Image: Fluffy Gluten Free Cinnamon Rolls

Fluffy Gluten Free Cinnamon Rolls

I had posted a gluten free cinnamon rolls recipe a couple of years ago, and have been trying to make a fluffy version ever since. I tried about 4 or 5 different methods, none of which worked well. I had been under the impression from a cookbook that I had read early on that rising gluten free dough twice is senseless. Well, I learned that this statement was not true. A second rise for cinnamon roll dough is the key to making them fluffy or lighter. I plan on experimenting with this recipe by using my Gluten Free All Purposed Flour Blend next. When I do, I’ll update this recipe. I hope you enjoy it.

Need help learning how to roll this soft dough? Check out the YouTube video first. Then proceed to the below recipe.

How to Roll and Prepare Gluten Free Cinnamon Roll Dough


Fluffy Gluten Free Cinnamon Rolls


Yield: Makes 6 large cinnamon rolls.

Fluffy Gluten Free Cinnamon Rolls

A fluffy gluten free cinnamon rolls recipe close to the gluten version, if not lighter, and they are healthier with the use of some whole grain flour.


    For the Cinnamon Rolls:
  • 1/2 cup white rice flour (77 g)
  • 1/2 cup brown rice flour (67 g)
  • 1/2 cup tapioca starch (59 g)
  • 1/2 cup potato starch (76 g)
  • 1/4 cup millet flour (34 g) (or potato flour)
  • 1 teaspoon xanthan gum (or guar gum for corn-free)
  • 1/2 teaspoon pectin (leave out 1/2 teaspoon xanthan gum) (optional)
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon gluten free baking powder (Featherweight is corn-free)
  • 3 Tablespoons sugar
  • 1 cup warm 2% reduced fat buttermilk, (or milk) heated to 105 - 110°F
  • 1/3 cup unsalted butter, melted, cooled
  • 1 1/4 teaspoon instant dry yeast
  • 1 egg, at room temperature
  • For the Filling:
  • 1/2 cup dark brown sugar, packed
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 2 3/4 Tablespoons unsalted butter, barely melted
  • For the Cream Cheese Icing:
  • 2 Tablespoons cream cheese
  • 1 cup confectioners’ sugar (Trader Joe's Organic is corn-free.)
  • 1 Tablespoon milk of choice
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • For Dairy-Free Icing:
  • 1 Tablespoon dairy-free buttery spread or shortening (I use organic palm shortening), softened
  • 1 cup confectioners' sugar (Trader Joe's Organic is corn-free.)
  • 1 Tablespoon milk of choice
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract


  1. Grease an 8 x 8-inch baking pan (or 9 x 9-inch if using millet, pectin and milk) and set it aside.
  2. Add sugar and yeast to warm buttermilk; stir; set aside.
  3. Whisk all remaining dry dough ingredients together; sift flour mixture into the bowl of your mixer; add yeast mixture, egg, and melted butter; beat on high speed for 4 minutes. While dough is mixing, oil a bowl, liberally. In a small bowl, mix cinnamon and brown sugar together for the filling; set aside. Once dough is mixed, add it to the oiled bowl; cover with a lid or plastic wrap; and set aside in a warm environment (about 80°F) for 45 - 50 minutes, or until doubled in size.
  4. Lay out two sheets of plastic wrap to cover an area about 15 x 23-inches; flour the area liberally (I used my Gluten Free All Purpose Flour Blend.) Turn dough onto the plastic wrap and pat lightly with flour. With a lightly floured rolling pin, roll dough out to approximately 11 x 16-inches.
  5. Add melted butter to brown sugar and cinnamon; mix until crumbly; and sprinkle evenly onto dough or double the filling recipe and add more butter and spread on the entire dough. Roll up dough by lifting the plastic wrap on the shortest side and roll as tight as you can. Cut into 6 rolls; and add each gluten free cinnamon roll to the prepared pan. Cover and allow rolls to rise until they almost fill the pan, about 50 - 55 minutes.*
  6. Preheat oven to 400°F (200°C). Bake rolls for approximately 15 - 20 minutes or until golden brown.
  7. While rolls are baking, add cream cheese or butter to the bowl of your mixer; cream until smooth. Add the confectioner’s sugar, milk, and vanilla extract. Once rolls are baked, spread frosting on warm rolls. Serve warm.
  8. To reheat, warm in a microwave on a medium-low or reheat setting.


If you’re using your oven to rise the rolls during the second rise, take them out of the oven after about 45 - 50 minutes, and preheat the oven, allowing the rolls to rise another 5 minutes or so. I usually heat my oven to 170°F, shut it off, place the pan in the oven, and the leave the door open until risen.

I have made this recipe adding 1/2 teaspoon of pectin, substituting the buttermilk for low-fat milk, and substituting the millet flour for potato flour and it comes out a bit lighter, as seen in the photo. However, because not everyone has pectin and potato flour on hand, I changed the above recipe. They are both close in fluffiness, but I enjoyed the flavor of the millet ones better. My husband agrees. Plus the one with the pectin is a bit chewy.

Do not attempt to add butter to the dough and then the cinnamon/brown sugar over it prior to rolling, because it makes it very difficult to roll tightly. You want to mix the butter, cinnamon, and brown sugar together.

*Rising times will vary depending upon the environment's temperature.

Visit Carla’s Gluten Free Online Store.

27 comments on “Fluffy Gluten Free Cinnamon RollsAdd yours →

  1. I was wondering if there’s something I can substitute for the potato starch, as I’m not supposed to eat potatoes. Could I just use more of one of the other flours?

  2. Do you think after the second rising I could refrigerate the dough over night then bake in the morning?? Thanks for your thoughts on this:)

    1. He Rachael,

      I haven’t experimented with rising and then refrigerating before baking. I suggest allowing them to rise in the refrigerator overnight. Then bringing them to room temperature prior to baking.

      Let us all know how it turns out.


  3. Wow, these were fantastic!!!!! First of all, thanks for the wonderful recipe. I was a little worried when the dough was soupy, but had to remember that gluten free yeast bread dough is a different animal from wheat yeast bread dough. It still seemed a little too runny, so I added 1/4 cup of sorghum flour to the dough during my 4 minute mix. I also had to remember that a longer mixing time is required to get the guar gum working. I substituted coconut sugar in place of the brown sugar. Thanks for noting that you need to use the plastic wrap to roll up the dough, there was no way I could’ve rolled it up with my hands! The rolls came out of the oven looking and smelling so good, we ate them without the icing. Frankly, we didn’t think it needed it because they were so good on their own! Next time I’ll ice a few just to see if we can amp up an already great tasting cinnamon roll!!!

    1. Hi Heather,

      I’m not sure why your dough turned out soupy. Perhaps you won a lower powdered mixer than I do??? I use one that is 325 watts. When using lower powered mixers, it helps to mix longer to develop a gluten-like dough texture. Meanwhile, it sounds like you did a great job correcting the problem. Did you use millet flour? Because it is a heavier whole grain flour compared to rice flour, it absorbs more liquid. So, if you used all rice flour without millet, it may explain the need for additional flour.

      I am so happy to hear they turned out delicious. I understand the no need for icing. If it weren’t for others enjoying it, I would leave it out as well.

      I appreciate your feedback. Thanks for taking the time to leave a comment.


      1. My dough was totally soupy too. I added the sorghum flour like Heather, but it still seems more like a muffin batter than a dough. It’s rising right now. I’m hoping it’ll turn out okay somehow.

        1. Christin,

          I know it’s hard to roll this soft dough, but it is the only way to make a fluffy cinnamon roll with natural ingredients. It may be soupy in the beginning, but it should be just soft once risen. Did you use plastic wrap to roll? That’s the only way it works. Meanwhile, do let us all know how they turn out and which version you made.


  4. Facebook Comment,

    “These recipes have way too many ingredients..I would rather go without than do all that.”


    My reply,

    “Alesa Cirello-Gudmundson, You can always substitute the white rice flour, brown rice flour, and millet flour one type of rice flour. That leaves just rice flour, tapioca flour, and potato flour, with a bit of xanthan gum. The other ingredients are typical cinnamon rolls ingredients.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *