

REWARM – Rewarm in a preheated 350 F oven for 5-10 minutes, or pop one in the microwave in 30-second intervals until warmed through.