Savory and Slightly Sweet Pumpkin Dinner Rolls



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I'm Kris, trained chef, culinary nutritionist and busy mom, here to help you take the stress out of healthy eating with flexible meal planning, simplified meal prep and easy budget-friendly meals.

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I’ve never been much of a baker. Sure, we learned the basics in culinary school- but chemistry has never been my forte, and baking truly is a science. I’m more of the creative type- a little bit of this, a little bit of that- and as much as I like working with my hands, you won’t find me decorating cakes any time soon.

But there is something about bread… the smell of yeast, the feeling of dough between my fingers, soft and smooth, or shaggy and textured- there is an element of artistry to creating yeasted baked goods, it’s all about the feel, and the ratios matter- but there is much more give, much more creativity and consciousness about creating the perfect dough. Thankfully, dinner rolls are pretty forgiving- and this is a recipe I’ve come back to, again and again, as I’ve developed it over the years. If it’s easy enough for those of us non-bakers, it’s easy enough for your Thanksgiving table!

Plus, these rolls are DARN delicious. We love the subtle sweetness the pumpkin and maple lend, still pairing nicely with savory soups and stews- and of course, your Thanksgiving spread. I hope you enjoy them as much as we do!

Savory and Slightly Sweet Pumpkin Dinner RollsMakes about 12 rolls

1/4 cup warm water

2 tbsp + 1 tsp maple syrup

1 package active dry yeast

1 1/2-2 cups organic all purpose flour, divided

1/2 tsp sea salt

3 tbsp butter or coconut oil, melted + more for greasing pan

1/4 cup milk of choice, room temperature

1/2 cup canned pumpkin

1. Preheat oven to 375. Grease a round or square baking dish with butter or coconut oil.

2. Whisk together warm (not hot) water, yeast and 2 tbsp maple syrup. Set aside.

3. In a separate bowl, whisk together 1 cup flour and sea salt.

4. Whisk 2 tbsp melted butter and milk into yeast mixture. Stir in canned pumpkin.

5. Slowly add flour into wet ingredients until a sticky dough has formed. Add another 1/2 cup flour, slowly, until dough is soft.

6. Remove to a floured surface and knead 1-2 minutes until smooth and elastic.7. Cover in plastic wrap and let sit for 10 minutes.

8. After 10 minutes, remove from wrap and divide into 12 equal balls.9. Place in greased pan, cover and let rise in a warm place (typically on the preheating oven) until at least doubled in size, 30 minutes or so. Whisk remaining butter and maple syrup and brush over rolls.

10. Bake for 18-20 minutes until golden. Let cool and serve.


  • If dough becomes dry, add more milk, 1 tbsp at a time (up to an additional 1/4 cup)
  • Make it pumpkin spice: Add 1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
  • Make it sweeter: replace 2 tbsp milk with 2 more tbsp maple syrup (1/3 cup milk + 1/4 cup maple syrup)

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