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No-Fail Cinnamon Rolls

No-Fail Cinnamon Rolls Our made-from-scratch, no-fail cinnamon rolls are a work of love. The dough is lightly sweetened and tinged with tangy savor; we fill ours with cinnamon and brown sugar and top them with finger-licking good cream cheese frosting.

Year after year, I’ve set out with a goal of surprising the people in my life with warm, delicious rolls of creamy goodness. Each time, I try and FAIL! With more ruined batches than I care to count, I’ve finally put together these no-fail cinnamon rolls with a rich, buttery homemade yeast dough. If I can get cinnamon rolls right after all these years, so can you!

WHAT YOU NEED TO MAKE THIS RECIPE

  • Water: Use a food thermometer to ensure the water heats to 115,° the perfect temperature to activate the yeast.
  • White Sugar: Flavors the cinnamon rolls and activates the yeast.
  • Dry Active Yeast: I use dry-active yeast, which takes longer to rise and needs to dissolve in a liquid to prove; you can use quick rise or instant yeast if you prefer.
  • Milk: For best results, use whole milk. Almond milk is a great non-dairy option.
  • Vanilla Extract: I use vanilla to flavor these cinnamon rolls, but go crazy. Try caramelorange, or maple extract for something different.
  • Egg: Provide structure for the cinnamon rolls.
  • Butter: The star ingredient of any good cinnamon roll is butter! Use it for the rolls, filling, and frosting.
  • Salt: Salt is underrated but does so much; it lends flavor and controls the yeast in this recipe.
  • Flour: I use all-purpose flour to create the soft consistency; I swear by King Arthur’s for my cinnamon rolls. You can also use bread flour for a more structured cinnamon roll.
  • Brown Sugar: Sugar and more sugar! I use light brown sugar here, but dark brown sugar works also.
  • Ground Cinnamon: I mean, cinnamon is in the title, so you pretty much have to!
  • Powdered Sugar: Flavors the frosting.
  • Cream Cheese: Full-fat cream cheese creates the gooey, delicious frosting.

WHAT IF I DON’T HAVE YEAST?

No worries, we’ve got you covered – try our No Yeast Cinnamon Rolls.

HOW TO MAKE OUR NO-FAIL CINNAMON ROLLS

For the Dough:

active yeast or cinnamon rolls

Combine water heated to 115°F (46° C) in a small bowl with a teaspoon of sugar, then add the yeast. Let it sit for about 5 minutes or until foaming.

frosting or cinnamon rolls

Add milk, vanilla, one egg, butter, sugar, and salt to a mixing bowl. Blend on low using a hand-mixer or spatula. Then, blend flour 1 cup at a time until fully incorporated. Do not over mix.

dough ball or cinnamon rolls

Knead the dough for about 5 minutes with your hands until smooth. Next, form the dough into a ball and place it into an oiled mixing bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and set it out a room temperature to rise for about 2 hours.

filling or cinnamon rolls

While waiting for the dough to rise, prepare the filling; combine butter, brown sugar, and white sugar in a small bowl and set it aside.

active dough or cinnamon rolls

When the dough has risen, press it down with your hand and roll it out on a floured surface into a rectangle.

dough rolled out or cinnamon rolls

Sprinkle the dough lightly with flour.

rolled out dough covered with filling or cinnamon rolls

Then, cover the dough with the reserved filling mixture.

dough rolled up and scored or cinnamon rolls

Tightly roll the dough into a tube, then trim the ends. Cut into even slices, about 10.

For the Cinnamon Rolls:

cinnamon rolls lining a baking pan

Preheat the oven to 350° F (176° C). Prepare a baking dish and line it with the cinnamon rolls, careful not to overcrowd. Brush the tops with melted butter and bake for 25 minutes.

frosting or cinnamon rolls

While the rolls are baking, let’s make the frosting. Use a hand mixer to blend the softened butter, powdered sugar, cream cheese, salt, and vanilla extract until smooth. Set aside.

Retrieve the cinnamon rolls from the oven, and allow them to cool for 5-10 minutes. Then, generously cover the rolls in the cream cheese frosting. Enjoy!

BAKING TIPS

  • Yeast Instructions: All yeast calls for a different proofing method; read the label on the yeast package and follow the directions accordingly. 
  • My Dough Didn’t Rise: If the yeast doesn’t become frothy in step one, your rolls will not rise. Check the expiration date; that one always gets me. Another culprit could be the temperature of the water the yeast dissolves in. If the water is too hot, it will kill the yeast; I suggest using a thermometer to be sure the water warms to 115° F (46 °C).  
  • Tips for Preparing the Dough: Use a stand or hand mixer to prepare the dough. I use a hand mixer to incorporate the ingredients, and my hands knead the dough. It requires a little more effort, but the outcome is worth it.
  • Shrinking Dough: If your dough shrinks as you roll it out, stop there! Cover the dough with a towel, and give it 10 minutes to rise. You should be able to roll out your dough more easily from there.

SEARCHING FOR MORE LIKE THIS? 

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plated yeast cinnamon rolls

WHAT TO DO WITH THE LEFTOVERS 

  • FRIDGE – If somehow you end up with leftovers, cinnamon rolls keep at room temperature for 3-4 days. Place the leftover rolls on a plate and cover them with aluminum foil.
  • FREEZER – I do not recommend freezing already baked rolls unless you bake them and leave the frosting off. I will often make two batches; I bake one to eat right away and then freeze the other for quick baking the next time around. To freeze the rolls, gather them together, wrap them tightly in plastic wrap and then place them into a freezer-safe bag. The rolls will keep for up to 2 months. When you’re ready to eat, defrost them in the fridge overnight. Prepare the frosting, warm your cinnamon rolls in the oven according to the baking instructions, and enjoy.
  • REHEAT – For best results, set the oven to 350° F (176° C) and pop them in for 5 minutes.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

I don’t want to wait for the dough. What can I do?

Oh, that’s an easy one! Cut your wait time in half by prepping the dough the night before. Follow the instructions to step 6. Then, cover the dish with plastic wrap and place it in the fridge overnight. The next day, allow the dough to come to room temperature and rise for about an hour before continuing to step 7.

What are my options for frosting?

Consider making icing instead. Use one cup of powdered sugar, three tablespoons of butter, one teaspoon of vanilla extract, and one tablespoon of milk. You can also use dairy-free options like coconut milk and coconut oil.

Upgrade the cream cheese frosting by adding pumpkin spice to the filling and the frosting to make pumpkin cinnamon rolls. Maple, orange, or caramel extract would be tasty additions as well.

YOU SHOULD ALSO TRY:

Cinnamon rolls in a baking dish and covered with homemade icing.

No-Fail Cinnamon Rolls

Tressa Jamil
Our no-fail cinnamon rolls are sweetened and tinged with tangy savor; we fill ours with cinnamon and brown sugar and top them with finger-licking good cream cheese frosting.
5 from 4 votes
Prep Time 30 mins
Cook Time 25 mins
Proofing Time 2 hrs
Total Time 2 hrs 55 mins
Course Breakfast, Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 10 cinnamon rolls
Calories 510 kcal

Equipment

Ingredients
  

For the Yeast:

  • ¼ cup water, heated to 115° F | 46° C
  • 1 teaspoon white sugar, granulated
  • 1 package dry active yeast, or 2 ¼ teaspoons

For the Rolls:

  • ¾ cup whole milk
  • ¼ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 egg
  • ¼ cup butter, unsalted, and melted
  • 3 ½ tablespoons white sugar, granulated
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 4 cups flour, all-purpose, and added one cup at a time

For the Filling:

  • cup butter, unsalted, softened, and room temperature
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • ¼ cup white sugar, granulated
  • 1 tablespoon cinnamon, ground

For the Cream Cheese Frosting:

  • 6 tablespoons butter, unsalted, softened, and room temperature
  • cup powdered sugar, sifted
  • 4 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
  • teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract

Instructions
 

For the Dough:

  • Combine water heated to 115°F (46°C) in a small bowl with a teaspoon of sugar, then add the yeast. Let it sit for about 5 minutes or until foaming.
  • Add milk, vanilla, one egg, butter, sugar, and salt to a mixing bowl. Blend on low using a hand mixer or spatula. Then, blend flour 1 cup at a time until fully incorporated. Do not over mix.
  • Knead the dough for about 5 minutes with your hands until smooth. Next, form the dough into a ball and place it into an oiled mixing bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and set it out a room temperature to rise for about 2 hours.
  • While waiting for the dough to rise, prepare your filling. Combine butter, brown sugar, and white sugar in a small bowl and set it aside.
  • When the dough has risen, press it down with your hand and roll it out on a floured surface into a rectangle. Sprinkle the dough lightly with flour and then cover with the reserved filling mixture, leaving room on all four sides of the dough, about 1/4-inch.
  • Tightly roll the dough into a tube, then trim the ends. Cut into even slices, about 10. I find it helpful to score the dough before making the cuts to ensure they're even.

For the Cinnamon Rolls:

  • Preheat the oven to 350° F (176° C). Prepare a baking dish and line it with the cinnamon rolls, careful not to overcrowd. Brush the tops with melted butter and bake for 25 minutes.
  • While the rolls are baking, let’s make the frosting. Using a hand mixer, blend the softened butter, powdered sugar, cream cheese, salt, and vanilla extract until smooth. Set aside at room temperature.
  • Retrieve the cinnamon rolls from the oven, and allow them to cool for 5-10 minutes. Then, generously cover the rolls in the cream cheese frosting. Enjoy!

Notes

Cooking Tips: 
  • Yeast Instructions: All yeast calls for a different proofing method; read the label on the yeast package and follow the directions accordingly. 
  • My Dough Didn’t Rise: If the yeast doesn’t become frothy in step one, your rolls will not rise. Check the expiration date; that one always gets me. Another culprit could be the temperature of the water the yeast dissolves in. If the water is too hot, it will kill the yeast; I suggest using a thermometer to be sure the water warms to 115° F | 46 °C.  
  • Tips for Preparing the Dough: Use a stand or hand mixer to prepare the dough. I use a hand mixer to incorporate the ingredients, and my hands knead the dough. It requires a little more effort, but the outcome is worth it.
  • Shrinking Dough: If your dough shrinks as you roll it out, stop there! Cover the dough with a towel, and give it 10 minutes to rise. You should be able to roll out your dough more easily from there.
 
Nutrition Disclosure:
  • The nutritional information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator. It should not be considered a substitute for professional advice.
 
Web Story:
  • Check out our web story for our cinnamon roll recipe!

Nutrition

Serving: 1 Cinnamon RollCalories: 510kcalCarbohydrates: 82gProtein: 7gFat: 19gSodium: 428mgFiber: 2gSugar: 46g
Keyword cinnamon roll recipe
Did you make this recipe? Let me know how it turned out for you! Leave a comment below and follow @thejamilghar or tag #thejamilghar on Instagram!
Recipe Rating




Roma

Saturday 4th of June 2022

Great recipe. Came out delicious.

Tressa Jamil

Tuesday 7th of June 2022

I am so glad you enjoyed it.

Bianca

Friday 3rd of June 2022

These cinnamon rolls were amazing! The perfect breakfast yumm.

Tressa Jamil

Friday 3rd of June 2022

I am so glad. Thank you for trying them!

Giangi

Tuesday 31st of May 2022

I was hesitant to make the cinnamon rolls, but once the fear was gone and they came out from the oven smelling out of this world, I will make them at home again. Thank you for your very descriptive instructions. Very helpful.

Tressa Jamil

Friday 3rd of June 2022

This was me for the longest time. I am grateful this recipe worked for you as well.

Olga Veiga Gonzalez

Monday 30th of May 2022

Delicious! You can never go wrong with these delicious rolls!

Tressa Jamil

Friday 3rd of June 2022

Wow, thank you so much! I am glad you enjoyed them.

fede

Monday 30th of May 2022

I tried this recipe and the cinnamon rolls turn out amazing. My family went crazy on them! Thank you for sharing this delicious recipe!

Tressa Jamil

Friday 3rd of June 2022

This is my family too. I once made a batch for my daughter's birthday and they were completely gone by 11am, all 10 of them!