Tanzania Safari and…. AIP Cinnamon Rolls

Cinnamon rolls with an orange glaze may seem like an impossibility on the AIP/ Paleo diet, but these AIP and Paleo Cinnamon Rolls are free of gluten, dairy, eggs, nuts and processed sugar, but are still packed with the flavor you come to expect from a treat like cinnamon rolls. They are the perfect start to a holiday morning, great for packing for treats on the go, or really for any day that you want to make a little more special.

 

Cinnamon rolls with an orange glaze may seem like an impossibility on the AIP/ Paleo diet, but these AIP and Paleo Cinnamon Rolls are free of gluten, dairy, eggs, nuts and processed sugar, but are still packed with the flavor you come to expect from a treat like cinnamon rolls. They are the perfect start to a holiday morning, great for packing for treats on the go, or really for any day that you want to make a little more special.

I grew up in Tanzania. Well, several of my most formative years were spent in Tanzania. Now, I’m sure that many (if not all) of you must think I’m insane starting a post about Ooey gooey cinnamon rolls by talking about my childhood in Tanzania.

 

Bear with me for a little story and it will all become clear. 

 That’s my brother and I on top of the family car, while my dad got things ready for a trip cross country. You see, for the years we lived in Tanzania, we were in a small town on the western side of the country which happened to be about a 5 day drive from any major city. 

 


This meant regular trips for supply shopping, visiting friends and a variety of other reasons. These 5 days of travel were on rough roads through the bush and adventure was literally around every corner. Like this one time where the bridge was washed out and we had to improvise. 

 

 

 

Plus, as you can see, the roads weren’t dotted with rest areas and fast food joints. So, preparing for a trip was an ordeal in itself. We would make bread and roast peanuts and make granola bars (which we lovingly called survival bars), and boil eggs and fry meat really crispy and make cinnamon rolls. These packed foods would be one, two or sometimes three meals a day while on the road. The funny thing is that it took me about 20 years to enjoy eating cold boiled eggs again and cinnamon rolls have never since become a regular part of my life again….that is until this week.

Cinnamon rolls with an orange glaze may seem like an impossibility on the AIP/ Paleo diet, but these AIP and Paleo Cinnamon Rolls are free of gluten, dairy, eggs, nuts and processed sugar, but are still packed with the flavor you come to expect from a treat like cinnamon rolls. They are the perfect start to a holiday morning, great for packing for treats on the go, or really for any day that you want to make a little more special.

On Tuesday, I was walking through the mall with a colleague and we walked past Cinnabon and got a whiff of the freshly backed cinnamon rolls and I just had to have one. Ok…I obviously didn’t actually have one because that would have been insanity on my part, but I had to figure out how to make them. Cinnamon rolls needed to be in my life again and it needed to be soon.

For other great AIP/ Paleo foods that are perfect for your next outing, check out my ebook “AIP Safari.”

Once home, sweet potatoes were peeled and boiled and the dough started to come together. It tasted good and felt right…but the question of the day was would it roll right? And how would they taste?


So, I spent the afternoon brainstorming about these rolls. How would I recreate the soft and chewy dough? What would it be like to use white fleshed sweet potatoes and banana and coconut flour. Hmmm. That just might work.

I patted the dough out onto a piece of parchment paper, spread on the honey, coconut oil & cinnamon filling and sprinkled on some raisins…and they began to look like cinnamon rolls.
Rolling them and slicing them almost felt like gluten filled dough. This sweet potato dough may have more uses in the days and weeks to come….hmmmm….what else could I make.

 

OK, you’ve been patient long enough. Here’s the recipe.

**A note about “AIP Treats”: While it is true that these Cinnamon rolls and other treats on this blog are made with AIP friendly ingredients, it should be noted that the AIP diet is primarily about nutrient density and healing and with that in mind treats should be reserved for special occasions. This are occasional foods, not everyday food. Treat often are higher in sugar content (even fruit) and as sugar causes inflammation for many of us following AIP, we need to make treats an occasional part of our lives.
Ooey Gooey AIP/ Paleo Cinnamon Rolls
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Cinnamon rolls with an orange glaze may seem like an impossibility on the AIP/ Paleo diet, but these AIP/ Paleo Cinnamon rolls are free of gluten, dairy, eggs, nuts and processed sugar, but are still packed with the flavor you come to expect from a treat like cinnamon rolls. They are the perfect start to a holiday morning, great for packing for treats on the go, or really for any day that you want to make a little more special.
Author:
Recipe type: Brunch
Cuisine: American
Serves: 10 rolls
Ingredients
  • DOUGH:
  • 1 TBSP coconut oil
  • 1 cup mashed white fleshed sweet potatoes (simply peel, dice, boil til tender & mash)
  • 1 ripe banana
  • 3 TBSP Coconut Flour
  • 3 TBSP Arrowroot starch
  • ½ tsp sea salt
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • ½ tsp cinnamon
  • FILLING:
  • 2 TBSP honey
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 TBSP coconut oil
  • ¼ tsp sea salt
  • ⅓ cup raisins (soaked in hot water for 10 minutes & drained)
  • GLAZE:
  • ¼ cup full fat coconut milk
  • 1 TBSP honey
  • zest of 1 orange
  • 2 TBSP orange juice
  • 1 tsp coconut flour
  • ⅛ tsp cinnamon
Instructions
  1. peel, dice and boil potatoes (go ahead and boil a few so that you have leftovers to eat or for other recipes)
  2. soak raisins in hot water
  3. mix wet ingredients - potatoes, banana (mashed well) and coconut oil
  4. mix dry ingredients - coconut flour, arrowroot, salt, baking soda & cinnamon
  5. mix dry ingredients into wet until they form a soft dough
  6. let dough chill in the fridge for 5-10 minutes
  7. preheat oven to 200C/ 400F
  8. mix filling ingredients - honey, cinnamon, coconut oil & salt
  9. press dough out to about a 8x10 inch rectangle on a piece of parchment paper
  10. spread filling onto the dough using the back of a spoon and sprinkle raisins on top
  11. using the parchment paper to help you, carefully roll up as tight as you can (the dough is soft, so you need to work carefully)
  12. once rolled, place in fridge or freezer for 10 minutes for dough to harden a bit before slicing
  13. slice roll into 10 pieces. You may need to reshape them into rounds.
  14. Place on a cookie sheet or baking pan lined with parchment paper and greased with some coconut oil with a little space between rolls
  15. bake at 200C/ 400F for 35- 40 minutes until rolls are brown on the bottom
  16. while, baking, make the glaze by mixing together the glaze ingredients
  17. cool in the pan for about half an hour, then drizzle with glaze and ENJOY!
  18. they keep for several days in an airtight container on the counter
 

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These cinnamon rolls remind me of childhood and home. Here are a few other recipes that also bring me back to my childhood:

 

Cinnamon rolls with an orange glaze may seem like an impossibility on the AIP/ Paleo diet, but these AIP and Paleo Cinnamon Rolls are free of gluten, dairy, eggs, nuts and processed sugar, but are still packed with the flavor you come to expect from a treat like cinnamon rolls. They are the perfect start to a holiday morning, great for packing for treats on the go, or really for any day that you want to make a little more special.

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