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Cinnamon Buns (Gluten Free)…

December 18, 2010

I know I should have caved to the pressure of all the fall recipes on the blogs a lot earlier. But I didn’t. So now I’m here, in the middle of December, with Cinnamon Buns. I’ve come to the party late. A whole lot late if you consider that we’ve just been through Spring here in SA and now its Summer and Fall was what? 3 seasons ago? Anyway, we can still enjoy them right? They’re cinnamon buns. Duh.

Time for a confession though. I’m a cinnamon hater. Yep. I do not like cinnamon. In small quantities I can handle it. Maybe even border on liking it. But I never love it. Maybe it’ll change, but for now it’s strong and sickly sweet aroma makes my stomach churn.

I can do Cinnamon Buns though. And I really enjoy them. But only for a few bites. Then G has to step in and endure the task of helping me to finish mine after he’s just finished scoffing down his. Such a hard life.

I was skeptical about these being as good as the gluten-full ones but I shouldn’t have been. They were every bit as delicious. They can be a bit of a process, but they’re worth the time it takes when you wake up the next morning and there’s your cinnamon bun waiting for you. Add a steaming hot cup of tea and that’s me gone.

Gluten Free Cinnamon Buns:

(Adapted from Shauna of Gluten Free Girl and Jeanne of Four Chickens)

I used Jeanne’s Gluten-Free All Purpose Flour Mix:

  • 1 1/4 Cup brown rice flour
  • 1 1/4 Cup white rice flour
  • 1 Cup tapioca flour
  • 1 Cup rice flour
  • 2 scant tsp. xanthan gum

Whisk all ingredients together in a large bowl to combine, then store in an airtight container. Store in the fridge if you can, otherwise a cool, dark place will do fine.


  • 3 Cups Jeanne’s Gluten-Free All-Purpose Flour Mix
  • 1 tbsp xanthan gum
  • 4 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 4 tbsp sugar
  • 2 tbsp active dry yeast
  • 1 1/4 Cup warm milk (not hot)
  • 2 tsp vinegar (I use apple cider vinegar)
  • 4 tbsp neutral-tasting vegetable oil (such as canola)
  • 2 large eggs
  • extra tapioca flour for rolling out dough and for pan
  • extra butter for pan

Prepare your pan (9 by 13-inch) by buttering and flouring it and set it aside.

Whisk together the flour, xanthan gum, baking powder, salt and 3 tbsp of the sugar and set aside.

In a mixer using the paddle attachment, mix together the eggs, oil and vinegar until just combined.

In a small bowl, dissolve the remaining 1 tbsp sugar in the milk. Add the yeast and whisk gently until dissolved. Set aside in a warm place for about 10-15 min to proof. This gives the yeast time to grow and foam.

Once its nice and foamy on top, add it to the mixer bowl and combine gently.

Add the dry ingredients and mix on med-low speed until the dough comes together.

You’re looking for a soft, shaggy dough here, not as stiff as a gluten dough would be, more like a cookie dough. If the dough feels too stiff and dry, add a little more milk or some water to get the consistency right. If too wet, add a little tapioca or potato flour. Trust your gut.

This is where I was a bit confused. Shauna lets her dough sit in a greased bowl under a tea towel in a warm place to rise for about an hour (until doubled in size) where as Jeanne goes straight on to rolling it out. ?

I was a bit pressed for time so I went with Jeanne’s method but I’m sure Shauna’s would be great to.

Roll out the dough on a generously floured work surface (tapioca flour works well) to a large rectangle. About 1/2 inch thick. (You can half the dough and roll out two rectangles if you’d like to make two smaller logs for smaller rolls)


  • 115 g (4 oz/1 stick) unsalted butter
  • 2/3 Cup brown sugar
  • 4 tsp cinnamon
  • 3 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1/2 cup golden raisins (optional)
  • 1/2 cup walnuts (optional)

Melt the butter and set aside for a few min. Sprinkle the brown sugar, cinnamon, maple syrup, walnuts and raisins onto the dough. Drizzle 1/2 of the melted butter over the filling.

This is where you understand how important it is that you generously floured your work surface. Roll the dough up into a log from one of the short sides of the rectangle. If the dough sticks to your work surface, gently run a long, thin knife or palate knife underneath to loosen it.

Once rolled, score lines with a knife before cutting the log to get even pieces.

Drizzle the rest of the melted butter into your prepared pan and place the rolls in, cut side down, with a little space in between them. Set aside to rise for an hour. In Shauna’s recipe this would be the second rise. She says that gluten-free doughs wont rise as much as gluten doughs would on the second rise, but they will puff out nicely. Maybe the first rise is worth it?

While they are rising, pre-heat the oven to 180°C/350°F.

When they are done they’ll have puffed out to touch each other in the pan…

Bake for 25 – 35 min. The reason the baking times vary so much is that it all depends on your oven and a number of other factors. As much as you can, try to go on what it should look like when its ready to come out rather than on how much time has elapsed. I usually check for the first time about 5 min before the beginning of the end time. So here I would check at 20 min.

You want them to be golden brown on top and when you press both sides of one it should feel firm but still have some give. I overdid mine just a tad…

You can frost them while still hot if you like the frosting to soak into the rolls, or wait about 10 min if you like them to be smothered in it.


  • 60 g (4 tbsp) unsalted butter, softened
  • 4 tbsp cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 cups icing sugar

Beat the butter, cream cheese and vanilla extract together until pale and fluffy. Sift the icing sugar over in batches and beat well to combine. (You may not need all the icing sugar, just add until it’s thick and rich.)

Frost the rolls in the pan or out. And please, eat one straight away. They’re really good straight from the oven.

3 Comments leave one →
  1. December 18, 2010 9:59 am

    Stunning photos! Really a beautiful post. Thanks very much.

  2. December 20, 2010 6:35 pm

    wow~ gorgeous!

  3. Betty permalink
    July 3, 2013 10:42 pm

    The amount of rice flour shown in Jeanne’s Flour mix after white and brown, should be “sweet” rice flour. Missing a word confused me until I went back to Jeanne’s recipe. Thanks for the cinnamon buns. :)

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