June 15, 2024


Free For All Food

We have found Ireland’s best recipe for vegan cinnamon buns

a close up of food

© Provided by Evoke.ie

Move over Sourdough! One of the biggest new emerging food trends this winter is cinnamon buns.

The Christmassy treat has been all over social media for the past few weeks, while last month, British supermarket chain Waitrose reported via the Metro that searches for ‘cinnamon buns’ and ‘cinnamon rolls’ were up 320 per cent and 400 per cent year on year.

There are hundreds of recipes out there if you do want to get in on the trend but one Irish bakery has taken it a step further with a recipe for vegan cinnamon buns.

Selena Martin set up a plant-based café Wild Sage Bakery after returning home from teaching English in Peru, South Korea and a stint at a sustainable living community in India.

a woman standing in front of a cake: Selena runs the Wild Sage Bakery in Kerry. Pic: Wild Sage Bakery

© Provided by Evoke.ie
Selena runs the Wild Sage Bakery in Kerry. Pic: Wild Sage Bakery

When the pandemic struck, the family upped sticks and moved their business to Kerry.

She told EVOKE: ‘I love plants and have a deep love for nature and all things wild. I try to incorporate this into the Wild Sage kitchen and life as much as possible.

‘I mindfully forage with the seasons, collecting things each year like elderflowers, elderberries, blackberries, wild garlic, sloes, hawthorn and crab apples and makes jams, syrups and preserved to add to cakes and desserts.’

a dog sitting in the grass: Selena’s vegan cinnamon buns. Pic: Wild Sage Bakery

© Provided by Evoke.ie
Selena’s vegan cinnamon buns. Pic: Wild Sage Bakery

As to her cinnamon rolls, she says: ‘Cinnamon rolls have always been a classic and a favourite of mine to bake. You really can’t beat the smell of freshly baked rolls wafting through the house. They are warm, homely, and comforting and in a year where most of us have had to spend a lot of time indoors, they are the perfect treat to make us feel like our house is a home.’

‘In the bakery, I find a lot of customers prefer things that are not overly sweet and that avoid refined sugar so my recipe is made using coconut sugar and a little maple syrup for a less sweet option. I also use a blend of chai spices in the filling to jazz up the classic cinnamon roll but if you don’t have these spices to hand just use good old cinnamon!’

Selena has kindly shared her recipe for Chai cinnamon rolls and you can find further instructions on her Wild Sage Bakery website here. 

a cup of coffee sitting on top of a wooden table: Pic: Wild Sage Bakery

© Provided by Evoke.ie
Pic: Wild Sage Bakery


Chai Spice Blend

  • 3 tbsp ground cinnamon (or 2 or 3 sticks)
  • 2 tbsp cardamom seeds (not pods)
  • 1 tbsp fennel seeds
  • 2 star anise
  • 1 tsp cloves
  • 2 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1 tsp allspice/pimento
  • 1 tsp dried ginger powder
  • ¼ tsp black pepper


  • 190g warm water
  • 1 tbsp coconut sugar
  • 1 tbsp agave
  • 2 ½ tsp of yeast
  • 60g aquafaba (plus a little more for brushing the rolls before baking)
  • 2 ½ tbsp sunflower oil
  • 190g plain flour
  • 225g strong flour
  • ½ tsp salt


  • 100g softened vegan block butter (I use Naturli)
  • 80g coconut sugar (or can sub brown sugar)
  • 3 tsp chai spice


  • 75g coconut sugar, blended to a powder (or can sub icing sugar)
  • 1 tsp vanilla essence
  • 1-2 tsp plant milk

To make the dough

  • Add the warm water, coconut sugar, agave, and yeast to a bowl or jug and leave in a warm place for about 10 minutes to activate the yeast. When the yeast has a nice layer of foam on the top, add the aquafaba and sunflower oil and mix.

  • Place the plain flour, strong flour, and salt into a large mixing bowl and add the yeasty mix. Stir with a spatula until combined and then tip out the whole mixture onto a lightly floured work surface.

a cup of coffee sitting on top of a wooden table: Pic: Wild Sage Bakery

© Provided by Evoke.ie
Pic: Wild Sage Bakery

  • Now give those arms a workout! Knead the dough for about 5 to 7 minutes until it is soft and springy to touch, adding a little more flour to the work surface as necessary. It will become noticeably smoother as you knead. You can use a kitchen mixer here, to mix and knead the dough, if you have one.

  • Form the dough into a ball, place it in a lightly oiled bowl and cover with a towel. Leave it to rise in a warm place for approximately one hour or until it has doubled in size.

To make the filling

  • Put your softened butter into a bowl with the coconut sugar and chai spice and mix well with a spatula until you make a paste. If your butter is not soft enough then heat it a little in the microwave (10-15 seconds at a time) but don’t overdo it so that it’s fully melted! You want a consistency that you will be able to spread easily.

a piece of cake sitting on top of a cutting board with a knife: Pic: Wild Sage Bakery

© Provided by Evoke.ie
Pic: Wild Sage Bakery

To assemble the rolls

  • Once your dough has risen, it’s time to roll it out. Tip it out onto a floured work surface and roll into a rectangular shape, about 40cm x 25cm. Try to have an even thickness throughout. The long edge should be running along the bottom of your work surface. Gently grab each corner of the dough and pull gently so that it becomes more angular and you have a nice rectangle.

  • Scoop the filling onto the dough and spread it across in an even layer with a palette knife or spatula, all the way out to the corners.

  • Starting from the bottom, slowly and carefully roll the dough upwards into a log shape. Once you have made your log, gently push it in from both ends and smooth out any parts that seem a little uneven. We are looking for a nice, uniform log here.

a bunch of different types of food on a table: Pic: Wild Sage Bakery

© Provided by Evoke.ie
Pic: Wild Sage Bakery

  • Mark out ten even pieces and then carefully cut the log and place it into a lined baking tin. You may want to clean the knife between cuts so the sides of the rolls are not too messy. Cover again with a tea-towel and leave the rolls to rise for a further 30 mins. Don’t be tempted to skip this step, it’s very important to allow the dough to rise a second time to ensure that you have light and springy rolls!

  • Preheat the oven to 180°C and once your rolls have risen a second time brush the tops and sides of each roll with a little aquafaba. Pop them in the oven to bake for 14-16 minutes. Turn the tray halfway through to ensure they brown up nicely on each side!

food on a wooden cutting board: Selena’s Chai cinnamon buns. Pic: Wild Sage Bakery

© Provided by Evoke.ie
Selena’s Chai cinnamon buns. Pic: Wild Sage Bakery

To make the icing

  • Put the blended coconut sugar in a bowl and add the vanilla essence. Slowly add the plant milk, half a teaspoon at a time, and mix well until a thick paste is formed. Drizzle your icing over the rolls once they have cooled a little and enjoy!