These super easy, Homemade Healthy Cinnamon Rolls are clean-eating goodness rolled with love! They are made without refined sugar, and the main ingredient in the glaze is Greek yogurt. One word: scrumptious!
Hooray for cinnamon rolls! Yes, people. Cinnamon rolls. I am SO excited to share this healthy cinnamon roll recipe with you today.
I love cinnamon rolls. Like love LOVE them. There’s something so special about their ooey, gooey, cinnamony, sugary centers that I just crave.
It’s like a sweet little present every time. And speaking of these cleaning-eating, wholesome treats, I still can’t believe I don’t have a cinnamon roll recipe on the blog. C’mon, we’re talking about cinnamon rolls here, right?!?
Why? Well, it’s kind of a long story…
Way back when, about 4 years ago, I wanted to add a healthy cinnamon roll recipe to the blog. So, like I always do, I started researching how to make cinnamon rolls and tried out a recipe or two. And they were COMPLETE failures. Like almost inedible. I say almost because, hey, we are talking about cinnamon rolls, here. And, well, me. Anyway, I was so shaken about these horrible outcomes that I decided I just couldn’t make cinnamon rolls. It was just never gonna happen.
They were my Everest and I just couldn’t do it.
From time to time after that point, Dustin would suggest I try to make cinnamon rolls and I’d shrivel up into a pathetic ball and remember the horribleness. And then politely decline.
So…fast forward to about a month ago when Dustin and I were making a list of all the recipes I should have on the blog, but don’t…recipes like fried chicken, dinner rolls, chicken noodle soup, ravioli (man, don’t get me started on my ravioli failures!), apple pie, and so on. And then healthy cinnamon rolls came up. Sigh.
Plus, they are a great Christmas morning treat to have on hand which goes perfectly in line with the Christmas theme we are doing on the blog this month. Double sigh. It was time I put together a cinnamon roll recipe that tasted fantastic but could tick all the boxes for a clean-eating recipe. It was just time. So, I went back to the drawing board. I tried a few different things, made some adjustments, tried some more things, and then came up with this recipe.
And I nailed it! FINALLY! Whew. Who wants an easy, yet healthy cinnamon roll recipe? ‘Cuz I finally have one to share with you. Woohoo!
It’s funny, really, because they aren’t even difficult to make. In fact, they’re pretty much no-fail. Triple sigh. Needless to say, we are super happy. The girls are ecstatic they can have homemade cinnamon rolls. I am relieved and happy I was finally able to overcome my ridiculous issue with cinnamon rolls. Dustin is happy we have this recipe on the blog and can check it off the list.
All sorts of goodness.
HOW CAN I MAKE HOMEMADE HEALTHY CINNAMON ROLLS NON-DAIRY?
It’s a breeze to make these healthy cinnamon rolls a non-dairy treat. Simply replace the Greek yogurt used for the glaze with a plant-based yogurt. The recipe will still be sweet and delicious, but allows those with lactose intolerance to enjoy them, too!
HOW CAN I MAKE HOMEMADE HEALTHY CINNAMON ROLLS GLUTEN-FREE?
To make your Homemade Healthy Cinnamon Rolls gluten-free, switch the whole wheat flour for almond flour. The ratio is 1:1. Although, for binding, you may need an extra egg. Other good unrefined choices are cassava flour with a 1:1 ratio and chickpea flour. For this alternative, replace one cup of wheat flour with ¾ cup of chickpea flour.
CAN I MAKE HOMEMADE HEALTHY CINNAMON ROLLS SUGAR-FREE?
You have to include sugar in this recipe to make it come out right as it bakes and to give the cinnamon rolls a delectable taste! But, my recipe replaces brown and granulated sugars with coconut sugar for the roll, and maple syrup adds the perfect amount of sweetness to the glaze.
Coconut sugar is not chemically altered in any way, which puts it at the top of the list for healthy sugars. It contains calcium, potassium, and antioxidants. This boiled and dehydrated sap of the coconut palm is much lower in glucose and fructose than white sugar, for example. Be wise when you shop, though. Sometimes coconut sugar is mixed with cane sugar; be sure to buy coconut sugar alone.
HOW DO I MAKE SURE THE HOMEMADE HEALTHY CINNAMON ROLLS RISE?
Careful application of the yeast will ensure fluffy and deliciously plump cinnamon rolls every time. When adding the yeast to the milk mixture, the warm milk must be just that – warm. If it’s too hot, the yeast will not work its magic, so make sure the liquid is the right temperature.
CAN I MAKE HOMEMADE HEALTHY CINNAMON ROLLS AHEAD OF TIME?
These delightful cinnamon rolls can be made ahead and will retain their deliciousness when stored properly. If you are keeping them in the refrigerator, they’ll last up to a week. Nourishing and crave-worthy, the cinnamon rolls will stay fresh for 2-3 days if you want to keep them on the counter. In either case, cover them well so that they stay soft!
HOW DO I REHEAT HOMEMADE HEALTHY CINNAMON ROLLS?
These healthy cinnamon rolls are easily reheated in either of the two following ways:
- Microwave: Can be microwaved for 30-60 seconds
- Oven: Place in the oven at 300 degrees until heated through
INGREDIENT SUBSTITUTIONS FOR HOMEMADE HEALTHY CINNAMON ROLLS
These soft and gooey cinnamon rolls are already clean-eating. If you are looking for replacements for ingredients specific to your diet or eating regimen, here is how to do that:
- Gluten-free: Replace the whole wheat flour with almond, cassava (both with 1:1 ratio) or chickpea flour (¾ cup chickpea to one cup whole wheat flour)
- Vegan/Non-dairy: Use a plant-based yogurt instead of the Greek yogurt
- Keto/Paleo: Replace the whole wheat pastry flour with almond flour (1:1 ratio)
LOOKING FOR MORE HEALTHY BAKED DESSERT RECIPES?
A healthy dessert is the best way to finish off a tasty, pleasurable meal! Bake these for your next after dinner, clean-eating treat:
- 2 cups unsweetened almond milk or milk of choice
- 1/2 cup plus 1/4 cup melted coconut oil divided
- 1/2 cup coconut sugar
- 1 package active dry yeast
- 4 cups plus 1/2 cup whole wheat pastry flour divided
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp sea salt
- 1 cup coconut sugar
- 2 tbsp ground cinnamon
- 2 1/2 cups full fat plain greek yogurt
- 2 tbsp pure maple syrup
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 tsp maple extract
Combine the milk, 1/2 cup coconut oil, and coconut sugar in a medium saucepan and heat over medium heat until heated through. Do not heat enough to boil, just until heated through.
Set aside and allow to cool until it turns from hot to warm. You'll want the temperature to feel warm on your finger, but not to burn it. If the temperature is too hot, it will kill the yeast which would mean the yeast would never rise.
Sprinkle the yeast over the warm milk mixture and let it sit for approximately 2-3 minutes, until the yeast starts to grow and smell yeasty.
In a large mixing bowl, combine the milk-yeast mixture with 4 cups of the whole wheat pastry flour and stir until just combined. The mixture will be sticky.
Cover the bowl with a clean kitchen towel, and let sit for 1 hour to rise. It will double in size.
After 1 hour, remove the towel, and add the baking powder, baking soda, sea salt, and the remaining 1/2 cup flour. Using your hands, knead the dough and stir together to make dough go from semi-crumbly and powdery to smooth. This process of kneading the dry ingredients into the dough will take approximately 3-5 minutes.
Start preheating the oven to 375 degrees, and lightly grease a 9x13-inch baking dish with coconut oil. Set aside.
Now, it's time to assemble the rolls. Clear a very large, clean surface and sprinkle it generously with flour.
Using a rolling pin, roll the dough into a large rectangle, trying your best to keep the corners as square (90 degrees) as possible. The dough should be relatively thin.
Take the remaining 1/4 cup coconut oil and pour over the rectangular dough. Spread until dough is completely covered with the oil.
Sprinkle the coconut sugar very generously over the entire surface of the dough. All the dough should be covered well.
Sprinkle the ground cinnamon over the coconut sugar, making sure to cover all the dough. Don't be afraid to go for it with the cinnamon - it's gonna be delicious.
Beginning at the end farthest from you, start to roll the dough towards you by using both your hands and working slowly, taking care to keep the roll as tight and as even as possible.
Once it's completely rolled up, carefully lay the log down on its seam.
Using a sharp knife or other tool (some people use dental floss - I use my handy dandy kitchen scraper, divide the log into 12 equal pieces. I start in the middle, then keep halving the two halves until there are 6 equal halves on each side, totaling 12 rolls.
Carefully, place the sliced rolls down flat into the prepared baking dish in 4 rows of 3 rolls. You may need to slightly shape the rolls back into circles after slicing them.
Cover the baking dish again with the kitchen towels and let rise for an additional 20-30 minutes.
Remove the towel and bake for 15 to 18 minutes, until golden brown.
While the rolls are in the oven, make the frosting.
Combine the greek yogurt, syrup, and extracts in a large mixing bowl, and stir to combine.
Remove the rolls from the oven and, while still hot, pour the frosting over the rolls and spread evenly.
The rolls will keep, covered, unrefrigerated for 2-3 days or up to a week if refrigerated.
Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links for the kitchen item(s) I use 🙂
45 thoughts on “Healthy Cinnamon Rolls with Maple Greek Yogurt Glaze | Shockingly Easy | No Refined Sugar or Refined Flour!”
Hi Lacey I’d love to try this recipe but I only have brown sugar and cane sugar on hand. Can i substitute the coconut sugar with these? Do the rolls come out Just as good ? If so how much quality of cane sugar or brown sugar must i use. Thank you
Hello Khush! Thank you for your question. I am Lacey’s blog moderator and just checked with her. Good news: You CAN use brown sugar! At a 1:1 ratio. (Lacey’s usually includes coconut sugar in her recipes because it contains zinc and iron as well as antioxidants). Keep in mind that brown sugar holds in a little more moisture. This can affect the texture of certain baked goods…potentially making them slightly more moist or less dense. But, in this case, it could be a good thing! Please let us know how it turns out for you! -Jen
How much yeast is added in teaspoons/grammes please?
Yeast in the UK is sold in little cans.
Hi Lalita, thank you so much for your question! I’m Lacey’s blog moderator and just consulted with her on this. The package of yeast that we use is equal to: 7 grams, or 1/4 ounce and equals 2 1/4 teaspoons (11 mL). I hope this helps!
Can I please check with you on the quantity of yeast required in grams/teaspoons?
I’m aware that the right quantity of yeast is extremely important, and where I live we get yeast by the bottle.
Super good but will reduce brown sugar and frosting next time. Easy and straightforward, thank you for a great recipe!
So glad you found the recipe straightforward.
I have been looking for a “no egg” cinnamon roll recipe. Based on the reviews I will give this a try later this evening. Thanks for sharing and I will return with a results review.
I hope this one hits the no egg spot!!
WOW!! These are really good. They are so soft and puffy. The frosting is the best frosting I’ve ever made and I’ve made a lot of frosting. I’m glad I found this recipe. Thank you!!
So good, right? I cannot get enough of that maple frosting 🙂
Just fyi. When I print this it leaves out steps 12-15.
Yikes – thanks for telling me.
Amazing easy recipe! Buuut, too sweet! Next time I make it I’ll use less brown sugar (by a lot) and make less frosting (I already cut that by 1/3, but will cut more).
But I must say I’m impressed by how quick and easy it was, and really good.
I’m happy you will still try it again and found it easy to make! I’ve updated the recipe to be coconut sugar now, which might work better for your tastes.
I just made these cinnamon rolls! They are the best I have ever made. And not too difficult either. Thank you!
Hi there Lacey! I’m just wondering if I could substitute the sugar for either maple syrup or honey. Possible even coconut sugar. Also with the flour are there any other flours like I could use like oat flour? And the oil could I use olive oil or avocado oil? I want to still have them taste good, just more healthier I guess. I have a sensitivity to many foods
YES!!!! not as often as I would like, but YES!!!! I saw a young pregnant girl on Friday night, that I just soooooo wanted to pray for. My words gushed out of my mouth, I’m sure she thought I was completely insane. But I could not leave her without loving her, without trying to give her hope for her future, without trying to give her a glimpse of Jesus!!!
hey lacey – love your recipes! i’m about to try this cinnamon roll one for a bake off we have at work this friday. quick question – can i just buy premade pizza dough instead of making the dough or is the cinnamon roll dough different than just the dough labelled “pizza dough” at the grocery store?? thanks!
Pizza dough isn’t going to be as light and fluffy as this recipe – it will be more sense, but it will certainly save you time!
We are looking forward to making these cinnamon rolls for New Years Day but I wanted to know if they could be prepared the day before and then baked the following morning.
Also, we were unable to find organic Maple extract so we are opting for Vanilla extract for the icing. What are your thoughts on that switch?
Thanks so much.
Hi Lisa! What a great thing to make on New Years Day! Love it. Yes, they can certainly be prepared the day before. The dough is best if refrigerated after it has been formed into the rolls. Just cover shaped rolls tightly and refrigerate up to 24 hours. Remove from the refrigerator, partially unwrap, and then let the rolls rise until the dough passes the “ripe test” (Gently stick two fingers in the risen dough and then take them out. If the indentations remain, the dough is “ripe” and ready. If not, cover and let the dough rise longer, then repeat test.) Bake according to the recipe directions after the dough is ready.
The vanilla extract will work fine, but will obviously not have the maple flavor – you could add in some pure maple syrup or just go with it as vanilla which will still be super yummy 🙂
I hope that all makes sense – let me know if you have any other questions!
Have you tried freezing before baking?
Mandy, I have not tried freezing them all the way through the recipe. I have, however, made the dough and then frozen it, which works well – then, once it defrosts, starting back up with the steps.
This recipe is so easy and they taste wonderful. Will be making this again for sure.
Yay! So glad you agree 🙂 Thanks for letting me know how it turned out!
These cinnamon rolls look seriously amazing.. I can never go past an easy and classic cinnamon roll recipe and I have to try this one!
Awesome, I hope you enjoy it Thalia 🙂
Lovely! A reminder of an old and family favourite cinnamon roll recipe with maple icing I clipped from a mag in the late 60s early 70s (not entirely sure) called Emily’s or Emma’s cinnamon rolls (not entirely sure on the name either) but lost in a house fire along with many other treasured recipes & cookbooks. It’s not often you see maple icing on cinnamon rolls but have to agree its pretty darn tasty and a sure child pleaser like you say.
I do have a question though, your recipe calls for the addition of baking powder and baking soda besides the usual yeast and I’m wondering why that is so?
I’m glad you agree on the maple icing, Joycelyn (and so sorry to hear about your treasured belongings)! I use all of those leaveners to make the dough as fluffy as possible – I have found this combination really helps to make the cinnamon rolls rise very well 🙂
Love your blog , especially the videos. I was wondering if you could tell me the size of the cutting board you are using and the brand if possible:) I can’t wait to try your cinnnamon roll recipe, it looks delicious. thanks for sharing your recipes. Robyn
Thanks, Robyn! I think it’s roughly this one https://www.asweetpeachef.com/large-teek-cutting-board but I can’t measure mine for sure as I am currently in CA. It’s pretty huge. I can measure once I return home if you’d like 🙂
Enjoy the cinnamon rolls.
Is there a way we can substitute maple extract to imitation rum? I wasn’t able to find maple extract.
Hmmm, I’m not sure about the imitation rum since I’ve never used it before. I’d recommend using maple syrup if you can’t track down maple extract/flavoring. It can be tricky to find sometimes…look right where the vanilla extracts are 🙂
I just can say, OMG! Thank you for sharing such an amazing recipe, it was hard work but at the end it was worth it. Loved the icing and how they turn so soft. Totally making this again.
Greetings from Guatemala!!!
Yes, I’m so glad you enjoyed them, Lu 🙂
Wow, what a great idea. I am living in Sweden right now and I just know the regular famous Cinnamon rolls (Kanelbullar). The Icing is something completely extraordinary. My friends will be over on Sunday and I really wanna try the recipe then. Do you have any suggestions what you could use instead of cream cheese? One of my friends doesn’t like it too much. Thanks and Happy Cooking. Love, Steph
Hi Stephanie! I’d bet using Marscapone Cheese if you’re able to get in Sweden would be a good substitute for the cream cheese. If not, you could try some sweet vanilla greek yogurt. Best of luck!
If I make this on Christmas Eve, will the dough still be okay? I’ve never used active yeast before, and want to make Christmas morning as easy as possible…
Yes, placing in the fridge overnight would be fine and even improves the flavor. You could either place in the fridge after the first or last rise. Or, you could make them all the way through and still refrigerate overnight — all will be great and just depends on how easy of a time you want to have xmas morning 🙂 Happy holidays!
Great, thank you!! Cannot wait to try these, I know my husband has his heart set on starting a new tradition for Christmas morning 🙂
How sweet. That sounds like a wonderful tradition to start and I’m honored you’re using my recipe. Enjoy!
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