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The Healthy Living Magazine

Makeover Favorite: Cinnamon Rolls With Raisins

By Robyn Webb, MS, LN ,

The Makeover

Original Recipe, 30 servings
Calories 295
Fat 12 g (Sat. Fat 7.7 g, Trans Fat 0.4 g)
Carbohydrate 43 g (Fiber 1 g, Sugars 27 g)
Sodium 205 mg

Smart Swaps

Less Added Sugar: The sugar in the original recipe adds up. For the dough and filling, I reduced the amount of granulated sugar and used a brown sugar blend to more than halve the added sugar.
Fat Fighters: Vegetable oil
(with just a kiss of butter for flavor) replaces the stick
and a half of butter
in the original recipe. Using fat-free milk and fewer egg yolks helps trim fat, too.
Top Note: In place of frosting, an apple juice glaze adds a sweet, golden touch.

Per Serving

Calories 150
Fat 2.5 g (Sat. Fat 0.5 g,
Trans Fat 0 g)
Carbohydrate 29 g
(Fiber 2 g, Sugars 8 g)
Cholesterol 15 mg
Sodium 30 mg
Potassium 130 mg
Protein 4 g
Phosphorus 75 mg
Exchanges: Carbohydrate 2,
Fat 0.5

Reader Raluca Preda wrote from Romania asking for a cinnamon roll makeover. Her original recipe makes eight rolls—at 1,105 calories and 47 grams of fat each. For comparison, the nutrition info listed is based on 30 servings.

Cinnamon Rolls With Raisins

Makes: 30 servings
Serving Size: 1 roll
Preparation Time: 25 minutes
Rising Time: 3 hours
Cooking Time: 30 minutes

1 cup fat-free milk
1 Tbsp. unsalted butter
3 Tbsp. vegetable oil
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 tsp. salt
2 packages dry yeast
2 eggs
1 egg white
3 cups all-purpose flour
2 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
3/4 cup brown sugar blend*
2 Tbsp. cinnamon
2/3 cup raisins
1/2 cup frozen apple juice concentrate

  1. In a small saucepan, heat the milk and butter just to simmering. Add the oil, sugar, and salt. Remove the milk mixture from the heat, and cool to lukewarm.
  2. In a small bowl, combine the yeast and 1/2 cup warm water, and let stand until foamy, about 5 minutes.
  3. In a large bowl, beat the eggs and egg white with an electric mixer for 30 seconds. Add the milk mixture and the yeast mixture. Add the flours, a small amount at a time, mixing well with a wooden spoon. 
  4. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead gently for 10 to 15 minutes, until the dough is smooth and elastic. 
  5. Lightly oil a large bowl. Place the dough in the oiled bowl, turning to coat. Cover the bowl with a towel, and set the bowl in a warm place to rise, about 1 1/2 hours, until the dough is doubled in size. Divide the dough in half and form into two balls. 
  6. Combine the Splenda Brown Sugar Blend, cinnamon, and raisins. Spray an 11- x 14-inch baking sheet with cooking spray.Roll each piece of dough into a large rectangle. Sprinkle each rectangle with half the cinnamon-raisin mixture. Starting at the long side, roll each rectangle into a log. Slice each log into 15 pieces. Place each roll on the prepared baking sheet. Cover the rolls with a towel and let them rise for 1 1/2 hours.
  7. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. In a small saucepan, melt the apple juice concentrate over medium-low heat. Brush each roll with the concentrate. Bake the rolls for 15 minutes, or until lightly browned and cooked through.

*Tested with Splenda Brown Sugar Blend; if not available, use 5 Tbsp. brown sugar plus 3 Tbsp. Splenda Granular.


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