Vegan Cinnamon Rolls

  Vegan Cinnamon Rolls

 To dream of baking the perfect cinnamon roll is only human. But to actually sink your teeth into one fresh out of the oven is positively divine

For a long time after coming to the United States, I associated the smell of cinnamon rolls with shopping malls: not my favorite places. The reason being those ubiquitous Cinnabon chains known for their fluffy, delicious cinnamon rolls oozing with sticky frosting and a bazillion calories, no doubt. But there’s nothing like the warm smell of fresh-baked cinnamon to kick up your cravings and make you think you’re hungry when you’re not.

Of course, after going vegan and giving up all things of dubious origin, I had to stop treating myself to those mall-bought cinnamon rolls. And I was forced to come up with my own version.

Vegan Cinnabon

I will not claim these rolls are healthy: but some treats are not meant to be, otherwise they stop being treats. But I am pretty sure they are much healthier than anything you can buy. Plus, they are vegan and therefore free of any dairy or egg products, which– I’d say– makes them better for you.

And there’s one more thing: they’re delicious. Try ‘em.

Vegan Cinnamon Rolls
Cook time
Total time
These eggless and dairyfree cinnamon rolls are soft and fluffy and delicious.
Recipe type: Cinnamon Buns/Rolls
Serves: Makes 12 buns
  • 2¼ tsp active dry yeast + ½ cup warm (NOT hot) water. Stir together and set aside.
  • In a large bowl, add: ½ cup hot, but not boiling, soymilk (plain or vanilla) ¼ cup sugar ½ tsp salt ⅓ cup transfat-free vegetable shortening
  • 1½ tsp EnerG egg replacer + 2 tbsp warm water (use corn starch with the same amount of water as a substitute)
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  1. Mix at low speed if using a stand mixer, or by hand, for about 2-3 minutes until the ingredients are well mixed.
  2. Add to this: The yeast mixture, and Another 1 to 1½ cups of all-purpose flour, a little at a time, to form a smooth dough.
  3. Knead for a couple of minutes, by hand or on low speed if using a stand mixer.
  4. Remove the dough to a bowl coated with oil and set aside to rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1 to 1½ hours. (I leave it in the unheated oven with the light on).
  5. When the dough has doubled in size, punch it down and roll it into a rectangle on a floured surface, about 14 inches in length and 9 inches in width.
  6. Brush the surface with canola oil. Mix together: ½ cup sugar 1 tbsp ground cinnamon ½ cup toasted walnuts, chopped .
  7. Sprinkle the sugar-walnut-cinnamon mixture evenly on the dough.
  8. Now, starting at the 14-inch side, roll up the dough and press the edges together to seal them.
  9. Cut the roll at about 1-inch intervals, to make 12-15 individual rolls.
  10. Place the rolls side by side in a standard rectangular 9X12-inch pan brushed with oil. You can sprinkle some sugar mixed with ground cinnamon at the bottom of the pan, before putting the rolls in.
  11. Set the rolls aside, again in a warm place, for about 45-60 minutes.
  12. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees (if your rolls are rising in the oven, be sure you take them out before you preheat!)
  13. Bake the rolls for 30 minutes until nicely browned. Remove and place on a rack to cool slightly when you can go ahead and frost them.

 cream cheese glaze

Vegan Cream Cheese Glaze
Prep time
Total time
A delicious vegan cream cheese glaze to top your cinnamon buns
Recipe type: Topping, glaze
  • ½ cup vegan cream cheese, like Tofutti
  • ⅓- 1/2 cup confectioners' (powdered) sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  1. Beat all ingredients together, adding a little sugar at a time, until you have a smooth glaze.
  2. Drizzle or spread the glaze over the still-warm rolls and serve. Enjoy!

(C) All recipes and photographs copyright of Holy Cow! Vegan Recipes.

28 thoughts on “Vegan Cinnamon Rolls

  1. Permalink  ⋅ Reply


    April 17, 2009 at 2:21am

    I am visiting after a long time. These rolls do look divine. I think I need to try that enerG. I am seeing it everywhere these days.

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    April 17, 2009 at 2:48am

    So tasty!

    I loved Cinnamon rolls before becoming a vegan. I should try these sometimes…

    Thanks for sharing so many great vegan recipes!

  3. Permalink  ⋅ Reply


    April 17, 2009 at 3:30am

    I am in love :)
    I love cinnamon rolls and can have them for breakfast, lunch and dinner… yours look soooo yummy :)

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    April 17, 2009 at 8:35am

    Wow! Such spongy looking delights! Too good Vaishali! :-)

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    April 17, 2009 at 10:41am

    Vegan cinnamon Rolls???? Vaish, thank u soooooooooooo much :)

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    April 17, 2009 at 12:20pm

    Vaishali, these looks soo professionally done. I find cinnamon rolls extremely delicious & irrestible, esp,with a cuppa even if its 5 in the morning!! I have to make these soon.

    no not healthy, but very much worth indulging once in a while.

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    April 17, 2009 at 1:01pm

    These look perfect indeed! I wish I could eat one.

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    April 17, 2009 at 2:07pm

    Never thought that cinnamon rolls can be made “vegan”.. yay.. they look delicious. Soft & gooey.. yum.. yum.. Have a great weekend Vaishali.

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    Divya Vikram

    April 17, 2009 at 6:54pm

    Vaishali, i have fallen in love with ur cinnamon rolls! This is on my to do list for long! Lovely!

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    April 17, 2009 at 8:45pm

    Looks good, but too complicated for a lazy cook like me!

  11. Permalink  ⋅ Reply


    April 17, 2009 at 8:45pm

    Looks good, but too complicated for a lazy cook like me!

  12. Permalink  ⋅ Reply


    April 17, 2009 at 8:55pm

    ooh, lovely cinnamon rolls! especially the second pic. So gooey and tempting. Looks better than store-bought rolls. Great job Vaishali!

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    April 18, 2009 at 8:51am

    My oh my oh my…! Youre killing me softly girl..! :) You have absolutely succeeded in making a perfect vegan cinnamon roll! Kudos!

  14. Permalink  ⋅ Reply


    April 20, 2009 at 6:55am

    Looks absolutely yummy Vaishali! You are a whizz at effortlessly converting delectable food into equally delicious vegan treats!

  15. Permalink  ⋅ Reply


    December 24, 2009 at 1:54pm

    These rolls look delicious. My only suggestion is to list all the ingredients at the beginning to make it easier for someone to shop and have the items ready before preparation rather than reading through to pick out the ingredients.

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    January 9, 2010 at 6:37pm

    I followed the directions exactly as written, except I halved everything and baked them in an iron skillet. I kneaded the dough by hand for exactly 8 min. The proofing times were exactly correct. It took exactly 29 minutes at exactly 350 (i had a thermometer). They came out absolutely PERFECT!!! I usually am disappointed in online recipes but this was THE BOMB!!!! Best vegan cinni rolls I’ve ever eaten.

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    January 17, 2011 at 7:30am

    I have everything for this aside from the vegetable shortening. Would it be acceptable if I used vegetable oil in place of it or would it make it less like a cinnamon roll?

  18. Permalink  ⋅ Reply


    January 17, 2011 at 12:20pm

    Aikovenus, you won’t get fluffy rolls with vegetable oil. I’d advise using the shortening.

  19. Permalink  ⋅ Reply


    September 25, 2012 at 8:48pm

    I used a little less than 1/3 cup of applesauce in place of the shortening. They came out SOOOOO good!

  20. Permalink  ⋅ Reply

    Ellen Rinehart

    July 28, 2013 at 1:53pm

    these are proofing in the oven now, i woke up so excited this morning to make them, and can’t wait! your website has not only been key in aiding my transition to veganism, but also in boosting my confidence in learning how to make Indian food, which is the absolute favorite in my house. i make a few dishes from your site at least once a week, and my family and friends would hug you, i’m sure, if they could. thank you so much for your thoughtful writing, and your commitment to bringing such beautiful recipes to us!!!!

  21. Permalink  ⋅ Reply

    Vaishali Honawar

    July 30, 2013 at 3:46am

    Hi Ellen, thanks for your very sweet message– you are very kind. I hope you liked the rolls, they are one of my favorites.

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