There’s something so special about apple pie aroma – it’s so warming and cozy! And who doesn’t love cinnamon rolls? Well, I’ve combined the two to give you these apple pie cinnamon rolls! If you’ve tried my cinnamon roll recipe, you already know how delicious those are! I took my classic cinnamon roll recipe and added caramelized and spiced apple pie filling, creating an unforgettable fall dessert. And don’t forget the cream cheese frosting! I love to make a large batch of the frosting and add extra on my roll!
Ingredients for Apple Cinnamon Rolls
Here are the main ingredients you’ll need for these delicious rolls!
- Apples: crispy and sweet apples, such as Granny Smith, will work best for this recipe.
- Dry Active Yeast: both active yeast and instant/rapid yeast will work great for this recipe. If you’re using instant yeast, the dough will just proof faster.
- Flour: for making the yeast dough.
- Brown Sugar: for making the apple pie filling for the rolls.
- Cinnamon & Nutmeg: I like to use lots of spices to give the filling extra flavor.
- Cream Cheese: for making the cream cheese frosting to add on top!
Making the Apple Pie Filling
I like to use Granny Smith or Golden Delicious apples for this recipe. This firm yet sweet apple is perfect for apple pie and for this recipe. You can peel the apples or leave the peel on. Here’s a before and after of the apple pie filling. The aroma is simply incredible! You’ll want to eat it straight out of the pan!
- Place the diced apples, spices, salt and sugar into a large pot and stir until the apples are well coated.
- Cover the pot with a lid and cook the apples over medium heat, stirring every few minutes, until the apples are soft, about 15 to 18 minutes.
- In a small bowl, combine the cornstarch and water to create a slurry. Add the mixture to the apple pie filling and cook for an additional minute, until the filling is thickened. Remove the filling from heat and allow it to cool.
How to Make Apple Pie Cinnamon Rolls
Here’s how I make these delicious apple pie cinnamon rolls!
- Prepare the soft yeast dough first. The dough needs to proof for about 1 hour, or until it’s doubled in size.
- While the dough is proofing, prepare the apple pie filling. It takes about 20 minutes to cook. Once it’s done, place the filling into the refrigerator to chill. It needs to cool down before you can use it in the filling.
- Roll the dough into a large rectangle, measuring about 20×12 inches. Before adding the apple pie filling, spread the 1/2 cup softened butter all over the dough.
- Section the log into 12 equal pieces using a sharp knife and place into a casserole pan. Allow the rolls to proof again, for about 30 to 45 minutes, or until doubled in size.
- Bake the rolls for 10 minutes, then remove from the oven and pour the 3/4 cup heavy cream over the top, pouring a little over each roll. Place the rolls back into the oven and continue baking for an additional 25 to 28 minutes until the tops are golden brown.
- Remove the rolls from the oven and spread with the cream cheese frosting while the rolls are still warm. Serve warm.
My Secret Ingredient
These rolls are so incredibly soft and fluffy, thanks my secret ingredient: heavy cream. It’s added the 10 minute baking mark and it makes these apple pie rolls simple extraordinary! The cream adds a bit of needed moisture to the rolls and pan, preventing them from drying out.
Cream Cheese Frosting
And you can’t have apple pie cinnamon rolls without some cream cheese frosting! I use a simple, creamy recipe for all my rolls. I like to spread about half of the cream cheese frosting onto the rolls as soon as they come out of the oven, allowing the frosting to melt and coat the rolls really well! Add the rest after the rolls cool down further, or serve it on the side.
Check out my 5 ingredient ‘Cream Cheese Frosting’ video recipe for an in-depth tutorial!
Make Ahead Instructions
- Simply follow the instructions, making the yeast dough, filling and shaping the rolls. Cut the rolls to size and place into a large casserole pan.
- Allow the rolls to proof at room temperature for 15 to 20 minutes, then cover the pan with plastic wrap and place the rolls into the refrigerator. They can be made even a few days ahead of time.
- When ready to bake, remove the rolls from the fridge and let them stand at room temperature for 15 to 20 minutes. Bake at 330F, adding the heavy cream at the 10 minute baking mark. Continue with the original recipe.
Enjoyed this recipe? Check out some of my other recipes you’re sure to enjoy!
- The Original BEST Cinnamon Rolls – You can learn more about making my famous cinnamon rolls with my step-by-step video tutorial. I promise, this recipe will not disappoint!
- Raspberry Rolls – filled with freeze dried raspberries and berry preserves!
- Double Blueberry Rolls – all the blueberry flavor in these stuffed berry rolls!
- Strawberry Cinnamon Rolls – another fruity and berry twist on my original recipe!
- Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls – perfect for fall! Made with pumpkin and cinnamon sugar filling!
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Need some supplies to make this recipe? You can get them here (Amazon affiliate links):
- This cast iron braiser is similar to the one I use all the time in my kitchen!
- A nice rolling pin is a must in every kitchen! I like my wooden rolling pin, but marble rollings pins are also great.
- You’ll love this deep-dish casserole pan – perfect for everything from cinnamon rolls to lasagna.
- And this off-set lifter will help you get those rolls out the pan and onto a plate to enjoy.
Apple Pie Cinnamon Rolls With Cream Cheese Frosting
- 1 cup warm milk
- 2 1/2 tsp dry instant yeast
- 2 large eggs
- 1/3 cup butter, melted
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1 tsp salt
- 4 cups all-purpose flour
- 3/4 cup cream, for topping
- 4 large apples, diced
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 1 tbsp ground cinnamon
- 1 tsp ground nutmeg
- 1/2 tsp ground cloves
- 1/2 tsp all-spice
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 2 tbsp cornstarch
- 2 tbsp water
- 1/2 cup butter, softened
- 8 oz cream cheese, softened
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 2 to 3 cups confectioner’s sugar
For the Yeast Dough:
- Prepare the dough first. Heat the milk in the microwave or on the stove top until it’s warm but not too hot. Pour the milk into a large mixing bowl and sprinkle the yeast over it. Allow the yeast to proof in the warm milk for 5 minutes, then add in the salt, sugar, eggs and butter. Whisk all the ingredients together until smooth, then gradually begin adding the flour.
- Once a dough ball forms, turn the dough out of the bowl onto a floured work surface. Continue adding the flour and kneading the dough; it needs to be very soft, but not sticky. Knead for 4 to 5 minutes, then place the dough back into your mixing bowl, cover the bowl with a towel and set the dough into a warm corner of your kitchen to proof. Allow the dough to double up in size; about 45 minutes to an hour.
For the Apple Pie Filling:
- While the dough is proofing, prepare the apple pie filling. Place the diced apples, spices, salt and sugar into a large pot and stir until the apples are well coated. Cover the pot with a lid and cook the apples over medium heat, stirring every few minutes, until the apples are soft, about 15 to 18 minutes. In a small bowl, combine the cornstarch and water to create a slurry. Add the mixture to the apple pie filling and cook for an additional minute, until the filling is thickened. Remove the filling from heat and allow it to cool.
Assembling the Rolls:
- Once the dough has proofed, turn it out onto a floured work surface. Knead the dough for about a minute to get out any trapped air bubbles. Roll the dough into a large rectangle, measuring about 20×12 inches. Before adding the apple pie filling, spread the 1/2 cup softened butter all over the dough. Spread the filling evenly to the edges. Gently roll the dough into a log; do not roll the dough too tightly.
- Section the log into 12 equal pieces using a sharp knife – I like to split the log in half, then in half again, then cut the quarters into 3 pieces. Gently transfer the rolls into a 13×9 baking dish and place them into the pan facing up. Cover the pan with a clean towel and allow the rolls to proof for 30 to 45 minutes, until they are doubled in size.
Baking the Rolls:
- Preheat the oven to 350F. Bake the rolls for 10 minutes, then remove from the oven and pour the 3/4 cup heavy cream over the top, pouring a little over each roll. Place the rolls back into the oven and continue baking for an additional 25 to 28 minutes until the tops are golden brown. Remove the rolls from the oven and spread with the cream cheese frosting while the rolls are still warm. Serve warm.
- For the frosting, simply combine the softened cream cheese, cream, vanilla, salt and 2 cups confectioner’s sugar in a large mixing bowl. Whisk the ingredients together until smooth. To make the frosting thicker, add more confectioner’s sugar. To make it thinner, add more cream.