Go Back
+ servings
Print Recipe
5 from 1 vote

Pumpkin Cinnamon Buns

With pumpkin dough and a crisp, cinnamon-sugar coating, these squash-shaped Pumpkin Cinnamon Buns add sweetness and fun to fall festivities! Makes 24 3-inch buns.
Prep Time1 hr 10 mins
Cook Time25 mins
Resting/Rising Time8 hrs 40 mins
Total Time10 hrs 15 mins
Course: Breakfast, Brunch
Keyword: cinnamon rolls, dinner rolls, holiday recipes, pumpkin, pumpkin rolls, pumpkin spice, yeasted dough
Servings: 12

Ingredients

Sweet Pumpkin Dough

  • 2 tablespoons warm water (105-115°F)
  • 3 tablespoons granulated sugar plus a pinch, divided
  • 2 1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast
  • 3 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup apple cider
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • pinch freshly grated nutmeg
  • 4 1/4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour plus more for shaping

Assembly

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter melted
  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
  • 12 large pecans sliced in half lengthwise

Instructions

Sweet Pumpkin Dough

  • Add warm water and a pinch of granulated sugar to the bowl of a standing electric mixer. Sprinkle the yeast over the water's surface and stir to dissolve. Set aside.
  • Melt the butter in a medium saucepan over low heat. Add apple cider, maple syrup, sugar, and salt. Stir over low heat until the sugar dissolves. Remove from heat. 
  • Add pumpkin puree and egg to the butter mixture. Whisk to combine. 
  • In the bowl with the activated yeast (which should be bubbly), combine wet ingredients from the saucepan, the spices, and two cups of the flour. Stir to combine with a wooden spoon or the mixer’s paddle attachment.  
  • Add the remaining flour, about 1/4 cup at a time, allowing it to incorporate before adding more. Let the dough rest for 20 minutes before continuing. 
  • Switch to the dough hook and knead until the soft dough looks smooth, about 7 to 10 minutes.  
  • Scrape the soft, tacky dough into a greased bowl, flipping it once to coat the dough with oil. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let the dough rise over night in the refrigerator. Alternatively, let the dough rise at room temperature for about two hours.

Assembly

  • Pour melted butter into a wide, shallow bowl and set aside. Mix granulated sugar and cinnamon in small bowl. Pour about 1/3 of the sugar mixture into a wide, shallow bowl. Set aside. Grease or parchment-line two baking sheets.
  • Turn the dough out on a lightly floured surface and divide it into 24 evenly-sized pieces (if you did not refrigerate the dough, you might need more than a light dusting of flour).
  • Working one at a time, roll each piece of dough into a 10 to 12-inch rope, using just enough flour to prevent sticking. Before shaping, lightly dust the rope with flour, and then, with floured hands, turn it into a pumpkin. 
  • Create a small loop in the rope with a long tail on one side and a short tail on the other. 
  • Wrap the long tail around the edge of the loop 2 to 3 times.
  • Hold the remaining end of the long tail on the bottom-side of the loop with a finger to keep it from unraveling as you to work. 
  • Wrap the other tail around the edge of the loop, tucking it through the center of the loop and pinch the two ends together where they meet on the bottom side.
  • If you’re not happy with the look of any of the rolls, simply set them aside for about 15 minutes and reshape. 
  • Working one at a time, dip the shaped buns into the melted butter, turning for even coverage. Dredge the buns in the sugar mixture to coat them completely, jostling gently to work some of the sugar under the folds of dough.
  • Transfer the sugar-coated buns to the prepared baking sheets.
  • As needed, add more cinnamon-sugar to the wide, shallow work bowl, whisking to combine and break up buttery clumps.   
  • Insert a sliced pecan into the center of each roll, pressing so the pecan touches the pan. 
  • Cover the rolls with lightly oiled plastic wrap and let them rest at room temperature for 20 to 30 minutes. In the meantime, preheat oven to 375°F. 
  • Bake the rolls until they have an internal temperature between 190 and 200°F, about 20 to 25 minutes.
  • Let the rolls rest for 15 to 20 minutes before eating.
  • To reheat, set rolls in an oven preheated to 300° F oven for about 10 to 15 minutes.