Sunday, May 15, 2011

Cream Cheese Frosted Cinnamon Rolls


Back in Junior High, I was taught how to make Cinnamon Rolls from scratch without yeast. At that time, I thought it was so exciting to make them instead of purchasing the pop-open can from the store. Over the years, I have been known to pull out that little piece of paper containing the recipe when there was a calling but time was of the essence.

While I am grateful for that recipe, I have learned there are improvements that exist to make a much more enjoyable cinnamon roll. My entire life one thing I have enjoyed is making yeast bread. I have been known to spend an entire Saturday making bread by hand and then giving it away because there was too much for one person. So I am excited to share my recipe for Cinnamon Rolls that incorporates this love for yeast breads.


For this recipe, I choose to use a Challah dough but other basic doughs such as Brioche or Boule can be used. One thing to note with this recipe is the Challah dough used can be made either the same day or even up to 4 days before. (The dough also freezes well but will need to be thawed and left to rise before used).

Challah Dough 
adapted from Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day - J. Hertzberg & Z. Francois
1 C lukewarm water
3/4 Tbsp Granulated Yeast (3/4 packet) (I purchase the yeast in a bottle and store in refridge)
3/4 Tbsp Salt
2 Eggs, beaten
1/4 C Honey
1/4 C Unsalted Butter, melted
3 1/2 C Unbleached Flour

Mix together in a stand mixer with a dough hook (or in a bread machine in Dough cycle only)water,  yeast, salt, eggs, honey and melted butter.  Once that is combined, add the flour. If you do not have this equipment, dough can be mixed with a spoon but gently stir until combined. You may need to use floured hands at end to incorporate final flour.

Once combined, cover bowl with plastic wrap loosely and leave on counter to rest at room temperature for two hours.  Once the initial rise is complete, dough can be used immediately or be refrigerated in a lidded but not airtight container for up to four days.

Cinnamon Rolls (makes 12-14 rolls)
1/4 C Unsalted Butter, softened
1 C Sugar
4 Tbsp Cinnamon

First step, combine sugar and cinnamon in a bowl. I used a sifter to combine to make sure there were no clumps. Set Aside.


To make the cinnamon rolls, remove dough from fridge and cut in half. Dust dough with flour and shape into a ball by stretching surface into the back of the ball of dough until it makes a smooth top.

With a rolling pin, roll out dough to a 1/4 inch thickness rectangle on a floured surface. Be sure to use flour to keep it from sticking and turn over dough as you roll out. Once dough is rolled out, spread softened butter onto dough with a pastry brush or spatula. Sprinkle half of Cinnamon/sugar mixture over dough. Roll dough up from long end and pinch seams to seal.


Cut dough into 1 1/2 inch pieces either with sharp serrated knife (or my trick - unflavored dental floss or thread. Slide under dough and cross on top to cut dough). Put cut edge side down in pan but make sure  pieces are not touching (Do not pack pan). Once pan is full (I fill two pans), cover loosely with plastic wrap and let rise for 1 hr. 20 min.


Twenty minutes before you are ready to bake, turn oven on to 350 degrees. Bake 23 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool slightly.  Spread frosting onto warm rolls and serve.

Cream Cheese Frosting
8 ounces (1 pkg) Cream Cheese, room temperature
1/4 C Unsalted Butter, room temperature
1 C Powdered Sugar
1/2 tsp Vanilla

In a medium bowl, combine cream cheese and butter until creamy. Add powdered sugar and vanilla extract mix until well combined.
Now that you know one of my favorite yeast bread recipes, what's your favorite to make??

The beautiful plate used on the finished cinnamon roll photo is from Gleena.com. Check out the beautiful work done by Asya. 

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