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One thing I make over and over again with my kids is cinnamon rolls! Whatever season or holiday, this one's an absolute favorite in our kitchen, especially on Sundays. The recipe isn't tricky to follow; it just takes some time to measure ingredients, work the dough, and cut and arrange the rolls. Give yourself a little patience and you'll be so happy with the results.
My amazingly talented friend, Lizi of the Food Nanny, inspired me to first try and make cinnamon rolls from scratch. I've always been super intimidated to try it, so I was so happy at how easy the recipe was and how incredible they turned out. There's nothing like a gooey cinnamon roll on a Sunday morning... My mouth is watering just thinking about it.
I've included Lizi's original recipe below with a few of my own notes. Be sure to check out other Food Nanny recipes on their website; I've never tried one that my entire family and I haven't loved! Cinnamon Rolls - Recipe from @TheFoodNanny
- 1/4 cup warm (105-115 degrees water)
- 1 tablespoon active dry yeast
- 1 cup warm milk
- 1/2 cup canola oil
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 3 ½ - 4 cups White Kamut Flour
- 2 eggs
- 6 tablespoons softened butter
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 2 teaspoons cinnamon
- CREAM CHEESE FROSTING
- 4 ounces cream cheese, softened
- 2 tablespoons butter, softened
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 1 teaspoon milk
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
1. Measure out the warm water in a glass measuring cup and add the yeast (I add a tsp of sugar to help activate my yeast). Stir and set aside for 5 minutes.
2. Microwave the milk for about 40 seconds to warm. (I sometimes replace with almond milk). Pour it into a large mixing bowl.
3. Add oil, heaping sugar, and salt. (I use avocado oil and pink Himalayan sea salt).
4. Mix in 1 cup of flour.
5. Add eggs and beat again, then stir in the yeast mixture.
6. Adding 1 cup at a time, stir in 4 more cups of flour, Add enough from remaining flour to make a soft dough. (Sometimes I only end up using 3 1/2 cups of flour.)
7. Turn the dough onto a floured surface (I just put it straight on my counter or cutting board) and knead gently until the dough is smooth and elastic. Place in a lightly greased mixing bowl and cover with a damp dishtowel. Let it rise in a warm place. (I put mine under oven lights on my range for an hour.)
8. Grease a 12x18 inch sheet pan and set aside.
9. Once dough has doubled in size, punch down the dough and roll it out on a lightly floured surface into a big rectangle (about 20x14 inches or larger). Spread with the softened butter using this rubber spatula. (Butter is listed under the Filling ingredients.)
9. Mix the granulated sugar, brown sugar, and cinnamon in a small bowl, then sprinkle most of the mixture over the dough. (If you want, you can sprinkle the dough with extras like nuts, raisins, or dates.)
10. Starting on one of the long sides, roll up the dough into a tightly rolled log.
11. Mark the center of the roll with a knife and then make nine evenly spaced marks on each side of center (this totals 20 rolls). The original recipe says to slice with a strand of heavy-duty thread or dental floss, but I just use a dough cutter. According to Food Nanny: place the thread under the dough, crisscross it over the dough, and pull quickly to make a clean cut for each roll.
12. Place the rolls in the prepared baking pans nestled up close to each other. (You can see in my photos how mine are all gathered up close to each other.) I then sprinkle the rest of the cinnamon sugar mix on top. Cover the filled pans with damp dish towels and let rise again until nearly double (about 30 minutes). While these are rising, preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
13. Once the dough is done rising, bake 10-15 minutes, until just lightly browned (or a bit more brown if you like the crunch and flavor). While the cinnamon rolls are baking, make the frosting by blending all ingredients together with a mixer.
14. Frost the rolls in the pan while still warm to make them melty and delicious, and serve right away. (You can freeze cooled rolls in resealable plastic freezer bags, but you probably won't have many leftovers!). I like to arrange them on my RP Petal Cake Stand.