It’s pumpkin season. Need I say more? This time of year I love to make Pumpkin Brioche. It can be sweet or savory, it makes the best french toast, and it is just darn tasty. And for a long time now I’ve been suspecting that it would also make excellent cinnamon rolls.
I was right. It is so sweet being right. Literally.
These are better than traditional cinnamon rolls. And I’m not just saying that because I made them. The hint of pumpkin really adds to the whole cinnamon roll experience. You still get the cinnamon roll flavor and the cream cheese icing. Add in the pumpkin and it is a match made in tummy heaven.
Now for the slightly bad news. Something that tastes this good does not happen quickly. The brioche requires an overnight starter, then a rise for an hour or two, depending on how warm your house is, then the cinnamon rolls need to rise for another hour. Then bake, then eat. So, if you want these for breakfast, make them the day before, which actually means starting two nights before. I know. I know! But after all your hard work will be the best cinnamon roll you have ever tasted. I promise.
You can find the full pumpkin brioche instructions here. I’m just going to do the basic below. You will have enough brioche to make two 10 inch round pans of rolls, and then leftovers. I just shaped mine into rolls. They are tasty like that too.
Yield: 2 10 inch pans of cinnamon rolls plus six plain rolls
One year ago: French Four Spiced Cake with Browned Butter Frosting
- 312 g bread flour
- 190 g milk
- pinch of instant yeast
Mix all together and knead until smooth. Let rest for 12 to 24 hours.
- 500 g bread flour
- 1 whole egg
- 2 egg yolks
- 7.5 g instant yeast
- 25 g milk
- 11.5 g salt
- 375 g pumpkin puree
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp nutmeg
- 1/2 tsp ginger
- 1/2 tsp clove
- 65 g sugar
- 50 g honey
- 125 g butter
Warm liquids to 68F. Cut up your biga into small pieces. Add everything except the butter into the mixer. Mix on speed one for 5 minutes with a dough hook. Scrape the sides if necessary. While it is mixing, make your butter pliable. After the 5 minutes, increase to speed 2 or 3, depending on what your mixer can handle. Add the butter a small amount at a time, fully incorporating before adding more. After all is added, mix until a gluten window is formed. This part will take 10 to 15 minutes. Let rest in lightly oiled bowl for about 90 minutes. Do one set of stretch and fold after 45 minutes. After doubled, move on to cinnamon rolls.
Filling (enough for two pans of rolls)
- 6 oz unsalted butter (soft)
- 4 oz brown sugar
- 4 oz sugar
- 1 TB cinnamon
Make sure butter is very soft, but not melted. Mix all ingredients together.
Cream Cheese Icing (enough for two pans)
- 4 oz cream cheese, room temp
- 4 oz butter, room temp
- 7 oz powdered sugar
- 6 oz water
Cream together the butter and cream cheese until smooth. Add powdered sugar. Mix until combined. Slowly add water until a thin, but not watery, consistency is achieved. This may take more or less water. Do this step a few minutes before the cinnamon rolls are finished.
Making the rolls
Lightly butter your pans, including the sides, so they remove from the pan easier.
Scale out two 20 ounce balls of brioche. Set remaining brioche aside for another use. Roll out each ball into a rectangle. Spread filling leaving about one inch on the edges.
Gently roll the edge (long way) into a long roll. Cut the ends off to make it neat. Still bake the ends though, they are good. Cut the roll in half using either a sharp knife, a dough cutter, or floss. Floss takes a long time, but gives you a nice cut. I used a dough cutter. After you cut it in half, cut each half in half, and then repeat. You should have eight rolls. Place into a 10 inch pan (or whatever size you decide to use will work fine) nice side down. Press down lightly.
Meanwhile, heat your oven to 350F. Once rolls are puffy, bake until golden, 20 to 30 minutes. Let cool for about 5 minutes, then flip over onto a plate, platter, a sheet pan, whatever will hold the rolls. Pour half the icing on each pan. Let cool long enough so you don’t burn your tongue, grab a cup of coffee or milk, and eat.
These will keep for several days, but may dry out a bit. Just pop in the microwave for about 30 seconds and you are good to go again. Yum. Worth the effort, right?