Vegan Cinnamon Roll Pancakes

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Tall stack of Vegan Cinnamon Roll Pancakes

I had a bit of a debacle as to what to post Christmas week since everyone is so busy running around, wrapping gifts, traveling to see family and likely already have their holiday menus all planned out. But, I figured everybody surely has room for one more breakfast recipe in their back pocket with a week of lazy mornings surely on the horizon. Am I right?

Batch of our Vegan Cinnamon Roll Pancakes recipe on a cutting board

For me, it was clearly between pancakes or cinnamon rolls. So, I put it to vote with a question on Instagram and got a TON of responses. You guys are seriously awesome. One, because you care about what we post. And two, because you inspired me to dream up an entirely new recipe I hadn’t even thought of yet.

About half way through the comments somebody suggested cinnamon roll pancakes and it’s like they read my mind! I was thinking the exact same thing in that very moment. The perfect marriage of two perfect breakfast foods. It was on.

(P.S. for those who voted cinnamon rolls, don’t worry! I’m already plotting two recipes that I think you’ll be quite pleased with so sit tight and eat pancakes in the meantime.)

Bowl of batter for making Yeasted Cinnamon Roll Pancakes

I have never attempted cinnamon roll pancakes but I know they’ve been done before by a lot of bloggers, so I wanted to do something different and if possible, vegan. Turns out, both were entirely possible.

To get that quintessential cinnamon roll flavor I started with a yeasted, whole grain batter since nearly all cinnamon rolls have that amazing earthy, bakers-essential yeast flavor. I was so stoked to see that it rose to double in size just like I was hoping with all of its bubbly, yeasty goodness. Then, I scooped out a bit of the batter, added in brown sugar, cinnamon and a little melted butter and I had my cinnamon swirl in hand.

Cooking Vegan Cinnamon Roll Pancakes on a griddle

So easy and so delicious! Look how fluffy and decadent they look cooking up.

Batch of delicious Vegan Cinnamon Roll Pancakes on a cutting board
Cutting board with a freshly cooked batch of Vegan Yeasted Cinnamon Roll Pancakes

These cinnamon roll pancakes are legit and only require 8 ingredients!

Almond milk
Vegan butter
Whole-wheat pastry flour
Cinnamon
Sugar & brown sugar
Salt
Yeast

That’s it! You likely already have all those things on hand. Plus, they produce a surprisingly small mess of dishes and come together start to finish in under 2 hours. Not bad for pancakes that cram all of the flavor of homemade, slow-prepared cinnamon rolls into every fluffy bite.

Drizzling icing onto a stack of Fluffy Vegan Yeasted Cinnamon Roll Pancakes

While I don’t think a glaze is necessary, I couldn’t bare trying them without one. I went with my favorite easy glaze that always yields plenty of leftovers: Powdered sugar, almond milk and melted vegan butter (recipe below). So good once it hits your lips.

Stack of Vegan Cinnamon Roll Pancakes with icing dripping down the side

These pancakes really do taste like cinnamon rolls!

Fluffy
Not too sweet
Packed with cinnamon, brown sugar flavor
Seriously filling
& Surprisingly healthy

Plus, they feed a crowd and can be easily doubled and tripled, with one batch making at least 8 large pancakes. (Two should be plenty for one person.)

Plate with a batch of Easy Cinnamon Roll Pancakes topped with icing

Make these for your family and friends this week! I think they’ll love them. Plus, I have a feeling they’ll make your holiday gatherings a little bit sweeter and more memorable. Enjoy!

Stack of Vegan Cinnamon Roll Pancakes with icing
Stack of Fluffy Vegan Cinnamon Roll Pancakes with icing dripping down the side
Holding up a stacked bite of Vegan Cinnamon Roll Pancakes

Vegan Cinnamon Roll Pancakes

Vegan cinnamon roll pancakes made special with a yeasted, whole grain batter. Just 8 ingredients to fluffy, sweet, cinnamon-y pancakes that are perfect cozy breakfast on cold winter mornings.
Author Minimalist Baker
Print
Plate with a tall stack of Vegan Cinnamon Roll Pancakes dripping with icing
4.12 from 9 votes
Prep Time 2 hours
Cook Time 5 minutes
Total Time 2 hours 5 minutes
Servings 4 (2-pancake servings)
Course Breakfast
Cuisine Vegan
Freezer Friendly 1 month
Does it keep? 3-4 Days

Ingredients

For the Batter

  • 2 cups unsweetened almond milk (or other non-dairy milk)
  • 2 1/2 Tbsp vegan butter (such as Earth Balance)
  • 2 Tbsp sugar
  • 1 package rapid-rise or active dry yeast* (1 package yields ~2 1/2 tsp)
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 1/2 cups whole-wheat pastry OR unbleached all-purpose flour

For the Cinnamon Swirl

  • 2 1/2 Tbsp pancake batter
  • 1 Tbsp vegan butter (softened/melted)
  • 3 Tbsp brown sugar
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon

Instructions

  • Batter: In a large mixing bowl in the microwave heat the almond milk and vegan butter in 30 second increments, until warm and melted, never reaching boiling. Alternatively, heat the ingredients in a saucepan over medium-low heat.
  • Let mixture cool to 110 degrees F (43 C), or the temperature of bath water. It should be warm but not too hot or it will kill the yeast.
  • Sprinkle on yeast. Let activate for 10 minutes. Then add sugar and the salt and stir.
  • Next add in flour 1/4 cup at a time, stirring as you go. If there’s a lot of lumps, use a whisk but so do gently and not vigorously. The batter will become sticky but it shouldn’t be like a dough. 1 1/2 cups should be the ideal amount (amount as original recipe is written // adjust if altering batch size), but add more if it appears too runny. It will resemble normal pancake batter. Thick but pourable.
  • Cover with plastic wrap and set in a warm place to rise for at least 1 hour if not 2, or until doubled in size. The batter will proof more quickly if you use rapid rise, but active dry works well too. It just takes a bit longer.
  • Cinnamon Swirl: Once risen, gently scoop out 2 1/2 Tbsp of your batter and add 1 Tbsp melted vegan butter, 1/2 tsp cinnamon, and 3 Tbsp brown sugar (amounts as original recipe is written // adjust if altering batch size). Thin it with almond milk if it’s too thick to pour. Whisk until well combined and add to a sandwich bag (which you’ll snip the corner off of) or a plastic squeeze bottle.
  • Preheat a griddle or large skillet to medium heat and lightly grease surface. Scoop on 1/4 cup measurements of batter and then swirl on the cinnamon sugar filling in a circle starting at the center and traveling out. It doesn’t have to be perfect – you could even make other shapes/designs.
  • Flip when bubbles form on top and the edges appear dry. Cook for 1-2 minutes more and transfer to a large plate or serving dish. Keep warm in a 200 degree oven until serving.
  • Optional but recommended: Frost with dairy-free cream cheese frosting or a mixture of 2 cups powdered sugar, 1 Tbsp melted vegan butter and 1-2 Tbsp almond milk (amounts as original recipe is written // adjust if altering batch size). I prefer a thicker glaze but make it as thin as you prefer. Or just top with maple syrup.
  • Store leftovers covered in the fridge for up to a few days. Move to the freezer in a freezer safe bag or container for longer term storage. These should reheat well in the microwave or toaster.

Notes

*The batter will proof more quickly if you use rapid rise yeast, but active dry works well too. It just takes a bit longer.
*Recipe loosely adapted from Martha Stewart.
*Yields 8 large pancakes (as recipe is written).
*Nutrition information is a rough estimate calculated without glaze.

Nutrition (1 of 4 servings)

Serving: 1 two-pancake servings Calories: 307 Carbohydrates: 46 g Protein: 5 g Fat: 10 g Saturated Fat: 2.5 g Trans Fat: 0 g Cholesterol: 0 mg Sodium: 474 mg Fiber: 5 g Sugar: 12 g

Did You Make This Recipe?

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  1. Vegan Cook says

    How about mixing some maple syrup into the glaze, for a complete hybrid Cinnamon Roll Pancake.

    I don’t know if you said how to make the swirls, but an icing bag, with small round holed tip, might make it easier.

  2. Mandy Harper says

    I am unsure what went wrong when making these. The consistency was gooey and gummy. I even tried using a waffle iron and making waffles instead so that they got even heat distribution while cooking. It seemed the pancakes would rise at first, then fall flat.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hmm, thanks for the feedback, Mandy! We’ll give this recipe another look and see if we can make improvements!

  3. Carrie Ann says

    Just made these & unfortunately, I did not have success. The only modification I made was that I used unsweetened coconut milk in place of the almond milk. I used rapid rise yeast and let it rise for over 6 hours. Maybe I let it rise for too long?
    After watching the Martha Stewart video (of the recipe that this has been adapted from), I thought that maybe I didn’t get the milk/earth balance mixture warm enough. It was luke warm. The batter had a really strong yeasty, almost alcohol smell. It was pancake consistency (easy to pour but not too runny) but the inside did not cook, even with the skillet hot and ample cooking time.

    Pretty bummed. Had to dump the whole batch. Any insight as to where I went wrong?

  4. Natalie says

    Just made this for brunch this morning and they were amazing!! Took us about five minutes to inhale them.

    Thanks so much for sharing such a creative, delicious recipe. As always, you’ve knocked it out of the park! :)

  5. Stephanie says

    I just tried to make these but they didn’t turn out. Not sure what I did wrong, but they were all gooey and didn’t get firm inside when cooking. Any thoughts? I let the dough rise for just over an hour, as I used rapid rise yeast (the same yeast I’ve used when making cinnamon buns). I tried adding more flour to the batter but still no good. They look so good in the post.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hmm, that’s so strange. I’ll have to revisit this recipe to know exactly what went wrong. Did you make any modifications?

      • Stephanie Spicer says

        Thanks for the reply. No substitutions. The only thing I can think is if I spaced when measuring something…but I believe I got it right.

  6. Kendra says

    Sigh. I tried these and I was really excited, they looked good & smelled good. But they didn’t work at all. When my dough/batter was done rising it had separated into what looked like curdled cheese on top & milk on the bottom. I tried using just the top, just the bottom and then mixing them together. These pancakes had the consistency of a wet sponge and no matter how long I cooked them it didn’t get better. What on earth went wrong?

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hmm, sounds like the yeast was bad, or it wasn’t activated due to too cold or too hot water. So sorry! Check and make sure your yeast is fresh and use a thermometer next time!

  7. verena says

    Just made waffles with the batter :)
    Great taste! Everybody loved them <3
    Thank you for creating all these amazing recipes, Dana!

  8. Kathleen says

    Any way to speed up this process? Waiting 2 hours for dough to rise just isn’t feasible for when I want to make them! Can I make the batter the night before? Would letting it rise overnight just make it ridiculously huge? Or what if I didn’t let them rise at all? Any ideas to speed this up?

  9. JQL says

    I tried it and it came out to be a disaster! Idk what I did wrong. Wasted the last bit of my whole wheat pastry flour. Smh.

  10. Shelley says

    I made these for a special 4th of July breakfast ( just because I like any excuse to try your recipes :-) and they were AMAZING!!!! Seriously decadent! My hubby and kids loved them and couldn’t stop eating them! I used the vegan glaze you recommended in lieu of syrup and it really made them perfect. I think next times may add just a touch of cinnamon to the non-swirl batter just because I’m a cinnamon freak but they were perfect as-is. Thanks for this one!!

  11. Andrea says

    Your Martha Stewart link has some trailing characters and doesn’t quite work. I watched the video she does to see the batter consistency that you’re probably going for. This will be late brunch (bordering on lunch) pancake for today, I’m sure this recipe will work as well as the others I’ve tried so far.
    Thanks for the great now-veganized recipes. I trust your recipes/instructions much more than random google searches.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      Thanks Andrea! The link has been fixed. Hope you enjoyed these pancakes! And thanks for the kind words. xo

  12. Sunila says

    Can almond milk be substituted for dairy milk in your recipes?? I so wanna try some recipes of yours but don’t have almond milk at hand right now.

  13. Cindy says

    I’ve always been a pizza fan but when I saw this pancakes, its another thing! Thanks a lot for the recipe, I’ll try this as soon as I get home. Congratulations!

  14. Jamie @ Dishing Out Health says

    These sound like the perfect breakfast to make tomorrow eve while I have the day off! So glad I saw the recipe in time :)

  15. Amanda @ Once Upon a Recipe says

    These look fantastic! They would make a perfect lazy morning breakfast. I’ve got the next week off of work to enjoy the holidays and I think I’d better find a way to work these into my breakfast plans!