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:
  • 2 cans full-fat unsweetened organic coconut milk (Native Forest is Sheanne’s favourite brand)
  • 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 2.8 out of 5
2.8 out of 5 stars (based on 4 reviews)

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Latest Reviews

Such high hopes...

Rated 2 out of 5
April 18, 2021

Honestly I’ve itching to make these for months. I finally decided today was the day and sadly this is the most disappointing result. The pan sauce is straight liquid and the buns couldn’t cook through. Are we supposed to only use the solidified part of the canned coconut nut milk?


Love this recipe

Rated 5 out of 5
February 14, 2021

From reading the below reviews I was able to correct the recipe so turned out perfectly!
Yes I highly recommend it and to look for It on Instagram so you get a proper rundown on how to make!


My pan sauce is too thin! Why?

Rated 2 out of 5
January 29, 2021

I just made these and my pan sauce is very thin. I wonder, if like Cora said in another comment, we should just be using the hard cream of the coconut milk and not the water?


recipe is wrong?

Rated 2 out of 5
January 24, 2021

so i just made these and i’m pretty sure the recipe is written wrong. which is a bit frustrating for how long it takes! i looked on your stories (afterwards) and you did it differently. the pan sauce should just be the coconut cream and not the whole can – or two cans, since mine is still quite liquidy after baking an extra ten mins. also, the filling should say melt the butter because it doesn’t spread without doing that. and i’m not sure about the pear sauce – i made it as the recipe says and it makes soooo much. i’ve literally followed everything step by step.