Double-the-Cinnamon Rolls (Make Ahead Option)


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.

These dairy-free cinnamon rolls taste better than bakery fresh, but have a make-ahead option! A double dose of cinnamon inside this pantry recipe. Vegan, nut-free.

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!

These dairy-free cinnamon rolls taste better than bakery fresh, but have a make-ahead option! A double dose of cinnamon inside this pantry recipe. Vegan, nut-free.

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.

Reader Raves

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.

5.0 from 3 reviews
Double-the-Cinnamon Rolls (Make Ahead Option)
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Inspired by a recipe from Don’t Eat Off the Sidewalk. Note that the prep time does not include the rising times.
Serves: 12 cinnamon rolls
  1. In a large mixing bowl, combine the yeast and the warm milk beverage, and let it rest for 5 minutes.
  2. In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, cinnamon, and salt.
  3. 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.
  4. 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.
  5. 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.
  6. Punch the dough down; cover and let rest for 5 minutes. While that is resting, prepare the filling.
  1. 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.
  1. 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).
  2. Roll up the rectangle tightly, from the long side, pinch the seam to seal, dabbing it with a bit of water if needed.
  3. 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).
  4. 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.
  5. Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until they are a light golden brown (I like them on the less browned side).
  1. 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!
  2. Serve the cinnamon rolls warm, drizzled with the glaze.
*No Banana? – Like the recipe from Don’t Eat of the Sidewalk, you can use pumpkin puree or sweet potato puree in equal amounts to substitute for the banana. Heck, you may even be able to use applesauce … or some dairy-free yogurt! Surprisingly, the fruit does not have a notable effect on the cinnamon roll flavor, so don't be afraid to serve these to banana-haters.

** 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.

About Author

Alisa is the founder of, Food Editor for Allergic Living magazine, and author of the best-selling dairy-free book, Go Dairy Free: The Guide and Cookbook for Milk Allergies, Lactose Intolerance, and Casein-Free Living, and the new cookbook, Eat Dairy Free: Your Essential Cookbook for Everyday Meals, Snacks, and Sweets. Alisa is also a professional recipe creator and product ambassador for the natural food industry.


  1. Hi Alisa, thanks for this recipe. It looks fantastic ! I have a question, can I let it rise overnight? Do you think I’d have to adapt anything, if I wanted to make it at night to bake it in the morning? Thanks! Happy Holidays!

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  3. Amanda Everett on

    I personally feel like I can taste the coconut so I made it next time with almond milk. I also use earth balance spread and it’s loves. They are light fluffy and amazing. Best part we can add extra sugar for a desert or just as is for the prefect breakfast roll. My dairy free daughter truly thanks you for giving her cinnamon rolls back. Also try adding flavors to your frosting lemon is our favorite so far.

  4. Hello! I plan to make these for Christmas breakfast! I’m not a fan of the flavor of coconut, so I wondered if when you bake it with coconut oil if there is a hint of flavor or, if like the banana, you can’t taste it! I have a buttery spread on hand, but it may be easier to do coconut oil! Thanks!

    • You definitely won’t taste the coconut oil in the rolls or in the icing, and most don’t notice it in the filling either, but I usually use buttery spread in the filling. It just gives it more of that traditional cinnamon roll filling taste.

  5. Sharon Douglas on

    Can I just thank you for such a great and easy recipe. I used koko (coconut milk) and pure sunflower spread. They turned out amazing with my 2 year old allergy wee man living them saying they were so yummy. We are df sf and ef. I even used a Cinnabon frosting using violife creamy, pure sunflower, icing sugar, vanilla essence and lemon juice. Happy family here in Scotland

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  7. Can I use eggs? How would I replace the banana with an egg. At the bottom you only give other fruits/veggie option but what if I want to actually use an egg. I only need dairy free…

  8. Ive only just started vegan baking and I made these and non of my flat mates are vegan but soon as they saw these and smelt them within 5mins they were all gone I will be saving this recipe and have been begged to make them again today they are amazing!! Thank you

  9. These seem to be incredibly healthy compared to most baked goods.

    I usually keep the sugar and butters/oils minimal in my recipes.

    I’m also low on sugar at the moment, so this is perfect.

  10. Any Guess if I can sub a Gluten Free Flour mix (which has the gums in it) for the flour? I had a sudden craving or cinnamon rolls and they need to be GF, DF and Egg Free. So I think this recipe might work the best. 🙂

    • Ooh, since they are egg-free, too, I don’t want to make any promises. But if you try it, please let me know how it works out (would definitely use one with gums or other binders)!

      • Reporting back. This recipe is so good. I used 2.5 C of flour, and added in a bit of flour while kneading. I used a Gluten Free mix from Costco called Cloud 9 and coconut milk. Other wise I followed the dough the same. For the filling I used brown sugar, coconut oil and lots of cinnamon. They only rose a little so they are denser than wheat ones, but the taste was so good.
        I actually omitted the cinnamon to the dough and made half into buns. Again dense, but good taste and texture. which I loved.
        So bottom line they work but you can’t expect them to taste like your old favourite, but I’ve learned that already being Gluten free. Thanks for sharing the recipe

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  12. I’m not much of a baker, so I was nervous to try something like this, but they turned out soooo yummy! (I ate 2 just to make sure that they were really good 🙂 ). I used the pumpkin instead of banana, coconut oil for the dough and Earth Balance instead of margarine for the filling.

    Will make another batch tonight and bring the rolls to Thanksgiving dinner tomorrow 🙂

  13. This is an excellent cinnamon roll recipe, vegan or no! Turned out amazing. The dough was a tad bit on the dry side while mixing , so followed your advice and added in a tablespoon or two of liquid more – I used applesauce, actually, just to try something different.

  14. These were fantastic!! Have you tried freezing the cooked product, or the dough?? Just wondering if it would work?

  15. I want to make a King Cake for Fat Tuesday and it will need to be dairy free. Do you think I can use this recipe and instead of making individual cinnamon rolls, make a ring like a King Cake?

    • Marianne, having never made nor eaten a King Cake, I can’t give you a definite “yes, it will work!” In looking up other King Cake recipes, they do appear to be a cinnamon roll type base, so in that case, I would assume this recipe would work fine.

  16. on

    This recipe makes absolutely THE BEST cinnamon rolls I have ever had, homemade or bakery made. The dairy-free and egg-free aspect does not detract from the overall result. My entire family aggreed that they were the best ever. I think I ate like four all by myself. I simply cannot have them in the house. Keep the great recipes coming!

  17. Is the amount of “milk” correct? I tried this recipe and the dough was WAY too dry, it was flaking to bits! 🙁 Usually there is a higher ratio of liquid to flour in cinnamon roll recipes. Any suggestions as to what happened?

    • Hi Sara, you added the banana and oil correct? I’ve made them many times and many readers have emailed me on success with them – never a problem, it is a pretty supple dough. Add a little more liquid if the dough is too dry for you – a tablespoon at a time until if feels more pliable and cohesive.

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