Apple Raisin Cinnamon Rolls

I can’t even remember the last time I had cinnamon rolls. Maybe it’s because I stay away from store bought sweet pastries, and there is no way I’m going to pop those ultra processed vacuum sealed pillsbury things into my oven and oh yeah, I’m too dang lazy to try to make a homemade healthier version… until… drumroll please… TODAY! I made these sweet little delicacies for my sweetheart of a boyfriend. Since we only have a few more days together until I venture back to Florida, I wanted to leave him with sometime sweet to remember me by :) teehee. I’m such a nerd. Here’s the deal on the sweet rolls. They are vegan, low-fat, made with whole wheat flour and absolutely delicious. Recipe from Happy Herbivore with a few adaptations including adjusting the recipe for high altitude. I’m cooking at 10,000 feet folks! It’s insanity.

High Altitude–Apple Raisin Cinnamon Rolls
3/4 c. vanilla soy milk
1 packet (2 1/4 tsp.) active yeast
3 c. whole wheat pastry flour
1/2 Tbs. baking powder
1/4 c. raw organic sugar
2 tsp cinnamon
pinch sea salt
6 Tbs. unsweetened applesauce
1/4 c. organic raisins
1 granny smith apple, chopped into 1/4 inch pieces
1 Tbs. Earth Balance vegan spread
2 Tbs. organic brown sugar
1/4 tsp. nutmeg
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 c. chopped pecans
1 c. powdered sugar
1 Tbs. vanilla soy milk
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
**Preheat oven to 365 degrees

1. Warm 3/4 c. soy milk on stove stop until it begins to simmer and turn off heat. Add yeast and allow to dissolve.
2. In a separate bowl (if you have a stand mixer use the mixing bowl) combine 2 c. of the flour, sugar, salt, baking powder and cinnamon. Add applesauce and soy milk/yeast mixture and stir with a spatula until combined.
3. Pop the mixing bowl into your stand mixer and use the paddle attachment. Set on low and slowly add remaining flour. Knead in mixer for about 1 1/2 minutes until dough comes together. (You can also do this by hand, if you have the patience) ;)
4. Pull your dough out, sprinkle with a little extra flour to firm it up and set aside.
5. Melt Earth Balance in stovetop pan.
6. Add chopped apples, brown sugar and spices. Caramelize apples on low heat for about 5-7 minutes. Add raisins and pecans and stir. Turn off heat and set aside.
7. Flour your surface and rolling pin and roll dough out into large thin rectangle size.
8. Spoon out apple mixture into middle of dough, making sure to come to the edges.
9. Roll dough from the bottom up, holding tightly to keep stuffing inside.
10. Once the dough is rolled up you might need to lightly push the ends towards the middle to make your dough log a little thicker. Keep patting and firming the log together until you have a nice thick log, about 15″ across.
11. Grease a 12″ round or rectangular baking dish.
12. Cut the dough log into 6-8 equal sized pieces and set in baking dish. Flatten or shape with your hands if necessary. Sprinkle a bit of cinnamon or brown sugar on top.

Now, I’m at 10,000 feet, so these suckers took awhile to cook. I think I ended up cooking them almost 40 minutes. Happy Herbivore suggests 20-25 minutes, so I’m guessing at sea level they cook up a lot faster. 
While they are cooking you can make your frosting.
13. Combine powdered sugar, vanilla soy milk and vanilla extract in mixing bowl. Whisk at low speed in stand mixer until sugar clumps disappear (or whisk by hand).
14. Rolls are done when they start to brown on top. Remove from oven and top with frosting.

Mmm what a treat! I’ve been doing a lot of baking on this trip so my sugar consumption has been way more than usual. Last night I gave some of my baked goods to the neighbors. (Get ’em out of the house already!!) Anyway, when I get home I’ll probably do a week or two of lots of juicing, green smoothies and yoga to get all the sugar out of my system. Flying home soon! I’ll miss you Colorado…

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