These caramel apple cinnamon rolls are perfect as a fall dessert or breakfast treat. Classic cinnamon rolls get an upgrade with freshly diced apples and caramel frosting.
You all know my family and I are huge fans of cinnamon rolls and every variation you can think of. So far this summer, I’ve posted brown butter peach cinnamon rolls and lemon blueberry sweet rolls. I didn’t think we could transition to fall without including an apple version in our collection.
I took my favorite basic sweet yeast dough recipe, and added freshly diced apples inside the rolls along with the cinnamon and sugar. It tastes like a cross between an apple pie and a cinnamon roll. Can’t go wrong with those flavor combinations.
The recipe is virtually identical to my recipe for the best cinnamon rolls, only with the addition of apples. And those rolls have gotten rave reviews from many friends and family members. The only change I made was substituting in a brown sugar caramel frosting instead of the cream cheese frosting.
But if you would prefer a cream cheese frosting on your apple cinnamon rolls, go for it. Although, they would be missing the “caramel part of the rolls.
If you’ve ever made my caramel pecan sticky buns, you know how there is a sweet sticky syrup that coats the bottoms of the rolls when you take them out of the pan. These caramel apple cinnamon rolls are similar because the juice from the apples cooks with the sugar and creates a sweet apple syrup on the bottom of the rolls. Yum!
These rolls are best served warm, but are also delicious at room temperature. If you want, microwave them for 10-15 seconds to get that fresh out of the oven taste.
How to store caramel apple cinnamon rolls
These rolls will keep on the counter for a day or two, after that you should store them in the refrigerator. They won’t last that long though. 🙂 They are definitely best served on the first or second day.
Can you make caramel apple cinnamon rolls ahead of time?
Yes, my post about basic sweet yeast dough has a lot of detail on making dough ahead of time. Basically, you would make the dough ahead of time, and then store overnight in the refrigerator and roll them out, raise and bake them the next day. Or, you can make the dough and freeze it.
These caramel apple cinnamon rolls would make a great Sunday morning breakfast this fall. Or dessert for a fall party. If you make them, let me know how you liked them in the comments below.
- 1 recipe basic sweet yeast dough
- For the Filling
- ½ cup of butter, softened
- 1½ cups of brown sugar
- 3 tablespoons cinnamon
- 3 cups finely diced apples
- ½ cup butter
- 1 cup brown sugar
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¼ cup milk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 2½ cups powdered sugar
- Make the sweet yeast dough as directed in the recipe through the first rise.
- After the first rise, knead the dough several times and let rest on the counter for 5 minutes. Meanwhile, stir together the brown sugar and cinnamon for the filling. Divide the dough in half and work with one half of the dough at a time. Roll the dough into a 12 x 18 inch rectangle. Be patient with the dough.
- Spread ½ of the butter (1/4 cup) on the rectangle. Spread it to the edges, leaving 1 inch section bare on one of the 12 inch sides. Sprinkle ½ of the brown sugar filling on top and then ½ of the finely diced apples. Roll up tightly starting with the 12 inch side. Cut into 1-1.5 inch sections with dental floss or a very sharp knife. Place ¾ inch apart in a greased baking dish. Repeat with the remaining half of the dough.
- Cover and let rise until double, 20-30 minutes. Time will vary based on how warm the room is. Preheat the oven to 375 F. Bake the rolls for 12-15 minutes or until lightly brown on top.
- While the rolls are baking, make the frosting. Melt the butter in a heavy saucepan over low heat. Stir in the brown sugar and salt. Bring to a gently boil and let boil for 2 minutes. Add milk and cook for 30 seconds until no longer grainy. Remove from heat and beat in powdered sugar and vanilla until smooth.
- Remove the rolls from the oven and let cool for 5 minutes. Frost the rolls while they are still warm so the frosting will melt a bit.
- They are best served warm, but will keep a day or two on the counter.
Here are some of my favorite caramel apple recipes for fall.
Here are some other caramel apple yeast bread recipes from other bloggers.
Caramel Apple Monkey Bread from Julie’s Eats and Treats
Caramel Apple Pull Apart Bread from Delish
Crazy Caramel Apple Pie Bombs from The Slow Roasted Italian