It’s so hard to make homemade bread and rolls from wheat flour and smell them rising and baking, then to pass them off to everyone else. Now I can quit my whining. The best part is that everyone (even my picky husband) really enjoyed these gluten free cinnamon rolls. That tells me this is a winner on all accounts.
I toyed around with the amount of sugar and butter in the filling too. I think that’s an important, if not the most important part of cinnamon rolls, right? They have plenty of cinnamon. I left out raisins because I live with a houseful of people who prefer their raisins on the side and not in their cinnamon rolls. We also decided these are great with or without a glaze. So that part is up to you. I included a simple vanilla butter glaze recipe, but we all know the best glaze for cinnamon rolls is made with cream cheese. So feel free to add that to the glaze as well. Always looking to add nuts to everything, I sprinkled mine with chopped pecans. My mom always topped her cinnamon rolls with sliced almonds, so I’m just carrying on that tradition. :)
The biggest problem I had with these rolls was making the dough too firm. It really needs to stay sticky so the rolls will rise and be soft. Otherwise they just crumbled. Check out the step-by-step instructions for rolling below the recipe because I learned a few tricks in that regard as well.
Update 12.08.2013. The original recipe had a typo in it. The flour was listed as 4 1/2 cups, which was not correct. The mix makes 4 cups. Only about 3 3/4 cups are used in the dough.
- 4 teaspoons Red Star Active Dry Yeast
- 6 Tablespoons warm water (110 degrees F)
- 1 cup milk
- 6 Tablespoons shortening (or butter)
- ⅓ cup granulated sugar plus ½ teaspoon
- 1½ teaspoons salt
- 2 large eggs
- 4 cups gluten free flour mix (listed below)
- 2 teaspoons xanthan gum
- ¼ cup softened butter plus 2 Tablespoons melted butter
- ⅔ cup brown sugar, packed
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- Optional: vanilla glaze, for serving (recipe below)
- Dissolve yeast and ½ teaspoon sugar in warm water. Let stand for 5-10 minutes or until foamy.
- Place milk, shortening, ⅓ cup sugar and salt in a saucepan. Heat over medium-high heat until very hot and sugar and salt are dissolved and shortening has melted. Let cool to 140 degrees F.
- In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, lightly beat the eggs. With the mixer running on low, add the hot milk mixture in a slow stream.
- Whisk 3 cups of the gluten free flour mix with the xanthan gum. Add all at once to the mixer and turn on low. Turn off the mixer and add the yeast. Turn mixer back on to low speed. Add the remaining gluten free flour mix a little at a time until the dough is still a little sticky, but not stiff. (You should only need about 3¾ cups. Reserve the remaining for rolling out the dough.)
- Beat the dough on medium speed for 4-5 minutes. Turn off the motor, remove the paddle attachment and let dough stand for a few minutes. The dough will firm up a bit as it stands, so don't skip this step.
- Grease a 9- by 13-inch baking dish with butter. Set aside.
- Lay a large rectangle of parchment paper out on a clean, flat surface. Sift a few tablespoons of the remaining flour in an even layer over the parchment paper. Turn the dough out onto the parchment paper and sift a little more flour mix over the top. Use your hands to flatten the dough into a large rectangle, about 16- by 20-inches and ½-inch thick. Trim and patch the edges as needed so they are as straight as possible.
- Carefully spread the softened butter over the entire surface of the dough. Mix the cinnamon and brown sugar together and sprinkle evenly over the butter.
- Start on the long edge and use the parchment paper to help you roll the dough over itself. When you get to the edge, dab a little water along the length of the dough to help seal it. Press the dough, if needed, so the roll is even through the middle.
- Using a sharp serrated knife, carefully cut the roll into quarters and then cut each quarter into thirds. Transfer each roll to the buttered baking dish. Press down gently on each roll so it touches the one next to it. Brush the tops of the rolls with the 2 Tablespoons melted butter. Cover baking dish tightly with plastic wrap and place somewhere warm to rise for 30-45 minutes depending on the temperature of the room. The rolls will raise up, but not double in size.
- While rolls are rising, preheat oven to 425 degrees. Bake rolls for 20-25 minutes, or until the tops are golden brown. Remove from oven and let cool slightly before serving.
1/4 cup softened butter, 1½ cups powdered sugar, 2 teaspoons vanilla extract, water or milk for thinning. Whisk together until smooth. (Can also add 2 Tablespoons cream cheese and a little more powdered sugar.)
Gluten Free Flour Mix: (based on this recipe)
1 cup (165 grams) white rice flour
3/4 cup (105 grams) sorghum flour (can also sub brown rice flour)
3/4 cup (120 grams) sticky rice flour (also called mochi flour)
3/4 cup (120 grams) tapioca starch
3/4 cup (160 grams) potato starch
This dough should stay fairly sticky. Don’t be tempted to add too much flour. It will feel like really sticky cookie dough.
Carefully spread the dough with softened butter. Do this as gently as possible so you don’t tear the dough. Sprinkle with the brown sugar and cinnamon. Use your flattened palm to spread the sugar in an even layer.
Use the edge of the parchment paper to help you roll the dough. Apply even pressure on the paper as you roll it so the dough rolls tightly. If you need to, brush the excess flour off the dough. Before you get to the end of the roll, brush the edge of the dough with water to act as glue. Gently press the edge together to seal it.
Use your hands to even out the thickness of the dough along its length by squeezing it in the thicker parts. Cut the dough into 12 thick rounds. I do this by cutting the dough in half, then quarters and then in thirds.
Place the rolls in a well-greased baking dish. I gently press down on the rolls so they are touching. They will rise up a bit, but not as high as wheat rolls. Brush the rolls with melted butter and cover the pan with plastic wrap and let the rolls rise for about 30 to 45 minutes. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F and bake the risen rolls for 20-25 minutes. Let cool slightly before serving. Whisk the glaze ingredients together and serve on top, if desired.
Sprinkle with chopped nuts, if desired.
Disclosure: This post is sponsored by Red Star Yeast. All opinions expressed are 100% mine. I only recommend products I use in my own kitchen and love. :)