These gluten free cinnamon roll sugar cookies somehow manage to be soft and tender, and even light and flaky. Just like a “real” cinnamon roll—but in a neat little cookie. And no rising time. They’re cookies, after all!
This recipe is pretty similar to my Soft Frosted Sugar Cookies, but made a bit softer and made to brown a bit with another egg and a bit more butter. That’s it. Well, unless you could the brushing of the rolled-out dough with softened butter, the generous sprinkling of cinnamon-sugar, and the light drizzle of a simple sugar glaze. Oh, that.
I made these pretty small, since, well, they’re adorable that way. That, and it’s super fun to eat them like I, personally, think is the right way to eat real yeasted cinnamon rolls: unroll them slowly, tear off the unfurled roll in sections, then let the slightly crisp edges give way to that melt-in-your-mouth cookie inside. They even manage to be kind of light and flaky, almost like a real cinnamon roll. Magic!
When a plate of cookies gets passed around in my house, everyone tries to play it cool and act like they don’t care which one they get. That little game of pretend is even harder with these cookies than usual. You see, everyone has a favorite type. Mine? The ones that are juuuuust beginning to open up, like the one on the right in the photo just above. I bet I’ve already eaten that one!
My youngest makes no secret of going for “the biggest one, please.” Is it still gluttonous if you come right out and say it? Probably not!
See that one with the brown sugar and cinnamon filling that leaked out a bit on the right? That would probably be my husband’s pick, if I had to guess. My oldest? She’d take the one with the most glaze, as her sweet tooth knows no bounds. My son would probably take the one he could get into his mouth the fastest, so location would probably be his guide. Which type is your favorite?
1 teaspoon xanthan gum (omit if your blend already contains it)
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 cup (100 g) granulated sugar
3 tablespoons (22 g) confectioners’ sugar
9 tablespoons (126 g) unsalted butter, at room temperature
2 eggs (120 g, out of shell) at room temperature, beaten
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
For the filling 2 tablespoons (28 g) unsalted butter, at room temperature
3/4 cup (164 g) packed light brown sugar
1 1/4 teaspoons ground cinnamon, plus more for sprinkling
For the glaze 3/4 cup (86 g) confectioners’ sugar
1 tablespoon milk (any kind), plus more by the 1/4 teaspoonful if necessary
Preheat your oven to 350°F. Line rimmed baking sheets with unbleached parchment paper and set them aside.
First, make the cookie dough. In a large bowl, place the flour, xanthan gum, baking powder, salt, granulated sugar and confectioners’ sugar and whisk to combine well. Add the butter, eggs and vanilla, and mix to combine. The dough will be thick and smooth.
Roll the dough between two sheets of unbleached parchment paper into a 12-inch square, a bit less than 1/3-inch thick. Remove the top sheet of parchment paper, and spread the butter from the filling in an even layer on top of the entire surface of the dough, all the way to the edges. In a small bowl, combine 1/2 cup of the brown sugar and the ground cinnamon and mix to combine well. Sprinkle the cinnamon-sugar mixture on top of the melted butter, and spread into an even layer, again all the way to the edges. Using a sharp knife or pastry cutter, slice the dough into 4 squares of equal size (6-inch squares). Roll each 6-inch square tightly into a coil. Spread the remaining 1/4 cup brown sugar on the parchment paper, and roll the coils in the sugar to coat the outsides of the coils. With a sharp knife, slice each of the coils by cross-section into 6 pieces of equal size, each about 1-inch thick. Place each piece, about 2 inches apart from one another, on the prepared baking sheet. Place in the center of the preheated oven and bake until the cookies are puffed, pale golden and somewhat firm to the touch (about 11 minutes). Remove from the oven and allow to cool to room temperature on the baking sheet. They will crisp around the edges as they cool.
When the cookies are nearly cool, make the glaze. In a small bowl, place the confectioners’ sugar and 1 tablespoon of milk. Mix well, until a thick paste forms. Add more milk by the 1/4-teaspoon, mixing to combine well, until the glaze falls off the spoon slowly, in a thick but pourable glaze. Add milk very slowly, as it is much easier to thin, than to thicken, the glaze. If you do thin the glaze too much, add more confectioners’ sugar a teaspoon at a time to thicken it. Drizzle the glaze over the cooled cookies, sprinkle with a bit more ground cinnamon, and allow to set at room temperature before serving.
P.S. If you don’t have one yet, don’t forget to pick up your copy of Gluten-Free on a Shoestring Bakes Bread! Turn to page 166 for fluffy, soft and sweet yeasted Gluten Free Cinnamon Rolls. Your support means the world to me! :D