Pumpkin Cake Roll Recipe

Pumpkin Cake Roll Recipe – seasonal treat, perfect for fall. Layer of soft and tender pumpkin cake with sweet, smooth and creamy cream cheese frosting.

Pumpkin cake roll cut into slices on parchment paper

Easy and foolproof pumpkin roll cake:

This is the first pumpkin cake roll recipe I ever tried making and I’ve been sticking to it ever since. It produces the best, foolproof pumpkin roll cake.

The pumpkin cake is very soft and moist and the cream cheese filling is just heavenly!

Simple and tasty fall treat! Tastes like pumpkin cupcakes with cream cheese frosting.

This recipe was originally shared on my blog in 2014.

Back then, I kind of felt I did not have the skills to make a cake roll.

When I saw the recipe on a can of Libby’s pumpkin pure I had in my pantry, I finally decided to give it a try. I pretty much stuck to the original recipe with a few minor modifications. It turned out that making a pumpkin cake roll was much easier than I expected.

Pumpkin roll cake cut into slices

Ingredients for this pumpkin cake roll recipe:

Cake roll:

  • All purpose flour ( there is no need to use cake flour)
  • Baking powder
  • Salt – it balances out the sweetness and enhances the other flavors
  • Baking soda – why use together with Baking powder? Baking soda reacts immediately to acidic elements in a recipe and gives an immediate leavening effect. Baking powder on the other hand, keeps reacting with the heat, while baking to give a leavening boost. A combination of both these leavening agents gives the best leavening for most cake recipes. I use both usually in Pumpkin, Carrot and Zucchini cakes.
  • Pumpkin pie spice – a combination of ground cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, allspice and ground cloves
  • Ground Cinnamon – for a boost of the cinnamon flavor and because it pairs well with pumpkin
  • Eggs (large, at room temperature)
  • Pumpkin puree (Homemade or store bought. I like Libby’s brand.)

For the frosting:

  • Unsalted butter
  • Full fat cream cheese
  • Vanilla extract (optional)
  • Super fine powdered sugar

Making the roll:

If you haven’t tried making a pumpkin roll, the process is pretty easy and quick. You basically bake a sheet cake over oiled parchment paper.

After you take it out of the oven, the cane should be inverted onto a kitchen towel, which is sprinkled with powdered sugar.

Don’t want to use a kitchen towel? Not a problem! You can use a large sheet of parchment paper, place it on the working surface, dust with powdered sugar and then invert the baked cake. Peel off the oily parchment paper, used while baking and roll the cake with the clean, powdered sugar dusted paper.

You let it cool in the rolled position. When the cake has cooled to room temperature (it takes about 1 hour), you unroll it and  spread the creamy frosting over it and of course roll it back up and place it in the fridge for at least 1 hour.

When spreading the frosting, leave a margin of about 1/2 inch , where you don’t spread frosting on all sides. When rolling back the cake, the frosting will distribute perfectly.

Cutting the cake roll:

If you want to create the perfect slices, when ready to cut it, you can use dental floss to do so. This way your roll doesn’t get deformed from pressing with the knife.

Cracks in roll cakes

One of the reasons, you may be scared of with cake rolls, may be cracking. Some dryer and denser cakes can easily crack. With this recipe, which produces a moist cake with fine, tender crumb, I have not had cracking ever. But some of you may encounter this problem.

The reasons why?

Over baking and not rolling the cake when still hot could be the main reasons of cracking. Another reason is not being careful, when rolling and unrolling.

But if you do get cracks, don’t worry. The cream cheese frosting will “glue” them together. Plus dusting with powdered sugar the top of the finished cake will hide some potential cracks and imperfections.

A slice of pumpkin cake roll on a plate

How to store pumpkin cake roll?

Store this roll cake in an air tight container in the fridge for up to 2 days.

Wrap in plastic wrap and then aluminum foil, then freeze for up to 2 months. Allow it to defrost in the fridge overnight, before serving.

More Pumpkin Recipes:

Servings: 10

Pumpkin Cake Roll Recipe

Prep Time:
20 minutes
Cook Time:
20 minutes
Total Time:
40 minutes
Classic pumpkin roll. The pumpkin cake is very soft and moist and the cream cheese filling is just heavenly! Simple and tasty fall treat! Tastes like pumpkin cupcakes with cream cheese frosting.
5 from 6 votes
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  • Powdered sugar — , regular clean dish towel, oil spray (I use Misto)

Pumpkin Cake Roll:

  • 3/4 cup all purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 3 large eggs
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2/3 cup pumpkin pure — (not pumpkin pie filling)

Cream Cheese Filling

  • 1 pkg — (8 oz /226 gr) softened cream cheese
  • 1 cup sifted powdered sugar
  • 6 tbsp softened butter
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • powdered sugar


Pumpkin Cake Roll:

  1. Preheat oven to 375F (190C). Grease a 9x13 jelly roll pan. Line with parchment paper. Grease and flour paper. Generously sprinkle a thin cotton kitchen towel with powdered sugar.Make sure you sprinkle "generously", otherwise your cake will stick to the towel.
  2. In a bowl combine flour, salt, baking soda, baking poweder, cinnamon and pumpkin pie spice. Set a side.
  3. In another bowl, using a mixer beat eggs and sugar until thick. Beat in pumpkin. Stir in flour mixture, do not over beat.
  4. Spread evenly into prepared pan. Bake for 13-15 minutes, until top of cake springs back when touched. Immediate;y loosen cake and turn onto prepared towel. Peel off paper. Starting with the narrow end, roll up cake and towel together. Let it cool on wire rack.

Cream Cheese Filling:

  1. Beat cream cheese, butter, powdered sugar and vanilla in a small mixer bowl until smooth.
  2. Carefully unroll the cake, remove towel and spread cream cheese filling. Roll cake again. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour. Slice and serve.

Recipe Notes

Recipe slightly adapted form Libby's.
A larger jelly-roll pan (10x15 inch) can be used, cake will be thinner.
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American

Nutrition Information

Calories: 200, Fat: 8g, Saturated Fat: 4g, Cholesterol: 67mg, Sodium: 202mg, Potassium: 87mg, Carbohydrates: 28g, Sugar: 20g, Protein: 2g, Vitamin A: 2825%, Vitamin C: 0.7%, Calcium: 27%, Iron: 0.9%