Cinnamon Rolls

by Megan on February 15, 2010

There is love in the world. Real, sincere “all I need is love” love. And that’s why I love Valentine’s Day best, and it’s why I made these cinnamon rolls in heart shaped cake pans and it’s why I will proudly wear my new heart shaped sunglasses [Thanks Jacob!]. And it’s probably got something to do with the 3 teeny hearts on the inside of my wrist. There’s no big meaning to that tattoo, but when asked, I’ll tell you that the big heart is Jacob, the medium heart is me and the teeny one is Elliot.

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This is my third time making these cinnamon rolls. My mom coached me through the first attempt. I mean, it is her recipe after all, and I did grow up eating these on weekend mornings and weekday mornings and any morning they were around.

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My second attempt was last Valentine’s Day. I didn’t sprinkle enough sugar and cinnamon in the middles. So this year I took it up a notch and switched to brown sugar in the middle.

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And I made sure to be generous with it. Handfuls of brown sugar + a sprinkle-fest of cinnamon.

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And I made them all with the brown sugar tops because that way is best.

My sister, Laura, would beg to differ. But what does she know? (Love you, Laura! You know a lot.)

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She just prefers them plain-topped with frosting, and I have to say that when it comes to cinnamon rolls, I’ll take them any way they want to be. Both are absolutely delish.

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Cinnamon rolls are my most favorite. You should probably know that every food conversation I have with my friend Dayna somehow ends with cinnamon rolls being best. Every time.

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These remind me of being a kid, for sure. My mom’s always made these like it ain’t no thing.

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These are filled with love, cinnamon and brown sugar. There’s definite chemistry there because rumor has it, cinnamon and sugar have been spotted walking with their pinkies linked.

P.S. Please keep in mind the dough needs to rise in the fridge for 8 hours! Worth it though, for sure. Whip this dough up tonight and bake these fresh in the morning.

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Cinnamon Rolls

Ingredients:

proof that yeast –

  • 1/2 cup warm water
  • 1 t sugar
  • 1 pkg. active dry yeast

dough f’sho –

  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 t salt
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter (cold is fine)
  • 1 cup boiling water + 1 cup cold water
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 7 cups all-purpose flour

roll up in it –

  • 1/2 cup ( 1 stick) butter, softened
  • 1 cup brown sugar, but more like a few handfuls
  • generous amount of cinnamon

brown sugar topped –

  • 6 T butter, divided
  • 6 T brown sugar, divided

{Ok, so total you need about 3 sticks of butter. 2 whole sticks + 6 T.}

Directions:

  1. In a small bowl, proof the yeast. Whisk together 1/2 cup warm water, 1 t of sugar and 1 package of active dry yeast in a small bowl. Allow to sit for 10 minutes, until all puffy and bubbly. Now we have proof that yeast is working.
  2. In a large bowl stir together 1/2 cup sugar, 1 t salt, a stick of butter, 1 cup boiling water, 1 cup cold water and 2 eggs. Stir until the butter is mostly melted. (It’s ok if there are a couple butter pieces that aren’t melted when you add the rest of the dough ingredients.) Add yeast water, and lastly add 7 cups of flour. Stir, stir, stir. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise in the fridge over night, or 8 eight hours. (This dough doesn’t even need you to knead it.)
  3. The next morning, or eight hours later it is time to roll out the dough. But first prepare your cakes pans. Divide 6 tablespoons of butter between 3 cake pans. Turn your oven on to about 250 degrees F and place the cake pans in the oven until the butter melts. Then sprinkle the melted butter with brown sugar and twirl the two together enough so that the top will be even. OK. Now do the dough.
  4. Place the dough on a LARGE floured surface and roll out (until about and eighth of an inch thick). Spread evenly with a stick of softened butter using a spatula. Sprinkle generously with cinnamon and top that with a generous amount of brown sugar. Gently pat the brown sugar down into the dough a little. Roll up, slice and place in 3 prepared cake pans. Cover with a towel and allow to rise in the pan for 30 minutes to an hour. You want the rolls to have risen enough to be touching each other, but it’s ok if they haven’t completely filled the cake pans, considering they will rise speedily in the oven.
  5. Meanwhile turn the oven on to 350 degrees F and bake the rolls for 22 – 30 minutes, rotating positions in the oven. Flip them out onto a plates or foil when done. Be sure to allow them to cool completely before covering, to prevent sogginess. These are best right out of the oven, but keep well if wrapped tightly for a day or two or three.

ALSO! For Laura-style cinnamon rolls, leave out the step where you place butter and brown sugar in the cake pans. Simply spray the cake pans with cooking spray before placing the rolls in to rise. Then you’ve got the perfect cinnamon rolls for frosting! I would top with a simple vanilla buttercream. Recipe below:

Simple Vanilla Buttercream

  • 3 cups powdered sugar
  • 3/4 cup of butter, room temperature
  • 1 t vanilla
  • 2-3 T milk

Directions:

  1. Mix butter and powdered sugar until combined. Add vanilla and milk 1 Tablespoon at a time until a thick consistency.
  2. Top cinnamon rolls!

{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

beckie February 15, 2010 at 1:27 pm

Handfuls of brown sugar sounds like love to me! The rolls look so, so pretty in the heart pans! The presentation really makes this, Megan 🙂

Reply

Megan (megabite) February 15, 2010 at 1:31 pm

Thanks Beckie!

I agree about the suga. Brown sugar is where it’s at.

I love using my heart shaped pans whenever possible. It makes me feel ok with the fact that they constantly fall out of my too small cupboards. : )

Reply

Lois Walsh September 24, 2010 at 12:32 pm

Hi Megan,

Do you ever use plain margarine in this recipe,or does real butter have better results? They look absolutely yummy, sort of like edible roses!

Reply

Megan (megabite) September 24, 2010 at 12:50 pm

Hey Lois, I’m an all-butter kind of girl, so I haven’t every used margarine for it. It’s worth a shot though! Let me know how it works out if you do it.

Reply

Ruth August 6, 2012 at 9:17 pm

Hi Megan ^^ emm sorry but… Can you tell me the weight of the yeast? I mean in grams or something, everyway will be ok. Please >.<
Btw I love your recipes and I think its great that you do what you love to <3 I'm becoming a fan.

Reply

Megan August 6, 2012 at 9:19 pm

Hi Ruth!

The yeast weights 1/4 of an ounce. Let me know if you need anything else! <3

Reply

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