I’m just saying


There really isn’t much more to say about these. They really are as good as they look. I am a big cinnamon roll fan, and always have been, even after fainting in the bathroom in 5th grade because that was all I had eaten for breakfast. But, through the years I have had some trouble with executing what I thought was the perfect cinnamon roll. Sometimes I think they are too greasy (I don’t like dark and oily undersides), sometimes too much work for too little results (anything that involves a saucepan for the filling), and I generally disapprove of cream cheese frosting. Yes, I hear all of you gasping, but really, I think that the light icing is way better here. Just try these out at home, and I think you will agree!

Cinnamon Triumph Rolls

Combine 3 c. warm water, 2/3 c. sugar, and 1 1/2 t. salt in the bowl of a kitchenaid. Add 2 Tbs. yeast and stir until dissolved. Add two beaten eggs, 2/3 c. shortening, 1 t. vanilla and stir. Add enough flour to make a soft dough (7-8 c.). Mix until smooth dough forms, and the dough pulls together. If it interests you, I never use the dough hook as the beater bar does great. Knead it a couple of times on a floured surface, and pull together into a beautiful pile of smooth dough. Put a little oil in a large bowl, and drop the dough in, smooshing it to lightly coat the dough in the oil, and turn it over. Cover with a tea towel, and let rise until doubled (I don’t time it, but my guess is somewhere around 40 minutes). Punch it down, and divide into two pieces. Roll each piece out into a rectangle about 12×16 inches. Smear with a light coating of soft butter(about 1/4 c. per roll), sprinkle with sugar (somewhere in the neighborhood of 1/4 c. per roll), and then dust it up with cinnamon (not too thick, and not too thin). Do not even think about raisins. Roll up the rectangles, and pinch the seam shut. I use a bread knife, and cut each roll into twelve slices. Lay them on an ungreased jelly roll pan, and pat lightly to get a uniform height and spread them together a bit. Cover and let rise slightly while the oven pre-heats to 375 degrees. Pop them in the oven and bake for 20 -25 minutes, or until perfect. While they are still mildly warm, but not hot, drizzle with a thick mix of powdered sugar and milk. These freeze beautifully, making you everyone’s favorite mom on a Sunday morning.

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48 thoughts on “I’m just saying

  1. mmm, cinnamon rolls. My grandma used to make them for whoever of us 30-some grandchildren happened to be around on a Saturday. I have struggled to match the warm buttery gooey glory of her creations. This recipe might just do it! (And I totally agree– powdered sugar frosting beasts cream cheese frosting hands down!)

  2. Not the thing to see the day you are diagnosed with gestational diabetes…heehee πŸ˜‰ Maybe in a few months so eat an extra for me!

  3. Mmmmm…that looks mighty tasty, just might have to make some of those myself….
    And I totally agree with your cinnamon roll tastes–glazy icing and NO RAISINS.
    Now if only I could get dough to double in less than a day in our moisture-laden coastal climate, then they would be nice and puffy like your beauties!

  4. Brittany-
    Have you tried letting it rise in your oven? If you preheat it to low, then let it cool off a little, put the dough in there. It should create a warm and dry environment, and the oil on the top of the dough will keep it from drying out. At least I have seen this recommended although personally I have not tried it.

  5. Yum… How about posting your biscotti recipe too? I’ve had a real hankering for them this week.

  6. I love, love, love cinnamon rolls. I can’t wait to try this recipe, it’s always fun to try someone else’s “perfect” one. Although I do like that caramel sticky goo on the bottom of mine. Before I put mine in the pan to bake I spread the bottom of the pan in butter and brown sugar( my grandmas recipe). Yummy! And no raisins, I totally agree!

  7. I too have been searching for the perfect cinnamon rolls- however, I have not done near the investigating you have. I really want to try this recipe, but do you know how to do it if you don’t have a kitchenaid? Thanks!

  8. Shannon-
    Doing these without a kitchenaid is no problem. Simply use a large bowl and beat well with a wooden spoon (don’t worry about the chunks of shortening, they will mix in fine later). Add about half the flour and stir well. Stir in as much of the remaining flour as you can, then dump out on the counter and knead it until a smooth and springy dough is formed. There you have it, just a few more calories burned!

    ah, the biscotti – or, as Daphne says it “bidoddy”. Coming soon! Maybe tonight – we’ll see!

  9. I am a sucker for cinnamon roll recipes! Can’t wait to try this one. I can’t promise I won’t top it with cream cheese icing though.

  10. Yum! I can’t wait to try these. How do you freeze them and how do you reheat them? Thanks!

  11. I mean, who DOESN’T want to be everyone’s favorite mom on Sunday morning?

    Also, when is the best time to freeze them?

  12. They look almost as good as the ones my Aunt Ruth used to make. Hers were more cookie-like. I could go either way, tastewise and texturewise, but sentimentalwise, hers win hands-down. Hmmm…I think I need to get that recipe from mom for the next time I do after-worship refreshments!

  13. Hi there-
    The best time to freeze these is anytime after they are completely cool, and before they are completely gone! I have been making these for people who just had babies, and as Lina was watching me package them up to give away she said “but mommy, we just have TWO babies! We need some at our house!”
    To reheat them, just microwave for maybe 20-30 seconds. My family eats them warm, but I love them cold. You should be aware however that eating them cold enables you to eat about three times as many!

  14. Thanks for the tip, Rachel, I’ll try the oven idea! I’ve tried the top-of-the-fridge, top-of-the-heater, but still my bread always turns out barely above a brick.

    I am totally impressed by your baking accomplishments performed while taking care of your little ones!

  15. Thanks for the recipe! I love ci-ci- rolls, as Jed calls them. You should bring on the bidoddy recipe! I want that one too!

  16. Woo-hoo! We have sucess!! I didn’t believe it, but mine are big and puffy, just like the picture! That really is an amazing recipe, Rachel!

  17. Here I am, chiming in with the rest to say thanks for the recipe! I just pulled our batch out of the oven and it is really splendid! John and I pinched off a little piece of a roll to sample it pre-frosting and they are delicious, to put it mildly! We are quite delighted and will be introducing our Lizzie to these little glories tomorrow morning. The recipe is most certainly a keeper. Blessings!

  18. Those look delicious! They also make me feel guilty for not having made them in so long:-/ My children eat a batch that size all in one sitting, requiring more than one batch if I wish to save or share.

    Might I recommend that if your bread is not rising well, Brittany, the use of bread flour also makes a huge difference. I always use the oven to let the dough rise, except in the summer when the oven is cooler than my countertop.

    Another fun idea is to use strong coffee instead of milk to make the glaze. Even if you don’t like to drink coffee, it makes for an interesting flavor combination with the cinnamon.

  19. Brittany…You got to those fast…can you bring one to church tomorrow, since I just had a baby??? Thanks!

    Rachel, I can’t wait to try the recipe, as well. I liked your idea of when you had breakfast for dinner and cinnamon rolls as a birthday cake for one of the kiddies. Heather had told me about it a while back and it sounded fun.

  20. Rachel, I am an absolutely hopeless cinnamon roll baker, and I swear every year that I’m not going to try that darned project again only to present my family with either the sloppy, doughy blobs or the dry, chalky chunks. But then again, every year I find myself scouring cookbooks and websites for THE cinnmon roll recipe to deliver me from failure. Why do I keep torturing myself? Because of the adoration I get from my husband and children whenever I make them, no matter how they turn out. Seriously, I think cinnamon rolls are a worthy struggle! So thanks for giving me hope again, and another shot at getting them right.

  21. Wow, I’m going to have to try baking those.

    I make something very similar on special occasions–I put mixed dried fruit and spices in the dough, and then the filling is marmalade and chopped apple.

    I am very popular.

  22. Don’t recall where I picked up the trick, but dental floss to cut the rolled dough works like a charm — doesn’t flatten or squish like a knife often will on the soft dough.

  23. I make cinnamon rolls fairly often…and I have a favorite recipe. However, I might try these out if there is any precedent for assembling as directed and then putting them in the fridge overnight. My current recipe is an overnighter, which really has everything beat in my book. All the goodness, and before ten o’clock in the morning. Of course, the notion of freezing is slightly tempting…but I’m afraid I’m skeptical. Is it really just as good as fresh?

  24. Jamey-
    I used to do the whole dental floss bit, but that was before the Wusthof knives….

  25. Rachel,
    I have your Hot Providence cookbook and have been absoulutely loving it! I’ve made so many of the recipes. Including your cinnamon rolls πŸ™‚ (isn’t this the same one that’s in there?) We loved them! And we are cinnamon roll purists – I have been making them as the main part of our Lord’s Day breakfast for years! I have tried so many recipes – but yours is right up there among our favorites. πŸ™‚ All the kids loved them.
    Thanks for sharing!

  26. Megan-
    I don’t think I would overnight them on the second rise, but if you combine the two rises into one overnighter (just giving the dough a chance to loosen up after the knead, but not rise, and then filling and rolling)- I am pretty sure you could do that with reasonable success (actually I am pretty sure that I have done that, it has just been a while). However, I am a major advocate of freezing. I don’t think that they loose anything being frozen – actually I like them better after it.

  27. Oh…and here’s another question. What size jelly roll pan do you use? Because I have the feeling that mine would be inadequate to accommodate 24 cinnamon rolls. (I think it’s 10×15.)

  28. Hi again-
    My jelly roll pan is a biggun – measuring in at 12×17. However, these cinnamon rolls have seen the inside of all kinds of bakeware, so just do whatever fits.
    Glad you like Hot Providence, these are the same ones for sure! Ever since I landed on this recipe, I haven’t budged!

  29. Rachel,

    Thank you, thank you, thank you! I have made a LOT of attempts at cinnamon rolls and all of them have been MAJOR failures. One such failure involved serving half baked cinnamon rolls to guests we had over for a Sabbath Feast. Yikes! Thanks to you I will never have to endure that embarrassment again. I just finished making these and they are by far the best cinnamon rolls I have ever tasted (if I do say so myself:).

  30. With ten weeks remaining before the expected birth of our first baby, I am starting to stock the freezer with many good things… and yesterday I baked fifty of your wonderful cinnamon rolls to add into the mix! I am going to individually wrap and freeze them today, but let’s be honest… there are quite a few less than fifty remaining already! πŸ™‚ My husband almost melted when he got one for a snack last night — I’ve rarely seen him gush so much over baked goods. He proclaimed me a very wonderful wife and thanked me for spoiling him.

    So *thank you* for helping us grow in our baking skills, our recipe collecting, and our husband-loving!! May God be glorified through even the little things we do, like baking cinnamon rolls.

  31. Ladies, are we using whole wheat or white flour? Or should I experiment with both?
    The picture looks so yummy – I can hardly wait!

  32. I would use white…but that’s because I’m a bad, bad person.

    And making cinnamon rolls is not a little thing!! It’s the stuff of greatness!

  33. Judith and Melissa-
    Glad the recipe worked well for you, it is nice to know that we aren’t the only ones who love them!

    I’m with Megan on this one, (although don’t let that go on the record because she is a bad person). In my mind this is a sweet treat, so I don’t feel like it needs to even make a nod at health food. Seriously though, I’m sure a little bit of wheat would be fine!

  34. Thanks, ladies!

    I know Megan from my days in VA — not bad at all… and a great cook! So I’ll stick with white πŸ™‚

    This recipe looks great for breakfast this weekend… and to freeze since I’m due with this little babe any day now.

  35. I found this recipe on your blog this morning, and then made them this afternoon. They turned out great! I could barely keep my sisters from eating all of them up right away. I’m freezing some to take to our church’s Easter breakfast on Sunday.

    Normally when I make cinnamon rolls the dough doesn’t rise that much, but with this recipe the rolls turned out huge. Thanks for sharing the recipe. It’ll be one I use every time I want to make cinnamon rolls. πŸ™‚

  36. Oh! Erin! (My cover is blown.)

    Congratulations are your newest addition. :^) You are absolutely brilliant to be baking before a baby. I’m too much of a lazy pants most of the time…maybe baby 5 will turn me around.

  37. Comment on wheat flour: Bob’s Red Mill produces a good whole wheat pastry flour. I figure that the finer mill evens out the addition of the wheat bran, making it about equal to AP flour. I’ve had success with my scones. But then scones aren’t supposed to melt in your mouth.
    (And while we are on a food-purist streak, scones should be fairly unsweet, not cakey but not so dry that you have to dunk them in your coffee and end up drinking the crumbs. And no icing.)

  38. Thank you, Rachel! The rolls turned out waaay better than any of my other attempts. What a fitting thing to make for Easter morning!

    I have a few questions, though. My main one is that the consistency of my dough when baked was more like a yeast cake than a traditional roll. Any ideas what I might be doing wrong?

    Second, when you freeze them do you recommend icing them first, or reheating them and then icing them before serving?

    Third, you mention that the dough should be “soft”, but in my ignorance that doesn’t mean much. I guessed, and I think mine was too soft (not enough flour). By soft do you mean that it shouldn’t stick to everything it touches? I ended up kneading more flour into the dough once I realized I couldn’t work with it. But even after rising the dough didn’t roll very easily. In fact, my “rolls” looked more like cinnamon blobs because the dough stuck to my J.A. Henckels when I cut them.

  39. Hi Megan-
    Here’s what I would say. Probably your dough was just too soft and that caused both your problems (messiness and the yeast cake texture). I would describe a soft dough as one that is workable, but not stiff. You want to be able to roll it out on a light dusting of flour and be able to pick it up again. However, you don’t want a dough that cannot be stuck to anything. When I get mine out of rising it is pretty sticky, but only a little bit of flour makes it easily workable. You may have also let it rise a smudge too long, which can make the dough overly airy. Hope you liked them enough to try again!

  40. Rachel, I know you’ve received lots of praise for this recipe, but we Spencers must add ours to the list! They are indeed triumphant. I made a batch for Easter morning and as soon as they were gone another batch was requested immediately…by Jeremy no less! Thanks for taking the time to share your baking talents with us!

  41. Rachel~
    Wow! These puppies were a doozy! I didn’t expect them to be so BIG, or to disappear in one day! I made them the night before a Bible study, and my children were all asking to have one before bed, and Scott snatched one to eat that evening (did I mention that my hubby doesn’t like cinnamon?). They were all a hit with the ladies as well, and I did get the big eyed, You made these?! Yes, the mother of 5 children does have time to make these (super easy) cinnamon rolls. Bravo, Rachel! Keep the nummy recipes coming!
    Jen Welch
    PS Your babies are soooooo cute!

  42. Jen-
    Hi! I think it has been ages since I saw you! You all seem to be flourishing away – and I saw that you have a Titus too. What good taste in names you have. Anyways, it was fun to hear from you, and I’m glad the old cinnamon rolls were a hit.

  43. Made these this morning. They were wonderful! I only had to get up at 6:30 to get them done by 8:30 and since the kids get me up by then anyway…

    Thanks for sharing the recipe.

  44. I use active dry. I only use instant if it is specifically called for, but active dry is just my regular yeast.

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