Healthier Hummingbird Cinnamon Rolls embody all there is to love about the classic Southern spice cake in a lower-sugar, whole-grain breakfast pastry. This post is sponsored by Soom Foods. I was compensated for my time, however all opinions are my own.
Today, we’re taking two decadent, spice-centric treats—cinnamon rolls and Hummingbird Cake—and rolling them into the ultimate breakfast pastry. The result? Tender, flaky dough bolstered with warm spice, sweet pops of pineapple, and crunchy bits of coconut and pecans. Drizzle these dreamboats with a luscious layer of pineapple glaze and you will certainly reach the apex of breakfast bliss.
Compared to most cinnamon roll recipes, this version achieves signature sticky-sweetness with 40% less refined sugar by using Soom Foods Silan Date Syrup.
This all-natural date syrup is made from 100% steamed and pressed dates that were cultivated throughout Israel, consisting of 80-90% Medjool dates, and with the remainder coming from the Jordan Valley.
Is Date Syrup Healthy?
In terms of nutrition, Soom Silan is lower on the glycemic index scale than honey, maple syrup, and granulated sugar, plus has almost 4x the potassium and 8x the fiber. Additionally, it’s a rich source of other essential nutrients, including calcium, magnesium, manganese, and iron. In terms of viscosity, Soom Silan falls between that of maple syrup and molasses, but I love it most for its rich flavor and caramel-like sweetness.
In addition to using Soom Silan in baked goods, it makes for a dreamy drizzle over pancakes and waffles, and adds the perfect jolt of sweetness to oatmeal and homemade lattes. If you’d like to try any Soom products (you all already know that I’m equally obsessed with their tahini), you can get 10% off your order off soomfoods.com by using the code ‘dishingouthealth’ at checkout!
What is Hummingbird Cake?
A signature southern dessert, Hummingbird Cake typically includes a trio of banana, pineapple, and cream cheese. Additionally, you’ll often find chopped pecans and lots of cinnamon to imbue the dessert with warm spice. Exactly how this dessert got its name is unclear, however it could have something to do with its level of sweetness, sure to suit those nectar-loving hummingbirds (or anyone with a hard-hitting sweet tooth, such as myself).
In this version, we’re leaving out the banana and instead bolstering the filling with unsweetened coconut flakes. Mainly because adding bananas to the batter impacted the overall flakiness of the dough, and adding them to the filling made it a bit too gooey. But, trust me, there’s enough fodder in the filling to make you not miss them one bit.
In addition to the nutritional perks of Soom Silan, I’d be remiss to not also touch on pecans. As far as tree nuts go, pecans are a top source of antioxidants, and they contain the largest variety of vitamins and minerals, including vitamins A and E, B vitamins, magnesium, and potassium.
If you dislike pecans, chopped walnuts will also do the job here!To sum up, these Healthier Hummingbird Cinnamon Rolls are a sweet treat ideal for leisurely weekend mornings and springtime entertaining.
Other Healthy Breakfast Recipes:
- 1 cup warm milk
- 1 packet instant dry yeast (I like Red Star Platinum Baking Yeast)
- 2 large eggs, room temperature
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- ⅓ cup unsalted butter, melted
- 2 tsp. pure vanilla extract
- 4¼ cups white whole-wheat flour
- 1 tsp. kosher salt
- **Hummingbird Filling**
- 1 cup chopped pecans, divided, plus more for sprinkling overtop
- ½ canned crushed pineapple, drained and patted dry (plus 1 Tbsp. drained pineapple juice reserved)
- ½ cup unsweetened coconut flakes
- 3 Tbsp. Soom Foods Silan Date Syrup
- 2 Tbsp. ground cinnamon
- 4 oz. Neufchâtel cheese (light cream cheese), softened
- ¾ cup powdered sugar
- 1 Tbsp. reserved pineapple juice
- Pour the warm milk in the bowl of a stand mixer and sprinkle the yeast overtop. Let stand 5 minutes.
- Next, add eggs, sugar, butter, and vanilla; use the paddle hook to beat until combined.
- Switch to dough hook and add flour and salt. Start on low speed and increase to medium. Knead dough in the standing mixer until a large ball is formed and the dough is mostly smooth, about 5 minutes. If the dough seems too tacky and is not forming a ball, add more flour 1 TBS at a time until a smooth ball is formed.Grease a large bowl and place the dough inside.
- Cover the bowl with a towel and put the bowl in a warm place to rise for 1 hour, or until the dough has doubled in size.
- Meanwhile, prepare the filling by combining pecans, pineapple, coconut flakes, date syrup, and ground cinnamon in a bowl; stir in combine.
- Once dough has risen, gently punch the dough to release the gas and transfer dough to a floured work surface. Roll the dough into an 18x12” rectangle, about ¼ inch thick. Spread filling evenly over dough and roll up jelly-roll style. Slice into 12 equal sized rolls and place into a greased 9x13 inch baking dish. Cover and let rise again for 30 minutes.
- Meanwhile, preheat oven to 350°F. Bake cinnamon rolls until golden brown, about 20 to 23 minutes.
- While the rolls bake, prepare frosting by beating cream cheese, powdered sugar, and pineapple juice until blended. Spread over tops of cinnamon rolls. Sprinkle chopped pecans overtop.