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Weekend Special: Homemade Cinnamon Rolls

Homemade Cinnamon Rolls II Rants, Raves, & Rations

During the week, we do not eat “cooked” breakfasts.  Rather, we eat cold cereals, yogurt, hard-cooked eggs, string cheese, fruit, or sometimes oatmeal.   If we do eat something “cooked,” it’s been made prior to the morning because we don’t allot extra morning kitchen time (such as a quinoa bake or cinnamon quick bread).  On weekends…well, we splurge a little and typically make pancakes or eggs with a breakfast meat, and maybe a hearty slice of toast with a smearing of orange marmalade on the side.  Last weekend, I made buttermilk biscuits.  This weekend…

Homemade Cinnamon Rolls II Rants, Raves, & Rations

I made homemade cinnamon rolls.  They’re soft, moist, and deliciously sweetly spiced.  Topped with a light vanilla glaze, these are some of the best I’ve had.

Homemade Cinnamon Rolls II Rants, Raves, & Rations

(We really want to cut back on this type of carbs.)

Homemade Cinnamon Rolls II Rants, Raves, & Rations

Homemade Cinnamon Rolls II Rants, Raves, & Rations

And I have a long history with cinnamon rolls.  At a family restaurant we used to frequent when I was a child, I would always order their “Sweet Cinnamon Swirl” – which was a flaky cinnamon roll pastry.  Each layer would be eaten first until I could finally savor the perfect center in all its soft, tender glory.  I still do this with any cinnamon roll.

What I find to be an issue with a lot of store-bought cinnamon rolls is that the texture lacks tenderness; the dry roll just tears off in pieces.  The icing usually leaves a lot to be desired, too.  While the glaze for this recipe isn’t my favorite (I normally like a tangy cream cheese frosting), it’s a nice addition to them.

The best part about this recipe is the simplicity.  One rise.  It took around two hours from start to finish because they only need one period of rising.  I turned on the oven to 200 degrees F and put the rolls in, shut the door, and shut the oven off.  This created a great environment for rising – especially when it’s 30 degrees warmer than normal here, and we have the air conditioning going inside.

Homemade Cinnamon RollsHomemade Cinnamon Rolls II Rants, Raves, & RationsHomemade Cinnamon Rolls II Rants, Raves, & Rations

Homemade Cinnamon Rolls II Rants, Raves, & Rations

They got a little larger than “double in size”

A couple of changes I will make to this recipe for next time is adding or substituting the white sugar for brown sugar, and making the aforementioned cream cheese frosting instead of the vanilla glaze.  Other than that, I appreciate Sally’s Baking Addiction for a great base recipe!

Homemade Cinnamon Rolls


    • 2 and 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
    • 3 Tablespoons granulated sugar
    • 1 teaspoon salt
    • 1 package Red Star Platinum Yeast (1 packet = 2 and 1/4 teaspoons)
    • 1/2 cup water
    • 1/4 cup milk
    • 2 and 1/2 Tablespoons unsalted butter
    • 1 large egg
    • 3 Tablespoons unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
    • 1 and 1/2 Tablespoons ground cinnamon
    • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
Vanilla Glaze
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 Tbs. half & half or cream


  1. Make the dough: Set aside 1/2 cup of flour. In a large bowl, toss the remaining flour, sugar, salt, and yeast together until evenly dispersed. Set aside.
  2. Heat the water, milk, and butter together in the microwave until the butter is melted and the mixture is hot to touch. About 125F-130F degrees. Stir the butter mixture into the flour mixture. Add the egg and only enough of the reserved flour to make a soft dough.  Dough will be ready when it gently pulls away from the side of the bowl and has an elastic consistency.
  3. On a lightly floured surface, knead the dough for about 5-6 minutes. Place in a lightly greased bowl (I used non-stick spray) and let rest for about 10 minutes.
  4. Make the filling: After 10 minutes, roll the dough out in a 14×8 inch rectangle. Spread the softened butter on top. Mix together the cinnamon and sugar and sprinkle it all over the dough. Add more cinnamon/sugar if desired. Roll up the dough tightly. Cut into 11 even pieces and place in a lightly greased 9-inch round pan. I used a pie dish, lightly sprayed with nonstick spray. Loosely cover the rolls with aluminum foil and allow to rise in a warm, draft-free place for 60-90 minutes. (*Heat the oven to 200F degrees. Turn oven off. Place rolls inside oven and allow to rise.)
  5. After the rolls have doubled in size, preheat the oven to 375F. Bake for 25-30 minutes until lightly browned. *I covered the rolls with aluminum foil after 15 minutes to avoid heavy browning.
  6. Make the glaze: Right before serving, top your cinnamon rolls with glaze. Mix the powdered sugar and cream together until smooth and drizzle over rolls.
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