Soft and sticky plum cinnamon rolls with a quick and easy plum glaze. These brunch time beauties are made with a homemade spiced plum jam which packs the rolls with flavour and gives the topping a gorgeous all natural pink shade.
What's Special About These Rolls
- Homemade spiced plum jam - the filling for these rolls is made with a quick and easy plum jam, made from scratch, no pectin or special tools required!
- Brioche dough - these rolls use my classic super soft and buttery brioche dough. You can find the step by step guide to making this dough in my basic Brioche Cinnamon Rolls recipe.
- Quick plum glaze - to top these rolls off, I use a quick and sticky plum glaze, naturally pink from the plum jam.
Ingredient Notes for Homemade Plum Jam
To make your jam, you'll need:
- Plums - I recommend using fresh plums, with the stones removed and roughly chopped. Leave the skins on the plums, as these will bring more flavour and colour to the jam. You may find different plums give different depths of flavour and colour to your jam, but aim for well ripened fruits.
- Light brown sugar - I like to use brown sugar for the added richness of the molasses notes. You can use granulated sugar or caster sugar here.
- Cinnamon - a bit of ground cinnamon will go a long way to spicing up this jam, enhancing the plums.
- Lemon - the juice of a lemon will freshen everything up, giving the jam a slight tang. Lemon juice also helps to encourage the sugar to start dissolving at the beginning of the cooking process and will help thicken the jam.
How to Make the Jam
This is a simple small batch plum jam without pectin. It's a quick stovetop recipe and can be ready in about half an hour. For the cinnamon rolls, you can substitute this with a store bought plum jam, but the flavour and results will vary, since most shop bought plum jams are mixed with other ingredients.
- To make the jam, start by placing all ingredients in a saucepan (image 1 below).
- Cook this over a medium heat, stirring occasionally until the sugar has dissolved and the fruits are releasing juices.
- Bring the mixture to a boil over the medium heat and continue to cook, stirring occasionally for about 20 minutes.
- While the mixture boils, the fruits should soften and the jam thicken.
- Remove from the heat (image 2 below) and decant into a heat proof bowl to cool completely before use in your rolls.
A couple of quick tips for this jam:
- Since this is being used in your cinnamon rolls, there is no need to bring this to a certain temperature in order to ensure it sets. A lot like my Peach Cinnamon Roll recipe, you're mainly just looking for a good loose jam consistency, a bit thicker than a sauce.
- Cooking times may vary a bit dependent on the ripeness of your fruits and the size of the pieces you chop.
- You want to ensure that this doesn't stick to the bottom of your pan, because it will burn and make clean up a lot messier. Stir occasionally and turn down the heat if it seems to be sticking.
Ingredient Notes for the Filling
- Butter - unsalted butter softened at room temperature so that it can be spread easily on your dough. This can be substituted for salted butter, but there will be an added saltiness to your overall recipe.
- Cinnamon - ground cinnamon. There is already some cinnamon in your jam if you've made my homemade spiced plum jam recipe. If you're using store bought or un-spiced jam, you may want to double the amount of ground cinnamon called for in the filling of this recipe.
- Sugar - a couple of tablespoons of sugar is all that is needed, since there is plenty of sugar in the jam for your filling.
- Plum jam - either my homemade jam, included as part of this recipe, or a store bought alternative. If using store bought, you will want to look for a pure plum jam (not mixed with other fruits or berries) for the closest match to my recipe.
How to Make Plum Cinnamon Rolls
This recipe starts out a lot like my other roll recipes - with the dough. To save time here, I've not included a step by step breakdown. Instead, if you want to see the full process for this dough, check out my Brioche Cinnamon Roll recipe.
We pick this recipe up after the slow proof, when you're ready to fill and form your rolls.
- Line a square baking tray with parchment paper and set aside.
- In a small mixing bowl, mix together the butter, cinnamon and sugar so that you have a spreadable butter paste.
- Scrape your dough out of it's bowl and on to a well floured work surface.
- Press this into a rectangle and then roll will a rolling pin until you have a large (roughly 12" x 15") rectangle.
- Spread your butter mixture over the surface of the dough, leaving a small gap around the edges.
- Next spread the jam over the cinnamon butter.
- Roll the dough up from the bottom to the top forming a log.
- Using floss or a thin kitchen twine, trim the ends off of the log, removing about an inch or two of uneven/unfilled dough.
- Then divide the remaining log into 9, using the floss to cut the 9 rolls and place these in the lined baking pan.
- Cover the pan with a clean kitchen towel and allow to proof at room temperature for 2 hours until doubled in size.
- After the second proof, preheat your oven and prepare an egg wash using the remaining egg yolk from your dough.
- Brush the egg wash over the top of the rolls and place in the centre of the preheated oven to bake until risen and golden.
- Remove from the oven and allow to cool for about 10 minutes while you make your glaze.
If you're familiar with my cinnamon roll recipes, you'll no doubt know the drill by now! But, for anyone just starting out with brioche cinnamon rolls, there are a few quick tips that may come in handy:
- Don't be put off by the amount of kneading - this is a sticky enriched dough, which needs work to be brought together. The mixer should be kept on a low setting and personally I just set timers to keep track.
- Even after the 30 minutes of kneading called for in this recipe, your dough may still appear sticky and wet. A good test of doneness is to touch the dough - it shouldn't leave a lot of residue on your finger.
- If you're making your own jam, do this the day before you plan to assemble your rolls to ensure it has time to thoroughly cool down before adding to the dough. It can be made a few days in advance and stored in the fridge to get a head start here.
- The smaller the pieces of plum, the better for the sake of spreading the jam in your rolls and using in the glaze. This is because the plum pieces won't break apart as much as some other fruits (like berries) when cooking down.
To top off my plum rolls, I've opted for a plum glaze. This is a bit looser and runnier than a frosting, but still packed with flavour.
- Powdered sugar - or icing sugar. This doesn't normally need sifted for a glaze like this. If yours is particularly lumpy or the clumps are really solid, you may want to sift to remove these.
- Heavy cream - or double cream. You can also use milk in this recipe, but the amounts will vary. You normally need less milk in a frosting than cream to achieve a similar consistency. If using milk add it slowly and avoid over-doing it.
- Plum jam - if you're using my homemade plum jam recipe, you'll need to reserve a couple of tablespoons of the jam when you're adding this to the roll filling. This will then be used for the glaze. Again you can use a store bought jam here, though if it is a firm set jam, it may be a bit more difficult to mix it into the icing.
- Vanilla extract - a touch of vanilla will round out the flavour of your glaze.
All you'll need to do is stir the ingredients together until smooth. There will be pieces of chopped plum, but the sugar should be fully combined with the liquid ingredients.
My glaze is a bit runny for these rolls. If you'd like to start off with a thicker consistency, add the cream about half a tablespoon at a time, rather than all at once. Stir to combine after each addition. Stop once you're happy with the consistency.
If you want to adjust the consistency further, you can follow the standard adjustments of more powdered sugar to thicken or more cream to thin. As ever, make any additions a little bit at a time. This way you avoid over-adjusting and needing to re-adjust again.
- Different frosting - these rolls will go great with a cream cheese frosting, like I use in my Blueberry Cinnamon Rolls or a thick and creamy vanilla option, like with my Funfetti Cinnamon Rolls (with or without extra sprinkles!).
- Add more spice - this recipe is pretty straightforward on the cinnamon spice, but you can play around here! Add more or less cinnamon to your flavour preferences, try some nutmeg or a touch of ginger - the options are endless. You can add spicing to the jam, if you're making your own or to the butter filling mixture (or both).
- A touch of orange - orange compliments plum and can add a bit of a fresh tanginess here. You can substitute the lemon in the jam for orange juice and try my orange glaze from my Orange Cinnamon Rolls in place of the frosting.
- Varieties of plums - plums can vary significantly across variety. This recipe was developed with a standard mildly sweet ruby/purple skinned but yellow centred plum. Plums with a darker more purply flesh will give a more deep colour to the jam and the overall cinnamon roll. Some plums can be sweeter and others more tart, giving different qualities to this recipe. Find out more about major plum varieties in this link.
These cinnamon rolls with plum filling are at their best freshly baked.
They can be made a day ahead. If doing so, do not frost with the glaze until the day of serving. This means you'll have the opportunity to reheat them and won't need to worry about storing in the refrigerator. Bake the rolls as directed, cool completely and wrap well to keep from going stale. Reheat them in the oven (I usually do about 15 minutes in a 350°F) and frost for serving.
Leftovers do also keep for a day or two, but the moisture of the plum jam makes the bread soggy if left too long.
Yes, most definitely! Cinnamon is a great spice to pair with plums - it will accentuate the plum flavour and make a warming, cozy bake. Try out these plum cinnamon rolls for yourself to see!
Cinnamon roll fillings essentially leaking out or sinking to the bottom can happen for a couple of reasons. Some common reasons include:
- the plum jam wasn't thick enough and was too runny
- your rolls weren't rolled tightly enough when assembling and the jam has drained down during the second proof
Don't worry too much, they'll still be super tasty, though the bottom of the rolls might be a bit on the stickier side!
Looking for more fruity recipes? Try:
Plum Cinnamon Rolls
- 8" square baking tray
- stand mixer fitted with a dough hook
Ingredients for the Plum Jam
- 16 oz fresh plums stone removed and roughly chopped (leave skin on). 16oz is about 6 medium plums with the stones removed.
- 6 tablespoon light brown sugar firmly packed
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice or juice from 1 lemon
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Ingredients for the Dough
- ¼ cup full fat milk or whole milk, warmed to 104°F (40C)
- 2¼ teaspoon dry active yeast or one packet
- 1 tablespoon granulated sugar or caster sugar. This will be divided in the instructions below.
- 1 cup all purpose flour or plain flour
- ¾ cup bread flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 3 large eggs ideally at room temperature, one egg dividd into yolk and white
- ½ cup unsalted butter softened at room temperature and cut into small pieces
Ingredients for the Filling
- ¾ cup plum jam most of the quantity from the homemade jam in this recipe (reserving a couple of tablespoons for the glaze)
- 6 tablespoon unsalted butter softened at room temperature
- 2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ¼ cup light brown sugar firmly packed
Ingredients for the frosting
- 1 cup powdered sugar or icing sugar, no sifting necessary
- 2 tablespoon plum jam reserved from the homemade plum jam in this recipe or store bought
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoon heavy cream or double cream
Instructions for Plum Jam
- Start by making your spiced plum jam. Place your roughly chopped plums (stone removed, but skins left on) in a saucepan with the sugar, lemon juice and cinnamon. Cook over a medium heat, stirring occasionally until the sugar dissolves.
- Bring the mixture to a boil and continue cooking for about 20 minutes. During this time the plums should begin to soften and break down a bit (see note) and the sauce should thicken.
- Pour the jam into a heatproof bowl and allow to cool completely. Once cool, cover and store in the refrigerator if making in advance.
Instructions for Dough
- Grease a mixing bowl with some butter and set aside.
- Sprinkle the yeast and 1 teaspoon of sugar over the yeast. Give this a stir and set aside for about 10 minutes to become foamy.
- Meanwhile, place the flour, bread flour, remaining sugar and salt in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook. Give this a quick stir.
- When the yeast is ready, pour this into the flour mixture, immediately followed by two of the eggs and one egg white. Reserve the remaining yolk for an egg wash when ready to bake.
- Turn the mixer onto a low setting and knead for about 15 minutes to bring the dough together. This will be sticky, but after 15 minutes it should be starting to pull itself from the sides of the bowl. (see note)
- With the mixer still on a low setting, add the butter a couple of small pieces at a time. Once these have all mixed into the dough, continue kneading for about 15 minutes until the dough is again pulling itself from the sides of the bowl.
- Scrape the dough into the prepared greased mixing bowl, cover with plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator for a slow proof overnight (or for about 8 hours).
Instructions for Filling
- After the dough's first proof, line your square baking pan with parchment paper. Set this aside while you prepare your filling and assemble the rolls.
- Start by mixing together the softened butter, cinnamon and sugar until you have a smooth flavoured butter paste.
- Remove the dough from the refrigerator and scrape out onto a well floured work surface.
- Press this into a rectangular shape and then roll out with a rolling pin to a large rectangle, about 12" wide by 15" long.
- Spread the butter mixture over the surface, leaving a small gap around the edges.
- Then spread the plum jam over the top. (see note)
- Roll the dough from the bottom to the top, forming a tight log.
- Using flavorless dental floss or thin kitchen twine, trim the ends of the log so that you remove the uneven and unfilled dough. This will be about an inch or so off of each end.
- Then use the floss to divide the remaining dough into 9 equal rolls. Place the rolls in your lined baking pan and cover with a clean kitchen towel to proof at room temperature for 2 hours (until doubled in size).
Instructions for Baking
- Preheat the oven to 350°F (175C/155C Fan).
- Using the reserved egg yolk, add a splash of milk (about half a tablespoon). Beat this together with a fork to make a quick egg wash.
- Brush your egg wash over the rolls and then place them in the oven to bake for about 25 minutes until risen and golden.
- Once baked, remove from the oven and allow to cool at room temperature for about 10 minutes while you make your glaze.
Instructions for Plum Glaze
- Stir together the powdered sugar, plum jam, vanilla and cream until you have a smooth glaze (this will have chunks of plum in it but the sugar should dissolve smoothly into the cream). (see note)
- Spread this over the warm rolls and serve.
- The riper your plums the better for this recipe - under-ripened fruits will take longer to break down and may not soften as much. You should still have a delicious sauce, but it may take a bit longer.
- When cooking this quick jam, you're not looking for a specific temperature to be reached because it doesn't need to set (like a traditional jam). You just want it to thicken so that you've cooked out a good amount of the water. This will make it better for filling your rolls.
- You only need a light boiling, it doesn't need to be a high rolling boil. Cooking at too high a temperature may lead to the jam catching on the bottom and burning, so be sure to stir regularly to check its not sticking.
- Depending on the size of your mixer, you may find that you need to pause the kneading soon after the start to knock the flour into the centre of the bowl and avoid this pressing up the sides of the bowl.
- Brioche is a sticky enriched dough. Despite the kneading, it may still be sticking to the sides and especially to the base of your bowl. To check it is ready, you can press the dough lightly with your finger. It may be sticky, but it shouldn't leave much residue on your finger.
- For this recipe, the jam recipe will make approximately 1 cup of jam, depending on how long you've cooked this and therefore how thickened it has become. This is divided into two parts, with a large amount used in the filling and a small amount used in the frosting. I recommend reserving a couple of tablespoons for your frosting and then using the rest in the filling. This might mean that you use slightly more than the ¾ cup called for in this filling recipe.
- The plum glaze in this recipe is runnier than some of my other cinnamon roll frostings. If you'd like a thicker frosting, add more powdered sugar or use less cream.