Vanilla Cinnamon Rolls

Sixteen year old Sandra thought X-Files was creepy and dorky. Thirty-two year old Sandra kind of loves it. At least I like it enough that Steve and I watch it every night. It’s become our evening ritual. 

vegan vanilla cinnamon rolls

When Clarissa and Veronica finally succumb to sleep, we climb in bed and watch an episode of X-Files on the computer. Because we like to live on the edge, we splurge and watch two episodes on Friday and Saturday nights. 

vegan vanilla cinnamon rolls

Most nights we have a little snack during the show. Since my cinnamon roll baking-binge started, our evening treats have been swirly, cinnamon-y rolls. I think these vanilla cinnamon rolls are my favorite, so far. 

vegan vanilla cinnamon rolls

Do you watch old shows on Netflix or Hulu? Is there a show from your youth that you’re loving right now? What is your go-to snack when you’re watching tv in the evening? 

Vanilla Cinnamon Rolls
  1. 3/4 cup lukewarm water
  2. 4 tbsp granulated sugar, divided
  3. 1 tbsp dry active yeast
  4. 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  5. 1/2 cup vanilla non-dairy milk
  6. 1/4 cup vanilla non-dairy yogurt
  7. 1 tbsp vanilla extract
  8. 4 cups white flour
  1. 1 1/4 cups packed brown sugar
  2. 2 tbsp white flour
  3. 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  4. 1/4 cup melted vegan butter
  5. 1 tbsp vanilla extract
  1. 3 tbsp vegan cream cheese*
  2. 1 cup powdered sugar
  3. 1 tbsp vanilla non-dairy milk
  4. 1 tsp vanilla extract
  1. 1. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the water, yeast, 1 tablespoon of sugar, and salt. Allow to rest for about 5 minutes, or just until the mixture is starting to look creamy/foamy.
  2. 2. Whisk the remaining sugar, milk, yogurt, and vanilla into the yeast mixture.
  3. 3. Using a wooden spoon, stir the flour into the liquid ingredients. Continue to stir, until you have a ball of dough (it might be a bit shaggy).
  4. 4. Turn the dough out onto a well floured surface. Knead for 3-4 minutes, or until you have an even, smooth ball of dough. You may work as much as a cup of flour into the dough, when kneading, but the dough may still be sticky.
  5. 5. Return the dough to the bowl, cover with a clean towel, and place a non-drafty location.
  6. 6. Allow to rise for 25 minutes. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees, while the dough is rising. Grease two pie tins, two 8x8 inch cake pans, or a 9x13 inch cake pan.
  7. 7. While the dough rises, whisk the dry filling ingredients together in a medium sized mixing bowl.
  8. 8. Stir the melted butter and vanilla into the dry ingredients, so that everything is moistened.
  9. 9. After 25 minutes, turn the dough out onto your floured surface again. The dough may not look like it rose much. Knead the dough for another minute.
  10. 10. Use a rolling pin, to roll the dough out until it is about 24x14 inches and roughly 1/4 inch thick. The size may vary, depending on how much additional flour you kneaded in. Flip the dough over and add more flour to the surface, as necessary, to keep the dough from sticking to the work surface.
  11. 11. Gently spread the filling mixture evenly over the dough. Be careful not to tear the dough. Keep the filling about 1/2 inch from the edges.
  12. 12. Roll the dough, from the long side, to create a log (like a jelly roll).
  13. 13. Cut the dough into 16-18 even slices. Place the rolls in your greased pan(s). It's okay if they fit snuggly and are touching in some places. This will result in soft cinnamon rolls.
  14. 14. Bake for 25-27 minutes, or until the tops of the rolls are golden brown and a bit crisp.
  15. 15. While the rolls are baking, make the icing. In a medium sized mixing bowl, whisk the sugar into the cream cheese. It will be very stiff at first, but will quickly become gooey and the sugar will incorporate.
  16. 16. When the cream cheese and sugar are completely mixed, whisk in the milk and vanilla.
  17. 17. Cool the baked rolls, in the pan, for 2-3 minutes. Then drizzle or spoon the icing over the still hot cinnamon rolls. Serve warm
  18. 18. Refrigerate leftovers.
  1. *I used Tofutti Non-Hydrogenated Better than Cream Cheese, which worked beautifully.


    • Sandra Kohlmann says

      I hope your family loves them! They take a little bit of time to prepare, but warm, soft cinnamon rolls are a great treat.

    • Sandra Kohlmann says

      The recipe is on the bigger side. It makes 16-18 rolls. If that’s too many, you can easily cut it in half.

  1. Joanne So says

    Would you actually do a video tutorial with this as well? This is amazing! Wish I got to eat your cooking~~!!! sounds heavenlyyyyyyyyyyyyy!

  2. Kim W says

    Is there anything that can be substituted for the non-dairy yogurt? It is not available in my town.
    How does the dough only take one 25min rise? Did I miss something in your other posts?

    • Sandra Kohlmann says

      All my cinnamon roll recipes just have one 25 minute rise. As for a sub for the yogurt, you can use an equal amount of whipped silken tofu. Just whiz it in a food processor or blender, until completely smooth. Or sub in an equal amount of pumpkin puree. In such a small quantity, and with the addition of the vanilla to the dough, you won’t get much in the way of pumpkin flavor. Good luck!

    • Sandra Kohlmann says

      I guess I didn’t actually explain about the rising, huh? My dough recipes are an adaptation of a pizza dough recipe I’ve been using for years. That recipe calls for two short rises, but I was once in a hurry and skipped the second rise. The crust turned out like it always did before, so I started skipping the second rise every time. When I started adapting for the cinnamon rolls, I gave it a whirl without a second rise, and they were fine, so I never bothered to change it.

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