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Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls with Caramel Frosting

Everyone in my family, and many of my friends, absolutely love my cinnamon rolls. But these Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls with Caramel Frosting are my personal favorite. Firstly, I love anything Pumpkin, though I think the pumpkin craze has gone a bit too far, like Pumpkin Spice Spam, really? That just does not sound appetizing to me, at all. Or pumpkin dog chow? Are dogs really into pumpkin like us humans are? Or how about a pumpkin spice burger? Even pumpkin spice toothpaste and deodorant. Just stop already!

Anyway, I think my favorite part of these cinnamon rolls, besides the fact that they are tender and delicate and melt in your mouth, is this caramel frosting. I can eat this frosting just by itself. It’s also great on pancakes, cupcakes, cakes, cookies, and so much more. If you’re a pumpkin fan, try this recipe, and you’ll be hooked!

I used to make this at our Colorado Bed and Breakfast Inn, now a Vacation Rental Luxury Suite, and they were always a huge hit. Enjoy!

This recipe, and 499 others can be found in my cookbook, Rocky Mountain Lodge & Cabins MORE Favorite recipes, which you can purchase at our GIFT SHOP!

Prep Time: 1 Hour and 45 Minutes
Cook Time: 40 Minutes
Total Time: 2 Hours and 25 Minutes
Servings: 12

Ingredients:

  • ROLLS:
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 1/3 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter
  • 1/2 cup canned pumpkin
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/4 tsp. grated nutmeg
  • 1 Tbsp pumpkin pie spice
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 2 eggs, room temperature, lightly beaten
  • 4 1/2 cups flour, sifted
  • 2 (1/4 oz each) packets active dry yeast
  • FILLING:
  • 3 Tbsp butter, melted
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 2 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • CARAMEL FROSTING:
  • 6 Tbsp butter
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 3 Tbsp milk
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
  • Dash salt
  • 1 1/4 cups powdered sugar*

Instructions:

  1. FOR THE ROLLS:

  2. In a small saucepan heat water, milk and 1/2 stick butter just until warm and butter is melted.

  3. In a large mixer bowl, combine pumpkin, sugar, nutmeg, pumpkin pie spice, and salt.

  4. Add milk mixture and beat with an electric mixer until well mixed.

  5. Beat in eggs.

  6. Add half of the flour and all of the yeast to the pumpkin mixture. Beat on low speed for 5 minutes, scraping sides of bowl frequently. Add remaining flour and mix thoroughly (dough will be very soft).

  7. Lightly grease a large non-metal bowl and put dough in bowl, turn over so greasy side is up. Lightly cover with plastic wrap or kitchen towel and allow to rise in a warm place until double in size, about 1 hour. TIP: I put it on the stovetop and turn the stove light on above it to keep it warm, or put it in a microwave (don't turn the microwave on though!).

  8. After the dough has doubled in size, punch dough down and turn onto a floured surface and roll to a 12"x18" rectangle.

  9. Brush dough with 3 Tbsp melted butter.

  10. Mix together 1/2 cup brown sugar and 2 tsp. ground cinnamon and sprinkle over butter on dough.

  11. Beginning with the long side of the dough, roll up jellyroll style. Pinch seam to seal. With a sharp knife, or unflavored dental floss, cut dough into 12 even slices. Place rolls in a lightly greased 9"x13" baking pan. Cover and let rise in a warm place until nearly double, about 30 minutes.

  12. Preheat oven to 350°. Bake rolls about 30 minutes, or until golden. Drizzle with Caramel Frosting (below).

  13. CARAMEL FROSTING:

  14. In a small saucepan heat butter until melted. Stir in brown sugar and milk, cook over medium low heat 1 minute. Transfer to a mixing bowl and allow to cool.

  15. Once cooled, stir in vanilla, pumpkin pie spice, salt, and powdered sugar. Beat with electric mixer until well blended. If necessary, add more powdered sugar or milk to achieve desired consistency and drizzle over rolls.

  16. *For a thicker caramel frosting for cakes or cupcakes, add more powdered sugar until the desired thickness.

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