Autumn is here and I am HERE FOR IT. If you’re also looking for a breakfast item that is perfect for a chilly morning, then look no further than these super fluffy pumpkin cinnamon rolls with brown butter frosting!
Autumn to me equals pumpkins, pumpkins, pumpkins. When Will and I went around New England one Autumn and I loved how every porch (also, loved that every house has a PORCH) was covered in pumpkins. One day we were driving to Vermont through New Hampshire, and decided to take a break to stretch our legs and grab something to eat. The exit we took took us to a small town called Warner, known for it’s telephone museum – and apparently, google tells me there is also a haunted house and asylum?? How did I miss this. What Warner also had was a diner which bragged about having New Hampshire’s best cinnamon rolls, so obviously we had to get one. The guy working there offered to heat ours up, and it took literally forever. Once he gave it to us in a take out container I realised why it took so long, it was the largest cinnamon roll I have ever seen. Between the two of us we couldn’t even finish it.
- Pumpkin puree In the UK you can buy canned pumpkin online and I’ve noticed it is now more widely available in shops! Just check out the baking section, it’s usually with the other cans like condensed milk. Make sure you’re using pure pumpkin and not pumpkin pie filling!
- Maple Syrup I use maple syrup here, you could probably try out maple flavoured golden syrup but I like to splash out for real maple syrup for treats like these
- Cream Cheese this is what gives the frosting that yummy tang
Baking Tips & FAQs
If you don’t have pumpkin pie spice on hand, you can make it yourself! Pumpkin pie spice is just a combination of cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, cloves and cardamom.
A lot of cinnamon bun recipes will have you melt the butter, then sprinkle your filling on top. I’ve found though it makes the filling too thin and harder to roll up, so here I’ve mixed room temperature butter with the brown sugar and spices, and spread that on the dough. If your kitchen is pretty cold and the filling isn’t spreadable, you can heat it up in a microwave for 15-20 seconds.
I recommend starting these in the afternoon. You can then pop them in the fridge to rest overnight, and then the next day let them rise for about an hour before baking them.
How to make cinnamon bun dough
This dough is a bit of an intense one but so worth it. It’s adapted from the Vanilla Bean Baking Blog. You do have to start the recipe the day before, but then again who would wake up at 4am to have cinnamon rolls anyway??
This is a brioche dough made with eggs, milk, flour, yeast, butter, maple syrup and pumpkin puree! I took out some of the eggs in the original recipe and replaced it with pumpkin puree, as the pumpkin acts as a bind similar to the eggs. It gives the dough this vibrant colour and subtle pumpkin taste. It also leaves enough pumpkin puree from a can to make pumpkin pancakes…
Part of the method will have you do a stretch and fold, which if you’re familiar with sourdough baking you’ll know all about! You’re going to put your hand into the bowl and take the bottom of the dough and stretch it over the top. You’re going to do that all around the dough, and let it rise for 30 minutes. You’ll do this a total of 4 times, taking 2 hours. This will give you a super fluffy and airy dough!
Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls with Brown Butter Frosting
- 9×13 inch pan
- 2 eggs
- 175 ml whole milk
- 75 ml maple syrup
- 568 grams flour
- 2 ¼ teaspoon active dry yeast
- 2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 142 grams unsalted butter, room temperature and cut into 1" pieces
- 200 grams canned pumpkin puree
- 113 grams unsalted butter, room temperature
- 170 grams light brown sugar
- 1 ½ tablespoon pumpkin pie spice
- ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
- 85 grams unsalted butter
- 113 grams cream cheese, room temperature
- 150 grams icing sugar
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Grease a large bowl. In a measuring jug, combine eggs, pumpkin, milk and maple syrup.
- In a stand mixer with the paddle attachment, mix flour, yeast and salt. Mix on low to combine. Add the egg mixture and continue on low. While the mixer is running, add the butter one piece at a time. Once all the butter has been added, increase the speed to medium and mix until it is completely combined. Transfer dough to greased bowl, cover with plastic and let it rise for 30 minutes
- Using the stretch and fold method, similar to sourdough bread, pull the dough up and fold back over itself. Do this 6-8 times around the dough. Re-cover with the plastic and let rise for another 30 minutes. Repeat for a total time of 2 hours, doing the stretch and fold 4 times. Tightly cover and put in fridge overnight.
- The next morning, take the dough out on a floured work surface and knead the dough 10-12 times. Shape into a ball and cover with a tea towel until it comes to room temperature.
- Grease a 9×13 inch pan or line with paper.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, add the filling ingredients and with the paddle attachment, mix until the filling is completely smooth.
- Roll the dough into a 16×12 inch rectangle. Spread the mixture over the top, leaving a half inch border around the rectangle.
- On the long side of the dough, roll it into a tight cylinder. Pinch the ends together to seal and position the dough so the seam is down. Use a sharp knife to cut the dough into 12 pieces. Place into the pan and cover with plastic. Let it rise for 1 ½ hours.
- Preheat the oven to 350°F/175°C. Bake for 30-35 minutes until golden brown.
- In a small saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat. Cook for 5 minutes, until the butter is lightly browned and smells toasted. Remove it from the heat and let it cool.
- In a medium bowl, beat together the brown butter, cream cheese, powdered sugar, cinnamon and vanilla until smooth.