This Caramel Apple Cinnamon Roll Wreath is the perfect brunch or breakfast meal for the holidays! The perfect brunch show stopper! You will wow everyone with this easy cinnamon roll centerpiece.
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Warm, soft dough, layered with a caramel apple sauce is the most amazingly special cinnamon roll recipe we’ve made to date. The kids gobbled up this cinnamon roll wreath (naturally) and begged for more.
When you top the caramel apple cinnamon roll wreath with a homemade caramel apple icing, you’re in for an out of this world experience. We topped our caramel apple cinnamon roll wreath with cranberries, dried blueberries, nuts and powdered sugar too.
The inspiration for this new holiday tradition
Every year, on Christmas morning, my mom would pop open a can of cinnamon rolls and pop them into the oven. We all knew that she would get the middle one and then the rest were up for grabs. I remember begging to lick the icing container of any last remnants that remained inside. It was pure bliss as a child.
Now, that my girls are older, I love making them cinnamon rolls too. It’s actually an amazingly fun thing to make with them. We have them on special occasions or just because, but it’s always awhile in between. Their giddy laughter warms my heart when I tell them what we are making. They jump up and down, dance, and run around with excitement. They too love to lick the bowl of icing when I’m done pouring it on. Can you blame them?
For the holidays though, I wanted to do something extra special. We decided we were going to make a wreath out of our cinnamon roll dough. We may have done a few more practices runs at this one….strictly for testing purposes only. *wink wink*
This is now one of our family traditions and the girls absolutely love it. So do we.
What ingredients do you need to make a caramel apple cinnamon roll wreath?
A cinnamon roll wreath can be made very similarly to a regular cinnamon roll recipe; however, the difference in this recipe comes in when you add the caramel apple part. For the cinnamon roll wreath, the ingredients that you need are:
- instant yeast
- unsalted butter
- whole milk
Those ingredients will make the dough of this caramel apple cinnamon roll wreath. The next part is the caramel apple filling and for that, the ingredients that you will need are:
- apple cider
- brown sugar
- maple syrup
- heavy cream
- unsalted butter
- apple pie spice
If you want to make a cinnamon roll wreath with the caramel apple filling, but just a traditional cinnamon roll wreath, you would just need cinnamon and brown sugar. We’ll explain below.
Lastly, there’s a delicious caramel apple icing that we add to the top of this. For the icing, you’ll need:
- apple cider
- cream cheese
- powdered sugar
- apple pie spice
How do you make a caramel apple cinnamon roll wreath?
In a bowl, you’ll start to make the dough. Add in the flour, sugar, salt, and yeast. You’ll add water and milk to a bowl of warmed, melted butter and pour that into the flour mixture. Next, add in the eggs. Then, knead with your hands until the dough is no longer sticky. Let it rise for just 15 minutes.
While the bread is rising, make the filling by combining the apple cider, brown sugar, maple syrup, heavy cream, unsalted butter, vanilla, salt, nutmeg, and some of the apple pie spice into a sauce pot. Let that cook over medium heat for 10 minutes, barely touching it. You are essentially making caramel sauce at this point and it’s best not to touch it. Remove, let cool.
Roll your risen dough out into a rectangle. It should be about 30X20 in shape. Spread the cooled caramel apple sauce across the dough. Spread the remaining pie spice across the top. Roll up the dough into a log.
Essentially at this point you could turn them into cinnamon rolls by just cutting into even slices.
To make the cinnamon roll wreath, you’re going to make sure the seam side is down and slice lengthwise. Then, place the two pieces side by side with the filling side up. Starting at the top, fold one piece of dough over the other and braid the two strands until you reach the end. Pinching the ends together. Place on a greased baking sheet and form a circle. Cover and place in a warm preheated, but turned off oven. After 35 minutes, turn the oven on and cook for roughly 35 minutes.
Make the caramel apple icing while your cinnamon roll wreath cooks. Pour on top when you remove and let cool for a few. Serves 16.
Can I make these into caramel apple cinnamon rolls instead of the a cinnamon roll wreath?
Absolutely! Whether you don’t feel like taking the extra steps or maybe a little intimidated by making a cinnamon roll wreath (seriously don’t be), there may be reason for you wanting just regular caramel apple cinnamon rolls instead.
You will make the recipe as directed until you end up with a rolled up log. Instead of slicing the cinnamon roll log down the center, you will just cut into slices. You should be able to get 18 rolls out of the log that you roll.
Then you will proceed with the recipe as directed, but only bake the cinnamon rolls for 25-28 minutes. It’s super easy!
What other recipes could I serve for a holiday or Christmas brunch?
Obviously this recipe, makes for an absolutely amazing holiday brunch or breakfast centerpiece. It’s gorgeous, tastes amazing, and will completely wow people. However, you need more than this to serve! Other brunch or breakfast holiday recipe ideas are:
- Pumpkin Cheesecake Pancakes
- Twice Baked Sweet Potatoes with Sausage and Apples (Can be Vegetarian or Vegan too)
- Cranberry Orange Nut Bread
- Sweet Potato and Egg Muffins
- Ham & Cheese Bites
- Bacon Egg and Cheese Pretzel Bites
- Banana Bread Pancakes with Caramelized Walnut Syrup
- 5 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/4 cup + 1 Tablespoon granulated sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 packages instant yeast
- 4 Tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 cup water
- 1/2 cup whole milk
- 2 large eggs
- 1/2 cup apple cider
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 2 tbsp maple syrup
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 1 stick unsalted butter
- 1/2 tsp vanilla
- 1/4 tsp salt
- pinch nutmeg
- 3/4 tsp apple pie spice + 1/4 tsp apple pie spice divided
- 2 cups apple cider reduced to 1/2 cup
- 6 oz cream cheese softened
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 1/4 tsp apple pie spice
- Chopped pecan
- chopped almonds
- dried blueberries
- powdered sugar
Preheat the oven to 200 degrees.
Grease a 14x16 pan with coconut oil and set aside,
In a large bowl, add flour, sugar, salt, and yeast.
Whisk to combine well.
In a small microwavable bowl, melt butter (about 30 seconds).
Add in water and milk to butter bowl and heat for an additional 30 seconds.
Carefully mix together so heated through.
Pour the butter mixture into the flour mixture.
Add the eggs and knead with hand until the dough is no longer sticky (do not overknead)
Place in a bowl and cover with a tea towel for 20 minutes to rise. Make filling while dough rises.
Add all the filling ingredients, reserving the additional 1/4 tsp apple pie spice for later, to a medium saucepan.
Heat over medium for 10 minutes, only stirring 2-3 times max. This will bubble up a bit but that's fine.
Remove from heat and let cool slightly.
After dough has risen for 20 minutes, roll it out into the shape of a rectangle. This should be roughly 30x20 in size. Ensure that you don't have more dough in the middle than you do at the ends or your wreath will not be even.
Spread the cooled caramel apple filling evenly across the rolled out dough. Work quickly so the filling doesn't harden.
Evenly spread the remaining 1/4 tsp apple pie spice on top of the filling.
Working from the longest side, tightly roll dough up. It's important that you get it as tight as possible.
With the seam side down, cut the cinnamon roll in half length wise.
Carefully place the two pieces side by side and place the right side over the left side.
Continue to braid the two strands until you reach the end.
Then carefully move the roll onto your greased baking sheet and form a circle, shaped like a wreath.
Cover lightly with aluminum foil.
Turn the oven OFF and place the covered wreath into the oven for 35 minutes to let rise.
After the 35 minutes is up, turn the oven back ON to 375 degrees and remove the foil.
Bake the caramel apple cinnamon roll wreath for 35-40 minutes or until the top is golden brown and the center is cooked all the way through. Note: if your oven brown faster and you notice golden brown around 25 minutes, place the foil back on top.
Add 2 cups of apple cider to a medium saucepan over medium high heat. Reduce down to 1/2 cup liquid. Remove from heat and let cool.
In a medium bowl, beat together cream cheese and powdered sugar.
Add in apple pie spice and reduced cider and blend until combined well.
Place in fridge until ready for cinnamon roll wreath.
Remove cinnamon roll wreath. If some of the filling has pooled into the middle, use a spoon and drizzle across the top of the wreath. Let cool.
Top with caramel apple icing and optional toppings.
Serves & Enjoy!
**Nutritional facts are just estimates. Please utilize your own brand nutritional values to double check against our estimates. Nutritional labels to not include optional toppings, but does include icing.
This was truly one of our most favorite things that we have made on our site before and we hope that you truly enjoy it as much as we have. Happy Holidays from our family to yours!
Some items that may help you make this recipe:
PIN THIS CARAMEL APPLE CINNAMON ROLL WREATH FOR LATER:
This post was originally published on 12/20/2017 and has since been updated.