Gluten Free Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls with Caramel Frosting

Gluten Free Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls | The Baking Beauties


After the startling discovery of my husband’s pumpkin secret, I’ve taken it upon myself to try to introduce him to new treats that are filled with pumpkin flavour. I figured, maybe he just hasn’t tried the right thing yet, maybe that’s why he doesn’t get my love of all things pumpkin. Paired with the warm notes of cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and cloves, things that contain pumpkin just make me smile this time of year. That includes Pumpkin Spice coffee creamer, Pumpkin Spice Hershey Kisses, Pumpkin Spice k-cups,and the pumpkin spiced tea bags that I recently purchased. We’ve tried them all since discovered his true feelings about pumpkin, and not one of these things made his heart flutter for All-Things-Pumpkin like it does for me. (Side note: Some of these things even have me, a pumpkin lover, very underwhelmed. Sad, but true.)

I had one last plan. My final attempt at getting him to come over to the pumpkin side with me. But, would it work?

I decided to hit his weakness – cinnamon rolls. Only, these cinnamon rolls have pumpkin in the dough and instead of just cinnamon, they are filled warming pumpkin pie spice. Would it be enough?

The verdict? Pumpkin is now welcomed by him in Pumpkin Pie and these gluten free Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls. :)


Gluten Free Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls
The wonderful flavour of pumpkin and spices fills these soft, gluten-free rolls. Can be made ahead and refrigerated before baking. Allow extra time for the rolls to rise if you refrigerate the dough.
  • 2 tablespoons (28 grams) butter, very soft
  • 1/2 cup (110 grams) firmly packed brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons (5 grams) pumpkin pie spice
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans (optional)
  • 1 2/3 cup (260 grams) brown rice flour
  • 1/3 cup PLUS 1/2 cup (105 grams) tapioca starch
  • 1/2 cup (100 grams) potato starch
  • 1/4 cup (45 grams) dry milk powder
  • 3 tablespoons (45 grams) granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon (10 grams) xanthan gum
  • 1 tablespoon (12 grams) rapid rise yeast
  • 1 teaspoon (5 grams) baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon (2 grams) salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon (2.5 grams) ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup (55 grams) butter
  • 3/4 cup (170 grams) milk
  • 3/4 cup (165 grams) pumpkin puree (no spices added)
  • 2 tablespoons (30 grams) oil
  • 1 teaspoon (5 grams) cider vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon (5 grams) vanilla
  • 1 large egg, room temperature
Caramel Frosting:
  • 1/2 cup confectioners' (icing) sugar
  • 2 tablespoons caramel sauce
  • 1 tablespoon heavy (whipping) cream
  • pinch salt
  1. In a small bowl, stir together 2 tablespoons butter, 1/2 cup brown sugar, and pumpkin pie spice. Set aside.
  1. In the bowl of your stand mixer, mix all dry ingredients until combined. Set aside.
  2. Put milk and butter in a glass measuring cup and microwave just until the butter has melted. Remove from microwave and stir. Add pumpkin puree, oil, cider vinegar, and vanilla. Stir. Add egg and whisk to combine.
  3. With the stand mixer running (using the paddle attachment), pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients. Scrap down the bowl if you have to.
  4. Allow to mix on medium speed for 3 minutes.
  5. Take a piece of plastic wrap and lay it out on a slightly damp counter top, so it covers an area bigger than 8″ x 16″. Sprinkle 1-2 tablespoons of sugar on the wrap. Lay ball of dough on top of that. Gently lay another piece of plastic wrap over the top of the dough. Pat the dough down into a rectangle shape. Lift and reposition the top plastic wrap whenever you need to. Roll the dough out (with the plastic wrap on top) to approximately 8″ x 16″.
  6. Remove plastic wrap. Spread filling mixture evenly across dough’s surface. Leave 1 1/2″ along one long end without any filling, this is where your cinnamon rolls will be sealed. Sprinkle with pecans, if using.
  7. Starting along the long end, use the bottom sheet of plastic wrap to lift the edge of the dough and roll it up, forming a long cylinder. Start with the edge that has filling on it, that will be the center of your finished rolls.
  8. Using a long piece of dark thread (light colours can be lost in the dough), cut the long “cinnamon bun log” into 8 pieces, about 1 1/2″ wide. You can do this by placing the thread underneath the roll, crossing it at the top, and pulling the threads so they cross each other, pulling it through the dough. This way, you won’t be squishing your dough down by cutting with a knife. Place rolls in prepared pan, with cut side up. I like to push the rolls down to about 1″ high.
  9. Allow the rolls to rise in a warm, draft free place for about 30 minutes, or until nearly double in size.
  10. Bake in preheated 350 degree F oven for 20-25 minutes, or until the tops are a nice golden brown.
  11. Allow to cool for about 5 minutes before removing to a wire cooling rack.
Caramel Frosting:
  1. For the frosting, beat together the confectioners' sugar, caramel sauce, whipping cream, and salt. Spread over rolls while they are still warm.
These are best served warm, however, I had great success with reheating them in the microwave for a few seconds when they were a day old as well.
For Gluten-free AND Dairy-Free Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls:
REPLACE the instant milk powder with 1/4 cup almond flour (ground almond meal)
REPLACE the milk with soy milk (or your favorite non-dairy milk)
REPLACE all of the butter with vegan butter (like Earth Balance)
OMIT the Caramel Frosting.


A picture is worth a thousand words, so a video must be invaluable! Watch me make cream cheese filled Cinnamon Rolls, the technique for these Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls is very similar. CLICK HERE TO WATCH IT.


Gluten Free Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls | The Baking Beauties



    • says

      Haha, it must have been too early here, because I didn’t even notice it until you pointed it out. :) LMK if you work the dairy free option. Cream cheese frosting would be good too, or even just a glaze. Mmm…

  1. Kelly Grace says

    I love your brain!! Those cinnamon rolls are so gorgeous. I will try them this weekend.
    When you say pumpkin purée, did you use canned? Or did you make your purée from fresh pumpkin? They give different results in baking. I want to get this right on the first time! Thanks a million!

    • says

      Why, thank you, Kelly Grace! One can’t just give up, can they? :) I used canned pumpkin puree. I think homemade pumpkin puree would work, you’d just have to adjust things a bit (probably only 1/2 cup) because it isn’t as dry as bought pumpkin puree. Hope this helps!

  2. Danalee says

    Hi Jeanine,

    I just wanted to say, my son tested pos for gluten sensitivity and it’s only been 2 weeks with the results,so I have just been familiarizing myself with the gf world and came across your blog. I love it, your recipe’s are amazing and so detailed. Corn dog muffins, cinnamon buns,potato pancakes, the onion rings.. I have made the first 3 and kids are happy, I messed up a bit, but everything still tasted great. Your cinnamon bun video helped. We are doing the onion rings this weekend. Lunches are surprisingly more fun. I have even ordered your book, after seeing your website. And you’re a prairie girl to boot. You are making this much easier than I thought, course it’s only been two weeks. I also made the buckwheat pancakes, the kids liked them better than regular. Thank you Thank you.

    • says

      Thank you very much, Danalee! I appreciate hearing from you. Although it may sound strange, I’m glad that your son was diagnosed with gluten sensitivity. I only say that, because then at least you know what is wrong, so many times things get overlooked for years with the person suffering. Once you know what the problem is, at least you know what to do to move forward. :)
      It really doesn’t have to be a life being deprived of the ‘normal’ things. Where there’s a will, there’s a way! :) I know I ate a lot of really, really bad things when I was new to GF, so I’m more than happy to share what works for me with others, so they don’t have to go through that.
      And thanks for buying the book too! Perfect timing for you, since you’re just starting out. I am a prairie girl, from Manitoba! :) Welcome here!

      • Danalee says

        Thank you, I am a prairie girl from Alberta. You are so right about finding a gluten sensitivity, it gives hope. You know, we’re doing this for his behaviour, which has been over the top since he was 3, now he’s 7. Angry, defiant, never happy smiling kid. Tummy aches here and there, (but probably more than normal) since he was 2 and constipated, and hurt before and hurt to go. So we were used to his normal, how terrible for the him, really. In 2 weeks off of gluten as much as I know, no tummy ache, normal bathroom( he’s never had a normal for that department), can’t believe it and seems happier. Incredible. Thank you again for sharing your hard work.

  3. says

    These look wonderful! I will substitute millet flour for the rice flour. One of the gluten free flours I’m allergic too.

    Do you have an apple cinnamon roll recipe too?

    Do you have a a carmel without corn or maple syrup?

    Might decide to make a batch for my church circle’s bake sale too on Nov. 10, 2013.

    I want to make some of the mini pies too for the sale.

    I want to cruise your recipes to see if you have some dinner rolls as well.

    Glad I found your website last night.

    Thank you for the recipes. I would rate this recipe with a 4 before trying and probably move it to a 5 after trying. I do have to make the substitution for health reasons.

    Bev Kendrick

  4. AllieSong says

    Absolutely amazing! Made them last night, served them this morning. Thank you for the fabulous recipes. Cinnamon rolls are one of the things I miss the most, I grew up eating them fresh from the oven and full of gluten. Had not found an acceptable substitute until now, Love the added pumpkin. Thank you again.

    PS…My 8 year old daugher, took one bite and started listing all the special events at which she thought these should make an appearance.

    • says

      yeah!! So glad to read that, AllieSong! :) I do have a standard cinnamon bun recipe here as well, quite similar to this recipe, in case you wanted a plain cinnamon bun. Makes me smile that your daughter is so happy about it. :)

  5. Joanna says

    Hi there, I can’t use the milk powder and almond isn’t a substitute I can use. What role does the milk powder play – are there other options I could try? Thanks — can’t wait to try these! :)

    • says

      You can omit it, the texture of the dough may just be a little different. Shouldn’t make too much of a difference though. I use the milk powder to up the protein of the dough a bit.

  6. says

    So glad to have found this recipe! I made the dairy free version and they are currently rising. I did have a question about how many these would yield. Mine were quite large and I got 6 out of them. Is that typical? Have you tried making smaller mini-rolls out of this with any success? They look and smell incredible right now and I am sure they will look and smell even better when they are baking! Thanks for the recipe. :)

  7. says

    Oh GOSH! Jeanine! I came to get your recipe for regular cinnamon rolls that I love so much and I saw these…plans must change! :) I’m so excited right now. Thank you!

  8. Krista says

    Hi Jeanine! Love using your recipes! Do you happen to know if these can be made ahead of time and frozen? I’d love to take them to Grandma’s for Christmas for a yummy breakfast!


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