Pumpkin Roll Cake with Sweet Cream Cheese Filling is a Fall dessert that is requested year round in my family!
Soft, sweet layers of moist, pumpkin cake and a smooth, sweet, cream cheese filling will leave you feeling super impressed with your baking skills. It’s so easy to make and so hard to stop eating.
Tips and Tricks for a Successful Pumpkin Roll
- Use a 10x15 jelly roll pan and line it with a sheet of parchment paper to cover it edge to edge. Add an extra inch to each end of the long edge of the pan. It is much easier to lift the pumpkin roll cake out of the pan with the extra length.
- Mix with a stand mixer if one is available. It simplifies the process and minimizes the mess.
- Grease the parchment paper in the jelly roll pan before pouring in the cake batter. The parchment paper must be greased because it is used to roll the cake after it bakes.
- Cream the eggs, sugars, vanilla, and pumpkin puree together first. Then, mix in the spices (salt, baking soda, cinnamon, and baking powder for even distribution. Last, add the flour a little at a time.
- Watch the cake's baking time closely because it bakes very quickly.
- Lift the cake out of the baking pan while it's hot, using the extra length on the ends of the parchment paper. Transfer it to a flat, heat-safe surface and immediately begin rolling the cake, keeping the parchment paper rolled inside. The pumpkin roll cake cools the fastest on a wire rack in an open space.
- Set the rolled pumpkin roll cake aside to cool and in the meantime, prep the sweet cream cheese filling.
How to Roll a Pumpkin Roll with Sweet Cream Cheese Filling (or any jelly roll cake)
The most intimidating part of this recipe is that it's a "roll" cake. "Roll cakes" are commonly referred to as as jelly rolls, and do not have the best reputation. The traditional method of making roll cakes is to flip the baked cake onto a big towel that’s covered with powdered sugar. This method is really messy, more involved, and not fool-proof. I also have always had this bizarre reluctance to put my cake in a towel. That can't help with moisture retention. Fortunately, parchment paper resolved all of the issues of the towel method!
*Step 1: Remove the pumpkin roll cake from the oven and lift the cake out of the pan using the long edges of the parchment paper. Set it on a heat-safe surface.
*Step 2: At one end of the long edge of the pumpkin roll cake, lift the parchment paper, and roll cake toward the opposite end. The parchment paper will roll inside the cake.
*Step 3: Set rolled pumpkin roll cake on a wire rack in a cool, open space and allow it to cool completely (1 hour).
*Step 4: Once cooled, unroll the cake using the edge of the parchment paper. Peel the parchment paper off of the cake. The parchment paper removes easily because it was greased before the cake was baked on it.
*Step 5: Spread the sweet cream cheese filling evenly over the unrolled pumpkin roll cake.
*Step 6: Re roll the cake with the filling inside. Do not roll the parchment paper into the cake.
Sweet Cream Cheese Filling
The sweet cream cheese filling in this recipe pulls everything together. It's light, but has the perfect extra pop of sweetness to compliment the subtlety of the pumpkin roll cake. The combination of the pumpkin roll cake and the sweet cream cheese filling is like a cake alternative to a no bake pumpkin pie...but better.
The sweet cream cheese filling is similar to a cream cheese frosting, but it uses a lower powdered sugar to butter/cream cheese ratio. The filling has a softer, creamier structure than cream cheese frosting, but it retains the flavor combination of cream cheese frosting. Vanilla also adds sweetness but isn't over powering.
The best advice I have for the filling is allow the butter and cream cheese to get to room temperature and soften before creaming them. If either is too cold when creamed, the result will be lumpy and require a lot more mixing. Also, do not over add vanilla. Cream cheese has a unique flavor profile and too much vanilla will overpower it.
Sprinkle, Slice, and Serve the Pumpkin Roll Cake with Sweet Cream Cheese Filling
After the cake has been filled and re-rolled, place it back in the refrigerator for 45 minutes-1 hour before serving. Sift and sprinkle the cake with a dusting of powdered sugar. Slice the cake and either serve it immediately, or store it in an air tight container in the refrigerator prior to serving and when saving leftovers. Enjoy! ( I know you will because it's impossible to not love this cake)
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Looking for MORE recipes? Don’t worry, I gotchu. Try sesame soy roasted edamame, sea salt caramel apple [oatmeal] cookies, perfect Fall pumpkin muffins,or my favorite vanilla bean white chocolate cheesecake with fudge brownie crust
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Pumpkin Roll Cake with Sweet Cream Cheese Filling
- Preheat oven to 350° F.
- Line the 10 x 15 inch jelly roll pan with parchment paper. Leave about an inch of extra paper on both lengths of the 15 inch sides of the pan (this makes it easy to lift the cake out of the pan while it's still hot). Spray the parchment paper with baking spray or grease it with butter.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer or food processor (or mixing bowl), cream together the eggs, vanilla, sugars, and pumpkin puree.
- Add salt, cinnamon, baking soda, and baking powder and mix until well combined.
- Gradually add flour until the batter is blended and smooth.
- Pour batter into the greased, parchment paper lined pan and spread evenly across.
- Bake the cake at 350°F for 10-15 minutes. It bakes quickly, so keep a close eye on it.
- Lift cake and parchment paper from jelly roll pan (using the extra length edges of the parchment paper) and transfer to a flat, heat-safe surface. Immediately begin to slowly roll the cake with parchment paper (parchment paper will roll into the cake for this step). Place the rolled cake (while in the parchment paper roll) on a wire rack in a cool, open space until it has cooled completely. This typically takes about an hour (in an open space on a wire rack if possible).
- While the cake is cooling, combine room temperature cream cheese and butter (softened) with vanilla extract and powdered sugar in a stand mixer, food processor, or mixing bowl. Mix until creamy and fluffy.
- Once cake is cool, carefully unroll it and peel off the parchment paper. Spread cream cheese filling evenly leaving about an inch from the edge (lengthwise) this will keep the filling from overflowing when the cake is re rolled.
- Slowly re-roll your cake, do not roll in the parchment paper this time. Carefully transfer it to a plate, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for about 45 minutes prior to serving. Prior to serving, sift and tap powdered sugar over the cake to evenly distribute.
- To store, cover with plastic wrap and keep refrigerated.