The Best Homemade Cinnamon Rolls Recipe (2024)

These are the ULTIMATE best Homemade Cinnamon Rolls. Easy to make and so soft, fluffy and perfect ♡ Slather them in your favorite cream cheese frosting for the perfect special brunch.

The Best Homemade Cinnamon Rolls Recipe (1)

There’s not many things I love more than homemade cinnamon rolls. I guess homemade soft pretzels are very high up that list, too, but otherwise? The perfect soft and fluffy cinnamon rolls is where it’s at.

I used to make cinnamon rolls a little differently, but some readers were having trouble with the dough. Some said they added eggs to the dough, so I tested it an now make them with eggs all the time – and actually like it better! So here is my new favorite easy cinnamon roll recipe.

Please note: If you have made the old recipe (made without eggs) successfully and are looking for that, please print it here.

Ingredients you’ll need

Here is a visual overview of the ingredients in the recipe. Scroll down to the printable recipe card at the bottom of this post for quantities!

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If you want to slather your cinnamon rolls with my 1 minute homemade frosting, you’ll also need these:

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Ingredient notes

  • Sugar: If you prefer, you can use all white OR all brown sugar for the filling. All brown will yield a more caramel-like taste. All white will make the filling sweeter.
  • Milk: I prefer whole milk for a richer dough, but feel free to use any fat percentage you have at home.
  • Yeast: Use active dried yeast for best results. You can use instant yeast, the dough will rise faster. The rolls tend to have a slightly “yeastier” taste with instant yeast. Organic yeast will rise much slower, so plan accordingly if you’re planning on using that.
  • Butter: I recommend using real butter here. If you have to use margarine for any kind of reason, please use stick margarine for best results.

How to make homemade Cinnamon Rolls

1. Start by activating the yeast: Place it in a small bowl with some milk and sugar. Stir well, then let sit for 5 minutes.

If you see bubbles appearing on the surface, your yeast is good to go! If you don’t see any bubbles within 10 minutes, you need to use a new packet of yeast.

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2. Next, add all ingredients for the dough to the bowl of your stand mixer. (If you don’t have a hand mixer, you need to knead by hand – stir the ingredients together in the bowl first, then knead on your counter).

You want to knead the dough on medium speed until it’s completely smooth and pliable. You should be able to pull a piece of dough until it’s see-through thin, without it ripping apart. This can take 10 minutes! So be patient.

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3. Now, transfer the dough to a lightly greased bowl. I recommend using a ceramic bowl for best results. You an leave it in the metal bowl from your stand mixer if you must, but it never gives me the same results as a ceramic bowl!

You’ll want to shape the dough into a ball, pinching the bottom together to create a smooth surface on top. Place the ball, seam down, in your prepared bowl.

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Cover the bowl with a clean tea towel and let it sit at comfortably warm room temperature until doubled in size.

4. Now, roll the dough into a rectangle on a lightly floured surface.

Spread with butter, then sprinkle with cinnamon sugar.

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5. Roll the dough up into a firm log and pinch the seam to seal.

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6. Slice the cinnamon roll log into rolls. I like using a piece of sewing thread or dental floss for super neat rolls!

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7. Place the rolls in a greased 9×13 inch dish, cover and let sit until puffy.

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Now just bake, then frost warm in the pan!

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Recipe tips

Timing of rise

The exact timing will depend on many factors, including:

  • your room temperature (cooler room = slower rise)
  • your bowl (really! ceramic bowls are warmer, so if you want your dough to rise faster, don’t leave it in your mixer’s stainless steel bowl)
  • your altitude (higher altitude = faster rise)
  • your yeast (instant yeast = fast rise; active yeast = regular rise; organic yeast = slow rise)

Note: This stage can also be done in the fridge overnight! Just make sure to remove the dough from the fridge 15-30 minutes before continuing with the recipe, so it can warm up.

Cutting

Now this is where the real magic happens! Ever rolled a beautiful log of cinnamon rolls, only to then destroy their beautiful round shape by running a knife through them?

It’s actually way easier, neater and prettier to cut them with a piece of sewing thread or some unscented dental floss.

Check out my recipe video up in this post or down in the recipe card to see how it’s done!

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The Best Homemade Cinnamon Rolls Recipe (13)
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Baking

Cinnamon rolls are supposed to be soft and a bit gooey, so don’t overbake them – they’ll be dry.

It’s perfectly fine if they turn a light golden on top, but they shouldn’t turn out crispy and dark brown on top.

Be sure to watch them like a hawk! No shame in hanging out in front of your oven just to get that perfect batch of homemade cinnamon rolls 🙂

Frosting

I like to let my cinnamon rolls cool for about 5 minutes, then I frost them warm straight in the pan.

This will keep the top of your cinnamon rolls extra-soft, but the frosting will also kind of sink in as they cool. If you have leftovers and are a huge fan of the frosting, you might need to spread on some more.

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Cinnamon Roll FAQs

Why are my cinnamon rolls tough?

Tough cinnamon rolls are usually the result of a tough dough. Make sure you do not add too much flour to the dough, it is a very soft dough – it just shouldn’t be paste-like or overly sticky.

Add any extra flour one tablespoon at a time and mix it in for a minute before adding more.

What can I use instead of cinnamon in cinnamon rolls?

You can try using a spice blend such as pumpkin pie spice or gingerbread spice.

Cardamom is also really delicious, it goes well with grated orange zest and a touch of ground ginger.

How do you keep the filling from spilling out?

Sometimes, the filling can leak out from the bottom of the rolls.

If you let the rolls sit for a little, they will soak back up some of the filling as they cool.

You can also remove one roll, then tilt the pan (careful if it’s still hot – use an oven glove!) and use a spoon to catch any leaked filling. Spoon it back over the rolls before frosting them.

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Make ahead instructions

You can do the first rise in the fridge overnight. Make sure to remove the dough from the fridge about 30 minutes before continuing with the recipe.

I suppose you could try letting the finished rolls do the second rise in the fridge overnight if you know you’ll be short on time in the morning! They may need a few extra minutes to bake, be sure to watch them in the oven.

Freezer instructions

I recommend freezing the baked, unfrosted rolls. I separate them for convenience, that way we can pull out as many as we need.

Flash freeze the separated cinnamon rolls, spaced apart, on a baking sheet for 1-2 hours, until solid. Once frozen, wrap each in foil and place them into a large freezer bag. Label with the name and use-by date (freeze for up to 3 months).

To reheat, leave them at room temperature for 10 minutes, then unwrap. Either defrost at room temperature on a wire rack. OR defrost in the microwave.

Warm them in the microwave for 30 seconds, or in the oven at 300°F until warm. Frost them, if you like, then serve.

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Serving suggestions

We love these by themselves, but they do go perfectly with a mug of hot chocolate. If you’re looking for a lighter side, try my winter fruit salad!

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More homemade baked goods

  • No Knead Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls
  • Easy Homemade Dinner Rolls
  • Homemade German Soft Pretzels
  • Easy Homemade Bread

PSIf you try this recipe, please leavea review in the comment section and add a star rating in the recipe card – I appreciate your feedback! Follow along onPinterest,FacebookorInstagram.

Please note: If you have made the old recipe (made without eggs) successfully and are looking for that, please print it here.

Printable recipe

Printable Recipe Card

The Best Homemade Cinnamon Rolls Recipe (23)

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Best Homemade Cinnamon Rolls

Make the BEST Homemade Cinnamon Rolls with my easy Cinnamon Roll recipe. They're soft, fluffy and perfect for a special holiday brunch!

Recipe by Nora from Savory Nothings

made it? tap the stars to add your rating!

4.99 from 58 votes

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Recipe details

Prep 10 minutes mins

Cook 20 minutes mins

Rising 2 hours hrs

Total 2 hours hrs 30 minutes mins

Servings 12 cinnamon rolls

Difficulty Easy

Ingredients

Dough

  • 1 package yeast 2 ¼ teaspoons
  • 1 cup milk
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour plus up to ½ cup more as needed
  • 6 tablespoons butter diced and softened
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 large eggs

Filling

  • 1 stick butter softened
  • ½ cup brown sugar packed
  • ½ cup white sugar
  • 3 tablespoons ground cinnamon

Easy cream cheese frosting

  • ¾ cup cream cheese
  • 1 cup icing sugar or more to taste
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • pinch salt

Instructions

Make the dough

  • Warm milk to around 100°F. This will take 30-45 seconds in the microwave – do not use milk that is hotter than 105°F, or you will destroy the yeast!

  • Place yeast in small bowl with 1 tablespoon warm milk and 1 teaspoon granulated sugar. Stir, then let sit for 5 minutes, until bubbles appear on the surface.

  • Place flour, butter, salt, eggs, yeast mixture, remaining milk and sugar in the bowl of your stand mixer. Stir a little to roughly combine.

  • Knead dough in the mixer with the dough hook attached on medium speed until dough forms a ball. Dough should be completely smooth. If dough doesn't form a ball: Add more flour, 1 tablespoon at a time with the mixer running on low speed, until dough pulls together (do not add too much flour, or dough will have a biscuit-like texture). Kneading can take around 10-12 minutes, so be patient.

  • Turn dough out into a greased bowl. Shape into a ball, pinching the bottom to form a smooth surface. Place it seam down, then cover with a clean tea towel. Let the dough rise in a warm place for 1 hour, or until doubled in size.

Shape the cinnamon rolls

  • Dust work surface with flour. Turn out dough on floured surface, punch down and shape into a rectangle.

  • Roll dough into rectangle, about 18×12 inches. Dough should be around ¼ inch thick.

  • Spread 1 stick softened butter over dough. Combine both sugars and the cinnamon for the filling in a small bowl. Evenly sprinkle over butter.

  • Roll up into a log from the longer side and pinch the seam to seal. Place log seam-side down. Slice into 12 rolls (I use a piece of sewing thread or dental floss for neat rolls).

  • Place rolls in greased 9×13 inch pan. Cover with the tea towel and let sit until puffy and almost doubled in size, about 30 minutes.

Bake cinnamon rolls

  • As rolls rise, heat oven to 350°F.

  • Bake risen rolls in the hot oven until lightly golden brown. This takes around 18 minutes. Be sure to check the rolls often. If center rolls aren't baked after 20 minutes, tent pan with aluminum foil and continue baking for up to 15-20 extra minutes (this can happen if your room was cool and the dough is colder due to it).

Frost rolls

  • Place ingredients for the frosting in a medium mixing bowl. Beat with a hand mixer until smooth.

  • Once cinnamon rolls are done, remove pan form oven and place on a wire rack. Let sit for 5 minutes, then frost rolls while warm.

  • Let cinnamon rolls cool until they can be touched, then serve warm.

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Notes

Ingredient notes

  • Sugar: If you prefer, you can use all white OR all brown sugar for the filling. All brown will yield a more caramel-like taste. All white will make the filling sweeter.
  • Milk: I prefer whole milk for a richer dough, but feel free to use any fat percentage you have at home.
  • Yeast: Use active dried yeast for best results. You can use instant yeast, the dough will rise faster. The rolls tend to have a slightly “yeastier” taste with instant yeast. Organic yeast will rise much slower, so plan accordingly if you’re planning on using that.
  • Butter: I recommend using real butter here. If you have to use margarine for any kind of reason, please use stick margarine for best results.

Also please note about the butter: I used to have 8 tablespoons butter in the recipe, but some readers were having trouble managing such a fatty dough. I re-tested the recipe with 6 tablespoons, and it’s just as nice with an easier dough!

Timing of rise

The exact timing will depend on many factors, including:

  • your room temperature (cooler room = slower rise)
  • your bowl (really! ceramic bowls are warmer, so if you want your dough to rise faster, don’t leave it in your mixer’s stainless steel bowl)
  • your altitude (higher altitude = faster rise)
  • your yeast (instant yeast = fast rise; active yeast = regular rise; organic yeast = slow rise)

Note: This stage can also be done in the fridge overnight! Just make sure to remove the dough from the fridge 15-30 minutes before continuing with the recipe, so it can warm up.

Freezer instructions

I recommend freezing the baked, unfrosted rolls. I separate them for convenience, that way we can pull out as many as we need.

Flash freeze the separated cinnamon rolls, spaced apart, on a baking sheet for 1-2 hours, until solid. Once frozen, wrap each in foil and place them into a large freezer bag. Label with the name and use-by date (freeze for up to 3 months).

To reheat, leave them at room temperature for 10 minutes, then unwrap. Either defrost at room temperature on a wire rack. OR defrost in the microwave.

Warm them in the microwave for 30 seconds, or in the oven at 300°F until warm. Frost them, if you like, then serve.

Nutrition is an estimate.

More recipe information

Course: Baking, Breakfast

Cuisine: American

The Best Homemade Cinnamon Rolls Recipe (2024)
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