Gluten-free Vegan Cinnamon Rolls

reading time: ca. 3 min

I don't even remember the last time i had a cinnamon roll. Actually this isn't anything that i know from my childhood (my childhood was rather defined by creamy bee sting cake :)), but i did use to love Franzbrötchen which is a German pastry / roll with loads of cinnamon. I remember buying one every now and then after school and brown it in a pan! So good. Here is my gluten-free, (raw) vegan take on that!

Healthy Vegan Cinnamon Rolls

adapted from Tanith @ Sheloveseating

Preparation time: 5 min (+ 1 hour refrigeration)
Main ingredients: dates, buckwheat, cinnamon
difficulty level: easy
makes: around 15 rolls
suitable for: vegan, lactose-free, gluten-free, nut-free, and delicious "even so"


300g buckwheat flour *
150ml plant milk (i used plain soy milk)
50g rice syrup
1/4 tsp ground cardamom
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp baking powder

100g dates, soaked
60g dried figs
1 tsp gingerbread spice
2-3 tsp cinnamon
8 tbsp water
1 apple (you could probably use applesauce or pear instead!)


For the dough: In a bowl, mix the flour with baking powder, cinnamon and cardamom. In a small pot carefully heat the plant milk - don't let it boil though, just warm up a bit! Stir in the stevia or whichever sweetener you prefer. I recommend agave syrup, maple syrup, rice syrup or - my favourite - coconut blossom sugar.
Add the sweetened milk to your flour and knead the dough with your hands until it forms a sticky ball. Cover the bowl with the dough with a towel and set it to a warm place.

In the meantime, prepare the filling: Preheat your oven at 375°F (190°C). Purée dates and figs with water, cinnamon and gingerbread spice. You can still add a little more water but the filling should stay kind of sticky. Wash an apple and chop it into very small chunks. Add it to your filling and stir. Get your dough and roll it out evenly with a rolling pin on a baking sheet. Try to shape it like a rectangle and about 1/3 inch (1cm) thick. 

Then evenly spread the filling over the dough and begin to roll it up from the longer side of your rectangle so you end up with a thick roll. This was kind of tricky for me, almost as tricky as my first time making a sushi roll, because the dough kept crumbling and breaking away. But i got it eventually and it was perfectly fine!

Take a wet knife and start cutting the thick roll into slices (approx. 1 inch or 2-3 cm thick). Place your cinnamon rolls on a baking sheet lined tray. Let bake in the oven for about 15 minutes, but already check them after 10 minutes so they won't burn. Enjoy warm or cooled down (and with a batch of peanut butter ;).

Of course, served with crunchy peanut butter for me :)

Raw Vegan Cinnamon Rolls

adapted from Maggie @ Rawified

Preparation time: 30 min (+ 1 hour refrigeration)
Main ingredients: almonds, dates, cinnamon
difficulty level: easy-moderate
makes: approx. an 8-inch-roll (20 cm)
suitable for: vegan, lactose-free, gluten-free, paleo, raw food, and delicious "even so"


1 cup almonds
1/2 cup flaxseed 
1/8 cup honey
1/8 cup rice syrup (or swap for another 1/8 cup honey)

1/2 cup dates, soaked for 30-60 minutes in warm water
1/4 cup water 
2 tbsp cinnamon 
handful of almonds
pinch of salt 
2 tbsp raisins (optional) 
2 tbsp chopped pecans, almonds or walnuts (optional)


As opposed to the recipe above, this is a raw vegan recipe: It requires no cooking, no baking and takes only minutes to make! It's super easy. 

First, prepare the "dough". You basically blend all listed ingredients for the dough using a high-speed blender or a food processor. I start with the flax seeds and blend them into a more or less fine powder, then i add the almonds, blend until they are crushed into coarse flour, then i add the rest and process it into a workable dough.

Place the dough between two sheets of wax paper (baking paper might work too) and flatten into a large square by using a rolling pin. Set aside.

Now onto the filling. Again, you just have to blend everything - except for the raisins and chopped nuts if you're including them - in your high-speed blender or food processor, this time in no particular order. A thick paste should form. Spread this paste evenly over your dough square. Sprinkle with raisins and chopped nuts if desired.

Lastly, roll your dough into a tight cylinder, as if you were making sushi and the wax paper were the mat. Place your roll in the fridge to set for about half an hour, then remove and cut into equal pieces. That's it!

Store your raw vegan cinnamon rolls in the fridge. Keep for up to a week (trust me, they'll be gone sooner than that).

Enjoy! :)

* Despite its name buckwheat does NOT contain wheat! It is not even a grain, nor a cereal and is gluten-free. Buckwheat is derived from the seeds of a flowering plant related to knotweed, sorrel and rhubarb. If you don't care about eating gluten-free, feel free to sub the buckwheat for spelt  flour or oats or even nuts :)



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