Cinnamon Rolls

These are amazingly delicious cinnamon rolls that can be made in less than three hours on a Sunday morning for brunch or they can be made the night before, put in the fridge, and baked in the morning. Hope you enjoy!

Cinnamon Rolls

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Recipe by Anne Walling


  • 3/4 cup milk, preferably whole milk or 2%

  • 2 1/4 teaspoons active yeast

  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar

  • 1 egg and 1 egg yolk, at room temperature

  • 1/4 unsalted butter, melted and cooled

  • 3 cups bread flour, plus more for dusting

  • 3/4 teaspoon salt

  • 2/3 cup dark brown sugar (I prefer dark, but light is fine if that’s all you have)

  • 1 1/2 tablespoons ground cinnamon

  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter, softened


  • Warm milk to around 110 degrees Fahrenheit. Transfer warm milk to the bowl of an electric mixer and sprinkle yeast on top. Add in sugar, egg, egg yolk, and melted butter. Mix until well combined. Next stir in flour and salt with a wooden spoon until a dough begins to form.
  • Place dough hook on stand mixer and knead dough on medium speed for 8 minutes. The dough should form into a nice ball and be slightly sticky. If it’s too sticky (meaning it’s sticking to the bottom of the mixer bowl) add in 2 Tablespoons more of bread flour. If you don’t want to use an stand mixer, you can use your hands to knead the dough for 8-10 minutes on a well-floured surface.
  • Transfer dough ball to a well-oiled bowl, cover with plastic wrap. Allow dough to rise for 60-90 minutes, or until doubled in size. This may be more or less time depending on the humidity and temperature in your home.
  • After the dough has doubled in size, transfer to a well-floured surface and roll out into a 14-by-9-inch rectangle. Spread softened butter over the dough, leaving a ¼ inch margin at the far side of the dough.
  • In a small bowl, mix together brown sugar and cinnamon. Use your hands to sprinkle the mixture over the buttered dough, then rub the brown sugar mixture into the butter.
  • Tightly roll the dough up, starting from the 9-inch side and place the seam side down, making sure to seal the edges of the dough as best you can. You will probably need to cut about an inch off the ends of the dough as they won’t be as full of cinnamon sugar as you’d want them to be.
  • Cut the roll into 1-inch sections with a serrated knife or floss. You should get 9 large pieces.
  • Place cinnamon rolls in a greased 9-by-9-inch baking pan or 9-inch round pan. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise again until doubled in size, 30-45 minutes. (** see note for making the cinnamon rolls the night before) While the rolls rise for the second time, preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and set out the ingredients for your chosen frosting so the butter and cream cheese (if using) can soften.

    ** To make overnight cinnamon rolls: After rolling, cutting as directed, and arranging them in the pan lined with parchment paper, cover well with plastic wrap then place in the fridge overnight. When you are ready to bake, let the cinnamon rolls warm and rise at room temperature until they are doubled in size, 1 1/2 – 2 hours. Bake as directed below.
  • Remove plastic wrap and bake cinnamon rolls for 20-25 minutes or until just slightly golden brown on the edges. You want to under bake them a little, so they stay soft in the middle. Allow them to cool for 5-10 minutes before frosting.
  • While the rolls are baking, make the frosting. These rolls can be frosted with cream cheese frosting or vanilla powdered sugar frosting. (My hubby is not a fan of cream cheese frosting, so guess which one I tend to make.) Here are recipes for both.

    Cream Cheese Frosting

    4 ounces cream cheese, softened
    3 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
    ¾ cup powdered sugar
    ½ teaspoon vanilla extract

    In the bowl, combine softened cream cheese, softened butter, powdered sugar, and vanilla extract. Beat with a hand mixer until smooth and fluffy. Spread over cinnamon rolls and serve immediately. Enjoy!

    Vanilla Powdered Sugar Frosting

    1/4 cup butter, softened
    1-1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    1 1/2 tablespoon milk

    In the bowl, combine softened butter, powdered sugar, vanilla extract, and milk. Beat with a hand mixer until smooth and fluffy. Spread over cinnamon rolls and serve immediately. Enjoy!


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