After making the cheesecake and cupcakes the other day, I had a container full of leftover pumpkin. I kept trying to think what I could do with it, I was thinking about making Pumpkin Smash smoothies but that called for soy milk and vanilla frozen yogurt, which I didn’t have on hand. Then I remembered that a few weeks back I had wanted to make pumpkin cinnamon rolls and that they just happened to call for the amount of pumpkin I had left over. So I adapted a recipe and gave them a shot. Both Stephen and his friend Eric agreed that although they didn’t scream pumpkin, the subtlety was nice.
Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls Recipe
- 1/4 cup warm water
- 1 pkg active dry yeast - OR 2 1/4 tsp
- 1/3 cup whole milk - OR 2% milk
- 1 large egg - beaten
- 3/4 cup pumpkin puree - solid-packed
- 2 tbsp butter - melted
- 3 1/2 cup flour
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp pumpkin pie spice
For the Filling
- 1/4 cup butter - room temperature
- 1/4 cup pumpkin puree - solid-pack
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 2/3 cup brown sugar
- 2 tsp cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
For the Frosting
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 4 oz cream cheese - room temperature
- 1/4 cup whole milk
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- Stir yeast into water in a large bowl. Allow to rest for 5-10 minutes before stirring to combine (it should get thicker and begin to bubble). Stir in the milk, egg, pumpkin, butter, 1 1/4 c. flour, brown sugar, granulated sugar, salt, cinnamon and pumpkin pie spice. Beat vigorously with paddle attachment for 2 minutes.
- Attach dough hook to mixer. Slowly add the rest of the flour, a little at a time, until the dough is stiff enough to knead.
- Turn dough onto a floured surface. Knead, adding flour if necessary, until the dough is smooth and elastic. Place dough into a greased bowl (olive oil is fine), turn the dough to coat the entire ball.
- Cover with plastic wrap and allow to rise until doubled, approximately 1 hour. If the dough is has not doubled by then, allow it to rise for an additional half hour.
- Meanwhile, prepare the filling by combining the sugar, cinnamon and pumpkin pie spice in a small bowl. Set aside.
- Transfer the risen dough to a floured surface and roll into a 16″x 12″ rectangle. Combine and spread butter, pumpkin & vanilla extract over dough. Sprinkle with sugar mixture. Roll into log and cut into 15 slices using a sharp knife or dental floss. Place slices into a 9×13 or two 8 or 9 inch round cake or pie pans with the bottoms lined with parchment paper. Cover with a towel and let rise until almost doubled, about 45 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Bake the for 20-25 minutes or until rolls are golden brown (don’t worry if the filling rises and bubbles, it will go down once the rolls have been removed from the oven).
- While rolls are baking, prepare frosting by beating the cream cheese and vanilla until smooth.
- Slowly add the powdered sugar, then the milk. Beat until combined.
- Remove rolls from oven and let cool on wire rack. Frost 5-10 minutes after removal.