Paula Deen’s Pumpkin Roll Cake

In cake, Christmas, Dessert, Food, Recipes, Thanksgiving on February 28, 2010 at 10:24 pm



  • 3/4 cup cake flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 6 large eggs, separated
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/3 cup golden brown sugar, packed
  • 2/3 cup canned pumpkin, packed
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • Powdered sugar


  • 1 teaspoon unflavored gelatin
  • 2 tablespoons dark rum
  • 1 cup whipping cream, chilled
  • 3 tablespoons powdered sugar
  • 6 tablespoons plus 1/2 cup English toffee pieces for garnish
  • Additional powdered sugar, for garnish
  • 1 1/2 cups purchased caramel sauce, warmed, for garnish


For the cake: Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

Line a 15 by 10 by 1-inch baking sheet with parchment paper. Spray the parchment with nonstick cooking spray.

Sift the flour, cinnamon, ginger, and allspice into a small bowl. In a separate bowl, beat the egg yolks, granulated sugar, and brown sugar until very thick. Add the pumpkin to the egg mixture and combine at a low speed until incorporated. Add the dry ingredients and beat at a low speed until mixed. In a separate bowl, beat the egg whites and salt until stiff but not dry. Fold into the cake batter, stirring with a spatula, until most of the white streaks are gone.

Spread the batter onto a baking sheet and smooth out. Transfer baking sheet to the oven and bake until a tester comes out clean, about 15 to 18 minutes. While the cake is hot, dust generously with powdered sugar. Loosen the edges and turn the cake out onto a kitchen towel. Fold the towel over the edge of the cake and roll up. Cool completely, edge down, for 1 hour in the refrigerator.

For the filling: Soften the gelatin in the rum. Stir over low heat until the gelatin dissolves. Cool. Beat the chilled whipping cream and powdered sugar in a large bowl until peaks form. Fold in the gelatin and 6 tablespoons English toffee pieces.

To assemble, unroll the cake and sprinkle with 4 tablespoons of English toffee pieces. Spread the filling over the toffee. Start at 1 long side of the cake roll and, using the towel as an aid, roll up the cake to encase the filling. Place the cake, seam side down, on a platter.

Trim the ends of the cake at a slight diagonal. Dust the cake with powdered sugar. Spoon some warm caramel sauce and the remaining toffee chips over the top of the cake. To serve, use a serrated knife to cut the cake crosswise into 1-inch thick slices. Drizzle more sauce on each slice and serve.

I normally LOVE Paula Deen, but I was a little disappointed in this cake. Don’t get me wrong, it was delicious – but I think I was hoping for a little bit more than what it turned out to be. First, it called for Rum…which is fine. I made a special trip to the state liquor store and wandered blindly for a few minutes before asking someone to tell me what I needed. This was actually my first experience with Rum…did you know it smells like cleaning products mixed with gasoline? Anyway, unless you are accustomed to the boozey flavor and appreciate it more than I do, then I suggest leaving it out entirely. It was way too strong, and I, personally, would have liked it better without.

Second, the filling was made with whipped cream, made by yours truly, none of that Cool Whip stuff….I did add extra caramel sauce to the center of the cake before I added the filling and some extra toffee chips…why not? Again, leave out the rum – the filling was pretty good on its own. My complaint about it though is that I kept wishing it had cream cheese….I love cream cheese….and I think I would have liked it more with cream cheese…..

Third, it was Paula Deen’s recipe…but it didn’t call for any butter. Not a stick, not a pad, not a shaving…I think the cake would have been better if it was slightly buttery – and I think it would have been a little more “Paula Deen” if it had at least a tiny bit of butter! Oh well…

Like I said before, it was a perfectly delicious cake. Only, if I’m going to absorb the calories, I’d like to not be left wanting….

I’ll let you know when I find/come up with a better recipe….one with cream cheese, perhaps?


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