These Maple & Butter Pecan Gluten-free Vegan Cinnamon Rolls are the ultimate comfort food. They are fluffy, sticky, and oh so ooey-gooey. Next level decadent. I don’t think I have ever had more amazing Gluten-free Vegan Cinnamon Rolls. Remember those days when all you could find were dry crumbly gluten-free cinnamon buns? Well, those days are over! These Cinnamon Buns are so delicious and fool proof, you’ll never have to put up with dry cinnamon rolls again.
Making Vegan Gluten-free Cinnamon Rolls
These days, I have been obsessed with making yeast-based pastries. They are something that I have dearly missed and near to impossible to find since having gone gluten-free. So, my only other option was to come up with my own recipe. However, I had to find out the hard way that yeast works a little differently in gluten-free pastries.
Making Fluffy, Chewy Cinnamon Rolls
Gluten is the binding protein that makes your dough stretchy and creates a bubble of sorts when combined with the gas producing yeast making them chewy and fluffy. However, with gluten-free dough, it’s much harder to create as much lift as with gluten-based doughs. When baking gluten-free, that binding protein is non-existent and therefore air tends to escape instead of growing into a fluffy cinnamon roll. This doesn’t mean that you are doomed to have a dense brick for a cinnamon roll.
Having done some research, I found that psyllium husk is an excellent replacement for that binding protein transforming the dense bricks back into fluffy chewy rolls. Adding psyllium husks to water creates a gelatinous, gooey residue which aids in the binding process.
Finding the Right Gluten-Free Flour for Cinnamon Rolls
Different flours have different properties which will improve the texture. For example, tapioca you’ll get a lot more chewiness to your dough. Another important ingredient in flour is xanthan gum. You’ll often find these 2 ingredients in store-bought mixes. I have tried many different store-bought mixes and so far the best one that I have had in terms of taste, texture, versatility, and ease of use is the Bob’s Red Mill 1 to 1 Baking Flour. There is no after taste and it is perfect for making bread, pizza dough, and especially these cinnamon buns.
Depending on where you are in the world, Bob’s Red Mill 1 to 1 Gluten-Free Flour may not be available but I have heard that this recipes works wonders with the Schar Gluten-Free brand which is widely available across the world. Either way, if you are looking for a replacement flour mix, I would suggest looking for something that uses tapioca and xantham gum. If you do decide to try it with another type of flour I would love to hear how it worked out.
Making refined sugar-free cinnamon rolls
I often enjoy eating treats that are refined sugar-free. Coconut sugar is a great way to have a lower sugar content without sacrificing taste. It creates a wonderful caramel taste to your cinnamon rolls and can be easily switched up in the cinnamon filling and the caramel bottom. However, since this is yeast-based dough, you will need to have sugar in the dough to activate the yeast. You can switch it up as well, however it will change the colour of your buns and may not rise as much so just be aware of this when switching it up.
Maple Butter Pecan Gluten-free Vegan Cinnamon Rolls
- Baking pan 9×13" with high edges
- 4 tbsp Vegan butter
- ½ cup Brown sugar packed
- 2 tbsp Maple syrup
- 1 tsp Vanilla extract
- 2 tbsp Coconut cream
- ½ cup Pecans (optional)
- Pinch of salt
- 2 tbsp Vegan butter softened – left outside a few hours
- ½ cup Brown sugar packed
- 2 tbsp Ground cinnamon
- 2¼ tsp Rapid rise yeast or 1 packet
- ⅓ cup Sugar
- 1 tsp Apple cider vinegar
- 1 cup Almond milk Luke warm – microwave 30 sec – Should be no hotter than body temperature
- 1 tsp Vanilla extract
- ¼ cup Vegan butter (melted) + extra 2 tbsp for brushing microwaved 15 sec
- ¾ cup Tapioca Starch
- 2 cups Bob's Red Mill 1-to-1 Gluten-Free Baking Flour
- 1 tbsp Psyllium husks
- ½ tsp Salt
- 1 tsp Baking powder
- Preheat oven to 350˚F. In a small saucepan over medium-low heat, add vegan butter, brown sugar, and maple syrup, stir until everything is dissolved. Add coconut cream, vanilla extract, and a pinch of salt and stir till incorporated. Remove from heat and pour into a greased 9×13" pan with high sides and sprinkle pecans.
- In a bowl, combine the butter, brown sugar, and cinnamon until it looks like wet sand. Set aside.
- In a bowl, mix all dry ingredients except sugar and yeast and mix until combined.
- In a separate bowl, mix your wet ingredients with sugar, yeast, and ½ cup of the dry ingredients and mix till well incorporated. Set aside for 10 minutes or until a foamy film forms on the top.
- With the stand mixer, using the paddle attachment or by hand, pour the dry ingredients a ½ cup at a time into wet ingredients until well combined. You should have a uniform dry dough but that is slightly tacky. If too wet to roll out, add more flour or if it is not sticky, add a little almond milk 1 tbsp at a time.
- Take a piece of plastic wrap and lay it on a flat surface to cover an area larger than 8 x 16. To the best of your ability, use your hands to spread out the dough into a 10×13 rectangle. Then take another piece of plastic wrap and lay it on top and roll out your dough so that it is even and approximately ½ inch thick.
- Remove plastic wrap and spread filling mixture evenly across dough's surface. Leave 1" along one short end without any filling, this is where your cinnamon rolls will be sealed.
- Starting along the other short end (the one with filling), use the bottom sheet of plastic wrap to lift the edge of the dough and roll it up, forming a long cylinder. Start with the edge that has filling on it, that will be the center of your finished rolls. Roll around a few times to ensure that the edge is well closed.
- Carefully cut the ends to even out the edges then cut them 1" wide and place them onto your baking pan. Cover your buns with a wet towel and place your baking pan in a warm, draft-free place for about 1 hr.
- Once they have risen (see image), brush them with the 2 tbsp of melted butter and bake at 350˚F for 20-25 minutes, or until golden brown.
- Allow to cool for about 5 minutes before serving. Flip over and drizzle left over syrup and pecans. Serve warm or microwave for 15 seconds. Keeps for 2-3 days.