Well, technically I got it from my great grandma according to a conversation I had with my mom this weekend. That ‘it’ I’m talking about is the most delicious and easy cinnamon roll recipe that I’ve ever made – not that I’m biased or anything.
Ooey, gooey, sweet, fluffy and satisfying.
Manfriend and I prefer to give experiences than actual gifts, and this past New Year we exchanged gifts and gave each other a weekend away. This past weekend we went on the first getaway together to Eastern WA. I decided to take Friday off so we could sleep in and start our trip relaxed versus trying to rush out of work and beat traffic out of town on a Friday afternoon. Since I am rarely home on week day mornings I wanted to take advantage of the extra morning time and start our trip with a special breakfast – as we’ve already established, I do not like to get up early for anything.
My mom has made these cinnamon rolls for every Christmas morning for as long as I can remember, and I’m sure my mom’s mom did and her mom before that. The best thing about these is that they can be prepped the evening before and then rolled out in the morning and go from fridge to oven to table in less than an hour. They only require 6 ingredients for the dough and the possibilities for fillings are endless.
If you’ve never made cinnamon rolls from scratch, don’t be intimidated, these are super easy and worth the effort, you won’t want to buy store bought cinnamon rolls ever again. These are the perfect thing to bring to brunch or impress your in laws with, or just for a special weekend breakfast. Or if you’re super ambitious, even a week day breakfast. They also keep really well so you can be noshing on them all weekend.
My Momma’s Cinnamon Rolls
Prep Time : 15 mins | Rest time : 8 hours or overnight | Cook Time : 30-40 mins
2 cups of warm to hot water
1 package of yeast or 2 1/4 teaspoons
3/4 cup sugar
1/3 cup oil (I used avocado, canola or vegetable will do just fine)
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp cinnamon
Approx 6-7 cups flour
1/4 cup unsalted butter
1/2 cup brown sugar
1. Add hot water to bowl and let sit to warm bowl, then pour out and add 2 cups of hot but not boiling water, mix in yeast, sugar and oil and let sit for about 10 minutes. The yeast will start feeding on the sugar, producing bubbles and look something like this.
2. Once the mixture is bubbled up, add one egg, cinnamon and vanilla and whisk to combine.
3. Start adding flour about 1/2 cup at a time, I try to use the whisk as long as possible to incorporate smoothly but you will eventually have to use your hands until the dough comes together and is no longer sticky. Make sure to not add too much flour or it will be too dry.
4. Once the dough comes together, coat bowl in oil and place somewhere warm. I like to turn the oven on to about 350 and just set the bowl on the oven until the dough doubles in size or reaches the top of the bowl, about 45 minutes. If your kitchen is warm enough, setting this on the counter should suffice. Make sure to turn oven off once dough has risen.
5. Once dough has doubled in size, punch a hole in the middle to deflate dough, then cover and put into fridge overnight.
6. In the morning, the dough will have risen again, take out of fridge and let come to room temperature, I like to do this about 30 minutes before I plan to roll out the dough. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
7. Roll out the dough until even and about the size of a cookie sheet, or however large your counter top will allow. Melt butter and spread on dough, sprinkle with brown sugar and cinnamon. At this time if you wanted to add raisins, nuts or even something crazy like nutella, go for it! I threw some chopped hazelnuts in these guys at the last minute and did not regret it.
8. Roll up the dough lengthwise until you have a long log. Slice into pieces and place into a 9X11 baking pan. I like to line the pan with foil as it makes it easier to remove the rolls from the pan and makes cleanup significantly easier since these babies will be sticky 🙂 You’ll want to space them out a bit since they will expand during baking.
8. Pop these into the oven and bake for 30 minutes and check on them, they should have risen and expanded and look a bit golden brown on top. I let this batch go until 40 minutes but they shouldn’t need any longer than that.
When they look and feel done, take them out of the oven and lift out of pan with foil and place on cooling rack. These are best when they are warm so feel free to dig in right away, just be careful not to burn yourself. These are so delicious and sweet on their own I don’t think they need frosting or anything else, but if that sort of thing floats your boat, go for it!
Give these a try the next time you want something warm, sweet and comforting for breakfast and make my great grandma proud! I may have filled my belly with 3 of these, but whose counting. I did that tabata run on Thursday so I was feeling just fine about my decision to eat these rolls, and besides, I was technically already on vacation and we all know those calories don’t count right? 🙂
Cheers everyone! Let me know if you try them out or have any fun additions! I think next time I am going to try nutella and chocolate chips.