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Gluten-Free Cinnamon Twist Sweet Roll Recipe


Gluten-Free Cinnamon Twists Recipe Image Teri Gruss

Gluten-Free Cinnamon Twists

2011 © Teri Lee Gruss

This recipe for gluten-free cinnamon twist sweet rolls features an easy-to-work-with, traditional pastry dough. The dough is rolled out, buttered and sprinkled with cinnamon sugar and folded 3 times. After cutting strips of dough, it's formed into appealing twisted shapes.

This recipe was adapted to gluten-free diets from a recipe for "Cinnamon Twists" by Elinor Klivans, from her fascinating cookbook, Fast Breads.

For best results please use the gluten-free flours and gums recommended in the recipe. Substitutions may alter the final results of the recipe.

For best baking results weigh ingredients on an accurate kitchen scale that measures "grams" or measure your flour the right way!

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 40 minutes

Rise Time: 1 hour

Total Time: 2 hours

Yield: 12


  • For Dough:
  • 1/2 cup PLUS 1 tablespoon whole milk
  • 1/4 cup cane sugar / 57 grams
  • 1 tablespoon dry active yeast
  • 1/4 cup room temperature unsalted butter PLUS 2 tablespoons melted butter to brush on twists just before baking
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 1/2 cups / 232 grams Gluten-Free Pantry All Purpose Flour
  • 1/2 cup cornstarch / 60 grams
  • 2 tablespoons sweet rice flour / 19 grams
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 3/4 teaspoon xanthan gum
  • 3/4 teaspoon guar gum
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • Ingredients to spread on dough:
  • 1/4 cup (4 tablespoons) room temperature unsalted butter
  • 4 tablespoons cane sugar mixed with 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • For Glaze: (optional)
  • 1/2 cup gluten-free powdered sugar
  • 1 tablespoon whole milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract


Combine milk and sugar in a medium saucepan. Heat over medium low heat until temperature reaches 105 degrees F. Remove from heat. Sprinkle yeast on milk / sugar mixture and let sit for 5 minutes.

Add butter and lightly beaten egg to milk mixture. Lightly whisk to combine.

In a large mixing bowl combine gluten-free all purpose flour, cornstarch, sweet rice flour, cinnamon, xanthan gum, guar gum and salt. Use a whisk to thoroughly mix dry ingredients.

Add milk mixture to the dry ingredients. Use a stand mixer or electric mixer and beat on high until mixture is well combined. The dough should be thick. If dough is too thick, add an additional 1 teaspoon of milk.

Sprinkle a large cutting board with gluten-free all purpose flour or cornstarch. Scrape dough on to cutting board. Shape dough into a square and use a rolling pin to roll dough into a 12-inch square. If dough sticks, sprinkle with more gluten-free all purpose flour or corn starch.

Spread dough with 2 tablespoons softened butter, leaving 1/2-inch around the edges unbuttered. Sprinkle with 2 tablespoons sugar / cinnamon mixture, leaving 1/2-inch around edges uncovered with sugar mixture.

Lift one edge of dough and fold it half way over the bottom layer of dough. Spread 1 tablespoon of butter on this layer. Sprinkle with 1 tablespoon of sugar / cinnamon mixture.

Fold the opposite side of the square of dough over the second layer. Press edges of dough to seal.

You should end up with a rectangle of dough that measures approximately 4-inches wide by 12-inches long.

Use a sharp knife and cut the dough into 12 1-inch wide by 4-inch long sections. Pick up each strip by the ends and twist each end in the opposite direction to create a nice, tightly twisted shape. Place each strip about 1-inch apart on a large greased, or parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Cover the twists lightly with a damp dish towel and allow to rest for 1 hour.

While rolls are resting preheat oven to 375° F / 190° C

Bake rolls in preheated oven for 35-45 minutes or until golden brown. Remove and place on a cooling rack.

For optional glaze, mix gluten-free powdered sugar with milk and vanilla extract. Glaze should be thin enough to drizzle over warm rolls. If too thick, add milk, about 1/2 teaspoon at a time. Use a teaspoon to drizzle glaze over rolls.

Gluten-free cinnamon twists are at their best eaten warm from the oven.

Reminder: Avoid Cross Contamination!

Always make sure your work surfaces, utensils, pans and tools are free of gluten. Always read product labels. Manufacturers can change product formulations without notice. When in doubt, do not buy or use a product before contacting the manufacturer for verification that the product is free of gluten.

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