Pumpkin RollFall is my favorite season. I mean, sure, all season have their merits. The holidays in winter, the first colorful flowers in spring, and going to the beach in the summer. But I love fall. I love the crisp air, and pulling out my scarves and sweaters, and of course I love pumpkin everything.

But England does not celebrate pumpkin everything like the U.S. I can’t find pumpkin spice in the grocery store so I make my own instead. A few weeks ago I had a craving for a pumpkin spice latte. Ryan and I decided to trek over to Starbucks to find out if it had arrived. Mind you, in the U.S. you’d never have to guess because every Starbucks window would be plastered with orange writing and pumpkin pictures. On the way to Starbucks we passed at least four proper coffee shops and a few other places that also sold coffee, but my heart was set on a PSL. We got there, and we were nervous, but they had it! It was advertised with only one small picture and a line item on the menu. How are the people of England supposed to know about pumpkin mania with such little advertising?

Pumpkin Roll Swirl

To get my true pumpkin fix, I hit the kitchen. I found this recipe for a pumpkin swiss roll on Pinterest and I was excited, but nervous to try it out. To make the beautiful swirl you have to bake then roll up a cake. Roll up a cake?! What if I break it? The key is, as soon as it comes out of the oven, you roll up the cake (without the filling) while it is hot. The cake won’t be so hot as to burn you, but I recommend using gloves or an oven mitt to make it easier. Then, wait for the cake to  be completely cool. It’s hard to be patient (and Ryan and I weren’t entirely patient), but if the cake is hot it will melt your filling and you don’t want that.

This cake is a great treat for any old day, but I also think it can be pretty enough to bring to a party or to your Thanksgiving feasts. The swirl of cream cheese looks just beautiful when cut. And you might not believe me, but this is actually easy to make. Any level of baker can make this recipe, I know it. Most importantly, this roll is incredible delicious. Ryan and I ate this whole roll in about two and a half days and have been talking about making another one ever since. As you can see, we still haven’t gotten our pumpkin fix yet.

Pumpkin Roll

I hope you enjoy the new recipe format below. I like this a lot because it looks more streamlined and easy to read. If you like to print recipes, you can finally do that. If you bring your computer into the kitchen, like I do, then you don’t have to scroll as much and won’t get dirty fingers on the keyboard. The only drawback is that I can’t post pictures alongside the steps, but for difficult or strange techniques I’ll still post those pictures above the recipe.

Now enough talk. Get your pumpkin on! Recipe by Sweet Anna’s.

Three spoonsMessy level: This is a three spoon recipe, but just barely. I’m giving it three spoons because you need two bowls for the cake, one for the frosting, and then you still have to sprinkle powdered sugar everywhere. Also, if you over fill the inside you’ll have a cream cheese burst (like I did) at the end of the cake.

Pumpkin Rolls with Cinnamon Cream Cheese Filling
  • for the cake:
  • ¼ cup powdered sugar (for dusting the towel)
  • ¾ cup flour
  • 1 tsp pumpkin pie spice
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • ⅔ cup pumpkin purée
  • for the filling:
  • 8oz cream cheese, room temperature
  • 6 tbsp butter, softened (if you don't let it soften you will have butter chunks in your filling)
  • 1½ cups powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  1. Heat the oven to 375º/190º.
  2. Line a 10x15" jelly roll pan with parchment paper. (a pan with edges all around, you have to have this pan) Then grease the parchment paper.
  3. Somewhere on your counter, spread out a clean kitchen towel or piece of parchment paper, and sprinkle that with powdered sugar.
  4. In a medium bowl, mix flour, baking powder, baking soda, pumpkin pie spice & salt.
  5. In a large bowl, beat eggs, vanilla & sugar until thick & creamy.
  6. Add in the pumpkin and mix to combine.
  7. Stir in the flour mixture.
  8. Pour the batter onto the prepared pan. Spread the batter evenly.
  9. Bake for 13-15 minutes, or until the top of the cake springs back when touched. Stay on the side of slightly under cooked, if you over cook it then cake will be too dry and won't roll.
  10. Immediately loosen the edges of the cake and turn it out onto the sugared towel/parchment. Peel off the parchment paper.
  11. Roll up the cake & towel together fairly tightly, starting with a narrow end.
  12. Cool completely on a wire rack.
  13. Now start on the filling. In another medium bowl, beat the cream cheese, powdered sugar, butter & vanilla until smooth.
  14. Carefully unroll the cooled cake (removing the towel) and spread the cream cheese filling evenly over the cake, coming to about 1″ away from the edges. If you go all the way to the edge, you will have filling oozing out the end.
  15. Carefully reroll the cake, wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate at least one hour.
  16. Before serving cut a little slice off of each end so the roll has a smooth look. Then dust the top with powdered sugar.

4 Comments on Pumpkin Rolls with Cinnamon Cream Cheese Filling

  1. Hmmm, I have been meaning to make pumpkin bread this week, but this sounds even better. Is it a super sweet dessert? I was surprised by how much cinnamon is in it, esp since it already has pumpkin pie spice (which usually includes cinnamon, no?) – does it dominate, or blend in? I see this in our future…yum. /Cathy B

    • It is sweet, but not sickly sweet. To be fair, I have a sweet tooth so I like sweets! But I did have a few slices for breakfast and didn’t feel gross afterwards. I was surprised by the cinnamon too, and it’s definitely a flavor you can taste but it doesn’t overwhelm. I think too much cinnamon can be drying and awful in your mouth, but the cream cheese really balances it. You could also add the cinnamon gradually into the filling and then taste as you go and stop when it comes to your liking.

  2. Thank you for posting this recipe last year! Because of shows like “The Great British Bake Off,” my son and I have started learning how to bake. Your recipe is perfect for this week’s Thanksgiving celebrations in the US, and I can’t wait to try it!

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