Grain-Free Cinnamon Rolls

December 23, 2013

Every week, Shauna Ahern of Gluten-Free Girl and the Chef will be sharing smart tips and smarter recipes that will please even the most devout gluten-eaters among us. Come one, come all -- we're going flourless.

Today: A grain-free cinnamon roll that everyone can enjoy over the holidays.

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Every Christmas morning, my mom made fresh cinnamon rolls. Soft, yeasty, and slathered in powdered sugar frosting, these were the sustenance between bouts of opening presents. 

When I had to go gluten-free after being diagnosed with Celiac Disease, I went years without eating them. And then, my curiosity and stubborn nature compelled me to work on a new version. After quite a few baking messes and careful notes, I realized that it's entirely possible to have soft, yeasty cinnamon rolls without gluten. 

Now, out of that same stubborn curiosity, comes these grain-free cinnamon rolls. With finely ground almond flour and starch-like arrowroot flour, plus the binding absorption of psyllium husk, those soft cinnamon rolls are possible for even more of us. 

This is the only way I have made these rolls, but you should feel free to play, too. Make these your own by using another starch, another nut flour, non-dairy milk, or coconut oil for the butter. They will taste different in your home than ours, but I'm sure they'll be just as good. 

Grain-Free Cinnamon Rolls 

Makes 12 to 18 rolls, depending on the size of the rolls

2 1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast
1/4 cup coconut sugar
1 cup warm milk 
300 grams finely ground almond flour
170 grams arrowroot flour
30 grams psyllium husk
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
2 large eggs, at room temperature
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled 
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 cup coconut sugar
8 tablespoons unsalted butter, very soft at room temperature

See the full recipe (and save it and print it) here. 

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See what other Food52 readers are saying.

  • Carla Turner
    Carla Turner
  • Sharon Chen
    Sharon Chen
  • Trisha Cain
    Trisha Cain
  • glutenfreegirl
Shauna writes about food. Danny cooks it. We grow excited every Saturday morning to go to the farmers' market. This time of year, a Billy Allstot tomato is enough to make us look like goons at the stand, jumping up and down with excitement. We will eat one slice with sea salt, standing over the sink. Another goes to our baby daughter. The rest might go into the smoker to make smoked tomato salsa, or thrown together with watermelon and good olive oil for a watermelon gazpacho, or stacked with smoked salmon and drizzled with horseradish sour cream. Every day is new. I have no idea what we're having for dinner tonight. But I'm sure interested to find out.


Carla T. July 17, 2015
Celiac is new in our home, so we're still struggling and taking a magnifying glass to read very small print labels. This cinnamon roll recipe sounds wonderful. One problem, we also have an egg allergy. Any ideas what we can use instead? Thanks
Sharon C. March 18, 2014
Hi! Is it possible to substitute the psyllium husk with ground flax seed or chia seed? Those are what I have on hand and I know you've mentioned those in the past for other recipes. Thanks! Looks yummy!
Trisha C. December 27, 2013
Sorry- check the full recipe-apparently, a few ingredients were omitted and the article hasn't been updated. (Just cinnamon, sugar, butter- no big deal!)
glutenfreegirl December 27, 2013
That's how it works here. You have to click on the link for the full recipe.
Trisha C. December 27, 2013
Where is the cinnamon?