I’m going to come right out and say that the first time you make these it might take you closer to 10-minutes than 5-minutes. Because there’s three amazing components to this recipe, the steps take a little getting used to, but I promise once you get the hang of it, you’ll be able to whip these babies up in 5-minutes flat!
By “these babies” I’m referring to two soft, sweet, creamy, dreamy, oozy-gooey, cinnamon rolls. A perfect, and I mean perfect, sweet treat for your Valentine’s sweetie or someone whom you absolutely adore… and you, of course, you get one too.
One thing I’ve been craving during pregnancy that’s somewhat out of the norm for me is baked goods. Carby, doughy, fluffy goodness in the form of muffins, cupcakes, bagels, donuts, and cinnamon rolls. I’m really not sure why, apparently “they” say that when you are having a girl you’ll crave sweets, and I have been, but not just any sweets, it’s all about the baked ones.
I’m not going to lie, over the past 6 1/2 months I’ve given into these cravings a few times (ok, more like 10 times), but one thing I have to do is source out dairy-free versions of these goodies. So, as kind of a blessing in disguise I guess, I can’t just stop at the nearest coffee shop to pick up a donut. Instead, I have to get into my car and drive to the organic grocery store that makes vegan (which means automatically dairy-free for me!) baked delights, or I have to find a suitable recipe and make them myself. I would have to say this extra effort required, and the fact that I’m really doing my best to avoid gestational diabetes and be healthy for my babe, is probably why I haven’t actually given into my cravings too much.
That being said, it was a pretty wicked and intense craving for cinnamon rolls that led me to the creation of this recipe. I actually found this mug-cake version of a cinnamon roll on Kirbie’s Cravings (maybe she was pregnant at the time too?) and used her recipe as inspiration to create mine. I swapped out the white flour for gluten-free, replaced the refined sugars with natural unrefined sweeteners, and made sure to swap out the dairy for non-dairy ingredients.
Also, because it’s APPLE MONTH, a yearly winter event that takes place across Western Canada celebrating quality produce, local growers, and of course apples grown on British Columbia soil, I knew incorporating apples into this delicious treat would be a great way to celebrate the fruit and add a little more nutrition and texture.
The combination of apples and cinnamon is a no-brainer, I knew that diced apples would work wonderfully in these cinnamon rolls and they really do end up as a little unexpected treat hidden inside the rolls.
I also love the fact that these cinnamon rolls come together so quickly. I mean sometimes it just takes too much patience to wait for yummy things to bake. I also have never been a master baker (hence the overall lack of baked goods on the blog) and although it is something I do want to learn more about, the day I wanted a cinnamon roll, I thought “ain’t nobody got time for that”, and made sure to create an express version.
While I definitely wouldn’t call these cinnamon rolls super-duper healthy, they are much healthier than traditional cinnamon rolls, and that’s good enough, especially on Valentine’s day!
Whether you love Valentine’s Day, hate it, or don’t really care, take an extra 5 (to 10) minutes this week and whip these cinnamon rolls up for yourself and someone you love. Also, be sure to pop on over to the BC Tree Fruits website to check out all of the amazing apple desserts you could make if these cinnamon rolls don’t tickle your fancy, and you can also find them here on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.
- Apple Cinnamon Roll Batter:
- ½ cup all-purpose gluten free flour
- ⅛ tsp xanthan gum
- ½ tsp baking powder
- ¼ tsp cinnamon
- ¼ cup unsweetened almond milk
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 tablespoon pure maple syrup
- pinch of salt
- ¼ cup diced apples, divided (I used BC Tree Fruits Pink Lady apples)
- Cinnamon Glaze:
- 2 tablespoons coconut palm sugar
- ½ tsp cinnamon
- 1 tablespoon vegan butter or regular (I used Earth Balance Soy Free Spread)
- Cream Cheese Icing:
- ½ tablespoon vegan butter or regular (I used Earth Balance Soy Free Spread)
- 1½ tablespoons plain vegan cream cheese or regular (I used Daiya Brand Plain Cream Cheese)
- ½ tablespoon honey
- Prepare the cinnamon roll batter by adding all of the batter ingredients except for the diced apples to a bowl.
- Stir until the batter is smooth and no clumps remain and set aside.
- Next, prepare the cinnamon glaze. In another bowl combine the glaze ingredients and place in the microwave for 15 seconds to melt the vegan butter, then stir until mostly smooth.
- Take two wide coffee cups (I love the use the touristy Starbucks cups we have from our travels as they are nice and wide) and drizzle ½ of the cinnamon glaze between each mug to coat the bottom of the mug, you can create a swirl design if you wish.
- Add 3 tablespoons of the cinnamon roll batter into each mug to top the cinnamon glaze.
- Next, drizzle ½ of the remaining cinnamon glaze between each mug over the roll batter, again you can drizzle in a swirl design if you wish.
- Next, add the diced apples to each mug (1 tablespoon of diced apples per mug), pressing slightly so the apples pieces are embedded into the cinnamon roll batter.
- Divide the remaining roll batter mixture between each mug to top the apples, spreading it slightly so it covers most of the apples.
- Divide the last bit of the remaining cinnamon glaze between each mug, drizzling over the cinnamon roll batter.
- Place each mug in the microwave on high for 1 minute and 10 seconds on their own (do not put together in the microwave).
- Then, once the cinnamon rolls are cooked, set the mugs aside and prepare the Cream Cheese Icing by adding all of the icing ingredients to another small bowl, microwave for 10 seconds and stir until smooth.
- Take two plates and flip the mugs upside down over each plate to release the cinnamon rolls, then flip the rolls right side up.
- Frost each roll with ½ of the icing and sprinkle with a pinch of cinnamon.
- Finish by topping each roll with 1 tablespoon of finely diced apples.
Have lovely week, a Happy Valentine’s Day, and enjoy the rest of your Sunday!
Nutritionist in the Kitch