I can’t believe it took me almost 25 years to make cinnamon rolls from scratch because HOLY WOW my life is changed. My taste buds are having a hay day over here.
For me cinnamon rolls were a Christmas morning type of thing, but now I want them to be an every morning type of thing (kind of joking, but not really) because the recipe I’m about to give you is THAT GOOD.
I must put a disclaimer out there though before I go any further; this is NOT my recipe. I am not claiming this nor taking credit, I got this straight from the Tasty website and am posting it here for you to see. Their video of the 4 min vs 40 minute vs 4 hour cinnamon roll is what inspired this post and my youtube video where I make my own versions and compare the two.
Here is the video if you want to check it out!
Below are the recipes for the microwave cinnamon roll and the classic cinnamon roll, from the Tasty website.
4 Minute Microwave Cinnamon Roll
for 2 servings
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 large egg
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
- 2 tablespoons whole milk
- 1 ½ cups pancake mix
- all purpose flour, for dusting
- nonstick cooking spray, for greasing
- 2 teaspoons water
- 6 tablespoons powdered sugar
- 1 tablespoon whole milk
- Make the filling: In a small bowl, combine the melted butter, brown sugar, and cinnamon. Make the dough: In a medium bowl, whisk together the egg, vanilla, sugar, and milk until combined. Add the pancake mix and stir with a rubber spatula until mostly incorporated.
- Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead briefly until mostly smooth. Roll the dough out to an 8 x 6-inch rectangle.
- Spread the filling over the dough. Starting with a long edge, tightly roll the dough into a log. Cut in half crosswise.
- Grease 2 12-ounce mugs with nonstick spray. Place 1 cinnamon roll in each mug with the cut side facing up. Spoon 1 teaspoon of water into each mug. Working 1 at a time, microwave the cinnamon rolls on medium power for 1 minute and 45 seconds. Let cool for 1 minute.
- Make the icing: In a small bowl, stir together the powdered sugar and milk until smooth.
- Drizzle the icing over the cinnamon rolls before serving.
Classic Cinnamon Roll
2 cups whole milk, warm to the touch
½ cup granulated sugar
½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted
2¼ teaspoons (1 packet) active dry yeast
5 cups all-purpose flour, divided
1 teaspoon baking powder
2 teaspoons kosher salt
¾ cup light brown sugar
¾ cup (1½ sticks) unsalted butter, softened
2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
4 ounces cream cheese, softened and cubed
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
4 tablespoons milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup powdered sugar
- Make the dough: In a large bowl, whisk together the warm milk, sugar, and melted butter. The mixture should be just warm, registering between 100-110˚F (37-43˚C). If any warmer, allow to cool slightly.
- Sprinkle the yeast evenly over the milk mixture, stir, and let sit in a warm place for about 10 minutes until the yeast has bloomed.
- Add 4 cups of flour to the milk mixture and stir with a wooden spoon until just combined.
- Cover the bowl with a kitchen towel or plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place for 1 hour, until nearly doubled in size.
- Generously butter 2 9-inch round baking pans and set aside.
- Make the filling: In a medium bowl, combine the brown sugar, butter, and cinnamon. Mix well, then set aside.
- Remove the plastic wrap from the dough and add the remaining cup of flour, baking powder, and salt. Stir well, then turn out onto a clean surface. Leave a bit of flour nearby to use as needed, but try not to incorporate too much.
- Knead the dough for at least 10 minutes, adding more flour as necessary, until the dough just loses its stickiness and does not stick to the surface or your hands. The dough should be very smooth and spring back when poked.
- Roll the dough out into a large rectangle, about ½-inch (1 cm) thick. Fix the corners with a bench scraper or a spatula to make sure they are sharp and even.
- Spread the filling evenly over the dough.
- Starting from one short end, roll up the dough into a log and pinch the seam closed. Place seam-side down. Trim any uneven ends.
- Using unflavored dental floss, cut the log into evenly pieces, about 1½ inches (8cm) thick. Place the cinnamon rolls in the prepared pans, 1 in the center and about 5 around the sides. Cover with a towel and let rise in a warm place for 35-45 minutes, until expanded by about half of their original volume. If you’re saving the cinnamon rolls for later, cover with plastic wrap and freeze for up 3 months.
- Preheat the oven to 350˚F (180˚C).
- Bake the cinnamon rolls for 25-30 minutes, until golden brown.
- While the cinnamon rolls are baking, make the frosting: In a medium bowl, whisk together the cream cheese, melted butter, milk, and vanilla extract until smooth. Gradually add the powdered sugar and whisk until homogenous and runny.
- When the cinnamon rolls are finished, let cool for about 10 minutes.
- Drizzle the frosting over the cinnamon rolls, using the back of a spoon to spread if desired.