Sweet Potato Cinnamon Buns with Hazelnuts

by Kirsten on May 27, 2011 · 16 comments

in Desserts, Misc. Sweets

Do you remember the baked sweet potato doughnuts I featured a few weeks ago?  They really exceeded my expectations and I couldn’t stop thinking about them, light and airy with the hint of sweet potato taste and nutmeg.

Therefore, I had to transfer this yumminess into another pleasing baked good, cinnamon rolls!  My dream came true in these incredibly delicious cinnamon rolls filled with cinnamon, brown sugar, and hazelnuts. They are the very best when still warm out of the oven with some powdered sugar sprinkled on top!

Even my daughter’s lovely riding instructor Cindy, who admitted to us, that she is a big  cinnamon roll snob, gave them high notes for taste and texture.


for the dough:

*  12 ounces (340 g) sweet potato, cooked and mashed
*  3 tablespoons unsalted butter
*  1/2 cup (125 ml) milk
*  1 envelope instant dry yeast
*  1/2 cup (100 g) sugar
*  1/2 cup (100 g) light brown sugar
*  1 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
*  1 vanilla bean, seeds scraped
*  1/4 teaspoon nutmeg, freshly ground
*  1 tablespoon dark rum
*  1 large egg
*  2 large egg yolks
*  3 1/4 cups (390 g) King Arthur Bread flour, more for second kneading and rolling

for the filling:

*  2 tablespoons (30 g)  unsalted butter, melted
*  2/3 cup dark ( 150 g) brown sugar, packed
*  1 tablespoon (15 ml) cinnamon
*  1 cup hazelnuts, chopped

mix the sugar with the cinnamon

For the topping:

*  powdered sugar


Prick the skin of two sweet potatoes with a fork and cook them in the microwave until done, about 10-12 minutes. (I used the “boiled potato” setting of my microwave which cooked them automatically.) Half the potatoes and spoon out the flesh. Puree it in a small food processor until it has the consistency of ordinary mashed potatoes. Set aside 12 ounces (1 cup) of sweet potato puree.

Place the butter in a small sauce pan and cook on medium heat until the butter turns brownish. Be very careful not to burn it! Set aside to cool.

Heat the milk (around 105 F, 40 C) in a small sauce pan or in the microwave and add the yeast. Let it sit for about 5 minutes and until foamy.

Attach your kitchen machine with the dough hook and mix together the milk/ yeast mixture, both sugars, salt, vanilla seeds, nutmeg and rum. Now add in the egg, the yolks, the browned butter and the sweet potato puree. Mix until well combined. Now it is time to add all the flour, first on slow speed to mix it all in and then on medium speed to knead the dough. Knead for about 5 to 6 minutes. If the dough is still too wet add more extra flour until the dough forms a ball. Place the dough into an oiled glass bowl, cover with a clean kitchen towel and let it rest and rise for 1 1/2 hours. I used my “rapid proofing” setting of my oven but it didn’t really rise that much. So, don’t worry!

Place the dough on a well floured surface, punch it down, knead in more flour if still to sticky.  Roll dough out into a 12″ x 18″ rectangle. Brush with melted butter and sprinkle with cinnamon-sugar mixture. Starting with the long side, roll dough into a cylinder. Place seam side down on a flat surface and cut crosswise into about 16 slices.

Grease a baking dish (I used an 8 by 8 inches and a 9 by 13 inches) place each piece, spiral side up, into the dish. Let the rolls rise for 1 hour or until almost doubled in volume.

Preheat oven to 400 F and bake the rolls until golden and done for about 30 minutes. Let cool and sprinkle with powdered sugar.

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Jamie June 2, 2011 at 8:11 am

Oh my, these are fabulous! Beautiful, perfect cinnamon buns and with sweet potatoes which I absolutely love in baking! Bookmarked this stunning recipe!

The Café Sucré Farine June 1, 2011 at 10:35 am

These look amazing and beautiful photography! I've made pumpkin caramel cinnamon buns (also quite delicious) but not sweet potato – will have to try these, for sure! Thanks, Chris

Connie the Cookie Monster June 1, 2011 at 7:25 am

hey! just stumbled across your blog, im loving it!

From Beyond My Kitchen Window May 31, 2011 at 9:50 pm

I will be bookmarking this recipe as soon as I'm finished writing this comment. OMG, I can't believe how good these look.

Les rêves d'une boulangère (Brittany) May 30, 2011 at 11:30 pm

I am sorry I haven't visited your dear blog in a while now! You have shared a wonderful recipe, as always. The buns look really professional. Oh, and your last post about the French Rhubarb cake really sparks my interest! I am going to go and read that post now too!

Nuts about food May 30, 2011 at 7:51 am

I could probably kill for one of these…

Gabi May 29, 2011 at 1:27 pm

Zimtschnecken sind mein Favorit 🙂 Ich habe ein Rezept mit Kartoffeln im Teig, das mit Süßkartoffeln probiere ich auch aus!

schlachtplatte May 29, 2011 at 7:52 am

I wish someone would make these for me. I myself am way too lazy to first cook potatos, then make a dough, then fill the dough, then roll the dough, then…., then…. But maybe, maybe I sould overcome my laziness because, goodness, do these cinnamon rolls look good!

Betty @ scrambled henfruit May 29, 2011 at 3:16 am

I really need to make these. Anything with sweet potatoes in it counts as a vegetable, right? They look soooo good! 🙂

kitchen flavours May 29, 2011 at 2:24 am

These look really good! Would be lovely with a cup of warm tea! Have a lovely weekend, Kirsten!

Cooking Creation May 29, 2011 at 12:25 am

These look sinful! YUM! Love the addition of rum. I must make this… yet another bookmark from your site. Thanks for sharing 🙂

Karen Harris May 28, 2011 at 2:48 pm

These look so delicious Kirsten!

Guvi May 28, 2011 at 12:26 am

You know, for whatever reason, sweet potatoes never appealed to me, but oh, boy, they do now! Thank you very much for sharing, Kirsten!

highplainsdrifters May 27, 2011 at 7:47 pm

Very cool! Wonder how one can go about calculating the glycemic index of these? Might have a commercial smash hit on your hands …

Barbara | Creative Culinary May 27, 2011 at 3:26 pm

There outta be a law. And that law should be that it is illegal to visit food blogs before breakfast. Because right now I would kill someone for one of those rolls!

yummychunklet May 27, 2011 at 3:16 pm

I like how certain foods stick with you that you have to make more dishes inspired by the first! These look great!

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