Caramel Apple Cinnamon Rolls

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Caramel apple cinnamon rolls are gooey, soft, sweet, and all kind of homemade fall comfort in a big pan.

These are the ideal treat to make on a cool, rainy fall day when you plan on just puttering around the house.

Close up of a caramel apple cinnamon roll on a white plate with text overlay.

Sweet Enough for Dessert

Now, I know most people consider this a kind of breakfast or brunch bread. It most definitely could be used that way.

Caramel apple cinnamon rolls sitting on a wooden cutting board with a red towel behind it.

However, their decadent sweetness makes them perfect for dessert. I’d absolutely serve them with coffee and tea.

Honestly a dollop of whipped cream or a scoop of ice cream would amazing too for something perfect for after dinner.

Difficulty Level: Intermediate

This is a fairly basic sweet dough recipe. It’s heavier than most sandwich or toast breads but not especially difficult. The number of steps and overall time involved makes this a more complicated recipe making it a better choice for the bread baker with some experience under their belt.

Avoid Too Much Flour

The ‘trick’ to making these rich and gooey but not sandwich bread like is in not adding too much flour. Knead the dough well and let it rest a bit before kneading again – this way you can stop before you add too much flour.

Close up of a caramel apple cinnamon roll on a white plate
A caramel apple cinnamon roll on a white plate.

Caramel Apple Cinnamon Rolls

Yield: 12 Large Rolls
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Rising Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 2 hours 30 minutes

Sweet, nutty, and full of apples - these brunch treats are so to be a hit for children and adults alike.

Ingredients

Roll Dough

  • 2 Tablespoons Active, Dry Yeast
  • 1/2 Cup Warm Water
  • 1/2 Cup Sugar
  • 3/4 Cups Milk
  • 1/2 Cup Salted Butter
  • 2 Eggs
  • 4 1/2 Cups Unbleached, All-Purpose Flour
  • 1 teaspoon Salt

Filling

  • 3/4 Cup Brown Sugar, packed
  • 1 Tablespoon Ground Cinnamon
  • 3/4 Cup Pecans, finely chopped
  • 1 Cup Apple, peeled & diced
  • 1/4 Cup Salted Butter, melted

Caramel Syrup

  • 3/4 Cup Butter
  • 3/4 Cup Brown Sugar, packed

Instructions

Start the Dough

  1. Melt together the butter and milk. Let cool to 115 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. In a large bowl, mix together the yeast, 1 teaspoon of the sugar, and warm water. Let sit until foamy.
  3. Add the eggs and remaining sugar to the yeast. Mix well.
  4. Stir in the milk and melted butter, 4 1/4 cups of flour, and salt. Mix until everything begins to come together.
  5. Once the dough comes together, turn it out onto a floured board. Cover the dough with a floured towel and let sit for 10 minutes.
  6. Knead the dough until soft and elastic, add no more than 1/4 cup of flour as needed to the kneading process.
  7. Oil a bowl and turn the dough around inside the bowl to coat. Cover with a towel and let rise until doubled 45 minutes to 1 hour.
  8. Meanwhile, make the caramel syrup.

Caramel Syrup

  1. Melt together the butter and brown sugar.
  2. Whisk until completely emulsified and the sugar is completely melted and smooth.
  3. Pour the syrup into the bottom of a 9X13" pan. Be sure to spread the syrup over the entire bottom of the pan.
  4. Set aside.

Get Filling Ready

  1. Whisk together the brown sugar and cinnamon until completely combined, set aside.
  2. Have the pecans and apples chopped and set aside.

Back to the Dough

  1. Punch down the dough and knead just slightly on a floured surface.
  2. Roll the dough out to a 11X17" rectangular.
  3. Using a pastry brush, coat the dough with about 2 Tablespoons of the melted butter.
  4. Sprinkle the cinnamon mixture over the top of the dough, leaving about 1/4" around the edges. Slightly press the on top of the cinnamon sugar with your hands to press it into the dough.
  5. Top the cinnamon mixture with the apples and chopped pecans, spreading evenly.
  6. Roll the dough up on the short side.
  7. With the seam side down, using a serrated knife slice the dough into approximately 1" rounds - so that you have 12 rolls.
  8. Place the rolls into the pan directly on top of the caramel syrup. It will be tight, the rolls be touching each other even before rising.
  9. Brush the tops of the rolls with the remaining melted butter.
  10. Cover with a towel and let rise for 30-45 minutes or until doubled.
  11. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
  12. Cook the rolls in the oven for 25-30 minutes or until golden.
  13. Let cool in the pan for 3-5 minutes.
  14. Put a serving platter or cookie sheet over the baking pan and invert - turning the rolls out so that the syrup drips down over the rolls. Do scrape any remaining syrup from the pan and spoon on top of the rolls.
  15. Allow to cool a bit before serving.

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Nutrition Information:
Yield: 12 Serving Size: 1 Roll
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 571Total Fat: 29gSaturated Fat: 16gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 12gCholesterol: 93mgSodium: 387mgCarbohydrates: 71gFiber: 3gSugar: 32gProtein: 8g

I try but cannot guarantee this nutritional information is 100% accurate.

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