These dairy-free cinnamon rolls are a beloved pantry recipe that has actually been on Go Dairy Free for years, but the post was in desperate need of an update! And though I still don’t have new photos, I can guarantee that these will be some of the best darn cinnamon rolls you have ever tasted, that just happen to be dairy-free and vegan. Perfect for holiday mornings or a weekend brunch.
Despite being void of eggs and butter, these dairy-free cinnamon rolls are incredibly tender and delicious. Trust me, you won’t know the difference between these and those fluffy store-bought cinnamon rolls. In fact, my husband swore that these were much better. As verified by the quantity he ate before I could even take a picture!
As you may have guessed from the name, these dairy-free cinnamon rolls have a double dose of spice with extra in the filling and some added to the dough, too. And no, you can’t taste the banana, I swear. But if you are really concerned about serving these to banana protesters, simply swap in one of the other options listed in the recipe notes.
Emilee gave these a try and had a happy success: “Thanks for these! I made them with an egg and just 1/2 cup banana and they were fabulous! We ate one pan and froze the rest to take camping, and they were just as good the second time around.”
Emma successfully swapped the banana for applesauce: “Just thought I’d tell you that apple sauce works brilliantly as a substitute for the banana and gives an excellent sweetness to the dough.”
Special Diet Notes: Double-the-Cinnamon Rolls
By ingredients, this recipe is dairy-free / non-dairy, egg-free, optionally nut-free, peanut-free, optionally soy-free, vegan / plant-based, and vegetarian.
- 2¼ teaspoons active dry yeast (or 1 single-use package)
- ½ cup unsweetened or plain milk beverage (your choice; I use almond milk), heated to lukewarm
- 3 cups bread flour or all-purpose flour, plus more as needed
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ¾ cup mashed ripe banana*
- ¼ cup coconut oil or dairy-free buttery spread, melted (can sub another oil if needed)
- 1 tablespoon sugar (can sub coconut sugar)
- ½ cup firmly packed brown sugar (can sub coconut sugar, will be less sweet)
- 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 3 tablespoons dairy-free buttery spread or coconut oil
- In a large mixing bowl, combine the yeast and the warm milk beverage, and let it rest for 5 minutes.
- In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, cinnamon, and salt.
- Mix the banana, melted oil or buttery spread (I use coconut oil), and sugar into the yeast mixture. Add half of the flour mixture and stir to combine. Slowly mix in the rest of the flour until a nice dough forms.
- Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface, and knead it for 10 minutes or so, adding more flour, 1 tablespoon at a time, as needed to keep it from sticking to your hands. You should end up with a fairly soft dough that is just slightly sticky.
- Place the dough in a greased bowl, cover and allow it to rise in a warm place for about 45 minutes, or until it has doubled in size. Tip: I actually mix the dough by hand in a round pyrex baking dish with a glass lid. When done making the dough, the bowl is still lightly floured/greased (I cheat and even knead the dough in the bowl), and I just pop the lid on and set it aside to rise.
- Punch the dough down; cover and let rest for 5 minutes. While that is resting, prepare the filling.
- Combine all filling ingredients in a medium bowl. If using chilled buttery spread, you should end up with coarse crumbles. If using softened buttery spread, you will get big soft globs of sugar. Oil or shortening should work okay, but I do like margarine for the filling.
- Roll the dough into a 12x10-inch rectangle on a floured surface. Sprinkle with the brown sugar mixture (it won’t fully cover, just evenly spread it out in small pieces as much as possible).
- Roll up the rectangle tightly, from the long side, pinch the seam to seal, dabbing it with a bit of water if needed.
- Cut the roll into 12 even slices. Place the slices in a greased 9-inch square or round baking pan**, cut sides down. Give them a little bit of space, as they will rise. Cover with plastic wrap, and pop them in the refrigerator to rise overnight (or let rise 1 hour if you are baking them same day).
- In the morning, pull the cinnamon rolls from the fridge and place them on top of the stove while you preheat the oven to 375ºF.
- Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until they are a light golden brown (I like them on the less browned side).
- In a medium bowl, whisk the powdered sugar, vanilla and 1 tablespoon of water. Add the maple syrup and/or oil or buttery spread, if using. Whisk in additional water as needed, to get the consistency desired. I play it a bit fast and loose with the glaze additions!
- Serve the cinnamon rolls warm, drizzled with the glaze.
** Pan Size – I actually didn’t have any 9 x 9 pans, so I used an 8-inch cake pan, fit nine cinnamon rolls in it (giving them each a wee bit of room to expand) and popped the other three, cut sides down in three muffin tins. The ones in the muffin tins cooked up just a few minutes faster. Feel free to wedge these babies into whatever size pans you have available. Give them just a bit of room, but not too much; you want them to rise, but also to be smooshed together once they rise and bake for that tender, pull-apart affect.