Food

The Best Gluten Free Cinnamon Rolls

at a glance
Prep Time 25 minutes
Rise Time 35 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes

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These homemade gluten free cinnamon rolls are easy to make and absolutely delicious — I can’t wait for you to try them!

a baking dish of gluten free cinnamon rolls

Homemade Gluten Free Cinnamon Rolls

These homemade gluten free cinnamon rolls are so, so delicious. Cinnamon rolls are my (Brandi’s) sweet breakfast treat of choice, but finding really delicious store-bought gluten free rolls can be quite the task. This recipe, though, is actually really easy to execute and the result is perfectly gooey cinnamon rolls every single time.

Brittany Angell, a very gifted recipe developer, created this recipe (along with several others on the site) and, once again, she hit a homerun! 

Yes, this recipe is really easy! It’s really just a matter of measuring and mixing ingredients, rolling out and filling the dough, cutting the rolls, letting them rise for 35-40 minutes, then baking. It’s a recipe that absolutely anyone can pull off – whether you’re a seasoned baker or totally new to baking!

Gluten Free Cinnamon Roll Ingredients

This list may feel like a lot, but each of the ingredients are easy to source (either at your local grocery store or Amazon), so don’t be intimidated! Here’s everything you’ll need:

For the Yeast + Milk Mixture

  • Milk – to start, you’ll need 1 ¼ cup (264 grams) of milk. Regular or non-dairy both work (Brittany used full-fat oat milk). 
  • Yeast – you’ll need 1 tablespoon of fast-acting/instant yeast to mix with your lukewarm milk.
  • Sugar – 1 tablespoon of organic cane sugar will go into the milk/yeast mixture also.

For the Dough

  • Flour – 1 ¾ cup (286 grams) of gluten-free all-purpose flour will act as the base of your cinnamon roll dough. We use King Arthur Gluten-Free Measure for Measure flour for all of our baking needs, and this is the flour that Brittany used when creating this recipe.
  • Potato Starch – in addition to the flour, you’ll also need a ½ cup (88 grams) of potato starch.
  • Expandex – a ½ cup (75 grams) of Expandex (essentially, modified tapioca starch that helps improve the texture, volume, and elasticity of baked goods) will also head into the bowl.
  • Sugar – to sweeten the dough, you’ll need a ½ cup (103 grams) of organic cane sugar. 
  • Avocado Oil – a ⅓ cup (72 grams) of avocado oil helps to moisten the dough.
  • Baking Powder – 1 ½ teaspoons of double-acting baking powder (just the regular kind) heads into mix.
  • Xanthan/Guar Gum – to provide some elasticity and stickiness to the dough, you’ll need 2 teaspoons of xanthan or guar gum.
  • Salt – ¾ of a teaspoon of salt goes into the dough mixture to counter the sweetness and enhance the other flavors of the rolls.
  • Eggs – lastly, you’ll need either 2 large eggs or 3 ounces of applesauce.

For the Filling

  • Butter – 4 tablespoons of softened butter (or vegan butter) gets rubbed onto the rolled out cinnamon roll dough before the brown sugar and cinnamon get sprinkled on top. 
  • Sugar – 1 ½ cups of brown sugar (or coconut palm sugar) gets sprinkled over the butter. 
  • Cinnamon – 2 teaspoons of cinnamon goes over the sugar!

For the Pan

  • Milk – 4 tablespoons of either milk or cream will get brushed onto the cinnamon rolls before the head into the oven.
  • Butter – 2 tablespoons of melted butter (regular or vegan) head into the bottom of the pan to prevent the rolls from sticking.

Absolutely! You can use 3 ounces of applesauce in place of the eggs, non-dairy milk instead of regular cow’s milk, and vegan butter instead of regular butter. 

Supplies Needed to Make this Recipe

How to make Gluten Free Cinnamon Rolls

  1. Prep – to start, turn on your oven to 200°F, and place 2 tablespoons of melted butter into your pan, then set aside.
  2. Make the milk and yeast mixture – place a microwave safe bowl on your scale and pour in the milk. Warm your milk in the microwave for 30-40 seconds, give it a stir, and test to see if it’s lukewarm. If it’s hot, it needs to be set aside to cool down. If it’s lukewarm, stir in your yeast and 1 tablespoon of sugar, and set it on top of the preheating oven.
  3. Measure the dough ingredients – place the bowl of your stand mixer onto the kitchen scale and measure out the King Arthur Flour, potato starch, Expandex, cane sugar, oil, baking powder, xanthan (or guar) gum, salt, and eggs (or applesauce).
  4. Check the yeast mixture – if it has started to bubble and froth, you know it’s alive and well, and you can add it to the bowl of the stand mixer with the rest of the dough ingredients.
  5. Mix – using the paddle attachment of your stand mixture, turn the mixer on low (gradually working your way up to high), and continue to mix on high for about 1 minute.
  6. Press out the dough – place a large sheet of parchment paper on the counter and spray it liberally with oil. Then, dump the dough onto the sprayed surface and spray the top surface of the dough and your hands with oil as well. Use your hands to press the dough out evenly into a rectangle that is 14 inches by 12 inches — double-check with your measuring stick to make sure it’s the correct size. 
  7. Add the filling to the dough – spread the softened butter across the surface of the dough using a spatula, leaving about ½ of an inch around the edges without butter. Then, sprinkle on the brown sugar and cinnamon.
  8. Roll the dough – using the parchment as your guide, carefully roll the dough relatively tight, making sure to end with the seam-side down. To make the dough a little easier to handle, sprinkle some potato starch on all sides.
  9. Measure and cut the rolls – with the large roll seam-side down, pull out your measuring stick again, and check to see if the roll is 14 inches. If it isn’t, press the ends in to make it the proper size. Using a knife and your ruler, measure and mark the roll every 1 ½ inches (this should give you 9 rolls). Using a sharp knife or floss, carefully cut the rolls at each mark.
  10. Add the cinnamon rolls to the pan and let them rise – place the cut cinnamon rolls into the prepared pan, spacing them apart evenly, then brush the tops and sides of the rolls with 2 tablespoons of either milk or cream. Cover the pan with a kitchen towel, turn the oven off, and place the pan in the warm oven, leaving the door open a crack for 10 minutes. After 10 minutes, close the oven door and let the rolls continue to proof in the oven for another 25-30 minutes.
  11. Bake – after the full 35-40 minutes, remove the pan from the oven and place it on a warm spot on top of the oven. Preheat the oven to 375°F and brush the rolls with the rest (2 tablespoons) of cream or milk. When the oven reaches 375°F, remove the towel and place the pan on the middle oven rack. Bake the rolls for 18-19 minutes if you want them to be gooey in the center, or for 20-22 minutes if you want them to be completely cooked through and have a bit of a firmer texture. 
  12. Let cool, then serve or store – allow the rolls to cool before serving. Then serve or store! 
the yeast mixture for cinnamon rolls
gluten free cinnamon roll dough being rolled up
gluten free cinnamon rolls in a baking dish with a towel on top before heading into the oven
ingredients in a bowl for gluten free cinnamon rolls
gluten free cinnamon roll dough rolled up and marked to cut
a baking dish of gluten free cinnamon rolls
gluten free cinnamon roll dough rolled out and filled
gluten free cinnamon rolls in a baking dish
a plate with a cinnamon roll on it

Tips and Tricks

Below are Brittany’s best tips and tricks for perfect gluten free cinnamon rolls:

  • Use a baking scale: for best results use a baking scale to make these cinnamon rolls. The cup amounts are included primarily to give you an idea of the amounts needed. The flour and liquid amounts need to be exact for the recipe to turn out perfect.
  • Trust the process: this dough is stickier, softer, and thinner than traditional cinnamon roll dough. Don’t assume that is isn’t right and start adding flour — trust the process and trust the gram measurement quantities.
  • Use dairy or non-dairy milk: any kind of real or dairy-free milk will work in this recipe. I used full-fat oat milk.
  • Make sure your milk is lukewarm: the temperature of your milk should be lukewarm. If it’s hot, it will kill the yeast, and if it’s cold, you won’t be able to tell if it is alive.
  • Use softened butter: make sure the butter for the filling is a soft, easy-to-spread consistency. If it’s melted, it may just run off the dough. 
  • Invest in an oven thermometer: I recommend investing in a little $10 oven thermometer that hangs on the rack so that you can make sure your temperature is what it is supposed to be. Oven temperature can make or break how bread recipes turn out.
  • Use the right pan: a variety of pan sizes can be used here. The absolute smallest option is a 9×9 square pan, but the most ideal size is a 10-inch cast-iron skillet or 10-inch cheesecake pan. Another great option is a 7×11, 3.1-quart deep Pyrex pan. Make sure that the sides of your pan are at least 2 inches tall, but 3 inches is preferable. 

Soft, fluffy gluten free cinnamon rolls are possible because of the starch, carbs, and sugar present in the dough. These three allow for the yeast to thrive, making the dough rise and get nice and fluffy. If you like softer, gooier cinnamon rolls, let them bake for 18-19 minutes (rather than 20-22 minutes for firmer rolls).

They do! They don’t need a double rise, but they’ll need to rise once for about 35 minutes before heading into the oven. This helps them to be nice and fluffy.

Your rolls will need to rise for 35-40 minutes before heading into the oven.

a plate of three cinnamon rolls

You’ll know the rolls are done when they’re golden brown on top. Gooey cinnamon rolls take 18-19 minutes of cooking time and firmer cinnamon rolls take 20-22 minutes of cooking time.

If your cinnamon rolls didn’t have a chance to rise (or the yeast wasn’t alive and ready when you added it to the dough mixture), they’ll end up dense. If you know that the yeast wasn’t the issue, you may try cutting back on the baking time just a tad.

Store your cinnamon rolls covered at room temperature.

They do! Brittany’s recommendation is to freeze your cinnamon rolls after baking (as opposed to before baking). I’d wrap each cinnamon roll in parchment paper and then freeze them in a large Ziplock bag.

Stored covered on the counter, your cinnamon rolls will last for about 1 week.

Gluten Free Cinnamon Rolls

By: Brittany Angell
No ratings yet
Prep Time: 25 mins
Rise Time 35 mins
Cook Time: 20 mins
These homemade gluten free cinnamon rolls are easy to make and absolutely delicious — I can’t wait for you to try them!

Ingredients  

  • For the Yeast + Milk Mixture
  • 1 ¼ cup 264 grams milk, regular or non-dairy
  • 1 tablespoon fast-acting/instant yeast
  • 1 tablespoon organic cane sugar
  • For the Dough
  • 1 ¾ cup 286 grams gluten-free flour (we use King Arthur Gluten-Free Measure for Measure flour)
  • ½ cup 88 grams potato starch
  • ½ cup 75 grams Expandex
  • ½ cup 103 grams organic cane sugar
  • cup 72 grams avocado oil
  • 1 ½ teaspoons double-acting baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons xanthan or guar gum
  • ¾ teaspoon salt
  • 2 large eggs or 3 ounces of applesauce
  • For the Filling
  • 4 tablespoons butter softened
  • 1 ½ cups brown sugar or coconut palm sugar
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • For the Pan
  • 4 tablespoons milk or cream
  • 2 tablespoons butter melted
  • Optional
  • Cream cheese frosting for serving

Instructions

  • Turn on your oven to 200°F, and place 2 tablespoons of melted butter into your pan, then set aside.
  • Place a microwave-safe bowl over your scale and pour in the milk. Warm your milk up in the microwave for 30-40 seconds, give it a stir, and test to see if it’s lukewarm. If it’s hot, it needs to be set aside to cool down. If it is lukewarm, stir in your yeast and 1 tablespoon of sugar, and set it on top of the preheating oven.
  • Place the bowl of your stand mixer onto the kitchen scale and measure out the King Arthur Flour, potato starch, Expandex, cane sugar, oil, baking powder, xanthan (or guar) gum, salt, and eggs (or applesauce).
  • Check your yeast mixture – if it has started to bubble and froth, you know it’s alive and well, and you can add it to the bowl of the stand mixer with the rest of the dough ingredients.
  • Using the paddle attachment of your stand mixture, turn the mixer on low (gradually working your way up to high), and continue to mix on high for about 1 minute.
  • Place a large sheet of parchment paper on your counter and spray it liberally with oil. Then, dump the dough on to the sprayed surface and give the top surface of the dough and your hands a spray of oil as well. Use your hands to press the dough out evenly into a rectangle that is 14 inches by 12 inches — double-check with your measuring stick to make sure it is the correct size.
  • Spread the softened butter across the surface of the dough using a spatula, leaving about ½ of an inch around the edges without butter. Then, sprinkle on the brown sugar and cinnamon.
  • Using the parchment as your guide, carefully roll the dough relatively tight, making sure to end with the seam-side down. To make the dough a little easier to handle, sprinkle some potato starch on all sides.
  • With the large roll seam-side down, pull out your measuring stick again, and check to see if the roll is 14 inches. If it isn’t, press the ends in to make it the proper size. Using a knife and your ruler, measure and mark the roll every 1 ½ inches (this should give you 9 rolls). Using a sharp knife or floss, carefully cut the rolls at each mark.
  • Place the cut cinnamon rolls into the prepared pan, spacing them apart evenly. Brush the tops and sides of the rolls with 2 tablespoons of either milk or cream. Cover the pan with a kitchen towel, turn the oven off, and place the pan in the warm oven, leaving the door open a crack for 10 minutes. After 10 minutes, close the oven door and let the rolls continue to proof in the oven for another 25-30 minutes.
  • After the full 35-40 minutes, remove the pan from the oven and place it on a warm spot on top of the oven. Preheat the oven to 375°F and brush the rolls with the rest (2 tablespoons) of cream or milk. When the oven reaches 375°F, remove the towel and place the pan on the middle oven rack. Bake the rolls for 18-19 minutes if you want them to be gooey in the center, or for 20-22 minutes if you want them to be completely cooked through and have a bit of a firmer texture.
  • Allow the rolls to cool before serving. Then serve or store!

Recipe Notes

Tips and Tricks:
  • Use a baking scale: for best results, use a baking scale to make these cinnamon rolls. The cup amounts are included primarily to give you an idea of the amounts needed. The flour and liquid amounts need to be exact for the recipe to turn out perfect.
  • Trust the process: this dough is stickier, softer, and thinner than traditional cinnamon roll dough. Don’t assume that is isn’t right and start adding flour — trust the process and trust the gram measurement quantities.
  • Use dairy or non-dairy milk: and kind of real or dairy-free milk will work in this recipe. I used full-fat oat milk.
  • Make sure your milk is lukewarm: the temperature of your milk should be lukewarm. If it’s hot, it will kill the yeast, and if it’s cold, you won’t be able to tell if it is alive.
  • Use softened butter: make sure the butter for the filling is a soft, easy-to-spread consistency. If it’s melted, it may just run off the dough.
  • Invest in an oven thermometer: I recommend investing in a little $10 oven thermometer that hangs on the rack so that you can make sure your temperature is what it is supposed to be. Oven temperature can make or break how bread recipes turn out.
  • Use the right pan: a variety of pan sizes can be used here. The absolute smallest option is a 9×9 square pan, but the most ideal size is a 10-inch cast-iron skillet or 10-inch cheesecake pan. Another great option is a 7×11 3.1-quart deep Pyrex pan. Make sure that the sides of your pan are at least 2 inches tall, but 3 inches is preferable.
Meet the Author
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Brandi Schilhab

Brandi leads our efforts on content audits, outline construction, website calendar management, and a great deal of writing. She could unashamedly watch reruns of Friends + Harry Potter movies and never get bored!⁠ ⁠ ⁠
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  1. Amy says

    Amy —  10/26/2021 At 09:20

    could you sub Tapioca flour for the expandex?

    • Brandi Schilhab says

      Brandi Schilhab —  10/26/2021 At 15:14

      No, that swap won’t work, Amy! So sorry!

  2. Samantha B. says

    Samantha B. —  12/11/2021 At 11:24

    I will have to say the description saying that these will last a week is inaccurate. They are too good and barely lasted 2 days in my house! Everyone loved them!

    • Brandi Schilhab says

      Brandi Schilhab —  12/13/2021 At 09:40

      LOL! That’s so great to hear, Samantha!! Thank you for taking the time to share this with us.

  3. Christina says

    Christina —  12/20/2021 At 09:14

    Have you tried freezing these after baking? If so, how did they turn out when you warmed them up?

    • Christina says

      Christina —  12/20/2021 At 09:15

      Never mind! Just read about it in the blog.
      Sorry!

    • Melissa Guevara says

      Melissa Guevara —  12/20/2021 At 09:57

      No worries! Let us know if you have any additional questions! Hope you enjoy! ~Melissa

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