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Pumpkin Roll Recipe: A Must-Try Dessert for Fall

Pumpkin Roll is the ultimate autumn delight that is a moist and fluffy pumpkin-spiced cake, rolled up with a luscious cream cheese filling.

July 3, 2023
Pumpkin RollPhoto By Canva
Difficulty Medium
Servings 8 people
Preparation 60 mins
Cooking 15 mins
Total 75 mins



  1. Preheat the oven to 350 °F (175 °C). Grease a 15x10-inch jelly roll pan and line it with parchment paper.
  2. In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, and salt. Set aside.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, beat the eggs and granulated sugar until light and fluffy. Add the pumpkin puree and vanilla extract, and mix until well combined.
  4. Gradually add the dry ingredient mixture to the wet ingredients, folding gently until just combined. Be careful not to overmix.
  5. Pour the batter into the prepared jelly roll pan, spreading it evenly with a spatula.
  6. Bake for about 12–15 minutes, or until the cake is set and springs back when lightly touched.
  7. While the cake is baking, lay out a clean kitchen towel on a flat surface and dust it generously with powdered sugar.
  8. Once the cake is done, remove it from the oven and immediately invert it onto the prepared kitchen towel. Carefully remove the parchment paper.
  9. Starting from one of the short ends, roll up the cake and the towel tightly. Place it seam side down and let it cool completely on a wire rack.
  10. While the cake is cooling, prepare the cream cheese filling. In a mixing bowl, beat together the softened cream cheese, powdered sugar, and butter until smooth and creamy.
  11. Gently unroll the cooled cake and spread the cream cheese filling evenly over the surface, leaving about a 1/2-inch border around the edges.
  12. Carefully roll the cake back up, using the towel to help you create a tight and compact roll. Place it seam-side down on a serving platter.
  13. Refrigerate the Pumpkin Roll for at least 1 hour to allow it to firm up.
  14. Just before serving, dust the Pumpkin Roll with powdered sugar for an elegant finishing touch.
  15. Slice and serve chilled. Enjoy the delightful flavors of your homemade Pumpkin Roll!
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size 1 Pumpkin Roll
Serves 8
Amount Per Serving
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 16.5 g21.2%
Cholesterol 100 mg33.3%
Sodium 255 mg11.1%
Protein 4.9 g9.8%
Potassium 148 mg3.1%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a serving of food contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.


  • Use fresh and high-quality ingredients. This will contribute to the best flavor and texture.
  • Use pure pumpkin puree. Make sure to use pure pumpkin puree and not pumpkin pie filling, as the latter contains added sugar and spices.
  • Measure ingredients accurately using proper measuring tools like measuring cups and spoons. This will help maintain the right balance of ingredients and yield consistent results.
  • Beat the eggs and sugar well. When beating the eggs and sugar together, ensure that the mixture becomes light and fluffy. This will help create a light and airy texture in the cake.
  • Gradually add dry ingredients. When adding the dry ingredients (flour, spices, baking powder, etc.), do so gradually and fold gently until just combined. Overmixing can result in a denser cake.
  • Roll the cake while warm. To prevent cracking, it's important to roll the cake while it's still warm. Use a clean kitchen towel dusted with powdered sugar to aid in rolling.
  • Let the cake cool completely. Before adding the cream cheese filling, make sure the cake is completely cooled. This will prevent the filling from melting and oozing out.
  • Prevent cracking. Let the cake cool for about 5 minutes after taking it out of the oven, then start rolling ASAP. It's important to roll the cake for the first time while it's still hot and pliable. Also, don't worry if the icing seems a little loose at first — it's less likely to tear while spreading and it'll firm up as it cools.
  • Use room temperature cream cheese. Soften the cream cheese at room temperature before making the filling. This will ensure a smooth and creamy consistency.
  • Properly grease and line the pan. Grease your jelly roll pan with cooking spray or butter, then line it with parchment paper. This will prevent the cake from sticking to the pan, making it easier to roll.
  • Chill before serving. After rolling and filling the cake, refrigerate it for at least an hour to allow it to set. Chilling helps the Pumpkin Roll hold its shape and makes it easier to slice.
  • Bake at the right temperature and time. Follow the recipe instructions for baking temperature and time. Overbaking can make the cake dry, while underbaking can result in a moist and undercooked center.
  • Dust with powdered sugar before serving. Just before serving, dust the Pumpkin Roll with powdered sugar to add a touch of sweetness and a beautiful finishing touch.
  • Slice with a sharp knife. Use a sharp knife to slice the Pumpkin Roll into neat, even slices. Clean the knife between cuts for cleaner edges.
  • You can prepare this pumpkin roll up to two days in advance. Store it in the refrigerator until you're ready to serve.
  • Wrap the pumpkin roll with storage cling wrap and store in the fridge for up to five days. Slice into 10 even portions before serving.
  • This pumpkin roll freezes well. Wrap tightly in storage cling wrap, then follow it up with a layer of aluminum foil. Freeze for up to three months. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight.
Rate This Recipe

Fall in love with the cozy autumnal dessert you'll want to make all season long - the Pumpkin Roll. This recipe brings together the moist and delicious spiced pumpkin cake filled with a heavenly vanilla cream cheese frosting. It's a dessert that's sure to impress at any gathering, and it's easier to make than you might think. Let's dive into the recipe!

What Is A Pumpkin Roll?

Pumpkin Roll is a classic and beloved dessert that consists of a tender and moist pumpkin spice cake rolled up with a sweet and creamy filling. The cake itself is made with a combination of ingredients such as pumpkin puree, eggs, flour, sugar, and a blend of warm spices like cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves. The batter is spread into a thin layer on a jelly roll pan and baked until it's lightly golden and springs back when touched.

Once the cake is baked, it is carefully rolled up in a clean kitchen towel or parchment paper while still warm. Rolling it while warm helps the cake retain its shape and prevent cracking. After cooling, the cake is unrolled, and a luscious cream cheese filling is spread evenly over the surface. The roll is then tightly rolled up again, without the towel, creating a beautiful spiral of cake and filling.

What Is Pumpkin Roll Filling Made Of?

The filling of a pumpkin roll is typically made of a cream cheese mixture. This mixture often includes cream cheese, butter, vanilla extract, and powdered sugar. The cream cheese filling is spread over the baked and cooled pumpkin cake before it is rolled.

What Is The Secret To Rolling A Pumpkin Roll?

The secret to rolling a pumpkin roll lies in the preparation. After baking, the pumpkin cake should be rolled while it's still warm, using a tea towel dusted with powdered sugar to prevent sticking. Once cooled, the cake can be unrolled, filled with cream cheese filling, and rolled back up.

Here are some tips to help you achieve a perfectly rolled Pumpkin Roll:

  • Roll the cake while it's still warm. As soon as you remove it from the oven, transfer it onto a clean kitchen towel dusted with powdered sugar.
  • Place a clean kitchen towel on your work surface and generously dust it with powdered sugar. This will prevent the cake from sticking to the towel while rolling.
  • Roll it up tightly. Starting from one of the short ends, carefully and tightly roll the cake and the towel together. Use the towel to guide the roll, keeping it compact and preventing any gaps or air pockets.
  • Work quickly. Roll the cake while it's still warm, as it becomes more flexible and easier to manipulate. If you let it cool completely, it may crack when you try to roll it.
  • Don't overfill. When adding the cream cheese filling, be sure to leave about a 1/2-inch border around the edges. Overfilling can cause the filling to ooze out when rolling.
  • Use the towel for support. As you roll the cake, use the towel to help you create a tight and compact roll. It acts as a support system and prevents the cake from tearing or losing its shape.
  • Chill before serving. Once rolled, refrigerate the Pumpkin Roll for at least an hour or longer. Chilling helps the roll set and hold its shape, making it easier to slice.

Why Is The Top Of My Pumpkin Roll Sticky?

The top of a pumpkin roll can become sticky due to the moisture in the pumpkin puree used in the cake batter. To prevent this, you can dust the top of the cake with powdered sugar before rolling it up.

Here are some reasons why pumpkin rolls become sticky:

  • After baking the pumpkin roll, if you don't allow it to cool completely before rolling and storing, condensation can occur. This can create a sticky surface on the top of the roll. Ensure that the pumpkin roll is cooled completely on a wire rack before rolling it.
  • If the pumpkin roll is not stored properly, it can result in moisture buildup, leading to stickiness. Make sure to wrap the pumpkin roll tightly in plastic wrap or place it in an airtight container to prevent exposure to air and moisture.
  • If you have applied an overly thick layer of cream cheese filling to the pumpkin roll, it can contribute to stickiness. The excess moisture from the filling can seep into the cake, making it sticky. Ensure that the filling is spread evenly and is not too thick.
  • High humidity in the environment can affect the texture of baked goods, including pumpkin rolls. Humidity can cause the sugar in the filling to absorb moisture from the air, resulting in stickiness. Store the pumpkin roll in a cool and dry place to minimize the impact of humidity.

To prevent a sticky top on your pumpkin roll, make sure to cool it completely before rolling, store it properly, and avoid excessive filling. If you encounter stickiness, you can try dusting the top with powdered sugar or placing the roll in the refrigerator for a short period of time to help firm it up.

Why Is My Pumpkin Roll Wet?

If your pumpkin roll turns out wet, it could be due to a few reasons:

Underbaking: One possible reason is that the cake was underbaked. Ensure that you bake the cake for the specified time and until it is fully set. Insert a toothpick into the center, and if it comes out clean or with a few crumbs, the cake is done.

Overfilling with filling: Another factor could be overfilling the pumpkin roll with the cream cheese filling. If you spread too much filling or extend it too close to the edges, it can make the cake moist and potentially soggy.

Not cooling properly: It's essential to allow the cake to cool completely before adding the filling. If the cake is still warm when the filling is spread, it can cause moisture to accumulate and make the roll wet.

Storing improperly: If the pumpkin roll is not stored correctly, it can become damp. Make sure to wrap it tightly in plastic wrap or place it in an airtight container to prevent moisture from getting in.

Humidity: High humidity can also affect the texture of the pumpkin roll. Moisture in the air can seep into the cake and make it damp. If you live in a humid climate, bake the pumpkin roll on a drier day or in an air-conditioned environment.

To prevent a wet pumpkin roll, ensure that you bake it thoroughly, cool it completely, and avoid overfilling. Proper storage in a dry environment is also crucial. Following the recipe and these guidelines should help you achieve a perfectly moist, but not wet, pumpkin roll.

Is A Pumpkin Roll High In Carbs?

Yes, a pumpkin roll is relatively high in carbohydrates due to the ingredients used in both the cake and the filling. The cake is made with flour and sugar, and the filling often contains powdered sugar, all of which contribute to the carb content. However, the exact carb count can vary depending on the specific recipe used.

How To Make Libby's Pumpkin Roll At Home?

To make Libby's Pumpkin Roll at home, follow this copycat recipe.

  • Preheat the oven to 375 °F (190 °C). Grease a 15x10-inch jelly roll pan. Line the pan with parchment paper, then grease and flour the paper.
  • In a mixing bowl, combine 3/4 cup all-purpose flour, 1/2 teaspoon each of baking powder and baking soda, 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon, 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves, and 1/4 teaspoon salt. In a separate bowl, beat 3 large eggs on high speed for five minutes until thickened.
  • Gradually add 1 cup granulated sugar, followed by 2/3 cup Libby's 100% Pure Pumpkin, and mix well.
  • Add the dry ingredients to the pumpkin mixture, stirring until just combined. Spread the batter evenly in the prepared pan, then sprinkle with 1 cup finely chopped walnuts if desired.
  • Bake for 15 minutes or until the top of the cake springs back when touched.
  • While the cake is baking, dust a clean kitchen towel with powdered sugar.
  • Remove the cake from the oven, loosen the edges and invert it onto the prepared towel.
  • Carefully remove the parchment paper, then roll up the warm cake and towel together, jelly-roll style. Allow it to cool completely on a wire rack.
  • In the meantime, prepare the filling by beating together 1 package (8 ounces) softened cream cheese, 1 cup sifted powdered sugar, 6 tablespoons softened butter, and 1 teaspoon vanilla extract until smooth.
  • Once the cake has cooled, carefully unroll it and spread the cream cheese filling evenly over the surface.
  • Roll it back up without the towel, place it on a serving platter, and refrigerate for at least one hour before serving.
  • Dust with powdered sugar just before serving. Slice and enjoy the delectable homemade Libby's Pumpkin Roll!

What To Serve with Pumpkin Roll?

Pumpkin Roll is a delightful and indulgent dessert on its own or with side dishes. Serve Pumpkin Roll with a dollop of freshly whipped cream or a drizzle of rich caramel sauce. The creamy and slightly sweet elements of these accompaniments beautifully complement the spiced pumpkin flavors of the roll. You can sprinkle some chopped toasted pecans or walnuts on top for added crunch and nuttiness. Additionally, you can serve it with a cup of coffee or spiced chai tea. Whether you choose to enhance it with a sauce, a sprinkle of nuts, or a warm drink, serving Pumpkin Roll with these complementary elements will create a delightful dessert experience.

Here are our delicious recipes that you can serve with Pumpkin Roll:

How Long Does A Pumpkin Roll Last?

Pumpkin roll can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days.

To store the pumpkin roll,

Refrigerate: After making the roll cake, wrap it tightly with cling film or place it in an airtight container. Store it in the refrigerator to keep it fresh longer.

Avoid moisture: Moisture can cause the pumpkin roll to get wet and lose its texture. Make sure the pumpkin roll is completely cool before wrapping it to prevent condensation from forming.

Freeze: If you want to extend the shelf life even more, you can freeze the pumpkin roll cake. Wrap tightly in cling film and then place in an airtight freezer bag. It can be stored in the freezer for up to 2 to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator before serving.

If there are signs of spoilage or a foul odor in the pumpkin roll, discard it.

History of Pumpkin Roll

The pumpkin roll, a classic American dessert, is particularly popular during the fall and winter months, when pumpkins are in season and holiday gatherings are frequent. Its origin is a bit of a mystery, but it's often associated with the Pennsylvania Dutch, who have a long tradition of making sweet, rolled cakes. The pumpkin roll, with its warm spices and festive appearance, fits perfectly into this tradition.

The pumpkin roll is a testament to the versatility of pumpkin as an ingredient. While pumpkin is often associated with pies, it shines in this dessert, where it lends moisture and a subtle, earthy sweetness to the cake. The spices traditionally used in pumpkin pie—cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves—are also used in the pumpkin roll, giving it a familiar, comforting flavor that's perfect for the colder months.

Despite its impressive appearance, the pumpkin roll isn't difficult to make, and it's a great way to impress guests at a holiday gathering. The process of rolling the cake can seem intimidating, but with a bit of practice, it becomes straightforward. The key is to roll the cake while it's still warm, then let it cool in its rolled shape before unrolling it to add the filling. This helps the cake keep its shape without cracking. Whether you're a seasoned baker or a beginner, the pumpkin roll is a rewarding and delicious project.

Recipe byPetite Gourmets

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