Fluffy Gluten Free Cinnamon Rolls

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After much anticipation, I present to you my fluffy gluten free cinnamon rolls recipe! In about two hours, you can have warm, fluffy, buttery cinnamon-filled cinnamon rolls. They’re to die for! Many people liken the texture to cake. If you prefer a traditional texture cinnamon roll, check out the Gluten Free Cinnamon Raisin Rolls recipe (raisins optional).

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 raising gluten free dough twice is senseless. Well, I learned that this statement was not true. The second rise for cinnamon roll dough is the key to making them fluffy and light. I plan on experimenting with this recipe by using my Gluten Free All Purpose Flour Blend Recipe. When I do, I’ll update this recipe. I hope you enjoy it.

Update: The All-Purpose Flour Blend created heavy cinnamon rolls.

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

Video: How to Roll and Prepare Soft Gluten Free Cinnamon Roll Dough:

Fluffy Gluten Free Cinnamon Rolls

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Prep Time: 1 hour

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Total Time: 2 hours, 10 minutes

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.

Ingredients:

    For the Cinnamon Rolls:
  • 1 cup buttermilk, heated to 110°F
  • 3 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1-1/4 teaspoons instant dry yeast
  • 1-1/4 cups white (or brown) rice flour
  • 1/2 cup tapioca flour
  • 1/2 cup potato starch
  • 1/4 cup millet flour (or potato flour - not potato starch)
  • 1 teaspoon xanthan gum
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon gluten-free baking powder
  • 1 large egg, at room temperature
  • 1/3 cup melted unsalted butter
  • Oil, for the baking dish and bowl
  • For the Filling:
  • 1/2 cup dark brown sugar, packed
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup Carla's All-Purpose Gluten Free Flour Blend recipe, or as needed for dusting
  • 3 tablespoons soft unsalted butter
  • Melted butter, for basting
  • For the Cream Cheese Icing:
  • 2 tablespoons (1 ounce) gluten-free cream cheese* (I use Philadelphia brand)
  • 1 cup confectioners’ sugar
  • 1 tablespoon milk* of choice
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Instructions:

  1. Oil an 8 x 8-inch baking dish; set aside.
  2. Add sugar and yeast to warm buttermilk. Stir and set aside.
  3. Whisk together the rice flours, tapioca flour, potato starch, millet/potato flour, xanthan gum, salt, and baking powder. Sift the flour mixture into the bowl of your mixer.
  4. Add yeast mixture, egg, and 1/3 cup slightly cooled, melted butter. Beat on high speed for 4 minutes.
  5. While dough is mixing, liberally oil a large bowl; set aside.
  6. In a small bowl, mix together the brown sugar and cinnamon for the filling; set aside.
  7. Once you beat the dough for 4 minutes, add it to the oiled bowl. Cover with a lid or plastic wrap. Set aside in a warm environment, about 80°F, 45 - 50 minutes, or until doubled in size.
  8. While the dough rises, lay out two sheets of plastic wrap onto a non-skid surface such as a silicone baking mat. It should cover an area about 15 x 23-inches. Sprinkle the area liberally with all-purpose flour blend.
  9. Douse the top of the risen dough with all-purpose flour. Turn it out onto the plastic wrap. Douse the top with flour. Using a lightly floured rolling pin and your hands, pat it out and roll it to approximately 11 x 16-inches.
  10. Spread 3 tablespoons of very soft butter on the dough. Sprinkle the cinnamon-brown sugar mixture on top.
  11. Roll up the dough by lifting the plastic wrap on the shortest side. As you lift the plastic, it rolls itself.
  12. Cut the dough-log into 6 rolls. Using a pastry/dough scraper or wide spatula, carefully transfer each roll to the prepared dish. Shape it into a circle the best you can. Cover with a tea towel. Allow rolls to rise until they almost fill the pan, about 50 - 55 minutes**.
  13. Preheat the oven to 400°F. Bake 15 - 25 minutes or until light golden brown.
  14. If using glaze, while rolls are baking, add cream cheese or butter to the bowl of your mixer. Mix on high speed until smooth. Sift in confectioner’s sugar. Pour in milk and vanilla. Beat on medium speed until thoroughly combined.
  15. When rolls are done, remove from oven and set on a wire rack. Baste the tops with melted butter to soften them. Cool for 5 minutes prior to serving. If using, drizzle with glaze and serve warm.
  16. Store covered at room temperature. To reheat, warm in a microwave on medium-low or reheat setting.

Tips

*Instead of using cream cheese and milk in the glaze, you may use the following ingredients: 1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar, 2-1/2 tablespoons heavy cream and 1/4 teaspoon vanilla. Whisk them until creamy. Cream cheese may also be substituted with 1 tablespoon shortening.

**Rising times will vary depending upon the temperature of the environment. If your home is cold, use your oven to rise the dough. Preheat oven to the lowest temperature possible, 170 - 200°F. Turn off oven, and place the dish on the center shelf. Leave the door open until rising is complete.

29 Replies to “Fluffy Gluten Free Cinnamon Rolls”

  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.

      Carla

  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.

      Carla

      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.

          Carla

  4. Facebook Comment,

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

    ~A.C.G.

    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.”

  5. I have quadrupled this recipe for a gluten free party. So far it’s coming out nicely. I used chia seeds in place of gum. I had to add more flours to get a good consistency and I think I will add a touch more on roll out. Very excited. Thanks for the recipe. I will let you know how they turn out!

    1. Teira,

      This is awesome news! I have seen some photos of this recipe on other blogs and notice that they do not fill the pan. Important tips are to allow it to rise enough and do not roll it too tight.

      Enjoy your party, and the gluten free cinnamon rolls!

      Carla

  6. So, I accidently screwed up the recipe, and then tried to remedy it so I wouldn’t waste flour….the result was nothing less than amazing!! LOL! I accidently added both 1/4 cup millet and 1/4 cup potato flour, so I added additional liquid and an extra egg white to make up the difference. If my screwed up recipe came out perfect, I can only imagine how good the original is!! :) I did not let them rise the first time either….just rolled it out, filled and cut them and then let them rise. My son is devouring them as I type! Thank you so much for such a wonderful recipe!

    1. Forgot to add that I also made these completely dairy free due to a dairy allergy in the family….I used Earth Balance soy free spread and they were great!

  7. Facebook Comment March 21, 2013:

    “Yayyyyy Carla!! You are amazing in every sense of the word! thank you for all of your hard work, trial and error, and persistence. I love these!!! Thank you again for reposting! You’re a blessing;)”

    ~ S.H.

  8. Hi Linda, I measured in ounces instead of by measuring cups & it appears the oz. measurements for the flours are double what they should be. Did anyone else have this issue? I just made a double batch instead, so no problems, but I was just curious.

    1. Sorry about that, Sara. I had typed this recipe up with grams at first, and someone said it was too low, so I assumed I made the error in weighing them in ounces. I updated it to ounces. When weighing 1/2 cup white rice just now, I see that my original error was entering a decimal point in the middle of the gram measurements. I now always weigh with my glasses on! LOL! Getting old sucks…now in mid 50s! It seems as if my body experiences new changes every week.

      Again, I apologize. All updated now.

      So…how did they turn out for you?

      Carla

      1. Carla, they were AWESOME! Since they turned into a double batch I froze one batch in individual rolls & used a small scoop to divide the icing & then froze on a sheet & put with each roll so I have some when I get a craving! Thanks for all the hard work on the recipe. It is definitely a keeper!

  9. Carla,
    I made these for Christmas morning and they were great!! I had to add a little more flour mixture to get the right consistence to roll, but otherwise, perfect .. :)

    1. Hi Linda,

      Thanks for your feedback. I’m so happy you enjoyed them.

      The dough is very soft, and the flour amount will vary depend upon how you measure. I used the scoop method, which will compact the flour and starches a bit. However, it is a very soft dough. If you heavily dust your rolling surface and lightly press while rolling it out, it makes them fluffier.

      Happy holidays to you!

      Carla

  10. So I attempted to make this, going by your weights there. I’m assuming that 7.7g actually means 77 g and so on. You might want to fix that, by the way. Anyways, I mixed everything together and I ended up with cake batter. I’m assuming that wasn’t your intention, since it’s pretty tough to roll out cake batter. You might want to fix your dry weights, double check the recipe, and tell us what dough consistency we’re looking for so we can reserve some of the wet mixture and add it as necessary to get the consistency correct.

    Meanwhile I’ve added extra flour mix to get something halfway rollable and I’m crossing my fingers that it comes together well enough that I can have cinnamon rolls for my wife on christmas morning. If not, I’ll just note to myself not to risk christmas breakfast on a random website I’ve never tried before.

    1. Oh Kevin,

      I am so sorry! I meant to weight it in grams, but can barely see the tiny “g” and “oz” on my scale. I am sure it must have been ounces, and have updated the recipe. I am known for great recipes, but any time you see an obvious error please just ask. I usually check comments several times a day.

      Again, I apologize.

      I hope it didn’t ruin Christmas breakfast for you and yours.

      Carla

  11. Hi
    Can you do any prep ahead and refridge or freeze and then maybe do final rise and bake? Or complete and bake and then freeze and rewarm? Thanks.

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