The Best Ever Soft and Gooey Cinnamon Buns by “Indian Rock Vegans”

Jan 21, 2019 by

Introducing, the most incredible, soft, gooey cinnamon buns you have ever met!! And, huge bonus, they’re 100% plant-based and cruelty-free!!

If you follow my Insta-stories, you may have noticed me *dying* over these on the weekend. Three of the To Die For ladies and I took a road trip to the Okanagan to visit a trio of newly rescued dairy calves at Critteraid Farm Sanctuary and we got to spend some quality time with our friends Dan and Sheanne of Indian Rock Vegans who so graciously hosted us for the weekend.

It’s an understatement to say that we were all blown away by the breakfast they served us on Sunday morning, Sheanne’s homemade cinnamon buns being the highlight. We couldn’t get over how soft and almost doughy their texture was. And the pear cream in place of icing was a hit. Cinnamon buns are rich enough — a lighter option like Sheanne’s pear cashew cream was the perfect pairing.

Lucky for all of us, Sheanne has so generously shared her recipe with us!! Huge thanks to has as the recipe had never even been written down before! It was in her head and on scraps of paper and old receipts around the house!! Thank you Sheanne for taking the time!! Also, you must read her ‘vegan story’ here that she shared in the documentary, Eating You Alive. Sheanne lost 133 lbs on a whole food plant-based diet and gained a whole new perspective on life! Her story is amazingly inspiring. Anyways, I promise you will not regret making these. Try them this weekend and please tag us so we can see your creations! @IndianRockVegans @ErinIreland


For the yeast mixture:
  • 4 tsp active dry yeast
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1 c. very warm water
For the dough:
  • 1 c. non-dairy milk
  • ⅔ c. white sugar
  • ⅔ c. vegan butter
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 6 c. organic white unbleached flour
For the filling:
  • ½ c. vegan butter (room temperature)
  • 1 c. white sugar
  • 3 tbsp cinnamon
  • 2 tbsp cocoa powder
  • 1 c. toasted chopped pecans (optional)
For the pan sauce:
  • 1 c coconut cream (the solid white stuff in one to two can’s worth of coconut cream or milk, depending on the brand used)
  • ⅔ c. brown sugar
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
For the pear cream / icing (healthier than vegan cream cheese icing!):
  • 2 x 28 fl oz. cans of pear halves in juice
  • 1 c. soaked raw cashews
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • Pinch of salt


For the dough:

  1. Warm the oven by turning on the oven light. This will be the perfect temperature for the dough to rise.
  2. In a medium bowl, mix the yeast, sugar and warm water together and set aside.
  3. In a saucepan, combine the non-dairy milk, sugar, vegan butter and salt over medium-low heat until butter is melted. Set aside and let it cool until it’s no longer hot to the touch.
  4. Once cool, add the yeast mixture (which should be foamy). Note: if the milk mixture is too hot, it will kill the yeast!
  5. In a separate large bowl, add 3 cups of flour. Add the warm milk/yeast mixture and mix gently with a spoon. Add the remaining 3 cups of flour and continue to mix gently. Transfer flour mixture to a lightly floured surface and knead for 8 minutes (which will feel like forever) until it resembles dough. Place in a lightly oiled bowl and cover with a slightly damp towel. Place the bowl into the mildly warm oven for 90 minutes.

For the filling:

For the pan sauce:

For the pear cream (which you can make ahead as it’s best serve chilled):

  1. Place 1 cup of pear juice and 1 cup of soaked cashews in a high-powered blender. Blend until completely smooth. Add the rest of the pears, vanilla and salt. Blend until smooth, transfer to a small bowl and place in fridge.

Back to the dough!

  1. Once the dough has risen for 90 minutes, use a rolling pin to create a rectangle, about 20” x 15”. Use your hands to shape the edges. Next, add the filling mixture to the dough and, using a spatula or knife, spread it evenly. Sprinkle on toasted pecans, if you like.
  2. Begin rolling the dough from the short side of the rectangle. Use your hands to keep the edges symmetrical by rolling the entire roll back and forth till it feels cylindrical.
  3. With the seam down, use dental floss (yup) to “cut” the individual cinnamon buns by placing the floss under the roll and drawing it upwards and crossing it to cut the roll. This makes a nice clean cut without “squishing” the roll with a knife. Repeating the cutting step until you have 12 to 14 rolls, each appromixately 1” to 1 ¼” wide.
  4. Gently place each roll on top of the pan sauce. There should be a bit of room between the rolls so they can rise again.

There are two options at this point (a quick one and a longer one) →

Quick option:

Longer option (Sheanne’s favourite):

Remove from oven, loosen the sides with a knife and then place your serving platter (or rimmed baking sheet lined with parchment) over the pan, then carefully and quickly flip the cinnamon buns over onto the platter. Serve warm with pear cream.

This is Sheanne and Dan, Indian Rock Vegans. They are pillars of British Columbia’s vegan community. If you ever need inspiration to go vegan, check out their posts on Instagram and Facebook and watch their story in the incredible, life-changing documentary Eating You Alive in which they are featured. Dan shares his story of beating stage four cancer and Sheanne talks about her 100+ lbs weight loss….all thanks to the ever-powerful plant-based diet.


Rated 3.3 out of 5
3.3 out of 5 stars (based on 9 reviews)

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Latest Reviews

I love these buns

Rated 4 out of 5
May 14, 2022

My first time making this recipe didn’t go to plan, the sauce did not thicken and they had to be cooked for double the stated time before the dough was cooked through. I have now made this recipe multiple times and found the only way to get the results stated is to cook in a cast iron dish and use full fat coconut cream. This is now my favourite bun recipe and a house favourite!


A bit more time in the oven = perfection

Rated 4 out of 5
January 3, 2022

I made these cinnamon buns (again) yesterday and baked them off this morning.
Did they go perfectly according to the recipe? No.
Where did I go wrong?
1. I think it’s important that they be fully at room temperature before baking. For me, this would have taken longer than 30 minutes.
2. I used a stoneware baking dish which is slow to change temperature. As a result, the cinnamon buns took about 45 minutes in the oven rather than 25.
What I love about these cinnamon buns is that they are not overly sweet. They are ooey, gooey and delicious.


Love these!

Rated 5 out of 5
December 7, 2021

We’ve made these several times and they’re absolutely delicious! Reading through the comments, YES, only use the white coconut cream from the top of the can. You can chill the whole cans in the fridge for a bit before you open them. This will help solidify the cream.
This recipe makes a lot. As in two pans for us!
Also, don’t use all the juice from the pears if you want thicker icing. I’m sure they’re different depending on the brand, so adjust as you go.



Rated 1 out of 5
December 4, 2021

Same here. The result was a mess and had nothing in common with the pretty buns in the picture. They did not even taste good. We had to throw it away. It’s so sad. This was really a waste of time and food. I wish I had read the comments before.


Best Cinnamon Buns

Rated 5 out of 5
November 28, 2021

I’ve made this recipe a handful of times now. The pan sauce is liquidy, BUT I also have to use two trays to fit all the buns so split into two portions works! The flip is definitely key to help all the sauce drain. Super sticky once cooled and delish!!!!