Cinnamon rolls

Have you ever visited a Cinnabon?  Well, I have!  And anyone who has ever visited an airport in the United States has likely been tempted by the smell of fresh cinnamon rolls coming out of the oven!

I’ve tried several different cinnamon roll recipes, and Kennon-Green has it just about right.  Here’s my version of Kennon-Green’s recipe, with slight changes.  Try it, and tell me if these aren’t just the most delicious cinnamon rolls you’ve ever had!

Cinnamon Roll Dough

  • 1 cup warm milk
  • 2 eggs, room temperature
  • 1/3 cup unsalted butter, melted
  • 4 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1 package yeast (1/4 ounce)

Cinnamon Roll Filling

  • 1 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter, softened

Cinnamon Roll Dough spread

  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter, softened to room temperature

Cinnamon Roll Icing

  • 3 oz cream cheese, softened
  • 1/4 cup (4 tablespoons) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt

Notes

  • Use a stand mixer for all mixing! 
  • This is a yeast based bread product.  it isn’t a cake.

Instructions

There are several groups of instructions here, each pertaining to a separate “sub product”.

Cinnamon roll dough

  1. Heat milk in microwave until between 105° F–115° F (41° C–46° C) .  This is required for yeast to work properly. Remember, the mixing bowl will cool the milk significantly, so make it warm enough so that when poured in the mixing bowl, the milk is still in the proper temperature range.
  2. Dissolve yeast in warm milk in the mixing bowl.
  3. Add sugar, butter, salt, eggs, and flour.  
  4. Mix well until a bread ball forms.
  5. Put the dough ball into a bowl sprayed with cooking spray.
  6. Tightly cover the bowl with plastic wrap
  7. Place the dough ball bowl in a warm oven (100 degrees) and let it rise for 1-2 hours.  The dough ball should be doubled in size.

Cinnamon roll filling

  1. In a fresh mixing bowl, combine the brown sugar, cinnamon, and butter.  Mix very well.  It is difficult to over mix sugar and butter.

Rolling out the cinnamon rolls

  1. Find a flat surface and measure out a rectangle about 16″ x 21″.
  2. Spray the area with cooking spray or sprinkle with flour.
  3. Roll out the dough ball.  The resulting rectangle should be around 1/4″ thick.
  4. Spread the Cinnamon Roll dough spread (melted butter) over the entire surface of the dough.
  5. Sprinkle the sugar/butter mixture over the cinnamon roll dough.  It is okay if the coverage is not 100%, do the best you feel comfortable with. 

Rolling up the cinnamon rolls

Cinnamon rolls cutting in pieces
Cinnamon rolls cutting in pieces
  1. Lightly grease a glass baking dish (probably will need at least a 11″ x 15″ dish).  Have a second dish ready for any additional rolls.
  2. Roll up the flat dough starting with the longer side.  This will make a 21″ long dough roll.
  3. cinnamon rolls in dish
    cinnamon rolls in dish

    Cut the long cinnamon roll into individual rolls around 1″ to 1 1/2″ thick.  This will produce around between 14 and 21 rolls.  I tend to make them 1″ thick.  Remember the “end cuts” aren’t going to be as perfect as the others, but they are just as tasty!

  4. Cover the glass dish with aluminum foil and let rolls rise to roughly double size, about 45-60 minutes.

Baking the rolls

cinnamon rolls baking
cinnamon rolls baking
  1. Preheat oven to 350° F (175° C)
  2. Bake until golden brown, around 18-20 minutes.  Use the toothpick test to determine if center of rolls are cooked sufficiently.  

Preparing the icing

  1. While the rolls are baking, prepare the icing.  
  2. Mix the cream cheese, butter, confectioners’ sugar, vanilla extract, and salt in the stand mixer until it is thoroughly creamed, light, and fluffy.  Recommendation is 10 to 15 minutes

Spreading the icing

  1. Cinnamon rolls adding topping
    Cinnamon rolls adding topping

    When the cinnamon rolls are ready and out of the oven, spread the icing over the rolls.  Do this while they are still very hot.  Do not remove them from the glass baking dish.  This helps to “melt in” the icing, into the rolls.

Eat!

  1. Pour a very nice cup of cold milk.
  2. With your left hand hold the cup of milk.
  3. And with your right hand…. pick up a cinnamon roll, and take a nice big bite
  4. Rinse and repeat!
  5. Yum!

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