caramel apple cinnamon roll recipe. UK food photographer. Irish food blog
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Caramel Apple Cinnamon Rolls

Cinnamon rolls are a classic baked treat that have been enjoyed for generations. But have you ever tried adding caramel and apples to the mix? This delicious variation on traditional cinnamon rolls is sure to become a new favourite. Made with a tangzhong dough, these caramel apple cinnamon rolls are soft and fluffy with a sweet and sticky topping of caramel sauce, and a filling of tart chopped apples, and a hint of cinnamon.

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caramel apple cinnamon rolls recipe. UK food photographer. Irish food blog. Halloween recipe. Fall recipe

Tangzhong method for bread

The tangzhong method is a technique used in bread making that involves cooking a small portion of flour and liquid to form a paste, which is then added to the bread dough. This paste is typically made from a mixture of flour and water or milk, and is heated on the stove until it thickens to a pudding-like consistency. Once the tangzhong is made, it is mixed into the bread dough along with the other ingredients, resulting in a soft and fluffy texture in the final baked bread. The tangzhong method is believed to help retain moisture in the bread, leading to a longer shelf life and improved texture.

Ingredients

Tangzhong:

  • 25g strong white bread flour
  • 125ml whole milk

The dough:

  • 475g strong white bread flour
  • 10g instant yeast
  • 75g caster sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 120ml whole milk
  • 1 large egg, beaten
  • 60g unsalted butter, melted and cooled
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract
  • 1 egg, beaten, for brushing

Filling:

  • 100g unsalted butter, softened
  • 100g light brown sugar
  • 1 tbsp ground cinnamon
  • 2 apples, peeled, cored, and finely chopped

Drizzle:

  • 100g caramel sauce
caramel apple cinnamon rolls recipe. UK food photographer. Irish food blog

Variations and Substitutions

  1. Variations and Substitutions
  2. Swap the apples for pears or peaches for a different fruit flavour.
  3. Use a different type of caramel sauce, such as salted caramel sauce or butterscotch sauce for a unique twist.
  4. Add chopped nuts such as pecans or walnuts to the filling for some extra crunch.
  5. Use a different type of flour such as whole wheat or spelt for a healthier option.
  6. Replace the caster sugar with brown sugar for a more caramel-like flavour.
  7. Skip the icing and sprinkle some coarse sugar over the top of the rolls before baking for a crunchy texture.
  8. Add some spices to the filling, such as nutmeg or cardamom for a warming flavour.
  9. Try making overnight cinnamon rolls by allowing the dough to rise in the fridge overnight, which results in even better flavor and texture.
  10. For a seasonal twist, you can make pumpkin cinnamon rolls by incorporating pumpkin puree and spices into the dough.
caramel apple cinnamon rolls recipe. UK food photographer. Irish food blog

How to make Caramel Apple Cinnamon Rolls

  1. Prepare the tangzhong:
    • In a medium saucepan, whisk together the flour and milk for the tangzhong.
    • Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until it thickens to a pudding-like consistency.
    • Remove from heat and let it cool to room temperature.
  2. Make the dough:
    • In the bowl of a stand mixer, mix together the flour, yeast, caster sugar, and salt.
    • In a separate bowl, whisk together the milk mixture (whole milk, egg, melted butter, and tangzhong) until well combined.
    • Pour the wet ingredients into the bowl of dry ingredients and mix until a dough forms.
    • Knead the dough on a lightly floured surface for 10 minutes until it becomes smooth and elastic.
  3. Let the dough rise:
    • Place the dough in a greased bowl, cover with a damp tea towel, let your dough rest and prove and leave it to rise in a warm place for 1 hour or until doubled in size.
  4. Preheat the oven to 180°C.
  5. Assemble the rolls:
    • Using a rolling pin roll out the cinnamon roll dough on a lightly floured work surface into a rectangle approximately 40cm x 30cm.
    • Spread the softened butter evenly over the dough, leaving a 1cm border around the edges.
    • Mix together the brown sugar and cinnamon and sprinkle it over the butter.
    • Scatter the finely chopped diced apples on top.
  6. Roll up the dough:
    • Starting at the long edge closest to you, roll up the dough tightly to form a log.
  7. Cut and bake:
    • Cut the log into 12 equal pieces and arrange them in a greased baking dish.
    • Cover with aluminum foil or tin foil and leave to rest for another 30 minutes.
    • Bake in the preheated oven for 20-25 minutes until they are golden brown and cooked through.
  8. Post-baking caramel drizzle:
    • After removing the rolls from the oven, let them cool slightly in the tray before removing and placing them on a wire rack.
    • Drizzle the caramel sauce over the rolls to create a sweet and sticky caramel topping.
caramel apple cinnamon rolls recipe. UK food photographer. Irish food blog. Halloween recipe. Fall recipe

FAQ

Can I use tart apples in this recipe?

Yes, absolutely! Tart apples, such as Granny Smith apples, work wonderfully in this recipe. They provide a pleasant contrast to the sweetness of the caramel and cinnamon.

Can I use a stand mixer for kneading the dough, and when should I use it?

Yes, a stand mixer is a great option for kneading the dough. Use it after you’ve combined the wet and dry ingredients. Mix the dough at low speed using the dough hook attachment until it forms a smooth and elastic ball, which typically takes about 10 minutes.

Is there a cream cheese icing option for these rolls?

While the original recipe doesn’t include cream cheese icing, you can certainly add a cream cheese glaze after the rolls have baked and cooled. To make a simple cream cheese glaze, mix softened cream cheese with icing sugar, a bit of milk, and vanilla extract until smooth. Drizzle it over the cooled rolls for an extra layer of deliciousness.

Top tip

For a neat way to slice the rolls, use a sharp knife or dental floss to make clean cuts.

Storage

These caramel apple cinnamon rolls are best eaten fresh out of the oven, but they can be stored for later consumption. Here are some tips for storage:

  1. Store the rolls in an airtight container or wrap them tightly in plastic wrap to keep them fresh.
  2. Room temperature: You can keep the rolls at room temperature for up to 2 days. Reheat them in the oven or microwave before serving.
  3. Fridge storage: If you need to store the rolls for longer, you can refrigerate them for up to a week. Reheat them in the oven or microwave before serving.
  4. Freezer: You can also freeze the rolls for up to 2 months. Wrap them tightly in cling film and store them in a freezer safe container. When you’re ready to eat them let them defrost in the fridge overnight and then reheat them in the oven or microwave before serving.
  5. Note that the icing may melt or become runny if stored in the fridge or freezer so it’s best to add it right before serving.

Let me know in the comments if you make this recipe! I’d love to know your thoughts! You can also connect with me on instagram or get in touch with me here.

 

Caramel Apple Cinnamon Rolls

Cinnamon rolls are a classic baked treat that have been enjoyed for generations. But have you ever tried adding caramel and apples to the mix? This delicious variation on traditional cinnamon rolls is sure to become a new favourite. Made with a tangzhong dough, these caramel apple cinnamon rolls are soft and fluffy with a sweet and sticky filling of caramel sauce, chopped apples, and cinnamon.
Course afternoon tea, biscuits and treats, brunch, Dessert
Cuisine American
Keyword Bakery, sweet
Prep Time 2 hours 30 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 2 hours 55 minutes
Servings 12 rolls
Calories 361kcal

Ingredients

For the tangzhong

  • 25 g strong white bread flour
  • 125 ml whole milk

for the dough

  • 475 g strong white bread flour
  • 10 g instant yeast
  • 75 g caster sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 120 ml whole milk
  • 1 large egg beaten
  • 60 g unsalted butter melted and cooled
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract
  • 1 egg beaten for brushing

for the filling

  • 100 g unsalted butter softened
  • 100 g soft brown sugar
  • 1 tbsp ground cinnamon
  • 2 apples peeled cored and finely chopped
  • 100 g caramel sauce

Instructions

  • In a small saucepan, whisk together the flour and milk for the tangzhong. Cook over low heat, stirring constantly, until the mixture thickens to a pudding-like consistency. Remove from heat and let cool to room temperature.
  • In a large bowl, mix together the flour, yeast, caster sugar, and salt.
  • In a separate bowl, whisk together the milk, egg, melted butter, vanilla extract, and tangzhong until well combined.
  • Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix until a dough forms.
  • Knead the dough on a floured surface for 10 minutes until smooth and elastic.
  • Place the dough in a greased bowl, cover with a damp tea towel, and leave to prove in a warm place for 1 hour or until doubled in size.
  • Preheat the oven to 180°C.
  • Roll out the dough on a floured surface into a rectangle approximately 40cm x 30cm.
  • Spread the softened butter evenly over the dough, leaving a 1cm border around the edges.
  • Mix together the brown sugar and cinnamon and sprinkle it over the butter.
  • Scatter the chopped apples on top of the sugar and cinnamon mixture.
  • Drizzle the caramel sauce over the apples.
  • Starting at the long edge closest to you, roll up the dough tightly to form a log.
  • Cut the log into 12 equal slices and arrange them in a greased baking dish.
  • Cover with a damp tea towel and leave to prove for another 30 minutes.
  • Brush the tops of the rolls with beaten egg and bake in the preheated oven for 20-25 minutes until golden brown and cooked through.
  • Remove from the oven and leave to cool before serving.
  • Enjoy! 

Nutrition

Calories: 361kcal | Carbohydrates: 56g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 13g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 3g | Trans Fat: 0.4g | Cholesterol: 45mg | Sodium: 241mg | Potassium: 143mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 24g | Vitamin A: 414IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 57mg | Iron: 1mg

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