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The Best Homemade Cinnamon Rolls

These Cinnamon Rolls are the ultimate Cinnabon clone. Chewy, soft, and homemade, you'll never need another Cinnamon Roll Recipe again!

Course Breakfast, Dessert
Cuisine American
Keyword breakfast, cinnamon roll recipe, cinnamon rolls, Easy Cinnamon Roll Recipe, how to make cinnamon rolls
Prep Time 6 hours
Cook Time 17 minutes
Total Time 6 hours 17 minutes
Servings 15 rolls
Calories 432 kcal
Author Lauren

Ingredients

for the dough-

for the filling-

  • 1/2 cup margarine softened (or butter)
  • 1 1/4 cups packed light brown sugar
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch

for the frosting-

  • 2 oz. cream cheese at room temperature
  • 1/4 cup margarine softened (or butter)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tablespoon corn syrup
  • 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1 1/4 cups powdered sugar
US Customary - Metric

Instructions

Make the Dough-

  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook, pour in water, yeast and 1 tablespoon of the granulated sugar. Stir and proof 5 minutes. 

  2. Once the mixture looks bubbly and frothy, pour in remaining sugar and salt. Stir on low for 15-20 seconds. In a small bowl, measure buttermilk, oil, and egg. Whisk ingredients together until egg is incorporated to other two ingredients. Pour contents into the water and yeast mixture. Stir another 20 seconds in the mixer. 

  3. Pour 2 cups of flour into mixer and stir on low until incorporated. Sprinkle flour in by 1/4 cup increments until dough cleans the sides and bottom of the bowl. **You may not use the entire amount of flour to get to this stage. THAT'S OK! When the dough is sticky but not sticky enough to stick to your hands when touched, it's perfect. Once it has reached this stage, knead for 5 minutes. 

  4. Remove dough from bowl, grease and replace back into same mixing bowl {since it's practically clean anyways.} Cover with plastic wrap and a dish towel. Rise 1-2 hours or until the dough has doubled in size.

Filling and Cutting Rolls-

  1. In a medium-size bowl, stir brown sugar, cinnamon, and cornstarch together until combined. Set aside. 

  2. Punch down dough. Flour a large clean table liberally with flour. Lightly flour dough as well. Roll dough out to be a 20x30 rectangle {or as close to that as possible} while moving dough around to ensure it's not sticking to your work surface. If it's a little short or uneven, feel free to cut off the edges to even it all out.

  3.  Spread softened margarine over dough, being sure to go right to the edges leaving a 1-inch strip untouched on one of the longer sides of dough. Dump brown sugar mixture onto the middle of the dough and spread with your hands, creating an even layer over top of the margarine, still leaving that 1-inch strip of dough untouched. If you have any filling that falls off the sides of the dough, use a bench scraper to replace. Lightly press the sugar mixture into the margarine using a rolling pin.

  4. Roll the dough up into a tight log, finishing with the plain dough on the bottom to seal the entire thing together. Cut off the uneven ends to even out the log. Score log every 2 inches and then slice your rolls using those marks. Place onto parchment paper lined, margarine greased pans. 12 into a 9x13, 3 remaining into a loaf pan, or 8x8 with the small ends. Cover pans with plastic wrap and dish towels. 

  5. Let rolls rise another 1-2 hours or until they are touching and have risen almost double. If you are not using quick rise yeast, have added too much flour or are working in a chilly kitchen, it may take 3-4 hours for your rolls to rise. 

    My rolls always spread out more than up, so just be aware that they will most likely spread out more than up. Bake in a preheated 350 degree for 17-20 minutes, or until tops start to brown. Watch them carefully!!

Cinnamon Roll Icing-

  1. While the rolls are baking, whip cream cheese and margarine together. Stir in vanilla, corn syrup and lemon juice. Scrape sides and mix again. Pour in powdered sugar and stir slowly until it starts to incorporate. Then mix on high for 5 minutes or until frosting starts to lighten in color. Scrape sides and mix again briefly. 

  2. Once rolls have been removed from the oven, frost using half the amount made. Then after they have cooled a few more minutes, frost again with remaining frosting. The first frosting will melt down into the rolls and the second layer should stay put. Serve warm.

Recipe Notes

-See step by step photos for more details.

-If your frosting isn't quite ready after you pull the rolls out of the oven, cover with foil so the tops don't dry out and get crispy.

-If you notice it takes forever for your rolls to rise, try adding an extra teaspoon of rapid rise yeast to your dough next time around. I also like to use Red Star Platinum yeast--it's amazing!

Nutrition Facts
The Best Homemade Cinnamon Rolls
Amount Per Serving
Calories 432 Calories from Fat 144
% Daily Value*
Fat 16g25%
Saturated Fat 3g19%
Cholesterol 15mg5%
Sodium 290mg13%
Potassium 105mg3%
Carbohydrates 67g22%
Fiber 2g8%
Sugar 35g39%
Protein 5g10%
Vitamin A 485IU10%
Vitamin C 0.2mg0%
Calcium 48mg5%
Iron 2.1mg12%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.