This post may contain affiliate links. Please read our disclosure policy.

This soft and spiced pumpkin roll recipe is an easy fall dessert made from tangy cream cheese frosting rolled up inside tender homemade pumpkin cake. Learn the secret to rolling a perfect pumpkin roll in a few quick steps!

A pumpkin roll with a slice cut from the end on a wooden cutting board.
Email Yourself This Recipe!
Get the recipe link sent to your inbox! PLUS, we’ll send you fresh recipes weekly!
Please enable JavaScript in your browser to complete this form.

I love serving this pumpkin roll for two major reasons. The first being that it’s delicious and a total crowd-pleaser, the second being that it’s simply stunning! This pumpkin roll recipe has all the wow-factor of everyone’s favorite pumpkin cinnamon rolls, filled with the rich creaminess of a pumpkin delight. This recipe simplifies the process of baking a perfect pumpkin roll, making it easy to follow and pretty foolproof. You’re going to feel like quite the baker once you’ve finished rolling this fall favorite!

Why You’ll Love This Easy Pumpkin Roll Recipe

  • Full of pumpkin flavor. The pumpkin flavor in this cake roll is rich enough to satisfy a pumpkin craving, but not so strong that it’s overwhelming. Real pumpkin puree and pumpkin pie spice some together to create a flavor that’s undoubtedly delicious and perfect for fall.
  • Pretty to look at. Not only scrumptious to eat, this pumpkin roll is so pretty on a dessert table! You can’t beat a gorgeous spiral of soft, tender pumpkin cake bursting with rich and tangy cream cheese frosting.
  • Holiday-ready. If you’re looking to wow everyone at Thanksgiving this year with the best Fall-inspired treat, this is the recipe for you!
Overhead view of a pumpkin roll cut into slices on a white coutertop.

Recipe Ingredients

If you love the sweet-savory-creamy combination in recipes like pumpkin cheesecake, you’re going to love this pumpkin roll recipe. I outline the important ingredients below. Don’t forget to scroll to the recipe card for the full ingredients list and amounts.

For the Pumpkin Cake

  • Flour
  • Sugar – You’ll need both white granulated sugar and light brown sugar.
  • Cinnamon – For an extra pop of cozy spice.
  • Pumpkin pie spice – You can make your own pumpkin pie spice from scratch, or use your preferred store-bought spice blend.
  • Baking powder and baking soda
  • Salt
  • Pumpkin puree – Make sure it’s 100% canned pumpkin and NOT pumpkin pie filling!
  • Eggs – I like to use free-range organic eggs.
  • Vanilla extract – If you can, try to use pure vanilla extract, not imitation.

For the Cream Cheese Filling

  • Cream cheese – It should be room temperature so it mixes smoothly.
  • Butter – Unsalted and also at room temperature.
  • Powdered sugar – For both the sweetness and consistency, don’t substitute powdered sugar with anything else.
  • Heavy cream – This helps to create the most amazing creamy consistency!
  • Vanilla extract
Front view of a pumpkin roll on a wooden cutting board lined with parchment paper.

How to Make a Pumpkin Roll

This dessert turns out just like the famous Libby’s Pumpkin Roll (IYKYK), made totally from scratch. All it takes is a few easy steps:

  • Prepare the cake batter. Start by whisking together all of the dry ingredients. In a separate bowl, combine the pumpkin puree with the eggs and vanilla, then stir the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients to make the batter.
  • Bake. Pour the pumpkin cake batter into a lined 12×16″ rimmed baking pan (also called a jelly roll pan). Bake the cake at 350ºF for 15-20 minutes.
  • Cool. While the cake is still warm, roll it up into a tight roll. Use oven mitts to protect your hands from the heat. Afterward, let the cake cool to room temperature.
  • Make the filling. When the cake is ready to fill, beat cream cheese with butter, followed by powdered sugar, heavy cream, and vanilla to make the frosting.
  • Fill and roll. Carefully unroll the pumpkin cake. Using an offset spatula, spread the cream cheese frosting all over the cake, and, finally, roll everything back up before returning it to the fridge. Chill the pumpkin roll for 30 minutes, then top with a dusting of powdered sugar and serve.

The Secret to Rolling a Pumpkin Roll

My top tip when rolling a pumpkin roll? Use parchment paper! When the cake first comes out of the oven, roll it up inside the parchment paper that the cake was baked on. Rolling the pumpkin cake while its still warm ensures a crack-free pumpkin roll. Before you roll, place a second sheet of parchment paper on top (so that the cake is sandwiched between both sheets), to prevent the cake from sticking.

Two pumpkin roll slices on a white plate next to a fork, with a cup of coffee in the background.

Pumpkin Roll Recipe Tips

Below are more easy tips for making a perfect pumpkin roll:

  • Don’t overmix the cake batter. Only mix the ingredients until they’re just combined. Otherwise you’ll end up with flat, dense cake that’s not easy to roll.
  • Use a rimmed baking sheet. Also known as a jelly roll pan, you’ll want a pan with a rim or lip so that the batter doesn’t go everywhere!
  • Roll the pumpkin cake while it’s warm. The key to avoiding cracks in a pumpkin roll is to roll it almost immediately when it comes out of the oven. The moisture in the warm cake makes it pliable and helps to prevent it from cracking. The cake is much more likely to crack when it’s cooled, so be prepared to get rolling as soon as the baking time is up.
  • Use a tea towel. I’ve seen some pumpkin roll recipes use a thin tea towel in place of parchment paper when rolling the freshly-baked cake. If you’d like to try the towel method, make sure to use something thin and smooth, like a linen towel, and not a textured cloth towel.
  • Roll the filling up tightly. You’ll want to roll your pumpkin roll pretty tight so it gets that nice classic swirl!
  • Let the rolled cake cool completely before you fill it. If the cake is even slightly warm, the filling will melt and the roll won’t hold its shape.

Variation Ideas

Yes, you can always find ways to make this pumpkin roll recipe your own! Try these easy variations:

  • Add nuts. Sprinkle crushed pecans or walnuts over the creamy filling before rolling up your roll.
  • Maple. Drizzle over some maple syrup for even more sweet fall flavor. Or, mix it right into the cream cheese frosting!
  • Caramel. Add a drizzle of homemade salted caramel sauce.
  • Different filling. If cream cheese isn’t your thing, feel free to fill this roll with good old vanilla frosting (or any frosting you prefer).
Overhead view of a pumpkin roll slice with a bite missing on a white countertop.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why is my pumpkin roll wet or sticky?

You may notice that as your pumpkin roll cools down, the outside of the roll becomes soft and moist. A sprinkle of powdered sugar can help make the cake less sticky.

Why is my pumpkin roll tough?

Be careful that you don’t overmix the batter! As mentioned, overworking the batter ingredients can lead to a baked cake that’s dense and tricky to roll.

How to Store

  • Fridge. Since this pumpkin roll recipe contains cream cheese, you’ll want to keep in airtight in the fridge. Properly refrigerated, a pumpkin roll will stay fresh for up to 3 days.
  • Freeze. You can freeze this pumpkin roll for up to 1 month. I like to wrap individual slices tightly in plastic wrap and freeze them separately, so I can pull them out when a craving hits! Take the pumpkin roll out to defrost at room temperature about an hour before serving.

More Pumpkin Desserts

4.50 from 2 votes

Pumpkin Roll Recipe

This soft and spiced pumpkin roll recipe filled with tangy cream cheese frosting is an easy fall dessert! Perfect for holidays and gatherings.
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 0 minutes
Bake time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Servings: 12 slices


  • ¾ cup (94 g) all-purpose flour
  • ¾ cup (150 g) granulated sugar
  • ¼ cup (55 g) light brown sugar, packed
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
  • ¾ teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ¾ cup (184 g) pumpkin puree
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract

For the filling:

  • 8 ounces (227 g) cream cheese, room temperature
  • 2 tablespoons (28 g) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup (120 g) powdered sugar
  • ¼ cup (59 ml) heavy cream
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Email Yourself This Recipe!
Get the recipe link sent to your inbox! PLUS, we’ll send you fresh recipes weekly!
Please enable JavaScript in your browser to complete this form.


  • Preheat the oven to 350 °F (177 °C) and line a large 12 by 16-inch rimmed baking pan with parchment paper.
  • Make the cake by whisking together the flour, granulated sugar, brown sugar, cinnamon, pumpkin pie spice, baking powder, salt and baking soda in a large bowl then set aside.
  • Whisk the pumpkin puree, eggs and vanilla extract together in a separate medium size bowl then pour it into the dry ingredients and fold just until there are no more clumps.
  • Spread the mixture out into the prepared baking pan and bake for 15 to 20 minutes or until the center of the cake is set and a toothpick comes out clean when inserted into the center.
  • Place another sheet of parchment paper on top of the cake so that the cake doesn’t stick together.
  • Use oven mitts to protect your hands while you roll up the cake into a tight roll.
  • Let the cake cool completely for about one hour.
  • Once it has cooled, beat the cream cheese and butter together in a large bowl then add the powdered sugar, heavy cream and vanilla extract and beat until light and fluffy.
  • Unroll the cake and spread the cream cheese frosting on top of the cake in an even layer then roll the cake back up tightly and refrigerate once again for 30 minutes.
  • Serve with a dust of powdered sugar if desired.


This pumpkin roll can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days.


Serving: 1slice, Calories: 256kcal, Carbohydrates: 36g, Protein: 4g, Fat: 11g, Saturated Fat: 6g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 3g, Trans Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 74mg, Sodium: 250mg, Potassium: 95mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 28g

This website provides approximate nutrition information for convenience and as a courtesy only. Nutrition information can vary for a variety of reasons. For the most precise nutritional data use your preferred nutrition calculator based on the actual ingredients you used in the recipe.

The default measuring system for this website is US Customary. Unit conversions are provided for convenience and as a courtesy only. While we strive to provide accurate unit conversions, please be aware that there may be some discrepancies.

Like this? Leave a comment below!

You May Also Like...

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating

1 Comment

  1. This was my first time making a pumpkin roll & it came out delicious! This will be my go-to recipe from now on. I love how the recipe was organized and easy to read.