Smart Sweet: Raw Cinnamon Rolls

When I was growing up, almost every Sunday morning my mom would pop cinnamon buns in the oven. As soon as they started to warm up, the smell would drift up to my bedroom, gently awake me from my slumber, and then I would jump out of bed, run down the stairs and eagerly wait for the buns to finish cooking (see I’ve always had a sweet tooth!). So naturally, since I began my love for raw desserts about three years ago, I have been on the hunt for the perfect raw cinnamon roll.  While I haven’t found the perfect match to a cinnamon bun, I definitely found a delightful treat.

After I made the Homemade Cinnamon Hazelnut Milk last week, I had heaps of hazelnut pulp leftover. I knew it was going to be good for something, and I was right. It was good for these Raw Cinnamon Rolls!

It didn’t taste exactly like the cinnamon buns I remember, but how could it?! It has no white sugar, flour, partially hydrogenated oils, dextrose, wheat starch, and corn syrup solids, just to name a few! I did however make it like a real cinnamon roll. I rolled it, filled it with a rich and creamy cinnamon and raisin mix, and topped it with a velvety icing (made from cashews!), so it was pretty darn close. But hey, if you happen to have a raw cinnamon roll that you think may taste exactly like the real deal and may be the answer to my ultimate raw cinnamon roll search then please be sure to let me know.

I highly encourage you to serve this at your next family brunch and you’ll have everyone buzzing.



  • 1 1/4 cup hazelnut pulp (leftover from the Hazelnut Milk, or you can grind up soaked hazelnuts in a food processor or blender and it will probably work just the same)
  • 1 1/4 cup (215 g) flax meal (ground flax seeds)
  • 2 1/2 tbsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • Pinch of sea salt
  • 1 cup (115 g) soft dates (get them soft by soaking if not already)
  • 1/4 cup (4 oz) water
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2 tbsp flax seed oil
  • 2 tbsp pure maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup (40 g) raisins
  • 1/4 cup (30 g) chopped pecansIcing:
  • 1/2 cup (50 g) cashews
  • 1/4 cup (4 oz) date soaking water (The water from you soaked the dates in)
  • ¼ tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tbsp pure maple syrup
  • 1 tbsp coconut butter


  1. Blend all the frosting ingredients in a food processor or high-speed blender until smooth. Add to a bowl and set to the side.
  2. For the Rolls: Combine the hazelnut pulp, flax meal, 1 Tbsp. cinnamon, nutmeg and sea salt in a bowl and set aside.
  3. In a high-speed blender or food processor, blend the dates, water and vanilla until a smooth paste forms.
  4. Remove half of it from the blender and add it to the pulp mixture. Also, add the flax oil and maple syrup until a dough forms.
  5. Take this dough and spread it out on a piece of parchment paper and flatten it into a 1/4 inch high square shape. I used my hands to flatten it out.
  6. Next, add the raisins and 1 Tbsp. cinnamon to the reserved date paste in the food processor and blend until almost smooth (leave a few chunks of raisins!).  Then take this mixture and spread it onto the dough, covering the whole surface.
  7. Use half of the icing and spread it on top of the date mixture. I actually didn’t do this step but I highly recommend it to sweeten it up!
  8. Sprinkle with the chopped pecans. Then carefully using the parchment paper to help hold it all together, roll the square into a log.
  9.  Transfer it to the fridge and chill for at least an hour.  I rolled it in the parchment paper and twisted the ends like a candy wrapper.
  10. When ready to eat, take out the log and cut it into segments about 1-inch thick.
  11. Top with leftover icing. Store in fridge before eating. Best served the next day to let the flavors soak in.This recipe was adapted from The Veggie Nook.


Prep Time: 30 minutes

Cook Time: 1 hour

Total Time: 1 hour, 30 minutes

Servings: 10

Serving Size: 1 cinnamon roll

Calories: 310

Fat: 21g

Trans Fat: 1.5g

Cholesterol: 0mg

Sodium: 0mg

Carbohydrates: 28g

Fiber: 7g

Sugars: 18g

Protein: 7g