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Pumpkin Rolls

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These delicious pumpkin rolls are as much a decoration as they are a simple side dish; with great flavors and an easy to shape it process, these will be one of your favorite pumpkin recipes this season.

Main image for recipe of pumpkin rolls on a plate ready to eat

Welcome to a tasty and beautiful recipe for pumpkin season.

If this is the first time you are here, you should know that I love bread, I love food, and I love keeping things simple.

These pumpkin rolls are not jelly roll cakes or swiss rolls with pumpkin cake batter. Instead I am bringing you dinner rolls shaped like pumpkins.

It might surprise you to look at the images of these pumpkin rolls and hear me call them easy.

But they are!

You will be amazed at how easy it is to make them.

It takes a little bit of time to let the dough rise properly, but with patience you will soon have this perfect pumpkin dinner rolls recipe ready for any event in pumpkin baking season.

kneaded bread in mixer

What ingredients are in pumpkin rolls?

  • Instant Yeast: this makes the rolls rise and get fluffy
  • Whole Milk: you need to warm the milk to help activate the yeast before mixing it in
  • White Sugar: this feeds the yeast and gives flavor to the rolls
  • Butter: melted will dissolve the sugars and warm the yeast to help activate it
  • Canned Pumpkin: adding pumpkin puree to the rolls gives color and a mildly sweet pumpkin flavor
  • Eggs: one goes in the dough to make it soft and fluffy and the other gets brushed on the outside before baking to give the rolls great baked color
  • Salt: this helps the yeast not rise too fast and go flat before it can be cooked
  • All-purpose Flour: this is the perfect flour to give you light rolls
  • Pecan Pieces: these will make the stems of the pumpkins once the rolls are

Pro Tip: If you like bread with warm autumn spices instead of more traditional dinner rolls, try adding just a teaspoon of pumpkin pie spice to the dry ingredients. It will give these a more traditional baked pumpkin flavoring instead of a simple sweet dinner roll.

dough placed into a greased bowl ready to rise

How to make pumpkin shaped dinner rolls:

  1. Mix first seven ingredients in a large mixing bowl until the pumpkin mixture is well combined.
  2. Gradually add flour to the wet ingredients and knead until dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl.
  3. Let dough rest for a few minutes, then continue to knead until dough is soft and smooth.
  4. Place dough in a large bowl that you have greased all over.
  5. Cover with plastic wrap sprayed with cooking spray and rise until doubled in size.
  6. Punch dough down and turn onto a lightly floured work surface to divide dough into 15 balls.
  7. Flatten each ball and use a pairing knife to cut 8 slices around the ball to make a pumpkin shape.
  8. Place on a parchment paper lined baking sheet, cover with plastic or a cotton kitchen towel, and let rise until doubled.
  9. Poke an indent in the center for the stem and brush risen rolls with egg wash.
  10. Bake until golden brown, then place a sliced pecan for the stem.
  11. Cool on a wire rack and serve!

Pro Tip: You can make these in any shape you want, but the most important step to give them that great pumpkin shape is cutting the slices around the edges of the roll before placing them on your prepared pan to bake. And adding a fake pecan stem after cooking helps a lot.

Those two steps will give you a beautiful and delicious pumpkin roll the whole family will enjoy.

risen dough in bowl ready to shape

What to do with pumpkin rolls:

  • Eat them! This is the most important thing you could do and should not be overlooked.
  • Use them as a centerpiece that you can eat. A small bowl of these rolls are cute enough to decorate your table with.
  • Use leftovers to make baked french toast casserole. Chop them up, add your french toast batter, bake, and enjoy!
  • Gift them. These make the cutest gifts for the pumpkin holiday season.
  • Serve them as dessert. Sprinkle with powdered sugar, fill with whipped cream, or place rolls on a cooling rack and drizzle with a cream cheese mixture glaze and these cinnamon pecans and have a tasty and tender pumpkin cake dessert.
8 flat round balls of dough on cookie sheet

What to eat with pumpkin rolls:

7 slits cut around each dough ball not quite to the center.

How do you warm up leftover pumpkin rolls:

You can microwave them for 10 seconds, but be careful because when you microwave bread too long it gets rubbery and then hard.

If you want to know the best way how to reheat pumpkin rolls, place them in an even layer on a baking sheet and put them in a warm oven for 2-3 minutes until it is heated through

slit cut rolls risen and brushed with egg and water combo

Can you freeze pumpkin rolls?

Yes! Let the rolls cool to room temperature. Then wrap them individually in plastic wrap, foil, or wax paper and place them in a freezer safe airtight container.

They should stay good in the freezer for up to 3 months.

a quarter piece of pecan pressed into the center of each roll to create a steam.

How to thaw frozen pumpkin rolls:

The best way is to let them thaw overnight on the counter. If you need them done faster you risk getting a poor texture in the pumpkin bread rolls.

side view of pumpkin rolls on a plate with a basket full behind

More Bread Side Dishes You’ll Love…

Pumpkin rolls are one of my favorite uses for pumpkin purée because they always turn out delicious, and just like real pumpkins, each one looks a little bit different while still keeping that classic pumpkin shape.

Yield: 14 - 16 Rolls

Pumpkin Rolls

zoomed in image of rolls on a plate

These delicious pumpkin rolls are as much a decoration as they are a simple side dish; with great flavors and an easy to shape it process, these will be one of your favorite pumpkin recipes this season

Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Additional Time 2 hours
Total Time 2 hours 40 minutes


  1. In a high speed mixing bowl combine yeast, milk, white sugar, butter, pumpkin puree, one egg and salt.
  2. Slowly add the flour, 1 cup at a time and mix well.
  3. Knead dough for 5 minutes allowing the mixer to knead your dough for you.
  4. While dough is being kneaded, grab a large bowl and spray with cooking oil.
  5. Once dough is soft and pliable, place dough in bowl and turn once.
  6. Cover dough with saran wrap or a kitchen tea towel.
  7. Let dough rise for 1 hour, or until doubled in size.
  8. Punch down the dough and cut into 16 equal pieces.
  9. Roll each of the dough pieces into balls.
  10. Flatten each ball with the palms of your hands, until about 1 inch thick.
  11. Place 8 flattened pieces of dough onto a cookie sheet. You'll need 2 cookie sheets for a total of 16 rolls.
  12. Using a sharp knife (pairing knife works great), cut 8 slits all the way round the dough, not quite to the center. This will give you your pumpkin shape.
  13. Cover dough and let rise for 1 hour.
  14. Once dough has risen to nice fluffy rolls, preheat oven to 350*F
  15. Using a small small utensil like a barbecue skewer or thick toothpick, poke a hole in the center of each roll.
  16. In a small bowl beat together remaining egg and 2 teaspoons of water.
  17. Gently brush egg mixture over each roll so they come out nice and shiny.
  18. Bake for 15 - 20 minutes or until golden.
  19. Once you remove from rolls from the oven, place a piece of pecan into center of each hole for a stem.
  20. Serve warm with butter.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 159Total Fat: 3gSaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 30mgSodium: 167mgCarbohydrates: 27gFiber: 1gSugar: 4gProtein: 5g

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