“Skinny & Naked Cinnamon Rolls”

Steaming cups of coffee.. warm cinnamon rolls baking in the oven.. family gathered around the table talking about good times. That sounds like the perfect Saturday morning to me.

I have always had a special place in my heart for cinnamon rolls but I rarely make them because they are so heavy and weighted down with fat, sugar, butter and more butter. About a year ago, I found a wonderful recipe that mimics the saturated buttery taste of a ‘Cinnabon’ roll.. you know the ones that taste so delectable but they are so monstrous that you feel guilty after just one bite? This recipe was no exception, using almost a cup of butter, 2 1/2 cups of refined sugar, whole milk and lots of white flour.

After making the recipe only a hand full of times, I decided to alter it a bit. Specifically, I wanted to eliminate the guilt after splurging on a weekend cinnamon roll (or two) and incorporate more clean ingredients. I cut out half the butter, half the refined sugar, half the white flour and eliminated the dairy milk. It sounds like a lot, but to be honest they still taste delicious, especially knowing they aren’t too terrible for you.

I also cut out the icing because well, that is just melted sugar and your body can do without. That’s why these rolls are considered “Naked & Skinny.”

Before I begin this modified recipe, I’ll note that I left the filling as the original which does use butter and brown sugar. If you’re really motivated to cut out all the butter, I would suggest using mashed up bananas or something else entirely like a nut butter.

Original Cinnamon Roll:  

  • 472 calories
  • 19 grams saturated fat
  • 36 grams sugar

“Skinny and Naked” Cinnamon Roll:

  • 252 calories
  • 2.7 grams saturated fat
  • 23 grams sugar


Mixing the dough with a thick edge or dough hook will keep the dough from becoming over mixed
Let the dough rise for about an hour
Screen Shot 2016-08-11 at 11.47.36 AM
Roll the dough out and spread the filling until it reaches the edge
Screen Shot 2016-08-11 at 11.48.16 AM
Roll the dough up like a sleeping bag
Screen Shot 2016-08-11 at 11.51.34 AM
Slice the roll into 1.5 inch sections
Place them in a prepared pan or dish
Let them rise for another 30 minutes
Bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 22-25 minutes



For The Dough (makes about 12-14 medium sized cinnamon rolls)

  • 1 package of active dry yeast
  • 1 cup warm milk (I used vanilla almond milk but you could also use plain)
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 2 1/4 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup pure maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup granulated white sugar
  • 1/2 cup apple sauce (natural/no sugar added)
  • 2 eggs

For The Filling

  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 3 Tbsp cinnamon
  • 1/3 cup butter



  1. In a small bowl, combine the warmed milk with the active dry yeast. Whisk together until the yeast is dissolved. Set aside for later use.
  2. In a mixing bowl, combine the salt and flours together. Mix together until incorporated.
  3. In the same mixing bowl, add the maple syrup, sugar, apple sauce and eggs. Mix on low until everything is evenly separated.
  4. While the mixer is still going, pour in the warm milk mixture and continue to mix until it forms a smooth dough-like consistency. Stop the mixture and scrape the sides making sure all the flour is incorporated.
  5. Transfer the dough into an oiled bowl and place a cloth over it. Let the dough rise for about an hour (or until it has doubled in size).
  6. While the dough is rising, combine the “filling” ingredients in the mixing bowl and mix on medium until it becomes crumbly.
  7. After the dough has risen, pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Roll the dough out on a lightly floured surface, it should be rolled out more in a rectangular shape vs a square or circle.
  8. Dump the filling crumbly mixture on the dough. Using your hands, spread the mixture evenly, reaching out to the edges of the dough.
  9. Starting at one long end of the rectangular dough, roll it up like you would a sleeping bag.
  10. Using a sharp knife or wire, slice the dough into 1.5 inch sections. Pace the rolls (with the sides facing up) in a prepared dish or pan. I like to use a pie pan and have the rolls touching. Continue to let the dough rise for another 30 minutes with a cloth on top.
  11. After the dough has risen, bake in the oven for 22-25 minutes (bake time differs greatly depending on if the rolls are baked together or spaced apart)





Screen Shot 2016-08-09 at 2.52.25 PM
Enjoy Your Sweet Morning




This is an original Healthy Chew Recipe- all rights reserved

All photos in this article were taken by and for The Healthy Chew- all rights reserved


Like This Post?

Share it on Facebook!

Follow me on Pinterest! @The Healthy Chew

Follow me on Instagram! @TheHealthyChew

Follow me on YouTube! @The Healthy Chew

Comment your questions!

email me at StephanieRackley@thehealthychew.org

Pin It on Pinterest!

Cinnamon Rolls


8 Comments Add yours

  1. Richard says:

    You are a lovely inspirational lady and wife! God bless you

  2. Bob Wieters says:

    Stephanie, a couple short questions.
    (1) I like the way you put your guacamole recipe in pdf format, what are the chances of doing cinnamon roll recipe in the same manner?

    (2) Your recipe states all rights reserved. Normally that means it cannot be copied to place in a recipe file. I keep recipes for later use, are there exceptions if used for own personal use?

    Glad that Da Fisherman Of Da Family is improving at an exceptional pace. You are very much like my wife and take care of your man. You are both Angels 😇 in our corners as we are so blessed!

    1. thehealthychew says:

      HI Bob! Thanks for reaching out and asking a few questions. You are more than welcome to keep this recipe for personal use. Please, print it out and keep it for later use in a recipe box. I put ‘All rights reserved’ on my recipes to prevent other bloggers or recipe developers from using my content and claiming it as their own. As for the PDF format, I started doing that earlier this year, so any recipes posted before then will not be in the PDF format. However, I will plan on reformatting my recipes into the PDF version now that I know how useful it is. Thanks again for the comment and well wishes!

  3. Sean says:

    I saw you made these when moving into the new house, congrats!! What was the recipe for the icing you used in that video? I noticed you omitted it in this post. Thanks 🙂

    1. thehealthychew says:

      Icing recipe calls for
      -6 tbsp butter
      -1 1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar
      -1/4 cup cream cheese
      -1/2 tsp vanilla extract

      Mix well in a mixing bowl until smooth. Spread on top the rolls while they are still hot out of the oven, to allow for melting.

  4. Diane says:

    HI! Can these be made the night before and baked in the morning?

    1. thehealthychew says:

      Hello! Yes they can! I recommend letting them rise for the second time and then putting them in the fridge overnight. You can also freeze them for a period of time and when you want to bake them, simply pull them out of the freezer, let thaw overnight and then bake them in the morning.

Leave a Reply