Cinnamon Rolls From Scratch

Big, soft and fluffy these cinnamon rolls literally melt in your mouth! It makes for the perfect breakfast, snack or dessert.

cinnamon rolls recipe

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About The Recipe

Cinnamon rolls…the perfect, cozy and delicious comfort food that everyone enjoys, and there’s definitely no season in which they cannot be enjoyed! This recipe starts of with a rich dough that contains yeast, butter and eggs. Roll that out and spread on a delicious brown sugar cinnamon spread, roll it up and cut into little pin wheels. Once they’re baked the cinnamon rolls are topped with a super easy 2-ingredient cream cheese frosting!

Making cinnamon rolls is a processes that requires patience, and some dedication, but if you follow this recipe to the T, then all of your hard work will really be worth it. This recipe makes 12 large cinnamon rolls, making it perfect for family get-togethers and parties.

I highly recommend you use a stand mixer (if you have one) to make the cinnamon roll dough because it is quite sticky, but that does not at all mean that you cannot make this dough by hand because I used to make this all the time by hand when I did not own a stand mixer.

What You’ll Need To Make Cinnamon Rolls

Flour: you’ll need regular app purpose flour, if you have bread flour can use that as well.

Sugar: This is needed for the dough and for the cinnamon filling as well.

Brown sugar: this is for the cinnamon filling, you can use dark or light brown sugar.

Yeast: this is the leavening agent, it’s what will make the cinnamon rolls soft and fluffy. You’ll need instant yeast for this recipe.

Butter: You’ll need softened unsalted butter, for the dough as well as the cinnamon filling. Adding butter to the dough makes the cinnamon rolls rich and delicious (butter makes everything better!).

Ground Cinnamon: you cannot make cinnamon rolls without cinnamon!

Salt: a bit of salt always helps to balance the sweetness of every dessert!

Milk: I used whole milk, but you can also use nay other type of milk.

Eggs: eggs act as a binding agent, and the yolk add richness to it as well. It’s best to use them at room temperature. Here’s a tip to bring eggs to room temperature fast.

Cream Cheese: this is for the frosting, you will need full fat cream cheese at room temperature.

Powdered Sugar: this is for the frosting as well, powdered sugar is the same thing as icing/confectioner’s sugar.

How To Make Cinnamon Rolls

Let’s go through the step-by-step processes of making these beauties!

Step 1: In a tall glass combine warm milk (95 degrees Fahrenheit) with the instant yeast and a tablespoon of sugar from the 3/4 cup of granulated sugar for the dough. Let it sit for 3 minutes, then add in the eggs and give it a whisk and set this aside.

Step 2: In a the bowl of your stand mixer combine the rest of the ingredients excluding the butter(flour, salt, and sugar). Pour in the egg and yeast mixer, knead the dough using the dough hook attachment until smooth (3-5 minutes).

Step 3: Cut the softened butter into small cubes, add it into the dough in two batches while kneading. Transfer the dough onto a floured surface and bring it together into a large ball. Place in into a well-oiled bowl, cover and let it rise for 1 1/2 hours until the dough has doubled in size.

Step 4: Prepare the filling: use a spatula to combine softened butter, ground cinnamon, brown sugar and granulated sugar into a smooth paste. Once the dough has risen, give it a punch and transfer it onto a well floured surface, roll it out into a 15×10 inch rectangle and spread on the cinnamon filling.

Step 5: Tightly roll the dough up starting from the 10 inch side. Place the log of dough with the seam side down and use a thread/floss or a serrated knife to cut 1 1/2 ich sections. Place them into a greased 10×10 inch square pan keeping in mind that they will rise again, if they don’t all fit in one pan you can place a few in a separate pan. Cover the pan with plastic wrap and let it rise for another 2 hours ( or one hour at least).

Step 6: Once the cinnamon rolls have risen, remove the plastic wrap and bake at 180 °C / 350 °F for 30 minutes. If the top starts to brown too fast, cover it with aluminum foil and continue to bake. Once baked let the cinnamon rolls cool completely or at least for 15 minutes if you like yours warm, in the mean time prepare the cream cheese frosting.

Combine softened cream cheese and powdered sugar using a spatula to form a slightly thick frosting. Spread it onto the cooled/warm cinnamon rolls and enjoy!

Storing/Freezing Cinnamon Rolls

Store any leftovers in an air-tight container at room temperature for up to 1-2 days, then transfer them to the refrigerator for up to 5 days. Reheat them in a microwave to make them soft and gooey again!

To Freeze Unbaked Cinnamon Rolls: you’ll have to freeze them before the second rise, after you’ve made the cinnamon rolls. Place the cinnamon rolls in a pan, cover with plastic warp and then place them in the freeze. When you’re ready to bake them thaw in the refrigerator (preferably overnight) then let it sit at room temperature for 30 minutes to activate the second rise. Then bake them as instructed in the recipe.

To Freeze baked Cinnamon Rolls: let the baked cinnamon rolls cool completely then wrap the entire pan with plastic wrap or place them in an air tight container, then freeze for up to 2 months. You could also freeze individual cinnamon rolls. When you’re ready to eat, thaw at room temperature and warm them up in an oven at 180 °C / 350 °F for 10 minutes. Make and spread on the cream cheese frosting before serving. You could also reheat individual cinnamon rolls in the microwave for 20-30 seconds.

Pro Tips

  • Don’t over heat the milk, this will cause the yeast to die resulting in the dough not being able to rise, and you’ll end up with dense cinnamon rolls.
  • Use room temperature butter for the dough and for the filling, this just makes it so much easier to combine into the dough as well as to spread on for the filling.
  • Forgot to remove your butter from the refrigerator ahead of time? No problem, cut the cold butter into cubes and place on microwave safe plate. Microwave at 20% power in 10 second intervals until the butter cubes have softened (it should take about 20 seconds in total).
  • To quickly bring cold eggs to room temp., place them in warn (not hot!) for 5-10 minutes.
  • If you have a convection oven (oven with a fan setting), reduce the temperature by 20 degrees.
  • Using room temperature cream cheese will make it easier to mix with the powdered sugar when making the frosting.
Cinnamon Rolls Recipe

How To Make Overnight Cinnamon Rolls

Once you make the rolls, place them on the greased pan, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight. Then remove them from the refrigerator 30 minutes before you’re ready to bake them, let it sit at room temperature. Bake as directed in the recipe, cool and add on the frosting, enjoy!

FAQ’s

Can I use a different type of flour?

I would recommend you use all purpose flour, but if you have bread flour, you can use that as well. Do not use any other type of flour like, whole wheat or cake flour.

Why is my dough so sticky?

This is supposed to be a little sticky, but if you feels it’s way to sticky to handle, then you can go ahead and add a few more tablespoons of flour.

Can I double the recipe?

Of course, but you’ll need to use a bigger pan or two pans.

What can mix-ins can I add into the filling?

There are so many options, like chopped nuts, raisins, chocolate chips or even other spices like clove and pumpkin spice. Sprinkle them on after you’ve spread on the filling, before rolling up.

In the picture above, I also added some milk to the cream cheese frosting to make it slightly runny, this is a great option if you don’t want too much frosting on you cinnamon rolls.

Check out my YouTube Channel for detailed recipe tutorials! Made one of my recipes? Tag me on Instagram, I would love to see your creations!

Recipe Card

Cinnamon Rolls From Scratch

Big, soft and fluffy these cinnamon rolls literally melt in your mouth! It makes for the perfect breakfast, snack or dessert.

Prep Time: 3 hours 30 min

Cook Time: 30 min

Total Time: 4 hours

Course: Dessert

Servings: 12 large

Calories: 464kcal

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Ingredients

For the dough:

  • 3/4 cup milk (180ml)
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar (150g)
  • 1 Tbsp instant yeast (12g)
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • 4 cups all purpose flour (600g)
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened (113g)

For the filling:

  • 1/4 cup brown sugar (52g)
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar (50g)
  • 1 Tbsp cinnamon, ground
  • 6 Tbsp unsalted butter, softened (85g)

For the frosting:

  • 5oz cream cheese, room temperature (150g)
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar (50g)

Instructions

  1. Heat the milk to 95 degrees Fahrenheit (lukewarm), add in the yeast and 1 tablespoon of the sugar from the total. Give it a whisk and set aside for 3 minutes.
  2. Add in the eggs into the yeast mixture and whisk until combined. Set this aside.
  3. In the bowl of your stand mixer combine the all purpose flour, sugar, salt and the egg and yeast mixture. Knead the dough on medium speed using the hook attachment until smooth, about 3-5 minutes.
  4. Add in the softened butter in two batched while kneading until the butter is fully combined. Transfer the dough onto a well floured surface (the dough is quite sticky). Use your hands to bring the dough together into a large ball, place in a oiled bowl, cover and let it rest for 1 1/2 hours at room temperature.
  5. While the dough rests prepare the filling: Combine the brown sugar, granulated sugar, ground cinnamon and softened butter using a spatula to form a paste, set aside.
  6. Once the dough has risen, give it a punch and transfer it onto a floured surface. Roll it out into a 15×10 inch rectangle, and spread on the cinnamon filling using a spatula.
  7. Tightly roll the dough up starting from the 10 inch side. Place the log of dough with the seam side down and use a thread/floss or a serrated knife to cut 1 1/2 ich sections. Place them into a greased 10×10 inch square pan keeping in mind that they will rise again, if they don’t all fit in one pan you can place a few in a separate pan. Cover the pan with plastic wrap and let it rise for another 2 hours.
  8. After two hours, preheat the oven to 180 °C / 350 °F and bake the cinnamon rolls for 30 minutes. If the top is browning too fast then cover with aluminum foil and continue to bake. Once baked let the cinnamon rolls cool completely or at least for 15 minutes if you like yours warm.
  9. While the cinnamon rolls cool prepare the cream cheese frosting: Combine the cream cheese and powdered sugar to form a smooth paste. (If you like your frosting a little runny you could also add a tablespoon of milk into it.)
  10. Spread the frosting onto your cooled/warm cinnamon rolls and dig in!

Nutrition (estimated per serving)

Calories: 463.98kcal

Total Fat: 19.47g

Carbs: 65.22g

Sugars: 26.31g

Protein: 7.65g

Sodium: 158.14mg

Fiber: 1.7g

** Nutritional information is based on third-party calculations and should be considered an estimate only. Actual nutritional content will vary based upon brands used, measuring methods, cooking method, portion sizes, and more. **

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