This is a sweet roll that I’ve been dreaming about for years. Every year we wait for our favorite holiday coffee to come to our local coffee shops. You know the one: Peppermint Mocha piled high with whipped cream. It’s such a great start to the holiday season!
This 100% homemade chocolate roll pays tribute to that famous coffee drink. If you love mint, coffee and chocolate, this roll is for you!
Why you’ll love this recipe:
Soft, fluffy chocolate yeast dough.
A simple filling of chocolate chips and baking chips.
The secret ingredient for ultimate gooeyness.
Fluffy peppermint buttercream for an extra minty boost.
What gives these rolls flavor?
There are a few key ingredients that you’ll need to give the peppermint mocha sweet rolls the best flavor:
Cocoa Powder. We replaced a little bit of the flour in our traditional cinnamon roll recipe with cocoa powder. Use unsweetened cocoa powder.
Espresso Powder. If you don’t like coffee, you can leave this out for just a chocolate and peppermint flavor. However, the powder in the dough and filling adds a fantastic mocha flavor and enhances the chocolate.
Chocolate Chips. Dark chocolate chips (or semi-sweet chips) work best so that the rolls aren’t too overly sweet. The chocolate chips in the filling get all melty and are what makes the rolls sooooo good served warm!
Andes Peppermint Baking Chips. You can find these during the holidays in the baking section. And when they go on sale at the end of the season, we stock up! These are some of our favorite baking chips ever.
Tips for Making Peppermint Mocha Sweet Rolls
The first step to making sweet rolls is to make the yeast dough. My favorite yeast is Red Star Platinum Superior Baking Yeast. It bakes up big, beautiful breads every time. Be sure your yeast is fresh for the best results! Have a different kind? Check your yeast with our yeast guide to see how to use it.
Use bread flour for best results. If you don’t have bread flour, you can use all-purpose but you may have to add more flour in order to roll them out.
We find it easiest to use a stand mixer to mix and knead yeast doughs. You can use your hands to knead the dough if you don’t have a stand mixer, just be sure not to add too much flour. The dough should be slightly tacky so the rolls don’t end up dry.
If you’d like, you can line the pan with parchment paper. It’s easy for clean up and also allows you to pull the rolls out of the pan cleanly for serving. It’s totally optional though.
Don’t forget the secret ingredient! Pouring heavy cream over the sweet rolls before baking might sound strange, but it is our trick for getting the softest, gooey rolls ever. Please don’t skip it!
Check your rolls at 20 minutes. If they are starting to get too brown, cover loosely with foil for the remainder of the baking time. Baking time will most likely take about 25-27 minutes but can depend on your oven and the type of pan you use.
Frost the rolls. If you frost the rolls while they are hot, the frosting will sink in. Which honestly isn’t a bad thing, but if you want a pretty swirl of frosting on top, allow the rolls to cool for about 30 minutes.
Use mint chocolate chips for extra mint flavor.
Pour peppermint mocha coffee creamer over the rolls. We’ve done this and still prefer traditional heavy cream, but it is an option for more flavor.
Double the recipe and bake in a 9×13 or 10×15 pan for more rolls. If you double the rolls, use 1 packet of yeast (2 ¼ teaspoons).
Use crushed candy canes instead of peppermint baking chips. They’ll melt in though, so you may not see them as clearly.
Pour the warm milk in the bowl of a stand mixer and sprinkle the yeast overtop.
Add the eggs, butter, salt and sugar.
Add the flour and cocoa powder. Mix using the beater blade just until the ingredients are barely combined. Allow the mixture to rest for 5 minutes so the flour has time to soak up the liquids.
Scrape the dough off the beater blade and remove it. Attach the dough hook.
Beat the dough on medium speed for 5-7 minutes or until the dough is elastic and smooth. **The dough will be tacky and will still be sticking to the sides of the bowl slightly. That’s ok! If it really looks too wet, add up to ½ more cup of flour as you knead the dough. Just add a small amount at a time. Don’t be tempted to add too much flour or it will make the rolls dry. The dough should be slightly sticky.
Spray a large bowl with cooking spray.
Use a rubber spatula to remove the dough from the mixer bowl and place it in the greased large bowl.
Cover the bowl with a towel or wax paper.
Set the bowl in a warm place and allow the dough to rise until double. I like to turn on the oven to the lowest setting for 1-2 minutes. Then turn off the oven and place the dough to rise in there. It normally takes about 30-60 minutes for the dough to rise but the time can vary based on weather and even altitude.
Assemble the rolls:
Sprinkle a pastry mat generously with flour. Turn out the dough onto the pastry mat and sprinkle the top of the dough with a light dusting of additional flour.
Flour a rolling pin and roll the dough to about a 12×8″ rectangle. (the size of the rectangle can vary…it does not have to be exact!)
Use a rubber spatula to smooth the butter filling over the whole dough rectangle.
Then sprinkle with espresso powder, chocolate chips and peppermint baking chips.
Starting on the long end, roll the dough up tightly jelly roll style.
Cut into 8 slices and place in a greased 9” round deep dish pie plate
Cover the pan and allow the rolls to rise for 30 minutes or until nearly double.
Bake the rolls:
Once the rolls have risen, pour warmed peppermint mocha creamer or heavy cream over the rolls.
Bake at 375 degrees for 25 minutes. Check the roll after about 20 minutes of baking. If they look like they are getting too browned, place a piece of foil over the top of the pan for the remainder of the time. **Note…the time will vary based on how big the rolls are, what type of pan, how close the rolls are packed, etc. To see if they are done, lightly pull up on the edge of the cinnamon roll in the center. If it looks cooked and not too doughy, it is done.**
While the rolls are cooling, prepare the frosting.
Make the frosting:
In a stand mixer bowl, with the mixer on medium speed, whip the butter for 2 minutes until it is almost white in color.
Add in the powdered sugar, vanilla and 2 tablespoons milk. Beat on low speed for 2-3 minutes, adding in the last tablespoon of milk if the buttercream needs to be thinner.
Pipe the frosting on the slightly cooled rolls in swirls or use a knife to spread the frosting on top.
These are best served warm and fresh. Store in an airtight container at room temperature.
If you use all-purpose flour instead of bread flour you may need to use slightly more.
Different yeast calls for slightly different proofing methods. We follow Red Star Platinum’s temperature guidelines. Please check your yeast packet to see what temperature the milk should be at.
The calories shown are based on the recipe making 8 rolls, with 1 serving being 1 roll. Since different brands of ingredients have different nutritional information, the calories shown are just an estimate.
*The Calorie count shows the amount with ALL of the frosting used. There will be less calories in the rolls if you don’t use all of the frosting at once.