Jam roly-poly

Jam roly-poly

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(27 ratings)

Prep: 15 mins Cook: 1 hr

More effort

Serves 6
This jam roly-poly is simple to make, comforting and sure to bring back memories of traditional school dinners

Nutrition and extra info

  • Freezable


  • kcal330
  • fat16g
  • saturates8g
  • carbs45g
  • sugars13g
  • fibre1g
  • protein5g
  • salt0.56g
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  • 50g salted butter, cold and cut into chunks, plus extra for greasing
  • 250g self-raising flour, plus extra for rolling



    Flour is a powdery ingredient usually made from grinding wheat, maize, rye, barley or rice. As…

  • 1 vanilla pod, seeds scraped out
  • 50g shredded suet
  • 150ml milk, plus a drop more if needed



    One of the most widely used ingredients, milk is often referred to as a complete food. While cow…

  • 100g/4oz raspberry or plum jam, or a mixture



    The juiciest fruit in the stone fruit family, plums come in many different varieties, some sweet…

  • custard, to serve


  1. Put a deep roasting tin onto the bottom shelf of the oven, and make sure that there’s another shelf directly above it. Pull the roasting tin out on its shelf, fill two-thirds with boiling water from the kettle, then carefully slide it back in. Heat oven to 180C/160C fan/gas 4. Tear off a large sheet of foil and greaseproof paper (about 30 x 40cm). Sit the greaseproof on top of the foil and butter it.

  2. Tip butter, flour and vanilla seeds into a food processor; pulse until the butter has disappeared. Tip into a mixing bowl. Stir through the suet, pour in the milk and work together with a cutlery knife until you get a sticky dough. You may need a drop more milk, depending on your flour.

  3. Tip the dough out onto a floured surface, quickly pat together to smooth, then roll out to a square roughly 25 x 25cm. Spread the jam all over, leaving a gap along one edge, then roll up from the opposite edge. Pinch the jam-free edge into the dough where it meets, and pinch the ends roughly, too. Carefully lift onto the greased paper, join-side down (you might find a flat baking sheet helpful for this), loosely bring up the paper and foil around it, then scrunch together along the edges and ends to seal. The roly-poly will puff quite a bit during cooking so don’t wrap it tightly. Lift the parcel directly onto the rack above the tin and cook for 1 hr.

  4. Let the pudding sit for 5 mins before unwrapping, then carefully open the foil and paper, and thickly slice to serve.

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Comments (31)

katrina4081's picture

Well, that was great; what a lovely pud. I used strawberry jam. I cooked it for 2 hours and let it stand for an hour before serving as it was just more convenient for me as I had guests. That was fine (I had checked a variety of recipes, several of which suggested a 2 hour cooking time).

karola's picture

I made three of these this weekend, two for someone else and one for us. It was delicious and I am delighted they can freeze. I used a good half a jar of jam per roly poly. I will definitely be making this again. For my third and final pudding, I found rolling it out on the buttered grease-proof paper worked quite well, as then there was no lifting of the pudding necessary, the grease on the paper didn't seem to hinder rolling the pudding up - certainly no more than rolling it on the work top. I also couldn't get someone's comment out of my head that calls this pudding 'dead man's leg!'

vintagemunchkin's picture

This was lovely - perfect texture, but agree with previous comments and would add extra jam next time. Delicious!

pinkpuppyuk2002's picture

Made this around 6 times no always turns out perfect i follow the recipe exactly except i add a tbsp of vanilla extract instead of the vanilla pod seeds.
Great recipe and very easy to follow

natalie-313131's picture

This turned out really well. Definitely needed a lot more jam than stated.

Before adding the jam I lifted the rolled out dough onto the greaseproof paper, this meant I didn't have to try and move the thing once it was jam-filled and delicate.

I used the same recipe yesterday, but substituted the jam for chocolate spread, that was also really tasty.

efrank71's picture

Perfect recipe!!

paulsaxby's picture

We made a lovely Christmassy version by adding a teaspoon of mixed spice to the dough and using a jar of mincemeat ( normally used in mince pies) with some lemon zest and chopped apricots as the filling instead of the jam... Absolutely lovely...served with custard it went down a treat..

stephenjoanne's picture

Omg can't understand why not many people have tried this recipe... Best ever jam roly. Light and such a lovely texture. Yes I did add extra jam to individual servings. Remember to grease the paper probs and there will be no problems with sticking. Fab my new Sunday lunch pudding favourite...

swetmanje's picture

This was amazing! I followed the recipe exactly with the exception of using vanilla extract instead of vanilla seeds and don't think that it requires any more sugar; the jam provides enough sweetness. Buttered the greaseproof paper and had no problem with sticking. Easier to make than I thought but very messy! So yummy, will definitely make again.

annestreeter's picture

If you are asking for a substitute for suet because you're vegetarian, there is a vegetarian suet available from most supermarkets. It's made by atora.

ceherbert's picture

Had never made jam rolly poly before, this recepie was so easy and i received amazing comments from all of my dinner guests.

vivaves's picture

This is a gorgeous recipe. It doesn't need any sugar to sweeten it, or any extra jam, in my opinion - the balance is just right, and with custard alongside, truely one of the British all-time great puddings. Worth keeping in the freezer for a quick fix, defrosts and heats brilliantly in the microwave. NB - at school, we affectionately called Jam Roly Poly 'dead man's leg', in reference to the 2-3 foot-long rolls, arranged in pairs in large baking tins, doled out by grumpy dinner ladies! We loved it then, and I still love it now. This recipe is very nostalgic!

annajaneharrison's picture

For me to make something and for it to come out like it should is bordering on a miracle. This jam roly poly actually looked like the picture, tasted great and was easy to make!

After reading previous reviews I added a little more jam and this was a wise move, so be sure to add a little more jam!

A great easy to make pudding and came out delicious....

Scores from the family out of 5....
Anna - 5
Jamie - 5
Dad - 4 (suggested even more jam!)
Mum - 5

Enjoy it!

spacegirl73's picture

I've made this recipie 4 times and each time gone down a storm! Easy to do I made by rubbing the butter and flour by hand as I don't have a food processor I just guess the amount of jam making sure its generous without risking too much for it to just leak out everywhere! I don't like desserts too sweet so this is perfect as there's no sugar added to the dough, don't wrap too tightly and ten minutes before done unwrap the top slightly as this avoids sticking, will keep this recipie as one of my favourites and will use for ever!

spacegirl73's picture

I've made this recipie 4 times and each time gone down a storm! Easy to do I made by rubbing the butter and flour by hand as I don't have a food processor I just guess the amount of jam making sure its generous without risking too much for it to just leak out everywhere! I don't like desserts too sweet so this is perfect as there's no sugar added to the dough, don't wrap too tightly and ten minutes before done unwrap the top slightly as this avoids sticking, will keep this recipie as one of my favourites and will use for ever!

lyegreen's picture

I followed the recipe exactly and it worked perfectly and tasted delicious.

mandyt40's picture

Loved this recipe. Was so easy to make. Did add a little sugar to the recipe as suggested in reviews and more jam, but was delicious. My kids and hubby loved it and already have made it twice in a week for them aswell as passing the recipe on to friends

tonster007's picture

Delicious we served with custard and I added a spoonful of sugar to the flour plus way more jam...made it two days in a row as my kids loved it...

sarahharding's picture

Made this and over half was eaten immediately. Didn't have a vanilla pod so used some extract instead. My son even ate the remaining portion cold when he came in from school!

lucyjoappleyard's picture

I made this for my family and they said it was better than what they had at school.I put 3 times as much jam in because the first time I made it ,it wasn't sweet enough also the pastry can be bland so make sure you scrape all of your vanilla seeds in!

To solve the pudding sticking to the paper i put loads od lurpak on it and it worked a treat! Try this recipe it's yummy and delicious!


Questions (5)

solatium's picture

Hi, Could you add some peanut butter to the jam, or would this make the pastry soggy?

steerable's picture

i have just rolled mine and am a bit peeved that inhad a load of jam escape! is this normal or what can i do to avoid this

goodfoodteam's picture

Hi steerable, thanks for getting in touch and sorry to hear you didn't have success with this recipe. It's important to roll the dough out large enough so that you've got plenty of surface area to distribute the jam. Then make sure you don't spread it too close to the edges as this could also cause it to leak out. And finally, roll it up really carefully and slowly to keep as much in the central rolls as possible. Hope this helps, do let us know how you get on if you give it another go. 

pashton's picture

Can you freeze this once cooked? What would be the best way to re-heat it?

goodfoodteam's picture

Hi pashton, thanks for your question. This jam roly poly should be fine to freeze once cooked. Just defrost in the fridge overnight and warm through in a low oven with a large tray of water underneath (same as for cooking originally) until hot through. 

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