Banana Cinnamon Rolls

Every time I have bananas that get ripe before I can get around to eating them, I mash them and freeze them to make banana bread later. I’ve been looking for a different take on traditional banana bread, and thought cinnamon rolls made with bananas in the dough would be an excellent choice! These smelled great baking in the oven! Next time I think I’ll add some walnuts or pecans to the filling.

Inspired by this.

Banana rolls:

½ cup milk (warmed to about 100 degrees F)
¼ cup sugar
2 ¼ teaspoons active dry yeast (one packet)
3 medium overripe bananas, mashed (about ¾ cup)
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 large egg
½ teaspoon salt
3 ½ cups bread flour (you can also use bread flour, all-purpose, and even about ½ cup whole wheat)

Filling:
1 cup packed brown sugar
½ teaspoons cinnamon
¼ teaspoon each of cloves, allspice, and ginger
1/3 cup chopped walnuts or pecans (optional)
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

Cream cheese frosting:
4 ounces cream cheese, softened
2  cups powdered sugar (approximate)
½ teaspoon vanilla extract

In a 2-cup measuring glass, combine the milk, sugar and yeast. Set aside for about 10 minutes to proof.

To the yeast mixture, add the bananas, butter, oil, and egg.

In a large bowl combine 2 cups of the flour and salt. Pour the wet ingredients over the dry ingredients. Stir with a spoon until combined. Continue adding flour until it forms a dough that is not sticky.

Knead the dough on a floured surface for about 10 minutes; a smooth dough will form. Place the dough ball into a lightly floured bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Allow to rise in a warm place for an hour or two, or until it has doubled in size.

Punch the dough down. On a floured surface, roll the dough to about an 18 x 24 inches rectangle (doesn’t have to be perfect).

For the filling, mix together the sugar and spices.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Brush the dough rectangle with the melted butter. Sprinkle evenly with the sugar mixture.

Roll up the dough along the long edge. Use a sharp knife to cut the log into 12 even pieces.

Place the rolls into a greased 9×13 pan. Allow to rise for about 15 minutes or until they start to get puffy.

Bake in your preheated 350 F oven for 22 to 24 minutes, or until golden brown. Allow to cool slightly before frosting.

For frosting, combine all ingredients in a medium bowl with a fork (or hand mixer). Spread evenly on the rolls.

Rolling out the dough…you can see the specks of banana seeds!

Brush with butter and then sprinkle with the spiced sugar.

Roll up the dough, starting with the long end.

Slice the log into 12 buns!

All lined up and ready to go!

Allow them to rise and get puffy before baking.

Fresh out of the oven!

Mmm smells like banana bread.

Frost them after they’ve cooled a bit.

Break one off and enjoy!

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