Pumpkin Yeast Rolls

March 28, 2008 · 29 comments · Print This Post

in Appetizers, Baked Goods, Bread / Rolls, Healthy

The Proof is in the Pumpkin

When these rolls came out of the oven and I tasted the first one sandwiched with a little butter I almost did a cartwheel. Finally, I’d made a recipe with yeast that actually tasted good!

Time for a quiz.
Which of the following accurately illustrates how Erin feels about baking bread:
A. I famously can’t make bread.
B. I’m impatient and dislike it when recipes take several hours to make.
C. I hate to cook anything with a high mess threshold.
D. All of the above

Give up? Well if you chose “D” you’re right on top of things. However, I plan to make an exception to this raging anti-bread sentiment in the future because I really liked these rolls.

In addition, these pumpkin dinner accompaniments are “Part 2” of the recipes I made with one can of leftover Libby’s Pumpkin. Those little cans obviously have a lot more possibilities in them than just boring old Thanksgiving pies.

Can of Pumpkin Part 2
Can of Pumpkin Part 2
Dissolve Yeast & Sugar
Dissolve Yeast & Sugar
Make Dough
Make Dough
Knead & Form Into a Ball
Knead & Form Into a Ball
Let it Rise
Let it Rise
Shape, Bake & Cool
Shape, Bake & Cool

Pumpkin Yeast Rolls (Originally published in the December 1998 edition of Cooking Light magazine. I halved the recipe as outlined below.)
Makes 12 Rolls

1/2 cup canned pumpkin
1 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 package dry yeast (about 1 1/8 teaspoons)
1 tablespoons brown sugar
3/8 cup warm fat-free milk (105° to 115°)
2 1/2 cups bread flour, divided
1/8 cup stick margarine or butter, softened
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cider vinegar
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 large egg (Note: Just scramble one egg in a dish and pour half into your recipe)
Cooking spray

Combine the pumpkin and vanilla extract, and set aside. Dissolve yeast and sugar in milk in a large bowl; let stand 5 minutes. Lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Add 1 cup flour, pumpkin mixture, margarine, salt, vinegar, nutmeg, and egg to yeast mixture; beat at medium speed of a mixer until smooth. Stir in 1 cups flour to form a sticky dough. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Knead dough until smooth and elastic (about 10 minutes); add enough of remaining flour, 1 tablespoon at a time, to prevent dough from sticking to hands.

Place dough in a large bowl coated with cooking spray, turning to coat top. Cover dough, and let rise in a warm place (85°), free from drafts, 1 hour or until doubled in bulk.

Coat muffin cups with cooking spray. Punch dough down. Divide into 12 equal pieces; shape each piece into a ball. Place 1 ball in each muffin cup. Cover and let rise 30 minutes or until doubled in bulk.

Preheat oven to 350°.

Uncover dough; bake at 350° for 20 minutes. Remove from pans; cool on wire racks.

Go Ahead!  Have a Bite!

{ 27 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Sarah March 28, 2008 at 8:29 am

Wow! Combining two of my favorites…bread and pumpkin. This is a recipe I will try for sure!


2 Cze-Johnson Carrie March 28, 2008 at 8:37 am

ok. I think I’m going to say ‘to hell’ with 2 of my cardinal rules… making bread and the no-pumpkin after january…. and try these out. they look SO GOOD!

so for a total bread-making novice like me… what’s your difficulty rating on these? should I wait to attempt these for when the kids are in bed so they don’t learn any new ‘bad words’?


3 Celine March 28, 2008 at 8:52 am

oooh, pumpkin yeast bread is so tasty!! your rolls look absolutely scrumptious.


4 Amy March 28, 2008 at 9:34 am

Oh, yum, I love anything pumpkin and these little plump rolls are calling my name! Well done! 🙂


5 Nicole March 28, 2008 at 9:42 am

I’ve never tried any type of pumpkin yeast bread before but it sounds good. I was rummaging through the back of my poorly designed pantry yesterday and found one can of pumpkin sitting back there all sad and lonely. Once I get out of of my baking slump, I might give these a try!


6 wummy March 28, 2008 at 10:10 am



7 Dylan March 28, 2008 at 11:00 am

They look amazing! Although I have to admit that I’ve never understood the American obsession with all things pumpkin-y. Don’t even get me started on pumpkin pie…!


8 Hänni March 28, 2008 at 12:11 pm

i have not had rolls but i’m a HUGE fan of both pumpkin bread and pumpkin cookies.


9 Elle March 28, 2008 at 1:14 pm

Erin, those look perfect! And with pumpkin, well, even better. They look pretty easy, too. Gorgeous color!


10 Rachel March 28, 2008 at 3:04 pm

Those look too perfect to be homemade! I bet they tasted fabulous. I think there should be more things made with pumpkin . . .


11 Amber March 28, 2008 at 3:34 pm

I so hate making bread to? I’m baking some as we speak. (ok, so my bread machine is doing it. whatever.)

Why oh why do you torture me so with these yummy recipes. ARGH!


12 Allen March 28, 2008 at 7:58 pm

Wow, these look great — the color is fun too! I love pumpkin any time of year, so applaud your use of it. And congratulations on making something with yeast — I love bread making.

Please forgive me for this ‘non-recipe’ but if you mix one can of Libby pumpkin with a pre-packaged brownie mix (do not add eggs or anything else, just the pumpkin), you actually get a moist and healthier brownie (high fiber, low-fat). You really don’t taste the pumpkin but you reap all the benefits from it. It came in handy as a quick sweet fix when I was doing the dreaded D-word. 🙂


13 Abbey March 28, 2008 at 9:52 pm

Oh My Heavens!! I love anything that involves pumpkin…and I just love the taste and smell of a freshly baked [anything with yeast]. But I’m with you…I don’t cook with it because I suck at it…and I hate making a huge mess.

But I’m totally up for trying this one. I’ll make it with my friend Shawnee who is also a pumpkin freak.

AND I do believe I am going to try the pumpkin brownie “non-recipe” from Allen above. Great idea!


14 Kate March 29, 2008 at 12:56 am

You will do more than cartwheels when you discover the two best sandwiches EVER to grace pumpkin yeast rolls:

Turkey and Cranberry Sauce on a pumpkin roll, with a bit of sage mayonaise. Oh yessss. A match made in heaven.

Roasted Glazed Ham, or Ham Salad, with roasted asparagus or other veggie of your choice, on a pumpkin roll. Come to Mamma.


15 farida March 29, 2008 at 1:15 am

Erin, your pumpkin rolls look so good. I like their color a lot, very appealing and appetizing! I enjoy visiting your blog!


16 Erin March 29, 2008 at 9:41 am

Carrie – I don’t think this is a hard recipe but if you haven’t really made bread before you’ll probably want to wait until the kids are in bed just so you don’t have any distractions. The way I feel about it is that if I made these come out anyone can.

Amy & Celine – Thanks! Let me know if you get a chance to try them out.

Nicole – I wonder if there are millions of sad and lonely single cans of pumpkin hiding out behind baked beans and enchiladas sauces all over the world just waiting for the chance to be made into something yummy…probably…since they’re always 5 for $1 at Thanksgiving time and really how many pumpkin pies can you make for a family dinner. I hope you break out of that baking slump soon!

Wummy – Thanks Mom 🙂

Dylan – Thanks! You better get used to Pumpkin Pie though since it looks like you’ll be staying on this side of the pond for awhile 🙂

Hänni – These are quite different than the traditional flavors of pumpkin bread and muffins. It’s a much more a hint of pumpkin taste and not the spicy flavor that you get from denser baked goods. I don’t want you to be disappointed if you make them. They aren’t sweet and would reside on the savory side of the taste spectrum. Just warning you 🙂

Elle – Really the hardest part was keeping all of the measurements that I halved straight. I was worried that they wouldn’t come out since I played with the recipe so much, but thankfully they did.

Rachel – Thank you! That’s such a nice thing for you to say. I of course hid the misshapen muffins behind the pretty ones. I hope they don’t need pastry therapy now 😉

Allen – Thanks for the recipe! It sort of reminds me of those No-Pudge Fudge Brownies where you just add a small container of fat free yogurt to the brownie mix. Of course that usually means I think that I can eat the whole pan — obviously that defeats the purpose though 😉

Abbey – You’ll have to let me know what you think. The pumpkin taste is subtle. I’m hoping that people aren’t expecting it to be like the cakey pumpkin muffins and breads that we’re all used to eating because they’re going to be disappointed 🙁

Kate – Those sandwich ideas sound outstanding! I never would have thought to put those combinations together, but now that you mention it I can’t imagine them being apart. I’ll have to make another batch soon and give your suggestions a try.

Farida – Thanks so much for stopping by again! I’m glad you liked the rolls. It’s really nice to hear such positive feedback.


17 dp March 30, 2008 at 1:30 am

Those rolls look like they turned out perfect. I love pumpkin so I think I’ll have to give these a try!


18 FlaNboyantEats March 30, 2008 at 1:22 pm

yeah, it’s always in the pumpkin–year round!



19 farida April 2, 2008 at 4:41 pm

Erin, I really want to make these pumpkin rolls and need your help:) I have never used canned pumpkin in my life and don’t know how it looks, so wondering if simply steaming pumpkin in little water then mashing it would be a good substitute. i have a buttermilk squash, could I use it? I am assuming I could.


20 farida April 2, 2008 at 6:36 pm

Erin, to save your time:) i did a search on the internet and decided to make my own pumpkin puree:) http://www.pastrywiz.com/thanksgiving/pumkpin.htm
Instead of buying a canned one. i have a butternut squash in sitting in my fridge forever and it is time to eat it:) will use it instead of pumpkin to see how it turns out. thanks for the recipe!


21 Erin April 3, 2008 at 7:17 am

DP & Bren – Thank you!

Farida – What a great question. I’ve honestly never used fresh pumpkin in a recipe, which is pretty terrible of me. I looked your question up online and it appears that you definitely can substitute one for the other though. Plus, obviously it’s much better for you. Here’s a link that has some tips about how to go about doing this: http://answers.yahoo.com/question/index?qid=20061114202644AAYIdWo

It seems that the most important factor is to make sure your fresh pumpkin mixture is very dry.

Good luck!


22 farida April 4, 2008 at 2:34 pm

Erin, I made these yummy rolls yesterday! We had guests and the rolls were a hit! As I wrote earlier, I had a butternut squash. I cut it into wedges and baked in the oven, then mashed and added to the dough. I added a little more sugar for extra sweetness. I didn’t use a muffing pan, I just used a regular baking sheet and put the rolls right there. They turned out beautifully and the aroma was simply irresistible. Oh, my, and the color was perfect! You can say that I am in love with this recipe, can’t you:)) Thank you for sharing!!!!


23 Chuck April 13, 2008 at 12:09 pm

Lust stumbled your blog and I just wanted you to know that those Pumpkin buns are very cute!


24 Diane April 14, 2008 at 3:33 am

Pumpkin buns sound great – looks fairly easy too. I’m a bit of a scaredy cat when it comes to baking bread though – the stress of knowing whether it’s done enough or not. I do have a breadmaker which takes 99% of the stress out of it though.
I’d be tempted to put a little ground sunflower seed in, or even chopped pumpkin seeds, but I’ll have to try your recipe first before I start adding to it!


25 shykathy1954 April 15, 2008 at 10:15 am

I love pumpkin so I think I’ll have to give these a try!


26 Niall Harbison April 17, 2008 at 11:27 am

Hi there

I just found your blog through stumbleupon and am loving the design, nice and clean and simple. The recipes are looking nice as well and can certainly see myself making some of them in the future. I am actually looking for people with excellent food photos who want to share them with the world and interact with other foodies. I started by blogging myself about a year ago and was frustrated that not enough people were seeing the quality content I had and saw huge potential for people to share their food photos and videos with a bigger audience and ultimately drive more traffic back to their own site. Check me out at http://www.ifoods.tv and let me know what you think and keep up the good work on the blog!


27 Deborah Dowd October 28, 2008 at 9:38 pm

These look really good. I have tried butternut squash rolls but like you, bread-baking is not my thing. Maybe I will give these a try!


Leave a Comment

{ 2 trackbacks }

Previous post:

Next post: