Picture this: It's Saturday morning and you wake up to the smell of warm cinnamon and butter. Lots of butter. You know what it is — it's cinnamon rolls. A familiar smell that personally brings me a lot of nostalgia of being a kid. My mother (hi, mom!) was notorious for whipping out the canned cinnamon rolls once every couple weekends when I was growing up. She went back and forth between the original and orange flavor, and they never disappointed. It wasn't until I got older and started learning more about baking that I realized that cinnamon rolls made from scratch can be a lengthy process. From making the dough, to rising, to rolling, to rising again, and then baking?! After a long week, who really wants to do that first thing on the weekend?
That's why I wrote this recipe and eliminated the yeast, which in turn eliminates the rising—which is the most time-consuming part. You can sleep in a little longer and still get the satisfaction of making a homemade treat that everyone will love. These cinnamon rolls are tender and fluffy and can be made in half the time traditional ones would take.
- Ben Perez, culinary team member
Ben's Homemade Cinnamon Roll Notes & Tips:
- You should sprinkle filling add-ons after you spread the butter mixture.
- If you don't have an 8- or 9-inch cake pan or pie dish, an 8x8-inch or similar-sized pan will work.
- If your rolls seem to be very soft after cutting them, you can arrange them in the pan and then refrigerate for a few minutes to help firm them up. This will help them hold their shape better in the oven.
- No mixer? No problem. You can use a wooden spoon to combine the dough, but will have to knead the dough longer by hand.
Can't get enough of cinnamon rolls? Try these Cinnamon Roll Pancakes.
- 2 ⅔ cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
- 1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon Kosher salt
- 3 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 cup buttermilk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter , melted and slightly cooled
- 1 stick unsalted butter, at room temperature
- ½ cup light brown sugar, packed
- 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon Kosher salt
- Optional add-ins: chopped nuts, raisins, chocolate chips
- 1 cup confectioners sugar
- 1 teaspoon to 1 tablespoon milk
Preheat oven to 375°F.
Lightly spray a 8-9 inch circular cake pan or pie dish with nonstick cooking spray. Melt butter in a small saucepan or in microwave and allow to cool slightly.
To the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the hook attachment, sift all the dry ingredients. With the mixer on low, slowly pour in buttermilk, vanilla, and melted butter. Let mixture knead for 2-3 minutes on medium speed until a smooth dough forms.
Turn dough out on to a lightly floured surface and knead for an additional 2-3 minutes adding a sprinkle of flour as needed, until dough is smooth and supple. Let rest for 10 minutes while you prepare you filling.
For the filling, in a medium bowl, combine softened butter, brown sugar, cinnamon and salt. Mix thoroughly until totally combined and set aside.
Add a light dusting of flour to your work surface and roll the dough out to approximately 13"x19" rectangle. Using an offset spatula, evenly spread the filling over the dough, leaving a 1/2 border around the outside.
Starting at the edge closest to you, begin tightly rolling the dough into a pinwheel. Lightly pinch the edge to the roll to seal shut.
Using a serrated knife, trim the very ends of both sides of the log off. Cut the log into 9 equal portions and arrange in your baking pan, giving each roll a light press to flatten slightly.
Bake at 375°F for 10 minutes, then reduce heat to 350°F and bake for an additional 18-20 minutes until lightly golden and gooey.
For the glaze, in a small bowl, add confectioners sugar and enough milk to reach desired consistency.
Allow rolls to cool slightly before topping with glaze.