Homemade easy-peasy cinnamon rolls

Are you a person who loves the aroma of cinnamon wafting through the kitchen in the early mornings?

If yes, then my recipe for hot cinnamon rolls is for you.

These delicious rolls spiced with cinnamon, vanilla and my secret ingredient – nutmeg, make for one of the most yummy breakfast recipes. They turn out super soft, spongy and utterly delicious. The best part is that we just need to proof the dough once. That’s it.

The recipe uses yeast so the fluffiness is guaranteed but unlike some bakers, I prefer to proof them for a minimum of 1 ½ hours. That gives the yeast the time to work its magic in the recipe. Also, since the basic tenet to working with yeast is proofing the dough, I recommend a simple way to do it. Check my recipe to know the trick to the perfect dough.

There is a three step process to making them

  • Making the dough
  • Making the filling
  • Making the frosting (if you want it). I don’t use glaze.




For the rolls

  • 2 ¾ cup all purpose flour/maida + ¼ cup for kneading (if needed)
  • ¼ cup white, granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 ¼ tsp instant yeast (I use bluebird)  or 1 small sachet of 10 gm
  • ¼ cup water
  • ½ cup whole cream milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla essence
  • 1 large egg, at room temperature
  • 3 tbsp unsalted butter + 1 tbsp
  • 2 tbsp castor sugar for sprinkling on top (if not using the glaze). If you want to glaze them then see the end of the post.


For the filling

  • 3 tbsp unsalted butter, soft at room temperature
  • 1 tbsp cinnamon powder
  • 2 pinches nutmeg powder
  • 1/4  cup brown sugar

Note – if you like then you can also use about ¼ cup choco chips for the filling.



Making the dough

  1. Which the flour, yeast, salt and sugar together and keep aside.
  2. In the microwave safe bowl, heat the milk, water and butter together. Heat at 20 sec intervals till the mixture is well combined. We need the mixture to be warm but not too hot to touch as it is needed to activate the yeast.  The ideal temperature would be about 43 deg C or 110 deg F (slightly warmer than lukewarm). Once done, pour this wet mixture on the dry mixture, add the egg and bring it all together into dough.
  3. Although a stand mixer is advisable for making the dough, I use a hand held one.
  4. As soon as the dough comes together (it will be sticky), flour the counter top of your kitchen surface and knead the dough on it. You may need as much as ¼ cup of flour to bring the dough to a supple, soft consistency. This should take about 5 minutes. Once done, the dough will be springy to touch and will bounce back if pressed with your finger tip. That’s the yeast at work.
  5. Grease a bowl and place the dough in it. Cover with a wet towel and set aside in a draft free environment for about 10 -12 minutes.
  6. To prepare the filling, simply mix the cinnamon, nutmeg and brown sugar together.
  7. After 10 minutes, bring out the dough (it will have risen somewhat).
  8. Flour the kitchen counter top again and roll the dough into a rectangular shape on your kitchen counter top, approx 15 x 9 inches.
  9. Slater the top of the rectangle with softened butter and then sprinkle the brown sugar and spices mix. If you are using choco-chips then you can sprinkle those too. Make sure to spread out all ingredients evenly.
  10. Roll the dough into a tight tube and cut it into even sized rings, approx half inch in width. You should get approx 10 rolls.
  11. Grease a baking dish, approx 9×9 (round dish or tray) and arrange your rolls on it. If they appear to be of uneven height, then just gently press down on the ones that seem taller to ensure that they all come to an even height. This will help them bake evenly.
  12. Note – For baking them, I prefer a tin with about 2-3 inch sides because that way when I cover the top with a cling film or aluminium foil, the dough does not stick to it.
  13. Cover the rolls with cling film or aluminium foil and allow them to rise for min 1 ½ hours.
  14. Note – to ensure that I always get super soft rolls, I preheat the oven to 140 deg C. Once done, I switch it off and place my rolls in it to rise for about 20 minutes. After that, I remove them and place them in a kitchen cupboard or any such area which is free from draft. In 1 ½ hours I get them to rise perfectly.
  15. Preheat the oven to 190 deg C. With a brush glaze the tops of the rolls in a mixture of milk and butter (glaze them)
  16. Place your rolls in the oven after they have risen and bake at 190 deg C for approx 30 minutes. Around the 25 minutes mark, crack open the oven door without switching it off and slather some melted butter on top of the rolls. Sprinkle the castor sugar and close the oven door. Let them continue to bake.

Note – If you observe your rolls turning too brown then you can cover them with an aluminium sheet mid way. Once baked, bring them out. I prefer to eat them as they are but if you would like to frost them then drizzle the frosting over the warm rolls and allow it to set as they cool.

If you would like to glaze your cinnamon roll with vanilla icing then follow these steps

  1. 2 table spoon whole fat milk
  2. 1 cup icing sugar
  3. 1 teaspoon vanilla essence

Simply whisk all the ingredients together and dribble on the hot rolls. That’s all there is to it.


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About Sonal Singh

I believe that life is a repertoire of anecdotes. The various situations that we encounter, the many incidents of every day, the people we meet, our conversations with them; all make life a melange of tales. And, that is what I attempt to capture through my writing. My cooking is no different! It reflects my love for travel and my love for innovation. The kitchen is my happy place. So, even though by vocation I am a recruiter (www.rianplacements.com), by passion I am a writer, home chef and a hodophile.

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