These Sweet Potato Cinnamon Rolls are so tender, luscious, and packed with sweet potato flavor! Elevate your everyday cinnamon roll game by whipping up a batch of the fluffiest and most decadent cinnamon rolls you’ll ever have. A swoon-worthy, maple cream cheese icing is the sweet finish to send these rolls over the edge!

sweet potato cinnamon rolls in white baking dish

Love me some cinnamon rolls. Real talk, they’re one of my most favorite bakes to make. There’s no special occasion needed for me to whip up a batch of them either, ha! For holiday gatherings, special dates, or just on a slow Sunday…cinnamon rolls hit the spot. Something about that soft, ooey gooey, warmly spiced yeast roll with sweet icing, yes indeed. I know that I’m not alone.

Now, out of all the cinnamon rolls I’ve ever made, these sweet potato cinnamon rolls are my favorite! If you’ve been around these parts for a minute, you already know how I get down with all things #sweetpotato. This is in general but especially around the Fall when everyone else is all about pumpkin this and pumpkin that. Friends, these rolls are EVERYTHING and a lil’ more!

⇢ More recipes: lemon bundt cake, this sweet potato coffee cake, the best chicken and waffles, homemade brioche doughnuts, my peanut butter and guava muffins, my fave brown butter rice krispie treats, and this apple crisp.

sweet potato cinnamon rolls in white baking dish

Sweet Potato Cinnamon Rolls!!! 🙌🏾

Unlike regular cinnamon rolls, these sweet potato cinnamon rolls have an enriched dough. You see, the sweet potato adds richness, flavor, color, and gives these rolls a super tender, pillowy soft texture that you’ll love. That sweet potato flavor shines beautifully in this recipe. Warming spices like cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves add a cozy flair, while the maple cream cheese icing compliments these cinnamon rolls so nicely…the dreamiest rolls!

🍠 \\ Let’s chat about sweet potato puree: For any of my sweet potato-forward recipes, I exclusively make homemade sweet potato puree.

>> How to make: Peel and chop/cube a large sweet potato. Boil until fork-tender and then transfer to a blender/food processor to blend until smooth. Homemade sweet potato puree is really the best for these sweet potato cinnies, peeps! Personally, I find canned sweet potato puree to contain a high amount of moisture/hydration– but of course, this can depend on the brand used.

Ingredients Needed For These Cinnamon Rolls

(Note: the full ingredients list, including measurements, is provided in the recipe card directly below.)

  • For the dough: whole milk, granulated sugar, active dry yeast, 1 egg, butter, sweet potato purée, flour, and salt. Super simple, comes together so quickly.
  • For the filling: butter, packed brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, and salt. Lots of signature, warming goodness- check!
  • For the icing: cream cheese, butter, powdered sugar, maple flavor/extract, and vanilla extract…this maple cream cheese icing is delicious, y’all.
  • I love chopped pecans as a garnish here, but totally optional!

⇢ Homemade cinnamon rolls are a lot easier than you think, I’ll walk you through the process with step-by-step photos and plenty of tips! 😊

How To Make Sweet Potato Cinnamon Rolls

(Note: please see the recipe card directly below for the complete written instructions.)

  1. Make the dough. In the bowl of a stand mixer or in a large bowl (if you plan to mix/knead by hand), combine the warm milk and 2 tablespoons of sugar together. Then sprinkle the yeast on top and mix to activate.
  2. Once the yeast mixture has activated and is visibly foamy, add in the remaining sugar, egg, butter, sweet potato purée, flour, and salt.
  3. Secure dough hook attachment to mixer and mix on low speed until the dough begins to come together, about 1-2 minutes. Increase the speed to medium and continue kneading the dough until smooth, elastic, and supple, about 5-6 minutes. Alternatively, if you are not using a stand mixer, knead the dough by hand for 10 minutes on a lightly floured surface.
  4. Shape the dough into a ball and place it into a lightly greased large bowl. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap or a clean kitchen towel- let the dough rise/proof in a warm environment until it doubles in size, about 1 1/2 hours or longer depending on the temperature of your environment.
  5. Roll, fill, & cut rolls. Punch down the dough knocking out the air and turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Use a rolling pin to roll out the dough. To make the filling: spread the softened butter over the dough Sprinkle the brown sugar on top of the butter and use your hands to rub it in. Lastly, evenly sprinkle the cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, and salt over the top and use your hand to gently pat it into the mixture.

How To Make Sweet Potato Cinnamon Rolls: II

  1. Roll up the dough into a tight log. Use a large sharp knife or unscented dental floss to cut the log crosswise into 12 pieces.
  2. Add the rolls into a parchment paper-lined baking dish and cover with plastic wrap/clean kitchen towel. Let the rolls proof in a warm environment until puffy. Towards the end of their rise time, preheat the oven to 350°F.
  3. Baking the rolls: Bake the sweet potato cinnamon rolls until lightly golden brown, about 30 minutes. While the rolls bake, prepare the icing.
  4. To make the maple icing: Beat the cream cheese and butter together until smooth. Add in the powdered sugar, maple, and vanilla. Continue mixing until the icing is well combined, silky smooth, and free of any lumps.
  5. Serve. When the rolls are done, spread the maple cream cheese icing over the rolls. Garnish the rolls with chopped pecans, if desired. These sweet potato cinnamon rolls are best served right away. Enjoy! 
black hands with spatula taking lifting sweet potato cinnamon roll in white baking dish

Tips + Tricks, & More For Recipe Success

Here are some additional notes for the perfect sweet potato cinnamon rolls 🤩

  • Room temperature ingredients: The egg, butter, and cream cheese need to be room temperature. For the egg, this helps the dough to blend seamlessly. An egg that is cold straight from the fridge may cause coagulation. >> I like to set these out on the counter about an hour ahead of time and, in a pinch, submerge a cold egg in warm water for a bit to speed things up. And the butter/cream cheese is softened so that they blend well.
  • Use fresh yeast! Double check that yeast in the pantry, fresh is best!
  • Working with yeast: When making the dough, make sure that your milk is warmed to the appropriate temperature. If your milk is not warm enough, the dough will not activate. Alternatively, if the milk is too hot, it can kill the yeast and your dough will be no good, causing you to start over.
  • Follow rise times: For proper yeast effectiveness, allow the dough to proof until it doubles in size (first rise) and the cut rolls are puffy (second rise) before baking. This will make sure that the rolls’ texture will be on point.
  • Can I use instant/rapid rise yeast? Sure thing! For this type of yeast, add it directly with the dry ingredients. No need to wait for the first proof.
  • Cutting rolls: A super sharp knife or unscented dental floss is clutch for this. I do, however, prefer the floss method because you don’t run the risk of having to press on/flatten the dough like you do with a knife.
  • Make-ahead/dough prep: If you want to make these sweet potato cinnamon rolls into an overnight situation, cool. After making the dough, transfer it into a lightly greased bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Keep the dough in the fridge overnight, 8-10 hours max. Then proceed with steps 5-10.
sweet potato cinnamon rolls in white baking dish with linen on the side

Gahhh, head over sneakers for these Sweet Potato Cinnamon Rolls, y’all. They’re just so fluffy and incredibly good. Be sure to tag @butterbeready in your BBR recipe creations, I sure love to see it when you do. Until next time! 🤟🏾

Love Sweet Potato, too? Don’t miss these recipes:

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black hands with spatula taking lifting sweet potato cinnamon roll in white baking dish

Best-Ever Sweet Potato Cinnamon Rolls

  • Author: Quin Liburd
  • Prep Time: 2hrs 30m
  • Cook Time: 30m
  • Total Time: 3hrs
  • Yield: 12 rolls 1x
  • Category: Breakfast, Brunch
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American

Description

These Sweet Potato Cinnamon Rolls are so tender, luscious, and packed with sweet potato flavor! Elevate your everyday cinnamon roll game by whipping up a batch of the fluffiest and most decadent cinnamon rolls you’ll ever have. A swoon-worthy, maple cream cheese icing is the sweet finish to send these rolls over the edge!


Ingredients

Scale

Yeast Dough:

  • 1 cup whole milk, warmed to about 110°F
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar, divided
  • 1 packet (2 1/4 teaspoons) active dry yeast- see notes
  • 1 large egg, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled
  • 3/4 cup sweet potato purée
  • 4 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt

Filling:

  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 1 cup packed dark brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

Maple Cream Cheese Icing:

  • 4 ounces (block) cream cheese, softened to room temperature 
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • 2 teaspoons maple flavor or extract
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste or vanilla extract

Topping:

  • chopped pecans, for garnish- optional

Instructions

  1. Make the dough. In the bowl of a stand mixer or in a large bowl (if you plan to mix/knead by hand), combine the warm milk and 2 tablespoons of sugar together. Then sprinkle the yeast on top and mix well. Let the mixture sit for 10-15 minutes or until foamy.
  2. Once the mixture is foamy, add in the remaining sugar, egg, butter, sweet potato purée, flour, and salt.
  3. Secure dough hook attachment to mixer and mix on low speed until the dough begins to come together, about 1-2 minutes. Increase the speed to medium and continue kneading the dough until smooth, elastic, and supple, about 5-6 minutes. Alternatively, if you are not using a stand mixer, knead the dough by hand for 10 minutes on a lightly floured surface.
  4. Shape the dough into a ball and place it into a lightly greased large bowl. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap or a clean kitchen towel. For same-day rolls: let the dough rise/proof in a warm environment until it doubles in size, about 1 1/2 hours or longer depending on the temperature of your environment. Alternatively, place the covered dough into the refrigerator to proof overnight, 8-10 hours max (to make cinnamon rolls on the following day).
  5. Roll, fill, & cut rolls. After the first proof, punch down the dough knocking out the air and turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Use a rolling pin to roll out the dough to about 15×10 inches, now let’s prepare the filling. Spread the softened butter over the dough, leaving a slight margin around the edges. Sprinkle the brown sugar on top of the butter and use your hands to rub it in, leaving a slight margin around the edges. Lastly, evenly sprinkle the cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, and salt over the top and use your hand to gently pat it into the mixture.
  6. Roll up the dough into a tight log starting from the longest side with the seam side down. Pinch the seam to seal in the edges as much as you can. I like to cut off a bit of the ends of the dough because they are not as full in size as the other sections. Use a large sharp knife or unscented dental floss to cut the log crosswise into 12 pieces.
  7. Line a 9×13-inch baking pan with a piece of parchment paper (this helps just in case any of the filling leaks out). Add the rolls into the baking pan, in 3 rows of 4, leaving a bit of space between each one for expansion. Cover the pan with plastic wrap/clean kitchen towel. Let the rolls proof in a warm environment until puffy, about 1 – 1 1/2 hours or longer depending on the temperature of your environment (and if the 1st proof was in the fridge). Towards the end of proofing time, preheat the oven to 350°F.
  8. Baking the rolls: Remove the plastic wrap/kitchen towel. Bake the sweet potato cinnamon rolls until lightly golden brown, about 30 minutes. While the rolls bake, prepare the icing.
  9. To make the maple icing: In the bowl of a stand mixer or using a handheld electric mixer, beat the cream cheese and butter together until smooth. Add in the powdered sugar, maple, and vanilla. Continue mixing until the icing is well combined, silky smooth, and free of any lumps. Set aside until the rolls are done baking.
  10. Serve. When the rolls are done, use a spreading utensil to spread the maple cream cheese icing over the rolls, slathering every nook and cranny. Garnish the rolls with chopped pecans, if desired. These sweet potato cinnamon rolls are best served right away. Enjoy! 

Notes

  1. If using instant yeast, simply add it directly into the dry ingredients.
  2. Please read the blog post in its entirety for more tips + tricks.

Keywords: sweet potato cinnamon rolls, cinnamon rolls, sweet potato rolls, sweet potato recipes, sweet potato desserts, sweet potato

sweet potato cinnamon roll sitting on a stack of 3 small white plates