Pumpkin Pull Apart Muffins

by Shumaila

The “pull-apart-bread” bug has finally bitten me.

In fact, it bit me long back- when Joy the baker had made her pull apart bread.

Since then it had been on my to-do list (an ever growing to-do list)!

Then, Kitchen corners did a pull-apart bread- a blueberry pull apart bread.

I looked at it and wanted to make it but did not!

And then came this pull-apart bread on Willow Bird Baking.

In between there were many other pull apart breads . But the pumpkin one did the trick.

There had been a can of pumpkin puree (that Damaris had sent) in my pantry for a looong time.

I had kept it for a pumpkin pie, to celebrate fall days, but those plans were thrown away when I saw this pumpkin bread. Of course my history with pie failures had nothing to do with it. The bread just screamed fall and it had to be made.

Plus, that butter rum glaze was too good to give a miss.

As Julie puts it:

This sticky, sweet pumpkin pull-apart loaf is irresistible. It’s made from layers of fluffy pumpkin yeast dough coated with browned butter, cinnamon, sugar, and nutmeg. Let it cool until it has just a hint of warmth left, drizzle on some glaze, and enjoy — preferably with the windows open to let in a crisp autumn breeze.

Since I planned to send it to V’s office on Thursday, I decided to make pull apart muffins (kind of like monkey bread muffins), so that it would be easier for everyone to have a muffin to themselves.

Truth be told, this way I would be able to keep 2-3 for myself and V and mom, without spoiling the whole effect of the bread.

Yes, I am greedy that ways!

While the bread is great as is, next time I will be adding a little spice to the dough itself and some crushed pecans to the filling. It doesn’t need it but, then, I love pecans on anything!


Adapted from here and here.

Julie mentions to bake until the bread is dark golden brown on top, mentioning that if you take it out at light golden brown, it’s liable to be raw in the middle. I followed her, but maybe I overdid it- the edges became to crisp from overbaking. My mom (and I) actually liked the crispiness, but in case you don’t just be careful about the browning.

I made pull-apart muffins, but this is great as a bread too. Do check Joy the Baker’s site for folding tips.


Pumpkin Pull-Apart Bread Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 3/4 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 1/4 teaspoons (1 envelope) active dry yeast
  • 2 1/2 cups bread flour

Filling Ingredients:

  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh ground nutmeg
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter

Butter Rum Glaze Ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1/8 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 1/2 teaspoons milk
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon rum

Make the pull-apart bread dough:

  1. Grease and flour a muffin pan or a loaf pan, if that’s what you are using.
  2. In a saucepan over medium-high heat, brown the 2 tablespoons of butter till it bubbles and foam, stirring so that it browns evenly. When it’s the color of dark honey, remove it from the heat and pour it into a large heat-safe mixer bowl to cool.
  3. In the same saucepan (less clean up!) over medium-low heat, warm the milk until it bubbles. Remove it from the heat and pour it into the bowl with the butter.
  4. Let these cool until they’re about 100-110 degrees F (use a candy thermometer to check).
  5. Set the saucepan aside for another use later. 🙂
  6. Stir the sugar and yeast into the milk/butter mixture and let it sit for a few minutes.
  7. Stir in pumpkin, salt, and 1 cup flour. Add all to a bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook.
  8. Add the rest of the flour 1/2 cup at a time, stirring between each addition. When the dough is combined, knead on low speed with a dough hook until smooth and elastic (about 4 minutes with a mixer).
  9. Place the dough in a greased bowl ( I just let the dough rise in the stand mixer dough) and cover it with a damp cloth. Let it rise in a warm place for about an hour until it doubles in size (After it rises, you can put it in the fridge overnight to use it in the morning, but let it sit out for half an hour before rolling if you do.)

Make the filling:

  1. While the dough is rising, whisk the sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg together in a small bowl.
  2. Toward the end of the rising time, melt the 2 tablespoons of butter for the filling in the saucepan over medium-high heat and brown it as directed above.
  3. Put it in a small heat-safe bowl to cool for use later. I just let it be in the saucepan to let cool. Save on clean up wherever possible, right?

Shape and bake pull-apart bread:

  1. Knead a sprinkling of flour (about 1 tablespoon) into the dough, deflating it, and recover it. Let it sit to relax for 5 minutes.
  2. Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and roll out into a 8 by 12 rectangle.
  3. Spread the browned butter over the surface of the dough with a pastry brush and then sprinkle the sugar mixture over the top, patting it down to ensure it mostly sticks. Joy the Baker encourages you to use it all even though it seems like a ton
  4. Cut the dough into 6 strips (cutting the shorter of the length-it’s easier to handle.) Stack the strips on top of each other and cutting downward, cut 6 pieces for jumbo muffin tins or 8-10 for regular size muffin tins ( I got 12 out of the whole lot but had to use some permutation and combination).
  5. Cover the pan with your damp cloth and place it in a warm place for 30-45 minutes to double in size.
  6. While dough rises, preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  7. When it’s risen, place the pan in the center of the oven and bake for 30-35 minutes until dark golden brown on top.
  8. Cool for 20-30 minutes on a cooling rack in the pan while you make the glaze.

Make the glaze:

  1. In your saucepan, bring the butter, milk, and brown sugar to a boil over medium-high heat.
  2. Remove it from heat, add the powdered sugar and rum, and whisk it to a smooth consistency.

Assemble and serve:

  1. Use a butter knife to loosen all sides of the bread from the muffin pan, gently remove and put on a serving plate. Drizzle glaze over top. Serve each piece slightly warm with a drizzle of glaze.