Feels like Home to Me: Pumpkin Cinnamon Buns

I have always been obsessed with the notion of ‘home’. Perhaps it is because my dad is a house builder or that the majority of my Pinterest boards are filled with kitchen, walk in closet, exterior landscaping, and secret library designs. I had a friend explain to the theory that home is not a place but a feeling. So it is the feeling of home I’m so in love with, not the building of it – that calming feeling of knowing you are exactly where you’re suppose to be, surrounded by unconditional love always. It is not a place, it is a feeling that exists regardless of location. Okay I’ll explain…

I visited my dad the other day and walked into the kitchen just like any other visit, expecting to see him sitting at the desk checking the messages on his landline, or sitting at the table finishing dinner. Instead, when I turned the corner, I saw one of the most familiar, comforting faces I could have ever been surprised with: my friend, well more of little brother from another family, was leaning perched against the kitchen counter like he had done almost every day since I was 12 and he was 10. He was home from his wonderful, successful life in England for a visit for the first time in over a year! I wrapped my arms around him, fought off some tears and was equally overwhelmed with happiness, surprise and reassurance that no matter how many km away, how many ocean lengths, or time zones somethings just stay the same. Seeing him there with that smirk and hearing his laugh, that felt like home. I felt like home.

This year I’m celebrating Thanksgiving with an extra helping of thanks from my feeling of home. If this feeling of home had a scent it would be pumpkin cinnamon buns to be exact. Make them and share them with the ones you’re thankful for this weekend and everyday, the ones that make you feel like home.

Pumpkin Cinnamon Buns

  • 1/3 milk
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 1/2 cup pumpkin
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 1 tsp nutmeg
  • 1 egg
  • 1 egg
  • 1 package of quick rising yeast
  • 2 1/4 cup flour, plus more for dusting


  • 1/3 cup margarine
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 2 tbsp cinnamon

Maple Drizzle

  • 1/4 cup margarine
  • 3 tbsp milk
  • 2/3 cup icing sugar
  • 2 tbsp maple syrup

Assembling the Rolls

  1. In a microwave safe bowl, heat butter and milk until lukewarm. Stir to melt butter and set aside. In a stand mixer, mix together pumpkin, sugar and nutmeg until combined. Slowly add milk and butter mixture, then egg and yeast. Gradually add flour until dough forms. Dough will be very soft.
  2. Transfer dough from mixer to a greased bowl. Cover bowl and place in a warm room to allow dough to rise (1 to 2 hours).
  3. Once dough has risen, knead on floured surface and roll into rectangular shape. Spread margarine onto dough and then sprinkle with brown sugar and cinnamon. Roll dough long wise.
  4. Spray an 8 inch spring form pan with non-stick spray and line the bottom with parchment paper. Cut dough into 1 1/2 inch thick rounds and place into spring form pan making a circular pattern. Cover and place in warm room for 1 hour to rise.
  5. Preheat oven to 350*. Place buns into oven and bake for 25 minutes, covering the buns in aluminum foil at the 15 minute mark.
  6. While buns are baking, prepare the maple drizzle. In a bowl add margarine, icing sugar, milk and maple syrup. Using an electric mixer, combine all ingredients until smooth.
  7. Remove buns from oven and let cool slightly. Remove spring form pan and pour maple drizzle over buns. Let sit for 10 minutes.