Chicago Diner's Vegan Cinnamon Rolls

Recipe courtesy of Chicago Diner, 2012
Show: Unique Sweets Episode: Sweet Americana
TOTAL TIME: 3 hr 30 min
Prep: 45 min
Inactive Prep: 2 hr 30 min
Cook: 15 min
YIELD: 12 rolls
LEVEL: Difficult


  • 2 tablespoons dry yeast
  • 3/4 cup plus 1/2 teaspoon vegan sugar
  • 1/2 cup vegan margarine
  • 4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour, plus more for flouring
  • 4 cups bread flour (or all-purpose flour)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 to 1 1/2 cups soymilk
      • 1/2 cup vegan margarine
      • 3 1/4 cups vegan powdered sugar, sifted
      • 3/4 cup vegan cream cheese
      • Nonstick spray, for greasing
      • 1/4 to 1/2 cup melted vegan margarine
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      For the cinnamon roll dough: Whisk together the yeast, 1/2 teaspoon of the sugar and 1 cup warm water in the bowl of an electric mixer. Cover with plastic wrap and set aside in a warm place to activate. Melt the margarine and set aside to cool. Sift together the flours, the remaining 3/4 cup sugar and the salt in a bowl.

      Once the yeast looks foamy, add the sifted dry ingredients, melted margarine and 1 cup of the soymilk. Knead with a dough hook on the lowest speed of an electric mixer until the dough is just combined, about 30 seconds. If the dough is dry, add the remaining soymilk a little at a time until the desired consistency. The dough should be a little wet and make a light sloshing sound when mixing. Mix for 3 minutes on low. Increase the speed to medium low and mix until the dough pulls away from the bowl, 3 to 6 minutes. The dough is ready when you can stretch it very thinly without breaking it. Cover the dough with plastic wrap and keep in a warm place until doubled in size, about 2 hours.

      For the cinnamon roll filling: Mix together the brown sugar, cinnamon, flour and salt.

      For the cinnamon roll frosting: Cream the margarine in an electric mixer with the paddle attachment on medium-low speed until smooth. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as necessary. Add the powdered sugar and mix until thoroughly combined. Add the cream cheese and mix until just combined. Refrigerate until ready to use.

      To assemble: Coat a baking sheet with nonstick spray. Roll out the dough on a lightly floured work surface into a rectangle approximately 15 inches by 20 inches. Brush with the melted margarine and coat evenly with the cinnamon roll filling, leaving an inch bare at one of the long ends. Roll the dough in a cylinder tightly onto itself and press at the end to seal. Cut into 1 1/2- to 2-inch pieces. Transfer the pieces to the prepared baking sheet. Cover with plastic wrap and allow to proof in a warm place until doubled in size.

      Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

      Bake until golden, 10 to 12 minutes. Spread with the cinnamon roll frosting while still warm.


      This recipe was provided by professional chefs and has been scaled down from a bulk recipe provided by a restaurant. The Food Network Kitchens chefs have not tested this recipe, in the proportions indicated, and therefore, we cannot make any representation as to the results.

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