Soft pumpkin cinnamon rolls filled with a gooey cinnamon swirl and topped with maple cream cheese icing.
- 1/3 cup (80ml) milk*
- 2 Tablespoons (30g) unsalted butter
- 1/2 cup (120g) canned pumpkin (not pumpkin pie filling)
- 1/4 cup (50g) packed light or dark brown sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 large egg
- 2 and 1/4 teaspoons (1 standard package) instant yeast*
- 2 and 2/3 cups (335g) all-purpose flour (spoon & leveled)
- 6 Tablespoons (86g) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
- 1/2 cup (100g) packed light or dark brown sugar
- 1 Tablespoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
Maple Cream Cheese Icing
- 4 oz (114g) full-fat cream cheese, softened to room temperature
- 1/4 cup (60ml) pure maple syrup
- 2 Tablespoons (30ml) milk*
- 1 cup (120g) confectioners’ sugar, sifted
- Make the dough: warm the milk and butter together over the stove or in the microwave. Warm the two together until the butter is *just* melted. A few butter specks is OK. You want the mixture lukewarm (105°F (41°C)-115°F (46°C)), not scorching hot. Set aside. Using your stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the pumpkin puree, brown sugar, nutmeg, and salt together on medium speed. Add the warmed milk/butter and beat until combined, then beat in the egg and yeast. With the mixer running on low speed, add 1 cup of flour. Mix for 1 minute, scraping down the sides of the bowl frequently. Add 1 and 1/4 cups more flour and beat for 1 more minute. The dough will be very soft. Place dough into a greased bowl (a bit of olive oil or nonstick spray to grease works). Turn the dough around in the bowl so all sides of the dough are coated. Cover tightly with plastic wrap and allow to rise in a warm, draft-free environment until doubled in size. This will take about 1 – 1.5 hours. Here’s what I do: turn the oven on to 250°F (121°C). Turn the oven off. Stick the covered dough inside the oven and allow it to rise in this warm environment. *If you do not have a stand-mixer, use a hand mixer or mix by hand.
- Gently punch the dough down to deflate it and turn it out onto a lightly floured surface. Knead the dough a few times so it is smooth. If it is too sticky, knead in a little more flour.
- Add the filling: Roll the dough out into a 18×10 inch rectangle. Spread the softened butter evenly on top. Combine the brown sugar, cinnamon, and spices into a small bowl. Sprinkle all over the top. Roll it up tightly. Using a very sharp knife, cut into 11-12 pieces, about 1.5 inches each. Arrange rolls into a greased 9-inch or 11×7 inch pan.
- Cover with plastic wrap and allow the rolls to rise again in a warm, draft-free environment until doubled in size. This takes about 1 hour (or use my overnight option, detailed below).
- Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C).
- Bake the rolls for 22-28 minutes, covering with aluminum foil at the 15 minute mark to prevent heavy browning. Remove from oven and allow to slightly cool as you prepare the icing.
- Make the icing: Using a handheld or stand mixer fitted with a paddle or whisk attachment, beat the softened cream cheese in a medium bowl on medium speed until smooth. Add the maple syrup and milk and beat on high until smooth. Add the confectioners’ sugar and beat on medium speed until creamy. Drizzle over warm cinnamon rolls. Rolls taste best served on the same day, though they remain fresh for one day covered tightly at room temperature. Unglazed rolls freeze well up to 2 months.
- Overnight Instructions: Prepare the rolls through step 3. Instead of allowing the cut rolls to rise in a warm environment in step 4, place the pan into the fridge and allow the rolls to rest for up to 14 hours before baking. When it’s time to bake the next day, allow the rolls to come up to room temperature and rise for 1 hour on the counter, or until almost doubled in size. Then bake as directed.
- Milk: For softest rolls and richest icing, I suggest a milk with fat in it, such as 2% or whole milk.
- Yeast: If using active dry yeast, not an instant, your rise times may be a little longer.
- Reference my Baking with Yeast Guide for answers to common yeast FAQs.
Keywords: pumpkin cinnamon rolls