Best Pumpkin Bread Rolls (Dinner Rolls)
These easy and healthy pumpkin bread rolls are simply delicious. They take a little time to make but it’s very simple and worth every second. They look utterly festive which makes them the perfect side dish for Halloween or Thanksgiving. You can probably tell by now that I love pumpkin recipes and autumn in general.
Homemade bread just oozes the feeling of comfort like hardly anything else.
I served mine along with my Easy Pumpkin Soup With Coconut Milk and it was a big hit with everyone.
What is the best squash to use?
The bread rolls owe their nice vibrant colour to the bright orange of the Hokkaido pumpkin. Hokkaido is my favourite kind of pumpkin because you don’t have to peel it.
In Europe, Hokkaido pumpkins are readily available in super or farmers markets but I do believe that they can be difficult to source in the United States. But, don’t worry you can also use butternut squash instead, just don’t forget to peel it.
If you are short on time, you can substitute with pumpkin puree to speed things up, just make sure that’s it’s 100% pumpkin.
I simply cut my pumpkin into 1-inch chunks and steam them for about 20 minutes before cooling them down and blending them into a puree.
Making a Predough
Once you have prepared the pumpkin puree, you start by making a “predough”. A predough helps the rise and the elasticity of the bake. You simply combine some of the white spelt flour with water and yeast, cover it and let it proof in a warm location for about 30 minutes.
Always use a bigger bowl because the volume of the dough will increase massively. You can tell by all the bubbles how active the yeast is.
How to make Healthy Pumpkin Bread Rolls?
After the predough is ready, simply mix it with all the remaining ingredients and knead for about 2 minutes or until everything is nicely combined.
The dough is slightly wet but don’t add more flour because it will dry it out. Just lightly flour your work surface and evenly divide the dough into 6-8 balls about 170 grams per roll.
I like using a kitchen scale for this but if you aren’t as OCD as myself you can just wing it.
You get the nicest shape when you tuck the dough from the top underneath the ball (2-3 times) and then rotate it on the work surface with your hand shaped like a claw.
Cover the dough
Place the rolls onto a parchment paper lined baking tray and cover immediately with a towel or cling film. This will prevent them from drying out and creating a skin.
Let the dinner rolls proof in a warm place for about 30 minutes or until their size has doubled.
How to tie up the Pumpkin bread rolls
Now it’s time to tie them up, you can either use one very long piece of kitchen string or four of about 30 centimetres each. If you opt for the short strings you just tie them to a knot in the middle, place the bun on top and tie together the strings from opposite ends.
If you choose the long string, it works like wrapping a parcel, you will have to flip the pumpkin bread roll over multiple times which leaves more room for error.
You want to make sure that you tie it tight and evenly like in the picture below.
Brushing the dough
If you want a nice colour and shine on your healthy pumpkin bread rolls you can brush them with either milk, water or oil. In my experience milk gives you the nicest result. Some people brush them with egg wash but for savoury treats I prefer milk.
Then, simply bake them at 400°F/350°F fan that’s 200°C/180°C fan for about 25 minutes, afterwards quickly remove the strings.
Now it is time to enjoy your golden-brown, pumpkin-shaped pumpkin bread rolls. They are guaranteed to be a real show stopper at your Halloween buffet or Thanksgiving dinner.
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What are your favourite Halloween treats? I am looking forward to reading your comments.
Healthy Pumpkin Bread Rolls
- 2 1/2 cups water divided, 1/2 cup for the predough
- 14 ounces Hokkaido pumpkin cut in 1-inch chunks, you can use canned pumpkin puree instead
- 1 tablespoon fresh yeast
- 2 cups white spelt flour a tiny bit more for the work surface
- 1 tablespoon brown sugar
- 2 1/2 cups wholegrain spelt flour
- 1/4 cup milk a little extra to brush on the rolls
- 1/4 cup butter soft and in chunks
- 3 teaspoons sea salt fine
- Fill 2 cups of water into a medium-sized saucepan and bring it to a boil. Place the Hokkaido pumpkin chunks into a steaming basket and steam for about 20 minutes.
- Transfer the steamed Hokkaido pumpkin chunks into a flat bowl and let cool to room temperature. Meantime prepare the predough.
- In a big bowl, mix 2/3 cups of white spelt flour with 1/2 cup of water, yeast and brown sugar. Cover with clingfilm and let proof for about 30 minutes at a warm place.
- Transfer the steamed Hokkaido chunks to a blender and mix on medium speed until you get a smooth puree. You might have to scrape the sides multiple times.
- Now combine all the ingredients in a big bowl including the predough and knead for about 2 minutes. The dough is slightly wet, don't add more water, just lightly flour your work surface. Divide the dough into 6-8 even portions and shape them into balls, about 6 ounces per roll. You get the nicest shape when you tuck the dough from the top underneath the ball (2-3 times) and then rotate it on the work surface with your hand shaped like a claw. At the end of the proofing time, preheat your oven to 400°F/350°F fan that's 200°C/180°C fan.
- Place them on a parchment paper-lined baking tray, cover with a towel to prevent the build-up of a skin and let proof in a warm location for about 30 minutes or until the size of the balls has doubled.
- Get four 30-centimetre long pieces of kitchen string for each roll and tie them to a knot in the middle. Place the roll on top and tie together the strings from opposite ends. See second method above.
- Brush the rolls with milk and bake for about 25 minutes.
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