Caramel Pecan Bun Muffins

Nothing is more calming than late night baking. Last night (or early this morning) I was up late to do some baking for my team at work. They've been a great bunch of unofficial taste testers for my gluten free baking spree the past week. Much to their surprise, they couldn't believe the baked goods I've brought in were gluten free - a clear sign of gf baking success (at least, for me)! This time, I set out to try Caramel Pecan Bun Muffins. A cross between the beloved caramel pecan roll and muffin, these capture all the sticky sweet flavor with the ease of making muffins in one bowl. I loved how easy this was to prepare, how wonderful my kitchen smelled while baking and how awesome I can enjoy this in a gluten free version. It's definitely a delicious morning to kick off the weekend...

I've been baking a lot recently, thanks to my go-to all purpose gluten free flour blend. It's been great trying out standard non-gluten baking recipes and using this blend as a substitute for all purpose flour. I was thrilled when I found this recipe on Melissa's blog because I missed having that simple pleasure of biting into a cinnamon roll. Now, it's possible! This recipe doesn't involve yeast and proofing or rising, unlike traditional cinnamon roll recipes. Instead, everything is made in a stand mixer and comes together quite quickly. The dough is rolled out immediately after a quick kneading with the dough hook attachment. Butter is spread on top and then a mixture of cinnamon, brown sugar and chopped pecans is sprinkled on. The dough is rolled up, cut into even pieces and then placed in a muffin tin to bake.

The original name for the recipe was 'Cinnamon Bun Muffins' but I found them to be more like caramel rolls - perhaps because I used packed dark brown sugar. For added texture, I included pecans which wasn't part of the original recipe. These baked up well and I can only assume they would bake higher if making the recipe with regular all purpose flour - I used the gluten free flour blend. To finish these off, a quick glaze of powdered sugar, milk and vanilla (I used vanilla paste) was spread on top while still warm. Definitely bake these in a greased muffin pan without liners because the bottoms become caramelized when baking. (I ended up transferring the warm muffins to another muffin pan with some parchment so they wouldn't stick to the pan... and it made for easy transport into work.)

This recipe is part of a recipe swap among fellow food blogging friends, so be sure to check out A Taste of Home Cooking for the round-up of all the recipes we all swapped recently! ...

Caramel Pecan Bun Muffins
recipe adapted from Fried Ice & Donut Holes

1 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup dark brown sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1 egg
3-3 1/2 cups flour (or 490grams GF flour blend + 1 3/4 teaspoons xanthan gum)


3 tablespoons butter, room temperature
1 cup brown sugar, packed
1 1/4 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 cup chopped pecans (I used candied pecans)


1 cup powdered sugar
2 tablespoons milk
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract (I used vanilla bean paste)

Preheat oven to 375 and grease a 12-cup muffin tin.

In the bowl of a stand mixer with the paddle attachment, combine the brown sugar, baking soda, salt, vanilla, and egg until one homogenous mixture. Add the buttermilk.

Slowly add flour, mixing in one cup at a time, until a dough is formed. Switch to the dough hook attachment and knead for about 2 minutes. 

Roll the dough into a 12x24 inch rectangle and spread with softened butter. Combine the filling ingredients in a small bowl and sprinkle over the rolled and buttered dough. 

Roll the dough into a log beginning with the wide side. Stretch the log slightly. Cut into 12 two-inch pieces and place into greased muffin tin. 

Bake in preheated oven for about 20 minutes, or until golden brown.  Allow the muffins to cool in pan for about 5 minutes, then remove from the muffin tins and drizzle with icing.  Reheat in the microwave for 10 seconds if needed.


  1. Great minds think alike, I posted overnight cinnamon rolls today. These look amazing and I am a huge fan of caramel so these are right up my alley!

  2. These look seriously amazing for being gluten-free. My eyes are rolling back on how much I want this right now...drool. YUM!!!

  3. OMG my mouth is watering! lol These look delicious!

  4. Caramel rolls without all the yeast and rising? Yes! Sometimes it's just too hard to wait for the dough to rise and such so these rolls are absolutely perfect to fulfill my Cinnabon cravings! I'm sure they'll taste 100x better :)

  5. try adding some strong coffee and maple syrup to the glaze..oh yeah!

  6. I have a soft spot for pecans...I would love this with my morning cup of coffee. Yum!

  7. These would be great for Easter morning! Looks delicious!

  8. I can't believe these are GF! Way to go.

    Thanks for being part of the recipe swaps!

  9. Do you think you could make this a freezer recipe and if so how would you recommend doing so?

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