Whole Wheat Cinnamon Rolls with Brown Butter Icing

Whole Wheat Cinnamon Rolls // take a megabite

Eat 5 cinnamon rolls, drink 4 cups of coffee, take 3 naps, buy 2 more pairs of coated leggings for Beyonce-style napping/living, and have 1 sweater that you wear every single day. And now we just have 5 weekdays, 4 new pink vintage glasses, 3 runs, 2 concerts, and one burrito a day. Because you see it just takes 1 night (for the dough to rise), 1 morning (to casually roll these out), 1 person (who’s my favorite) to say they love cinnamon rolls for me to make them at least once a month.

So anyhow, these guys are wheat-y and I’m into it. They get baked up in melted butter and brown sugar so when you flip them over the new top is crispy sugary goodness. And since frosting is a necessary accessory, brown butter icing happens for topping these.

Whole Wheat Cinnamon Rolls // take a megabite

Whole Wheat Cinnamon Rolls with Brown Butter Icing
Recipe adapted from my mom’s no-knead recipe


proof that yeast –

  • 1/4 cup warm water
  • 1/2 t sugar
  • 1/2 pkg. active dry yeast

dough f’sho –

  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 t salt
  • 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter (cold is fine)
  • 1/2 cup boiling water + 1/2 cup cold water
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

brown sugar crust –

  • 3 T butter
  • 3 T brown sugar

roll up in it –

  • 1/4 cup ( 1/2 stick) butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar, but more like a couple handfuls
  • generous amount of cinnamon


  1. In a small bowl, proof the yeast. Whisk together 1/4 cup warm water, 1/2 teaspoon of sugar and 1/2 of a 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 1/4 cup sugar, 1/2 t salt, 1/2 a stick of butter, 1/2 cup boiling water, 1/2 cup cold water and 1 egg. Stir until the butter is mostly melted. Add yeast water, and lastly add 3 1/2 cups of flour. Stir, stir, stir. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise in the fridge for 8 eight hours, or overnight.
  3. Preheat oven to 350F. Place butter in the pan you’re going to bake them in. Melt the butter in the oven. Remove the pan and sprinkle with brown sugar.
  4. Divide dough in half and roll each into a rectangle, and about 1/4 inch thick. Spread evenly with a 2 tablespoons 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 into twelve equal pieces and divide among the muffin cups. Repeat with other half of dough. Cover with a towel and allow to rise in the pan for 30 minutes.
  5. Bake the rolls for 15-25 minutes, or until set and baked throughout. Allow to cool slightly. Frost.

Brown Butter Icing

  • 3 T butter
  • 1 cup confectioners’ sugar
  • 1/2 t vanilla extract
  • 1-2 T milk


  1. Make glaze by melting butter in a small sauce pan over medium heat until 4-5 minutes, or until browned. Pour over confectioners’ sugar in a small bowl. Stir in vanilla and milk  (a teaspoon at a time) until smooth and glazey. Spread over cinnamon rolls.

Yay! Click HERE for a printable pdf of the recipe above.

Insta-living // take a megabite

Cupcaking // CharCUTErie // Fall Walk // Bowling

10 thoughts on “Whole Wheat Cinnamon Rolls with Brown Butter Icing”

  1. Whole wheat can give such a nice depth of flavor in baked goods. I’m sure it gives them a slightly nutty, earthy sparkle in these cinnamon rolls. I’ve been wanting to make cinnamon rolls for so long, I think you just pushed me over the edge to the land of “I HAVE TO DO IT NOW.”

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