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Homemade Easy Cinnamon Rolls

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Cinnamon rolls are a tasty treat that makes the whole house smell wonderful as they bake. Perfect for any special occasion, you will never go back to store bought rolls again after tasting these. Your family will love it anytime you make them these fluffy sweet buns for breakfast.

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Cinnamon buns / cinnamon rolls

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Easy Cinnamon Buns Recipe (What are Cinnamon Rolls)

Cinnamon rolls are a delicious treat that comes from Sweden. And there is a good reason why it is so popular around the world. They are simply delicious. They are also called as Cinnamon buns if it is topped with frosting.

A lot of people think that cinnamon rolls are something best left to bakeries and speciality shops, but this is not the case. Our easy to follow recipe will have your making these tasty treats at least once a month.

 What makes these the best cinnamon rolls

Our cinnamon roll recipe is one of the best we have ever tasted. Our families love them and request them every year when the weather starts getting cold.

One of the reasons we love these sweet treats is how easy it is to let the dough rise with the Instant Pot. It really takes the guesswork out of keeping the dough at just the right temperature.

And the result is perfectly fluffy and tender cinnamon buns every, single, time.

You’ll also love the sweet, somewhat spicy blend of sugar and cinnamon. And you’ll love even more how simple the recipe is to follow. One bite and you’ll never go back to store bought cinnamon rolls again.

cinnamon buns / cinnamon rolls

Cinnamon Roll Ingredients

Before starting, make sure to collect all the ingredients you’ll need. For ease, we broke them into ones for the dough, glaze, and filling.

For the dough, you’ll need:

  • Warm milk - You can gently warm it to a luke warm temperature on the stove top over low heat.
  • Lemon juice - This gets mixed with the milk to create a bit of buttermilk flavor. 
  • Vegetable oil - You could use another light tasting oil.
  • Sugar - Regular granulated sugar is all you need.
  • All-purpose flour - All purpose flour or bread flour work well. Bread flour gives a bit more of a fluffy, slightly chewy, and structured texture than all-purpose flour.
  • Leavening agents - You’ll need baking powder, baking soda, and instant yeast.
  • Salt-  just a dash!

For the filling, you’ll need:

  • Unpacked brown sugar - You can use light or dark sugar.
  • Cinnamon powder - You could grind your own, but powdered varieties are easier to work with.
  • Softened butter - You can leave it out on the counter to soften.

Finally, for the glaze you’ll need:

  • Powdered sugar - Do not use granulated sugar, it will be gritty.
  • Vanilla extract - You could use imitation if you need to, but it does not have as rich a flavor.
  • Milk - You could use light cream instead.

How to make Cinnamon Buns

 There are a few steps to the process, we broke them down below for ease.

 

For the Dough

Cinnamon buns salad step by step instructions

  • First, combine the sugar, warm milk mixture, and yeast in a small bowl and let rest for 5 minutes.
  • Check the mixture for frothy bubbles. If they did not form, dump it out and try a new packet of yeast.
  • Next, sift the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt into the bowl of a stand mixer. Once added, use the paddle to mix in the oil. After the oil is mixed in, gradually pour in the milk mixture  until a dough starts to form.

Cinnamon buns salad step by step instructions (1)

  • You can use a bread hook or your hands to knead the dough until smooth. Once you are done kneading, cover the dough and refrigerate.
  • Next, add a bit of oil to the Instant Pot and grease the inner pot before transferring the dough into the Instant Pot and rolling it so it’s also covered in oil on the surface.

Cinnamon buns salad step by step instructions (1)

  • Finally, place the lid on the pot and press the Yogurt setting button and make sure it is set to ‘Normal’. Allow the dough to rise for 30 minutes.

Make the filling and glaze

Cinnamon buns salad step by step instructions (1)

  • As the dough rises, make the filling and glaze. 
  • For the filling, mix all the ingredients together in a small bowl and then place it in a cool area.
  • Once the filling is ready, mix all the ingredients for the glaze in a separate bowl and set aside in a cool area.

Rolling and making the cinnamon roll

Cinnamon buns salad step by step instructions (1)

  • Once the dough has risen, take the lid off the Instant Pot and transfer the dough onto a flat, floured surface. Next, gently roll into a rectangle that is about 24" by 18" or 18"x18" to make bigger rolls.
  • Once rolled out, spread the filling by sprinkling it over the rolled-out dough. Or, you could use a spatula and spread it evenly out. As it bakes, the filling will spread out.
  • Next, roll up the dough from the longest side, making sure to roll tight but not too tight. Pinch the seam tightly and then place seam-side down. Finally, trim off any unevenness on either end. 

Cinnamon buns salad step by step instructions (1)

  • To cut the rolls, we recommend taking a strand of unflavored floss and sliding it under the large cinnamon roll. Next, take both ends of the floss, cross them over the top of the roll, and then pull on the ends to slice.
  • You’ll need to repeat the process until you have 14 cinnamon rolls. If you don’t have floss, you can use a sharp, thin knife instead.
  • Next, place parchment paper on the bottom of a deep baking dish and then place the rolls in the baking dish while keeping a small gap between each roll. The rolls will expand when cooking, and the small gap helps prevent them from sticking to each other.
  • Once placed, cover the rolls and let them rise for 40 minutes. Near the end of 40 minutes, preheat your oven to  180C/360F and then bake the rolls for 15 to 18 minutes or until golden brown.
  • Carefully remove from the oven and then drizzle with frosting evenly across the tops.

 

Cinnamon buns / cinnamon rolls

How to make Cinnamon Rolls in an Air Fryer

  • First, follow the assembling instructions in the recipe card as described. Once the rolls are assembled, line the basket of your air fryer with aluminum foil and lightly spray with non-stick spray.
  • Once lightly coated, place the rolls in the basket leaving just a bit of space between each. Next, let them rise, covered, for 40 minutes. 
  • Finally, place the basket in the air fryer and bake at 350 for about 10 to 15 minutes or until they turn golden brown and have expanded in size.

Pro tips and tricks

When making cinnamon rolls, follow these tips and tricks for the best results:

  • Don’t over knead the dough, this can result in tough, chewy rolls.
  • Make sure to measure the flour as precisely as possible. Too much or too little can cause chewy, tough, or dense cinnamon rolls.
  • Don’t forget to proof the yeast to make sure the dough will rise properly.

Cinnamon buns / cinnamon rolls

Is there a difference between a cinnamon roll and cinnamon bun?

Cinnamon rolls and cinnamon buns are very similar, but they have one small difference. Cinnamon rolls have a cream cheese or vanilla frosting on top, and cinnamon buns have a brown-sugar glaze on top with no icing. 

Otherwise, the two treats are more or less identical in how they are prepared and made.

Can this cinnamon roll recipe be healthy?

Cinnamon buns are a dessert, though some people eat them as a breakfast or snack too (which is definitely fine!). You can’t really make them “healthy,” but you could take steps to reduce their calories a bit.

Though we wouldn’t necessarily recommend it, you could substitute in whole wheat flour. You could also use sugar substitutes in place of the sugars. These steps may help reduce the total calories, but they may also produce a slightly less appealing cinnamon roll.

Cinnamon buns / cinnamon rolls

What is the best flour to use for cinnamon rolls?

The best flour to use depends some on preference. We like using all-purpose flour because it produces a generally soft, but fluffy texture for the rolls. 

Others like to use bread flour. When you use bread flour, the outsides get a bit more firm, while the insides get fluffy and soft.

Either one produces delicious results, so it really comes down to a matter of preference. Of course, you could make it both ways and decide for yourself which you like best.

Why are my homemade cinnamon rolls tough?

Tough cinnamon rolls are almost always the result of adding too much flour. Try to be as precise as you can be with measuring the flour you are using to avoid tough rolls.

Why are my cinnamon rolls not fluffy?

If your cinnamon rolls come out dense and non-fluffy, it’s probably because you didn’t use enough flour. When making the dough, too little flour often results in a very sticky texture, which means you may have mismeasured the amount you are using.

Cinnamon buns / cinnamon rolls

Why are my cinnamon rolls chewy?

Chewy cinnamon rolls could be the result of a bit too much flour and kneading the dough too much. When you knead the dough too much, it can cause tough, chewy rolls.

How to store and reheat Homemade Cinnamon Rolls

You can store cinnamon buns either in the fridge or on the counter. Either way, make sure to cover them before storing. 

If using the fridge, they should last about 3 to 5 days. If you intend to place them on the counter, they should last about 2 to 3 days covered.

To reheat, you can place one or more rolls in the oven and gently reheat until warmed through. You could also cover once and microwave for about one minute or until heated through.

cinnamon buns/ cinnamon rolls

Can cinnamon rolls be left out overnight?

Once cooked, the cinnamon rolls should last about 2 to 3 days on the counter. You will need to either place them in an airtight container or cover with aluminum foil. 

Let us know what you think

If you make this delicious recipe, let us know how it went! When you make this, be sure to take a pic and tag us on Instagram @dbellyrulesdmind or Facebook @thebellyrulesthemind!

cinnamon buns/ cinnamon rolls

Best Cinnamon Roll Recipe

Yield: 14
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Additional Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 5 minutes

Cinnamon rolls are a tasty treat that makes the whole house smell wonderful as they bake. Perfect for any special occasion, you will never go back to store bought rolls again after tasting these. Your family will love it anytime you make them these fluffy sweet buns for breakfast.

Ingredients

For the dough

  • 3/4 cup warm milk mixed with 1 tablespoon lemon juice keep aside for 5 minutes
  • Vegetable oil - 1/4 cup
  • Instant yeast* (or use rapid-rise yeast // 1 packet yields ~ 2 1/4 tsp) - 1 packet
  • Sugar - 1/4 cup
  • All-purpose flour - 2 1/2 cup
  • Baking powder - 1/4 teaspoon
  • Baking soda - 1/4 teaspoon
  • Salt - 1/2 teaspoon

For the filling

  • Unpacked brown sugar - 1/2 cup
  • Cinnamon powder - 1 tbsp.
  • Softened butter - 4 tbsp.

For the glaze

  • Powdered sugar - 1/2 cup
  • Vanilla extract - 1/4 teaspoon
  • Milk - 1 tbsp.

Instructions

Make the dough

  1. In a small bowl add the milk mixture with sugar and yeast. Let it sit for 5 mins.
  2. In the bowl of an electric stand mixer, sift flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. 
  3. Add the oil to the flour and mix using a paddle attachment if using a stand mixer, or beat it using a stand mixer, or use your hand instead.
  4. Add the milk mixture to the flour gradually and knead until you get a smooth dough.
  5. When done the kneading, cover and refrigerate.
  6. Add a bit of oil to the Instant Pot and grease the insert well. Transfer the dough into the Instant Pot and roll it so it’s also covered in oil on the surface.
  7. Press the Yogurt setting button on the Instant Pot and ensure it is set to ‘Normal’. place the lid and let the dough proof for 30mins.
  8. Meanwhile make the filling and glaze

Making the filling

  1. Mix all ingredients together and keep aside in cool place.

Making the Glaze

  1. Mix all ingredients together and keep aside in
    cool place.

Rolling and making the cinnamon roll

  1. Take the lid off and transfer the Instant Pot Cinnamon Roll dough onto a flat, floured surface and gently roll into a rectangle 24" by 18" or 18"x18" to make bigger rolls.
  2. Spread the filling by sprinkling it over the rolled-out dough, it's faster. Or use a spatula and spread it evenly.
  3. With heat, and while baking, the filling will spread within the rolls.
  4. Roll it up from the longest side, roll tight but not too tight. Pinch the seam tightly. Place seam-side down. Trim off any unevenness on either end.
  5. Take an Unflavored floss and slide the floss under the large cinnamon roll. Take both ends of the floss, cross them over the top of the roll, and pull on the ends to slice.
  6. Repeat the move, slicing each section in half, until you have 14 cinnamon rolls. (You can use a knife too). For bigger rolls cut 8. 

Bake it in the Oven

  1. Place parchment paper at the pan's bottom. Place the rolls in the baking pan, keeping a small gap between each roll. The rolls will expand on cooking and this small gap avoids them sticking to each other.
  2. Cover the rolls and let them rise for 40 minutes.
  3. Preheat oven to 180C/360F. Bake 15 to 18 minutes or until it’s golden.
  4. While still warm, drizzle evenly with frosting.

Make it in the Air Fryer

  1. Once the rolls are assembled, line the basket of your air fryer with aluminum foil and lightly spray with non-stick spray.
  2. Once lightly coated, place the rolls in the basket leaving just a bit of space between each. Next, let them rise, covered, for 40 minutes. 
  3. Finally, place the basket in the air fryer and bake at 350 for about 10 to 15 minutes or until they turn golden brown and have expanded in size.

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Brad

Monday 11th of April 2022

Can these be frozen?

Suzanne Ward

Sunday 10th of April 2022

Anyone tried alternative milk…ie: almond or soy?

S Ramirez

Monday 14th of March 2022

I used actual Buttermilk that I had on hand from making homemade butter out of heavy whipping cream. So, I used 3/4-cups plus 1-Tablespoon Buttermilk and NO lemon juice. I also added 1/2-cup Raisins on top of cinnamon sugar butter mixture and pressed into dough before rolling up and cutting. Placed on parchment paper, covered lightly with plastic wrap and then a light towel and set on opened oven door for one hour, pre-heated to 200 degrees. When risen as large as I wanted them to be, baked as directed in original recipe. Superb! 💕

TDale

Sunday 13th of March 2022

No yogurt setting on my InstantPot (it's from 2012 and they didn't have that setting on the earliest models). I'm guessing this means I need to go back to "another" way of rising the dough, right? There are no other settings I can use?

Angela

Friday 3rd of December 2021

My family loves cinnamon rolls. This recipe is great. Thanks for the information on rising the dough in the Instant Pot. I hadn't used it for anything like that before but it worked like a charm.

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