Think you can’t make homemade cinnamon rolls? Think again.
I thought I couldn’t make them either. For the longest time I was scared of yeast. I just figured I’d destroy anything I tried to make with yeast. It just sounded too much like a science fair project to me.
So, I just bought the canned rolls. Yuck.
Then one day, The Pioneer Woman inspired me to give it a try. My first ever attempt at making homemade cinnamon rolls from scratch was a huge success. And you know what happens when you are a huge success? You gotta do it again. Be successful. Make more cinnamon rolls.
This process is NOT hard. It just takes a little time (and not all at once). I usually complete the rolls the day after I make the dough. It is not time sensitive at all.
I altered PW’s recipe a bit to suit my family’s tastes. And sometimes, I’ll break out the chopped pecans and add them to my individual roll (cause my family doesn’t like pecans touching their sweets, but I do!).
Head’s up – these make awesome gifts! A few years ago, I started baking them for each of my kids’ teachers at Thanksgiving time. I get the small aluminum loaf pans with lids. Each pan will hold 5-6 rolls. Perfect for sharing.
- 4 cups whole milk
- 1 cup vegetable oil
- 1 cup sugar
- 4 ½ teaspoons active dry yeast
- 8 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 cup flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 tablespoon salt
- 1 ½-2 cups melted butter
- generous sugar for sprinkling (1/2 cup per dough section)
- generous sprinkling cinnamon
- 7 tablespoons melted butter
- 8 cups powdered sugar
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- ½ cup milk
- ⅛ teaspoon salt
- Mix milk, vegetable oil, and sugar in a large soup pot. “Scald” the mixture (heat until just before the boiling point.) Turn off heat and leave to cool 45 minutes to 1 hour.
- When the mixture is lukewarm to warm, but NOT hot, sprinkle in yeast. Let this sit for a minute so the yeast gets warm. Then add 8 cups of all-purpose flour. Stir mixture together. Cover and let sit for at least an hour.
- Now add 1 more cup of flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Stir mixture together. At this point, you could cover the dough and put it in the fridge until you need it—overnight or even a day or two, if necessary. Just keep your eye on it and if it starts to rise out of the pan, just punch it down. Or, just go ahead and make the rolls.
- Sprinkle surface generously with flour. Take ¼ of the dough and form a rough rectangle. Then roll the dough thin, maintaining a general rectangular shape. Rectangle should increase in both width and length as you roll it out.
- Now drizzle melted butter over the dough. I like to brush it on. Sprinkle sugar over the butter, followed by a generous sprinkling of cinnamon.
- Starting at the opposite end, begin rolling the dough in a neat line toward you. Keep the roll relatively tight as you go. Next, pinch the seam to the roll to seal it.
- Spray your pans with cooking spray. I like to make these in small foil loaf pans so I can share them. Or, put them in any size baking pan or pie pan. Then begin cutting rolls approximately ¾ to 1 inch thick and laying them in the buttered pans. Repeat this process with the rest of the dough. This recipe makes approximately 56 rolls.
- Let the rolls sit for 20 to 30 minutes to rise, then bake at 400 degrees until light golden brown, about 15 to 18 minutes.
- GLAZE: While the rolls are in the oven, make the frosting. To a mixing bowl, add 7 tablespoons melted butter, ½ cup milk, powdered sugar, vanilla, and salt. Stir until mixture is thick but pourable.
- Generously drizzle frosting over warm rolls after you pull them out of the oven. Don’t be stingy with the frosting.