When I saw this recipe in the Vegan Diner book, I knew I had to try it. I was always intimidated from making cinnamon rolls, because it had ingredients and steps I hate the most...yeast, and rolling out dough. When I read the instructions for this recipe, I thought it was pretty simple, so I gave it a try. I'm so glad I did, because this came out beautifully! The dough rose as instructed, and it rolled out nicely as well!
I've only seen recipes for cinnamon rolls that included milk, so I would end up having to adapt it. This recipe called for soy milk powder, which I always have on hand anyway. I use it when I make bread recipes in the bread machine, so this recipe was right up my alley. I usually purchase it at Whole Foods, but if you can't find it, you can omit it and sub the 1/2 cup of water with soy milk.
Vegan Orange Cinnamon Rolls
adapted from Vegan Diner
1/4 cup agave nectar
1/4 cup orange juice
1/2 cup water, room temperature
zest of one orange
1/4 cup hot water (110°-115°F)
1 tsp granulated sugar
3 3/4 - 4 cups unbleached all purpose flour (start off with 3 3/4 cup and add as needed after kneading)
2 TBSP soy milk powder
1 tsp fine salt
2 1/4 tsp instant yeast
3 TBSP vegan butter (rec: Earth Balance)
2/3 cup packed light brown sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
2 cups powdered sugar
3 TBSP orange juice (fresh from the orange you zested)
Spray or liberally coat a 9x13 baking dish with oil or shortening. Set aside.
In a large measuring cup, measure and whisk together agave, orange juice, 1/2 cup lukewarm water, and orange zest. Set aside.
Place in the bowl of a stand mixer, add hot water and sugar. Then add flour, soy milk powder, salt then yeast last. Turn on mixer on low to stir and combine.
Add liquid ingredients slowly while the mixer is on to form a ball. Replace with the dough hook of the mixer and knead for 3-5 minutes until the dough is smooth. If it's still sticky, add more flour 1 TBSP at a time.
Place the dough in a lightly oiled bowl, cover with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm area and let rise for 1 hour, or until doubled in size. (I turn my oven to warm for 5 minutes, shut it off, then put the bowl in the oven to rise.)
Transfer dough to a lightly floured surface and roll out to a 16x12 rectangle. Brush on softened butter/margarine while leaving a 1/2 inch border. Sprinkle brown sugar on top and spread evenly. Then sprinkle cinnamon on top of the sugar. (I sprinkled out of my spice jar and didn't measure.)
Rolling along the long edge, form a spiral, jelly-roll style. Pinch the edges to close up the seams. Using a sharp knife or bench scraper, cut into 12 even pieces. Place the pieces into the prepared baking pan and cover with plastic wrap. Let rise again for 30 minutes until almost double.
Remove plastic wrap and bake in preheated oven at 350° for 30-35 minutes until firm to the touch and lightly golden. Remove from oven and let cool slightly.
For the glaze, whisk together powdered sugar and orange juice in a medium bowl. Drizzle over warm cinnamon buns and serve.
Makes 12 cinnamon buns.