BEST & EASY HOMEMADE BROWN BUTTER CINNAMON ROLLS

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These homemade brown butter cinnamon rolls are rich, soft and gooey, the best and easy sweet rolls you will make at home this holiday season. The nutty and toasted flavor from brown butter enhances the taste of these baked rolls.

Cinnamon rolls or buns are one of the best sweet treat or dessert to start morning on a happy festive note during this holiday season or any weekend morning.

Cinnamon rolls are also know as cinnamon bun, cinnamon swirl, cinnamon Danish and cinnamon snail. These rolls are sweet and served for breakfast or as a dessert commonly in Northern Europe (mainly in Scandinavia) and North America. In Sweden it is called kanelbulle, In Denmark it is known as kanelsnegl, In Norway it is known as Kanelbolle, Skillingsboller and Kanelsnurr, and In Finland it is known as korvapuusti. (Source for these names : Wikipedia)

What are Cinnamon rolls?

Cinnamon rolls are traditionally yeast leavened dough over which cinnamon sugar mixture is sprinkled along with butter. This dough is then rolled and cut into individual portions and fried or baked. Main ingredients used in cinnamon rolls are flour, butter, sugar and cinnamon powder.

I was first introduced to Cinnamon rolls at Cinnabon in United States. I totally fell in love with it. People who have already tasted it definitely know what I am talking about. My love for baking, made me give these rolls a try at home. I have tried these rolls both with regular butter and brown butter. Both taste fantastic but my love towards brown butter from childhood makes me bake the rolls using brown butter frequently.

If you love brown butter and are planning to make this recipe, I would recommend making brown butter in advance.

HOW TO MAKE BROWN BUTTER?

  • Cut the butter into cubes, add it to pan and melt it over medium-low heat.
  • Once the butter has melted, increase the heat a little above medium.
  • Keep scraping and swirling the pan using with spatula or spoon during the process.
  • The butter will foam and sizzle around the edges. Slowly the bubble or foam dissolves and light brown specs will start forming at the bottom.
  • Be attentive throughout as there is very few seconds between brown butter and burnt butter. Once you smell the nutty aroma of brown butter, switch off the flame. Transfer it to a heat proof bowl immediately.
  • Let it cool down completely before using it in any baking recipe.

How to make Best & Easy Cinnamon rolls or Buns or Cinnabon copycat rolls from scratch using brown butter ?

In a bowl, add yeast and luke warm milk and allow the yeast to activate. Next add eggs, brown butter, salt, sugar, and mix. Finally, add the flour and knead to get soft and smooth dough.

Add flour in increments. Do not add too much flour. The dough can be sticky or tacky but not too dry. This is the key to get soft cinnamon rolls.

Best Cinnamon Rolls Filling

Filling for cinnamon rolls just uses three basic ingredients. Melted brown butter, brown sugar, and cinnamon powder.

My family loves brown butter or ghee from childhood. The nutty aroma of melted brown butter or ghee makes these cinnamon rolls and the filling incredibly delicious.

If you are out of time or want to keep the recipe simple, simply use regular salted butter.

How to roll cinnamon rolls or buns?

Once the dough has doubled in size, transfer the dough to a well floured surface to avoid it from sticking.

Using a rolling pin, roll the dough into a rectangle. Now spread the cinnamon roll filling. Fold it into a log starting with long side. Cut the log into 12 or 15 or as many rolls as you want depending on desired size and the size of baking pan you are going to use.

Leave it for second rise just until doubled in size.

How to make cinnamon rolls or buns or cinnabons rich and gooey.

After the second rise you will have to pour the heavy cream on risen rolls so that the cinnamon rolls are soaked in heavy cream.  This will give you rich and gooey rolls or buns like the one you buy from Cinnabon.

How do you pour the heavy cream on the rolls?

First, slightly warm the heavy cream to remove the chill off.

Why should I warm the heavy cream before pouring?

Your dough generally rises in warmth and you want to continue the rise even during the baking process. So just warm the cream enough so that you can touch.  Not hot or cold. Even room temperature heavy cream is fine.

How to make icing or cream cheese frosting for cinnamon rolls or buns ?

Cream cheese frosting is my favorite when it comes to cinnamon rolls. The ingredients are pretty simple – cream cheese, butter, sugar and vanilla extract.

You can even add brown butter and a tsp of cinnamon powder to enhance the taste. This is a fail-proof recipe and I have prepared this several times.

When should I add icing or frosting to Cinnamon rolls?

I generally add it when the rolls are still warm so that it gets soaked in and makes it better.

But if you want to make it look prettier for holidays or any special occasions simply add the frosting to the cinnamon rolls when it comes to room temperature.

Why are my cinnamon rolls or buns dry?

Too much flour in the dough will make your rolls dry and tough. Adding little flour will make it soggy and dense. Best practice is to add flour at the end in increments of tablespoon and check the texture of the dough.

Overnight Cinnamon Rolls or Make-ahead Cinnamon Rolls or Buns

When the cinnamon rolls are ready for a second rise in the baking pan, cover and refrigerate it overnight. Next morning when you are ready to bake pull them out of refrigerator.

At this point, they should have doubled in size in refrigerator. In this case just keep it out of refrigerator for 30 minutes to get chill off and bake.

If for some reason the rolls did not rise during second rise in refrigerator, keep it out at room temperature. Plan at least one hour additional rise at room temperature in this case.

Then pour the heavy cream on the rolls and bake.

Frozen Cinnamon Rolls

You can freeze the cinnamon rolls dough before baking. Once the dough comes to point of second rise, roll the dough, spread the filling, and cut them into rolls and place in baking pan. Then, keep it in freezer for one hour. Then place in freezer-proof ziploc bag.

When you are ready to bake the rolls, remove the the freezer and defrost.

To defrost, place the rolls in refrigerator overnight. Next morning, when you want to bake it, arrange it in baking pan and allow it around one hour at room temperature for second rise. Then follow the same steps and bake them.

How to store cinnamon rolls?

Baked cinnamon rolls :

Baked cinnamon rolls remain fresh for few days, say up to 3 days at room temperature in an air-tight container. This will even keep them moist and prevent from drying out. If you keeping them in pan, make sure you cover it tightly with an aluminum foil.

Uncooked cinnamon rolls :

The best way to store them is to keep the cinnamon rolls dough before the second rise in refrigerator if you need it the next day. Freeze the rolls if you are planning to store it for a long time. Thaw, allow to rise at room temperature and bake as needed.

What goes well with cinnamon rolls?

Cinnamon rolls are served with cup of coffee for breakfast or as a mid day snack or after meal dessert. But surprisingly I have also seen it paired with chili and its one of the best interesting combo.

Can you make cinnamon rolls without yeast?

Yes, cinnamon rolls can be done even without yeast. You can substitute it with equal amount of baking powder. The amount of dough rise will be less compared to traditional rolls. Plus the rolls or buns will have slightly denser texture and will be chewier.

Can cinnamon rolls be made eggless?

Yes. If you want a vegetarian version of cinnamon rolls – then skip eggs mentioned in the recipe. The texture of baked cinnamon rolls will vary slightly.

Egg is mainly added to make yeast breads richer and finer, bind the ingredients and also provide the volume.

Vegan cinnamon rolls

Cinnamon rolls can be made vegan with proper substitutes. The taste and texture will vary ofcourse vary slightly. Substitute milk with any dairy free milk, butter with vegan butter or coconut oil and cream cheese with vegan cream cheese.

Air fryer cinnamon rolls

After the cinnamon rolls are done with the second rise, preheat the air fryer to 350 degree F. Transfer around 4 to 5 rolls depending on the size and air fry for 5 minutes. Turn the rolls over and fry again for another 4 minutes. Repeat the steps for remaining cinnamon rolls.

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Detailed recipe for Homemade Best & Easy Cinnamon Rolls with Brown Butter and Cream Cheese Frosting (Cinnamon Danish, Cinnamon Swirl, Cinnamon Snail, Cinnamon Buns)

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BEST & EASY HOMEMADE BROWN BUTTER CINNAMON ROLLS WITH CREAM CHEESE FROSTING
Prep Time
30 mins

Cook Time
30 mins

Rest Time
1 hr 30 mins

 

These homemade brown butter cinnamon rolls are rich, soft and gooey, the best and easy sweet rolls you will make at home this holiday season. The nutty and toasted flavor from brown butter enhances the taste of these baked rolls.

Course:

Breakfast, Desserts, sweets
Cuisine:

American, Denmark, Sweden
Keyword:

Casserole, Christmas, Christmas recipes, christmas recipes for large crowd, cinnabon copycat, cinnamon buns, cinnamon danish, cinnamon snail, cinnamon sticky buns, cinnamon swirl, cream cheese cinnamon rolls, crescent rolls, Easter Brunch, frosting for cinnamon rolls, holiday season recipes, Homemade Dough, Kanelbolle, kanelbulle, kanelsnegl, Kanelsnurr, korvapuusti, morning buns, no yeast bread, Skillingsboller, sweet bread, sweet rolls, thanksgiving recipes, Yeast Rolls
Servings: 12
Author: Kushi

Ingredients
For the dough
  • 1
    cup
    Warm milk
  • 2 1/4
    tsp
    Active dry yeast or Instant yeast
  • 2
    Eggs, room temperature
  • 1/2
    cup
    Salted brown butter, in melted form
    (check tips)
  • 4 1/4
    cups
    All purpose flour, more if needed
  • 1
    tsp
    Salt
  • 1/2
    cup
    Sugar
For the filling
  • 1/2
    cup
    Salted brown butter, melted
  • 1
    cup
    Brown sugar
  • 2
    tbsp
    Cinnamon
For pouring on unbaked rolls
  • 1/2
    cup
    Heavy cream (optional)
For the frosting
  • 8
    oz
    Cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2
    cup
    Salted butter, softened
  • 2
    cups
    Confectioner's Sugar (powdered sugar)
  • 1/2
    tbsp
    Vanilla extract

Instructions
Step I
  1. In a bowl, add luke warm milk and sprinkle yeast. Let the yeast activate. Add egg, brown butter (check tips), salt and sugar.

  2. Add flour in increments and knead till smooth and elastic dough is formed. You may add up to another additional 1/2 cup flour if needed depending on weather conditions and brand of flour you are using. You may feel the dough is sticky during the kneading process but that's ok. Don't add too much flour. This is what makes your rolls or buns softer.

  3. Transfer the dough to a greased bowl and cover with plastic wrap.

  4. Let it rise in a warm place or just until doubled in size.

Step II (Prepare cinnamon filling)
  1. In bowl, combine brown butter, sugar and cinnamon powder. Keep this aside.

  2. Once the dough has risen, transfer it to a well-floured surface. Roll the dough into a rectangle approx. 24 inch by 15 inch dimensions.

  3. Using spatula, spread the cinnamon sugar mixture prepared above over the whole rectangular rolled dough.

  4. Starting on long end, tightly roll the dough.

  5. Now cut the rolls into 12 slices and place them in a 9 by 13 inch baking pan.

  6. Cover the baking pan and allow the rolls to double in size approx 20 to 30 minutes.

Step III
  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degree F.

  2. Warm the heavy cream just until you can touch it. Don't make it hot or don't use chill heavy cream.

  3. Pour this over the top of risen rolls so that the rolls soak down.

  4. Bake the rolls for about 20 to 25 minutes till they are light golden in color and cooked through at center completely. The baking time may vary depending on the pan, size of rolls, type of oven, and various other factors. Have a close look at 20 minutes mark. they may take up to 27 to 30 minutes. If you feel the rolls are getting browned – then cover with aluminum foil and bake.

Step III
  1. While the rolls are cooling down, prepare the cream cheese frosting.

  2. In a bowl, add cream cheese and butter. Blend it using hand held mixer.

  3. Add vanilla extract and powdered sugar and beat until just combined .

  4. Spread the frosting over the rolls when its warm if you want the frosting to soak. Alternately, spread the cream cheese frosting when the cinnamon rolls come to room temperature to make it look more prettier.

  5. Brown Butter Cinnamon rolls are now ready. Serve and enjoy. You can also store them in an airtight container for up to 3 to 4 days. Warm and serve as required.

Recipe Notes

How to make brown butter (If using brown butter, plan ahead so that it cools down before using it in the recipe)

  • Cut the butter into cubes, add it to pan and melt it over medium-low heat.
  • Once the butter has melted, increase the heat a little above medium.
  • Keep scraping and swirling the pan using the spatula or spoon during the process.
  • The butter will foam and sizzle around the edges. Slowly the bubble or foam disappears and light brown specs will start forming at the bottom
  • Be attentive throughout as there is very few seconds between brown butter and burnt butter. Once you smell the nutty aroma of the butter, switch off the flame. Transfer it to a heat proof bowl immediately.
  • Let it cool down before using it in any baking recipes.
  1. You can also use regular butter or salted butter instead of brown butter and prepare traditional cinnamon rolls. It tastes fantastic.
  2. Heavy cream can be substituted with coffee cream, evaporated milk or even dairy-free milk. 
  3. You can reduce the butter in the dough up to 1/3 cup if you want to cut down on fat. 
  4. The rolls will still be soft and good without the addition of heavy cream. But adding it will make your rolls or buns rich and gooey. 

If you like this best & easy cinnamon rolls recipe,

Don’t miss to check out some of my delicious Easter, Thanksgiving and Christmas desserts, Fall and Winter desserts, or best, easy desserts for entertaining your family or a large crowd this Holiday season.

Pavlova Cake

Strawberry & Blueberry Panna Cotta

Nutella-stuffed Chocolate Chip Cookies

Persimmon Apple Pudding or Christmas Pudding

Easy peanut butter fudge

Pumpkin pie with streusel topping

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