Are you ready for the best cinnamon rolls you’ve ever eaten?? These Better Than Cinnabon Rolls are hands down my all time favorite cinnamon rolls! They’re super soft and fluffy, perfectly chewy with a hint of gooey, they’re jam packed with cinnamon flavor and they’re covered in a luscious cream cheese icing.
Years ago I posted a cinnamon roll recipe but these are definitely my new go-to.
These have the perfect amount of butter (no oil or margarine because why? Butter is always better!)
They are unbelievably soft – especially when you eat one warm from the oven. These little pillows of deliciousness just melt in your mouth.
They have the perfect amount of sweet between the dough, the filling and the icing.
Then the buttermilk in the dough and the cream cheese in the frosting perfectly compliments the sweetness.
And the abundance of cinnamon is a must. I highly recommend Saigon cinnamon if you can afford it, it really is the best. If you are going to add this much cinnamon to something and it’s the main flavor you may as well go for it.
So here’s a quick picture how-to. It should go something like so. Try to roll the dough as even as possible, I also like to pull the corners out a little as I’m rolling.
I like to first cut the log in half, then cut those halves in half, then those quarters into thirds. If that makes sense. Either way just work to get them equal in size so they cook evenly.
Then really let them puff up. This is the hardest part of cinnamon rolls is all the waiting for the dough to rise – but it’s so worth it in the end.
And finally bake to golden brown puffy perfection and drench with the frosting.
These are all of my dreams come true! I’ve made them twice this week and look forward to when I get to make them again. It’s a serious love affair.
One that obviously worthy of your Christmas breakfast. Sorry I didn’t get these shared sooner, I had way too many treats I wanted to share this season but hopefully you’ve already got everything on hand to make these.
I did also list a method for overnight cinnamon rolls in the recipe. Really the only changes are refrigerating immediately after you transfer them to the pan (rather than proceeding with the second rise). Then you chill overnight and remove and finish that second rise the following day (which will likely take 30 – 60 minutes longer than the original method since they are cold).
Then please please please serve these warm from the oven. A cold cinnamon roll versus a warm from the oven cinnamon roll is a night and day difference.
They do rewarm well too but there is just nothing quite like a freshly baked cinnamon roll.
Served with an ice cold glass of milk…first thing in the morning. Sugar highs for breakfast were made for holidays :).
The second time I made them this week I tried to eat just a few bites but then it quickly turned into trying to just eat a few bites of the second cinnamon roll.
These things are dangerous!
I hope you love these Cinnamon rolls as much as my family does! I think this will be my cinnamon roll recipe for life. I just love unwrapping each of those irresistable layers.
Merry Christmas and happy holidays everyone! I hope you have such a great weekend filled with lots of good food!
Better Than Cinnabon Cinnamon Rolls
My all time favorite cinnamon rolls! So soft and fluffy, and perfectly chewy with a hint of gooey. Their sweetness is perfectly paired with a hint of buttermilk flavor and a cream cheese icing. And they are jam packed with the best cinnamon flavor! A recipe you won't want to lose.
- 1/4 cup (60ml) warm water, 110 - 120 degrees
- 1 Tbsp active dry yeast
- 3/4 cup (180ml) buttermilk, at room temperature*
- 2 large eggs, at room temperature**
- 1/2 cup (100g) + 1/2 tsp granulated sugar, divided
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 6 Tbsp (85g) unsalted butter, diced into 1 Tbsp pieces and melted
- 3 1/2 - 4 cups (17.5 oz - 20 oz) bread flour (I recommend King Arthur)
- 6 Tbsp (85g) unsalted butter, well softened
- 1 cup (210g) packed light brown sugar
- 2 Tbsp (13g) Saigon cinnamon
Cream Cheese Icing
- 1/4 cup (56g) unsalted butter, softened
- 3 oz. cream cheese, softened
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 1/2 cups (190g) powdered sugar
Pour water in a the bowl of an electric stand mixer, pour in yeast and 1/2 tsp sugar and whisk well. Let rest 5 - 10 minutes to proof (if it doesn't puff up your water was either too hot or the yeast is bad and the rolls won't rise).
Add in buttermilk, eggs, 1/2 cup granulated sugar, salt, vanilla and 6 Tbsp melted butter. Fit mixer with whisk attachment and blend mixture until combined.
Pour in 2 1/2 cups of the flour and mix until well combined. Switch to a hook attachment then add another 1 cup flour. Knead mixture until combined.
Continue to knead on moderately low speed about 5 - 6 minutes while adding a little more flour as needed to reach a soft and moist dough (Dough shouldn't stick to the sides of the bowl but does stick to the bottom. I ended with 3 3/4 cups or 18.75 oz, but I am in a fairly dry climate so in a humid climate you may need a little more. Also note I use the scoop and level method when measuring in cups).
Transfer dough to an oiled bowl, cover with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place until doubled in volume, about 1 1/2 hours.
Butter a rimmed 15 by 10-inch jelly roll pan then line with parchment paper (a 13 by 9-inch baking dish works as well I just like the result of the slightly bigger pan better). Butter parchment paper and set aside.
Punch dough down. Dust a working surface lightly with flour and turn dough out onto surface. Sprinkle top of dough with a little flour then roll dough out into an 20 by 18-inch rectangle.
Spread 6 Tbsp butter evenly over entire surface (just use your hands). In a small mixing bowl whisk together brown sugar and cinnamon. Sprinkle and spread brown sugar mixture evenly over butter layer (try to leave about 1/2-inch border uncovered along all edges).
Beginning on an 18-inch side tightly roll dough into a cylinder. Pinch the seam to seal (brushing a little egg white underneath helps if needed).
Cut into 12 equal portions using a large sharp knife (they should be 1 1/2-inch each). Arrange rolls, spacing evenly apart on prepared baking sheet.
Cover with plastic wrap (leave plastic it a little loose but be sure it fully encloses to keep air out. Also see notes for overnight method as this would be the point to chill***).
Let rise in a warm place until doubled in volume, about 1 1/2 hours. Preheat oven to 375 degrees near the last 20 minutes of rolls rising.
Bake rolls in preheated oven until centers are no longer doughy, about 18 - 22 minutes (center should be 185 degrees on an instant read thermometer). If needed during the last 5 minutes of baking you can tent with foil to prevent excess browning, all ovens vary.
While rolls are baking in a medium mixing bowl using an electric hand mixer whip together butter and cream cheese until smooth and fluffy. Add in vanilla and powdered sugar and whip until light and fluffy.
Spread icing over hot from the oven rolls. Rolls are best served warm. If you have leftover rolls store in an airtight container once cool and rewarm individually on a plate in microwave for about 15 seconds or until soft and warm.
*You can also warm buttermilk gently in the microwave to bring it to room temperature. Heat it on 30% power in a microwave safe cup, in 20 second increments stirring between each, until it registers about 75 degrees on an instant read thermometer (no more than 90 degrees or it will curdle!).
**To quickly bring eggs to room temperature place them in a bowl and cover with warm water. Let rest 10 minutes.
***For the overnight method, immediately after you've cut rolls and placed them in pan wrap with plastic wrap and chill overnight. Then following day remove from fridge, keep covered and let rest at room temperature until doubled in volume, about 2 hours. Continue to bake as directed.
Recipe source: inspired by Allrecipes