Caramelized Apple Walnut Cinnamon Rolls

Caramelized Apple Walnut Cinnamon Roll

The oven warmed and glowed, the rolls slowly rose and browned, and every nook of my home was full of the warm spiced heaven sent aroma. These soft, spiraled flaky rolls stuffed with spiced caramelized apples, nuts and cinnamon have been baking in the kitchen early on last weekend.

If you are like me who finds all her self-control and reasons disappear at the sight of a cinnamon roll, you would know what that warm aroma of the fresh baked cinnamon rolls can do to your senses. At this moment you will find it hard to believe that I am not much of a dessert person; I am picky and usually a couple of bites satisfies my needs. But the rules are different when it comes to cinnamon rolls. This recipe is a  fall twist on the classic cinnamon roll. I have been seeing a very many apple  cakes and other apple desserts. With the apples rolling off the shelves, and my obsession with the cinnamon rolls,  I decided to combine them both.  These spiced cinnamon flavored swirls might not fix all your worries and ailments but the ecstasy that comes with a bite, the wonderfully spiced apples and the nuts burst out with texture and flavors of cinnamon and nutmeg will let you have that few minutes of bliss that we all deserve.

Caramel Apple Cinnamon Roll

The leaves  in blazing colors are under the trees, on the streets rustling around and I love the way a rush of the nippy wind have them rise up in a swirl and twirl around  in the air – like little dancers performing in unity with the chime of the wind. Fall is in the air, in the markets and at home. The baskets are full and the oven is warm. What are we waiting for? Apples, cinnamon and nuts are meant to be together. I have used Golden Delicious and the Gala for the rolls. If you like them tart, use the Granny Smith.

In good mood and just playing….


I am always at a high when I can sniff cinnamon rolls – at home, at a bakery or cafe; morning, evening, mid day – it does not really matter. I just want them. The brain tingling sugar high. Then I crave some good coffee, and maybe lots of  company or often times especially during the late afternoons I will be happy with some fuzzy socks,  a good book and a cozy silent corner to myself .

Caramelized Apple Walnut Cinnamon Roll

Meeta and Deeba have called us to mingle; “…where we can meet over tea & coffee, fun, food, stories and laughter …” . We are to bring along any “fruity bakes“. I chose company over the corner this time, and I am taking my swirls over to mingle.

Caramel Apple Cinnamon Roll

For the fear of overindulging I made very few of them and in smaller sizes.

The recipe of the dough is adapted from Ree’s (Pioneer Woman) Recipe.

Caramelized Apple Walnut Cinnamon Rolls

Ingredients: (makes about 8-12 rolls)

The Rolls:

  1. 1 cup milk
  2. 1/6 cup sugar
  3. 1/4 cups oil
  4. 1/2 package (about 1.5 teaspoons) active dry yeast
  5. 2 -1/4 cups flour, divided
  6. 1 teaspoon salt
  7. a pinch of  (scant) baking soda
  8. a generous pinch of baking powder
  9. 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon

For the filling:

  1. Caramelized apples (see below)
  2. 5 tablespoons  melted butter
  3. 1.5 cups walnuts, lightly toasted and chopped

For the caramelized apples:

  1. 4 cups apples,  diced into very small pieces
  2. 1/2 cup scant brown sugar
  3. 2 tablespoons butter
  4. 1 teaspoon ginger, grated
  5. 4 tablespoon apple cider
  6. 2 tablespoons cinnamon powder
  7. a big pinch of nutmeg

For drizzle:

  1. Maple Syrup
  2. Granulated Sugar


Caramelizing the apples:

Heat a non-stick skillet over medium-high  Drop in the  butter, and let it melt down, at low heat.

Drop the diced  apples  into the butter. With a wooden spoon, stir them around until they are completely coated with butter. Continue to stir until the the butter in the pan is no longer bubbling. Add the brown sugar, and the nutmeg. When the sugar melts and coats the apples well and starts to bubble, add the cider. Cook apples for approximately 20 minutes at the lowest heat, or until the fruit softens and browns completely. The released water from the apples and the sugar will make a thick syrup in the pan, which will slightly bubble. Add the cinnamon towards the end of the cooking process. Allow as much liquid to evaporate without burning the sugar. It will be thick sticky mix.

Remove the pan from the heat. Remove the apples from the pan and place them into a bowl.

Caramelized Apple

To make the dough:

Heat milk, oil, and 1/6 cup sugar until warm (do not boil.)

Allow the above mix to cool to lukewarm. Sprinkle in yeast and let it sit for a while and let it get frothy. Now add 2 cups flour. Stir gently with a wooden spoon and  loosely gather up into lump, and cover with a tea towel, allowing it to rise for 1 – 1.5 hours.

After the end of the time, add remaining flour, 1 tablespoon cinnamon powder, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Gently knead into a ball. Punch dough down. On a lightly floured surface, divide dough in half and shape each half into a ball. Cover and let it rest for 10-15 minutes.

To make the rolls: (the original Cinnamon Rolls has the step by step visual)

On lightly floured surface roll out half of the dough into a rectangle/oblong.

Spread generously with half the  butter. Spread half of the caramelized apples on the rolled dough.  Sprinkle half the nuts.

Roll up from a short side. Seal the edges.

Make a second roll with remaining dough, in the same way as above. Follow the same procedure with the butter, apples and the nuts.

Slice each dough roll into 4 or 5 pieces. (I made 6 rolls from each to have smaller serving sizes)

Arrange slices, cut side down, in a greased baking pan.Place the rolls very close to each other on a baking tray, but not sticking to one another. They will rise when they sit and then when they bake and will stick to one another. Cover; let rise until nearly double (about 30 – 45 minutes). Do NOT skip this step.

To assemble:

Bake rolls in a 370 F degrees pre heated oven for 25 to 30 minutes or until light brown. If required, to prevent over-browning, cover rolls loosely with foil the last 15 minutes of baking.

Let cool for a few minutes; carefully remove them from the pan.

Drizzle some maple syrup on the rolls and sprinkle some granulated sugar on the top. If you want an icing, the recipe is here.

Some for my friends –

Caramel Apple Cinnamon Roll

and one for myself, all to myself when the craving strikes late in the afternoon, with a book in a corner. (This is my wish and yet to come true…..)

Caramel Apple Cinnamon Roll

The rolls are Yeastspotted!

Related Recipes:

Cherry Orange Almond Sweet Buns

Spiced Apple Ginger Bread

Summer Fruit Tea Cake

Spiced Cranberry Raisin Bundt Cake

Eggless Chocolate Zucchini Nut Bread

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