Hello beauty Cinnamon Braid Buns! Just take a look at these STUNNERS! (Also known as Estonian Kringle bread – mini ones). They are dressed to impress, am I right?!
These Vegan Cinnamon Braid Buns are a dreamy winter breakfast delight. They’re warm and puffy, sweet and satiating, and are perfectly crunchy on the outside with a soft and supple cinnamon sugar interior. A total 10/10!
But, I’m not going to lie to you… Although it might seem in the photos that these were thrown together at ease I was TOTALLY intimidated to make these cinnamon braid buns. Heck, I’ve never even made normal cinnamon buns, so why I thought adding a braid to the mix was a good idea is beyond me. But it turns out a little optimism goes a long way; just look at the outcome! In the beginning I was a bit of a spaz, holding my breath with every braid as if my life depended on getting it right. But after the first bun, you realize that the dough is quite nimble and forgiving. You can play around with it and manoeuvre it, without having it fall apart. (I’ve heard this about new born babies too. That they’re a lot less fragile than they look, but I’ll stick to testing my theory on dough for now!). And so by the third cinnamon bun I was folding and rolling the dough like an expert baker. Turning and manipulating it at ease like it was some sort of choreographed dance.
So in a nutshell, I’m here to tell you that:
– YES, you can make these Cinnamon Braid Buns too!
– NO, they aren’t as cumbersome as they look.
– And YES, you can credit yourself a total boss for serving these beauties for breakfast
The dough I used for this recipe came from the Oh She Glows Cinnamon Rolls recipe. The cinnamon sugar filling was a big of an invention. Combining coconut butter, coconut sugar, and cinnamon. Don’t confuse coconut butter for coconut oil here. Coconut butter is the hydrogenated version, and although I like to stick with wholesome/natural ingredients (opting for oil over margarine), it’s important for this recipe to use margarine as we don’t want the dough to get too oily. I tried to find a brand with as few ingredients possible and without palm oil, and found that the Vita’Coco Margarine was my best bet. It worked really well in this recipe.
To make the Vegan Cinnamon Braid Buns I started by making the Oh She Glows cinnamon roll dough, leaving it for one hour to rise, then dividing it into 6 mini dough balls. From there I rolled out each pastry into a thin rectangular shape. I lathered each with cinnamon filling and then rolled them into 6 logs.
From there I cut the logs in half, lengthwise, leaving 1/2 inch at the top uncut. Then I began braiding the two pieces, trying to keep the sliced side with the exposed layers on top as I braided (this is what makes this braid effect). Finally I pinched the ends together and formed a round wreath. And if that explanation is too confusing the video below is a great play-by-play on how to roll, cut and braid the dough to get the braided effect. I watched it a couple times before trying it myself. You’ll notice in the video they’ve made one large kringle bread, but our mini cinnamon braid buns work just the same. 🙂
The end result is a cinnamon swirl masterpiece. Truly a breakfast of champions. And the sweet cinnamon flavour is so fitting as we approach the Christmas holidays. Although the recipe makes 6 cinnamon buns, you might want to double it. I’ll admit they didn’t even last 24 hours in our home and it was just the two of us. Every walk by the kitchen would illicit another bite. And when the house is filled with the beautiful scent of freshly baked cinnamon bread it’s hard to ignore!
I strongly urge you to give these Vegan Cinnamon Braid Buns a try. They make for a beautiful breakfast bun, and are fun to prepare. Why not make it a fun holiday get together with friends? It’s a great activity to do along Christmas tunes to get into the holiday spirit. Plus there is no better feeling then pulling out these gorgeous buns from the oven and indulging. It’s a Christmas miracle at it’s finest I would say. 😉
Hope you enjoy these totally brill vegan cinnamon braid buns.
Vegan Cinnamon Buns (Mini-Estonian Kringle Bread)
For the Dough:
- 1/2 cup warm water
- 1 tsp coconut sugar
- 1 packet active dry yeast
- 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (+ 1/2-3/4 more for kneading)
- 1/3 cup vegan butter melted
- 1/2 cup almond milk
- 1/2 cup coconut sugar
- 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
For the Cinnamon Filling:
- 1/2 cup vegan butter
- 2/3 cup coconut sugar
- 6 tsp cinnamon
- In a small bowl add warm water. Stir in coconut sugar until mostly dissolved. Then add yeast and stir. Set aside for about 7 minutes, or until yeast is dissolved and liquid mixture creates foamy bubbles on top.(If bubbles do not form, toss and try again. Water should be warm but not boiling or it will kill the yeast).
- Add 2 cups flour to a large mixing bowl. In a separate mixing bowl, combine melted butter, almond milk, coconut sugar, and sea salt. Pour in yeast mixture and stir to combine.
- Pour wet mixture over your flour and stir with a large wooden spoon. Mix until combined and resembling batter consistency. Then add remaining 3/4 cups flour. Mix together.
- Knead mixture until it comes together in a shaggy and sticky dough. Flour work surface and place dough on top. Knead the dough, adding small handfuls of flour as needed, until it’s no longer sticky to the touch, approx. 3-4 minutes. The dough should be smooth and elastic. (Don’t be afraid to add lots more flour. Adding 1/2 cup to 3/4 cups while kneading is normal). When dough is no longer sticky to the touch, shape it into a big ball.
- Wash mixing bowl and dry it. Lightly oil the bowl with 1 tbsp neutral oil (or melted vegan butter) and place dough inside. Flip the dough around so it gets lightly coated in the oil. Then, tightly cover the bowl with bees wrap and place in a draft-free area. Let the dough rise for at least 1 hour. (It should almost double in size).
- Meanwhile, make the cinnamon sugar filling. In a small bowl combine vegan butter, coconut sugar and cinnamon. Set aside.
- When dough has risen, divide it into 6 equal portions (to make 6 mini dough balls). Place on a clean work surface to the side.
- Preheat oven to 400F (200C). On a floured work surface, taking one dough ball at at a time, roll the dough into a rectangle as best you can, about 1/8 inch thick. Don't worry if it's not a perfect rectangle, my edges were wiggly.
- Lather cinnamon filling over dough in an even layer, leaving a clean 1/2-inch border around the edges. Then roll the dough away from you to form a log.
- Rotate log so that the end side is nearest you and using a sharp knife, cut the log in half vertically (from top to bottom) leaving about 1/2 inch at the top uncut.
- Start braiding the two pieces, one over the other, trying to keep the open layers exposed so the cut side remains on top (this is what makes this braid effect). When you've braided the entire log pinch the ends together, and form a tight circle. Gently transfer braided bun to a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
- Rolling out your remaining dough balls, and continue steps for lathering with cinnamon filling, rolling, slicing and braiding. Forming a circle. Place on same baking tray, ensuring there is at least 1-2 inches between buns. They will expand as they cook. (If you have remaining cinnamon filling you can serve with cinnamon buns as a buttery spread)
- Bake cinnamon buns in the oven for 12-15 minutes, or until golden brown. Serve warm with remaining cinnamon filling.
VEGAN – VEGETARIAN – DAIRY-FREE – SOY-FREE