Recipes, Special Diets on November 22, 2010 by

Guest Post: Gluten Free Cinnamon Rolls From the Gluten Free Spouse

We have been falling in love with The Gluten Free Spouse for a few months. Finally, we asked Shawn to write us a guest post for you! Don’t Cinnamon Rolls just sound like the best breakfast possible for Thanksgiving Day or the dreaded Black Friday? I would die of happiness if someone, hint hint, made me cinnamon rolls for breakfast on Thanksgiving Day . . . enjoy!

The weather outside this week chilled me to the bone. Cooler weather always reminds me of my family and cooler weather with the memory of my family always brings to mind Grandma’s house around the holidays. The house was a buzz with all the sights, scents, sounds, and smells that you would expect from a large multi-generational country family during the holidays and freshly baked cinnamon rolls were a constant comfort. From Halloween through to New Year’s, Grandma’s house played a huge role in our family’s holidays. It was a huge two-story farmhouse on top of a hill, dwarfed only by the fully mature tulip tree that was in the backyard. I loved it there.

When my spouse, Shawn, bless his heart, was finally diagnosed with celiac a few years ago, I remember thinking this is going to be a difficult road. Over the next few weeks after his diagnosis, we tried a lot of gluten free products. I wasn’t pleased with the tastes and textures so I continued to eat as normal and let Shawn have his gluten free, yuk! Needless to say, I couldn’t let the little guy suffer with foods that were gross to me, so, being the cook that I fancied myself to be, I set out to create recipes that Shawn “could” eat, and that I “would” eat. I then started blogging these recipes to help out anyone and everyone that wants to cook for their food restricted loved ones. I became “The Gluten Free Spouse.” We were very popular at the local farmers market this year.

Stop by my blog at The Gluten Free Spouse and bake something.

I remember spending the night at Grandma’s house during the cooler months, as a child, and awakening in the morning to the smell of freshly baked homemade cinnamon rolls was so comforting. I love homemade cinnamon rolls. Fresh from the oven, icing melted just right. This was something Shawn really wanted me to try to make, but until a recent sandwich bread breakthrough, I had not thought it would turn out right, but, never in my wildest dreams did I think it would turn out as delicious as it did. Wow! I’d serve these to anyone and challenge them to notice that these are gluten free. This is just another variation (one of many) on my gluten free sandwich bread recipe. A little more sugar, a little less milk. Give these a try and your family will uncontrollably smile for hours.


  • 3 Eggs
  • 1 tsp Pure Vanilla Extract (check for gluten-free)
  • 1 Tbsp Clover Honey
  • 1/2 stick Butter (melted)

Group 1

  • 1 cup Bob’s Red Mill Potato Starch
  • 1/2 cup Bob’s Red Mill Quinoa Flour
  • 1/2 cup Bob’s Red Mill Arrowroot Starch Flour
  • 1/2 cup Bob’s Red Mill Sweet White Sorghum Flour
  • 1/2 cup Bob’s Red Mill Brown Rice Flour
  • 3/4 cup Granulated Sugar
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground Sea Salt
  • 2 and 1/2 teaspoons Bob’s Red Mill Xanthan Gum
  • 1 teaspoon Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free Baking Soda
  • 1 teaspoon Bob’s Red Mill Baking Powder

Group 2

  • 1/4 cup Warm Water
  • 1 packet of Active Dry Yeast (2 1/2 tablespoons)
  • 1 teaspoon Sugar

Group 3

  • 1/2 cup Whole Milk
  • 1 Tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar

Cinnamon Sprinkle

  • 1/4 cup Granulated Sugar
  • 3 tsp Ground Cinnamon

Icing Glaze

  • 1-1/3 cups Confectioners Sugar
  • 2 Tbsp Whole Milk

Preparation is the key to making these easy and smoothly.

I begin with mixing the dry ingredients in Group 1 together in my stand mixer bowl. Whisk thoroughly.

Set this aside for now.

Next, mix together the items in Group 3 and set this aside to come to room temperature. At this time also set out the 3 eggs to come to room temperature.

When the eggs are almost to room temperature, mix the ingredients in Group 2 together and set out to

While the yeast is blooming, use a stick of butter to grease your baking sheet.

I also took this time to loosely wrap my cutting board with a smooth sheet of cling-wrap, keeping it smooth on top and tucking just the sides under for stability. Dust the smooth top of the cling wrap with a sweet rice flour/powdered sugar mixture to prevent the extremely sticky dough from sticking to the cling-wrap. Once all ingredients have warmed to room temperature and the yeast is blooming. Begin mixing the “groups” together using your stand mixer with dough hook attachments, adding the eggs and the vanilla, and the honey too at this point. The dough will take awhile to thoroughly mix together. It will be very sticky.

Turn the dough out onto the prepared cling wrapped and dusted board. The dough will stick to anything at this point, and is expanding, so quickness is of some importance. Spray your spatula with a butter-flavored cooking spray, this will make it glide easily without sticking to spread the dough out evenly on the cling-wrapped cutting board.

Use a kitchen basting brush to paint the top of this dough slab with the melted butter.

Once the top has been brushed with butter, mix the cinnamon and the sugar together for the filling.
Sprinkle the cinnamon sugar mixture onto the buttered slab of dough.

Undo the the side flaps of cling wrap that you had tucked under for stability, this will allow you to roll the very sticky dough into a “roll.” Grasp both ends and using the cling wrap lift and flip over tightly one end of the dough slab.

Make sure that the dough is not sticking to the cling wrap and gently and slowly continue the roll.

Stopping just before the end, make the last roll/fold bringing the rear up and over the top of the what is now a log. It has continued to expand in my warm kitchen.

Next I folded the cling wrap off of the log after smoothing the edges slightly. Then using a buttered pastry knife, I cut the log into roughly 1 inch widths. (I had to re-butter the pastry knife a couple of times.)

Using the buttered pastry knife, I slid under, lifted, and transferred each slice individually to the buttered cookie tin.

I placed these in the preheated oven at 175 degrees F for 45 minutes to rise. This next picture is of them after that rise but before cooking.

When they have risen for 45 minutes, turn the oven temperature to 350 degrees F and cook for approximately 15 more minutes. I’d like to caution you to keep an eye on this due to a lot of different factors. Like, I know my oven needs to be set to between 375 and 400 to achieve a true cooking temperature of 350 degrees. You want the cinnamon rolls to cook through to the center but not to get brown or very crusty on the outside at all. “Cooks, you know your ovens!”

When they came out of the oven, it was hard to not snatch one up and chomp away. I held back, pacifying myself with the thought of them glazed. With that thought, I sat the tray on a wire rack to cool and began mixing the glaze. Simply powdered sugar and milk, mixed to the consistency you desire. I drizzled them with no particular pattern in mind, instead, I was hurrying so I could try one faster.

They were delicious! They were exquisite! Grandma would be proud. I love these. Shawn loves these.
We know you will love these too. A favorite warm weather comfort food at our house when I was young, and now again! Gluten free!



Erin Passmonick says:

Shawn, these sound amazing. It is a cold day here in Arizona and I wish they were baking in my oven. I admire your dedication to the gluten-free lifestyle, to tasty food, and to your very fortunate spouse. These are on my Chritmas morning menu. Happy Holidays!
Erin in Mesa AZ

Flora says:

These look so good! I think I am going to be baking some today. I have been trying for over a year to get a good gluten free cinnamon roll, and let’s just say, it hasn’t been pretty. Yours look perfect.

Jon says:

“Wow! What a great blog on how to make gluten-free cinnamon rolls! I needed that! First of all, I haven’t had any in so long I almost forgot how to spell cinnamon! But the greatest thing is the column itself; it made me flash-back to my old freezing winter mornings in Ohio. Brrrrr. It was so well written, I swear I could smell them baking in the oven way out here in Palm Springs, California. But, I think the best part of all was the simple step-by-step list with those great photographs showing me what to expect at each point along the way. That really helps a novice like me. As a matter of fact, please excuse me, but I think I’m gonna run down to my local store right now and get those ingredients … my mouth is drooling! Thanks again for the blog and I hope we can read more from “The Gluten-free Spouse” (lucky him!!!!) – Jon

it be real nice to be able to get some coupons for all that you have to offer especially when a limited budget and need of gluten free products. thank you god bless!

I will be purchasing my first ingredients in the flour products from Red Mill’s..This is super…I am not a big sweet eater, but this will satisfy my cravings for sweets..

sherry shepherd says:

All I can say is wow!! I have made these several times, and they are my sons favorite, these turn out so perfect and tasty everytime, its truely my favorite!!! Thank you for sharing a great gluten free recipe

Thank You Sherry, I’m really glad You like them. I make these often, by request, and always love to have the first warm one out of the pan. =]

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