Apple-Cinnamon Pull-Apart Rolls

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Yield: 16 rolls

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These miniature "monkey breads" feature fresh apple and raisins nestled among miniature rounds of cinnamon-sugar bread. A simple white glaze takes them over the top — and an optional drizzle of boiled cider makes them ethereal!

Apple-Cinnamon Pull-Apart Rolls

star rating (3) rate this recipe »
Hands-on time:
Baking time:
Total time:
Yield: 16 rolls
Published: 03/11/2013





  • 2/3 cup confectioners' sugar
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 tablespoon milk
  • boiled cider, optional

Tips from our bakers

  • Ever had a Cobblestone muffin at Panera? These rolls are our King Arthur clone.
  • If you demand precision in a recipe, this one probably isn't for you. How many raisins, exactly, do you use for each roll? As many as you like. How many pieces of apple? Up to you. How much cinnamon-sugar? Enough to coat the dough. While baking often does demand exact amounts of ingredients, the filling for these rolls is more intuitive. If it looks good to you, it's right.
  • Why baking soda — isn't this a yeast bread? It's not critical, but we feel it gives the rolls a bit of extra "pop" in the oven.


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1) To make the dough: Combine all of the dough ingredients, mixing and kneading to make a smooth, soft dough. It may seem dry at first, but as you knead it'll soften up.

2) Place the dough in a greased bowl or greased 8-cup measure, cover it, and let it rise for 60 to 90 minutes, until it's noticeably puffy (though not necessarily doubled in bulk).

3) Lightly grease paper muffin cups, and use them to line the 12 cups of a standard muffin tin. The recipe makes 16 rolls; but if you don't have a second pan, don't stress — we'll give you an alternative.

4) Gently deflate the dough, and divide it into 16 pieces; each will be about 1 1/2 ounces (44g). Round each piece into a flattened ball.

5) Working with one piece at a time, use a bench knife (or regular knife) to cut the dough into 8 wedges. Don't worry about being precise; pieces can vary in size.

6) Roll or shake the dough pieces in cinnamon-sugar, and place four of them into a muffin cup.

7) Sprinkle with raisins and chopped apple (and cinnamon chips, if desired); top with the remaining four pieces of dough.

8) Repeat with the remaining balls of dough, raisins, and apple. When you run out of room in the muffin tin, section the remaining four dough balls, and make them into a small pull-apart bread. Or make individual rolls by placing them in doubled-up aluminum foil muffin cups, set in a cake pan or on small baking sheet.

9) Sprinkle any remaining cinnamon-sugar atop the rolls. Cover them lightly, and let them rise for about 2 hours, until they're noticeably puffy. Toward the end of the rising time, preheat the oven to 350°F.

10) Uncover the risen rolls, and bake them for 15 to 17 minutes, until they're a light golden brown. Don't let them darken too much; they'll be dry.

11) Remove the rolls from the oven and drizzle each with some boiled cider, if desired; this will add flavor, and a nice stickiness.

12) To glaze the rolls: Mix the glaze ingredients together. Drizzle over the cooled rolls.

Yield: 16 rolls.


  • star rating 10/13/2014
  • Shar from Massachusetts
  • Excellent recipe! I made it using 4 ounces of "discard" sourdough starter, and deducted 2 ounces each of the water and All-Purpose flour. I followed the Blog suggestions and added a streusel/pecan topping to half of the rolls to try it out. The rolls are great with or without the streusel, but I especially like the addition of the chopped pecans. I made half of the glaze recipe - added a little maple syrup, along with the boiled cider, and drizzled it over the rolls. Thanks for another great recipe!
  • star rating 12/22/2013
  • Marilyn from Brunswick, OH
  • I thought these were excellent and I'm surprised there aren't more reviews. A very easy recipe for the new baker. I made the dough as written in the bread machine and it was very easy to work with. I chopped up two granny smith apples and put them in a bowl with 2 cups of water and 2 tablespoons of lemon juice to stop them from browning. I used a large 6 muffin tin instead of the 12 muffin small tin. I used 3 ounces of dough cut in 8 pieces and set aside an additional 3 ounces cut in 8 pieces for fill. After rolling the dough in cinnamon sugar I placed 4 balls on the bottom, topped with a heaping tablespoon of apples and topped it with 6 dough balls. Followed the rest of the recipe as written except I let it raise for 1 hour and baked it for 17 minutes. Reheated in the oven the next day at 350 for 6 minutes. They tasted great.
  • star rating 06/26/2013
  • khadijah from atlanta
  • I did this apple pull apart rolls and it was the best and easy dough I've ever worked with. I'm a baker, and I don't normally do yeast dough. The prep is very easy I like same bowl recipes, I made the dough--I didn't have any potato flakes on hand so (LOL) I used small SWEET POTATO! The dough rose really nice and just like the blog says, its not a precise dough or you may not get precise pieces once you put them in the liners. That's the fun part having more in one than the other. The 2nd part of the dough rising--I didn't need to let it sit 2 hours only about 1 hour and the pieces came out perfectly. Did I say I used pears instead of apples! The rolls were soft and not too sweet. the glaze really gave it the sweetness it needed it was very yummy and I would use this recipe again.

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