Gooey Potato Cinnamon Rolls with Chai Spiced Frosting

Confession time: these cinnamon rolls are made out of potatoes.

If that deters you, then like, we shouldn’t be besties and we can’t hang tight.

I mean, look at them. Look at them:

First things first, I may not love tater tots but heyyyy; I be lovin’ potatoes.

DID YOU KNOW potatoes have more potassium than bananas? I love ‘naners, but c’mon, that’s pretty rad. Plus- they’re packed with heart-healthy, body-cleansing, totally satiating fiber.

But wait- there’s more. Potatoes actually impart a gooey, chewy texture and yet incredibly light mouthfeel to your cinnamon roll dough, which means your rolls won’t turn out as dry as your Monday morning meeting. Each bite will be rich but pillowy soft, fluffy, and undeniably mouthwatering. If you don’t believe me– you just have to make these for yourself.

PLUS. That frosting though.

Plain old cream cheese frosting is like, so 1962. Mix things up with Chai– a spicy aromatic blend full of antioxidant-rich ingredients like black tea, ginger, and cinnamon. Your already cinnamon-loaded cinnamon rolls will be taken to the next fricken level.

And don’t even look at these thinking they require work. They’re so ridiculously easy, my dog could bust them out while chasing a squirrel and scrolling through her Instagram.

Gooey Potato Cinnamon Rolls with Chai Spiced Frosting 

Makes: 12 cinnamon rolls

For the potato dough:

  • 2 cups room temp water
  • 4 medium-large Yukon gold potatoes (about 1 lb- peeled and cut into chunks)
  • 1 heaping tablespoon sea salt
  • 1 stick (1/2 cup) butter, plus more for greasing bowl
  • 3 eggs
  • 4-5 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
  • 1/2 cup warm water between 105-115 degrees F
  • 2 tablespoons dry active yeast
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar

For the filling:

  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 3 tablespoons cinnamon
  • 1 1/4 cups brown sugar
  • 1 stick (1/2 cup) butter

For the spiced chai frosting:

  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 8 ounces cream cheese (at room temperature)
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • Scant 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon allspice
  • 1/2 teaspoon cardamom
  • 1/4 teaspoon fresh grated ginger or ground ginger
  • pinch of sea salt

To make the dough, add water, potatoes, and sea salt in a large saucepan, bring to a boil, and boil 15-20 minutes, until potatoes are super tender. Remove from heat, and mash potatoes right in the saucepan (don’t drain!). Add butter and mash until butter is all melted. Stir in eggs, then 1 cup of the all-purpose flour, and mash until super smooth. Let potatoes cool until barely lukewarm (about 10-15 minutes).

In a stand mixer with a paddle attachment, combine the 1/2 cup of water (between 105-115 degrees F) with the yeast and brown sugar. Let stand until it starts to foam (about 10 minutes). Then add in the potato mixture and mix on low until creamy (about 2-3 minutes). Next, add in remaining 3 cups of all-purpose flour, 1 cup at a time, until a tacky dough forms (tacky as in sticky, not ’till the point where it starts pairing denim jackets with blue jeans). Keep adding more until the dough is still sticky, but formed enough to grab into a rough ball and transfer to another work surface.

Turn dough out onto very generously floured surface. Knead until a smooth, elastic dough forms (about 7-8 minutes) adding more flour, a couple tablespoons at a time, if dough be too sticky. Don’t be afraid of adding more flour until you get the consistency right.

Grease a medium-sized bowl with butter, place dough inside, and turn to coat. Cover bowl tightly with plastic wrap, then drape a kitchen towel over it. Let the dough rise in a warm place where a draft can’t get in for about 1 hour. When it’s done rising, it will look like this:

While the dough is rising like jesus on easter, make the filling by combining 2         tablespoons flour, cinnamon, and sugar in a medium bowl. Mix in the 1/2 cup of butter with a fork.

When dough is done rising, preheat oven to 425. Take dough out of bowl and turn onto a well-floured surface. Roll out into a 25×12″ rectangle and sprinkle filling on top. Beginning at one of the long sides, roll into a jelly roll log, enveloping all the filling inside.

Using a sharp knife dipped in flour, cut into 12 even pieces:

Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper and place pieces onto the sheet, leaving about 3/4″ between each one. Cover the sheet loosely with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place where a draft can’t get in for about 20 minutes so they puff up.

Bake rolls for 18-22 minutes, until golden. Remove from oven and let cool for 10 minutes.

While rolls are cooling, make the frosting! In a stand mixer with a paddle attachment, combine 4 tablespoons butter, cream cheese and vanilla until fluffy. Add remaining spiced chai frosting ingredients and beat until combined. When rolls are cooled, spread frosting on top and eat up, yo.


  1. Dear Savvy: The “potato” part caught my eye for our gluten-free fam members, but alas……the recipe also includes flour. Can I substitute a gluten-free flour? If so, which one to you recommend??? Also, please let us know if your dog catches that squirrel!!! xo

    • Yes, absolutely. You can choose any GF blend you like, preferably once that includes xantham gum in the mixture. The squirrel is still in the tree taunting the puppy, but I have her busy making cinnamon roll dough so she should be occupied for at least a while 😉

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