Easy Homemade Cinnamon Rolls Recipe

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Once this recipe is perfected at home, there’s no need to stretch your budget again for store-bought cinnamon rolls.
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“Melissa’s Southern Cookbook: Tried-and-True Family Recipes” by Melissa Sperka
Yields 24 cinnamon rolls SERVINGS


For the dough:

  • 2 (1/4 ounce) packages rapid-rise dry yeast
  • 1/2 cup warm water (110 to 115 degrees F)
  • 1-1/2 cups whole milk
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 4 tablespoons salted butter, cubed
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 5-1/2 to 6 cups bread flour, plus more for kneading by hand (optional)

For the filling:

  • 1/2 cup (1 stick, or 4 ounces) salted butter, at room temperature, divided
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg

For the frosting:

  • 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 4 tablespoons salted butter, at room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1 (16 ounce) box powdered sugar


  • To make the dough: In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook, dissolve the yeast in the warm water. Allow the yeast to bloom for 5 minutes.
  • In a small saucepan, combine the milk, granulated sugar, butter, and salt. Heat to between 110 and 115 degrees F, stirring, until the butter has melted. Do not boil.
  • Add the warm milk mixture to the yeast in the mixing bowl. With the mixer running, mix in the egg.
  • Begin to add the bread flour, starting with 3 cups. Mix on low speed, stopping to scrape the sides of the bowl as needed.
  • Add 2 additional cups of bread flour. If the dough is still sticky, add more bread flour 1 tablespoon at a time, up to 6 cups total, until the dough leaves the sides of the bowl.
  • Increase the speed of the mixer and knead for 5 minutes. Alternatively, turn onto a floured surface and knead by hand for 5 minutes.
  • Coat the sides of a large bowl with cooking spray. Shape the dough into a ball and place in the bowl. Cover and place in a warm, draft-free place to rise for 1-1/2 hours, or until doubled.To fill the dough:
  • Punch down the risen dough and stretch into a roughly a 16x24-inch rectangle. Spread from end to end with 7 tablespoons of the butter, reserving the last tablespoon to butter a jelly-roll pan.
  • Mix together the granulated sugar, brown sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Sprinkle over the buttered dough.
  • Begin rolling up the dough from the widest edge, ending seam side down.
  • Cut into 24 (1-inch) pieces and place side by side in a buttered jellyroll pan. Cover and let rise for 1 hour, or until doubled.
  • Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Uncover the dough and place the pan in the oven. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until rolls are golden. Remove from the oven and let the rolls rest while you prepare the frosting.To make the frosting: 
  • Cream together the cream cheese, butter, and vanilla. Gradually add the powdered sugar, beating until smooth. Spread evenly on top of the cinnamon rolls while hot.
  • Serve warm.Cook’s NotesThese cinnamon rolls may be made the night before: After cutting into 24 (1-inch) portions, arrange in the buttered pan, cover, and then chill overnight. The dough will continue to rise very slowly in the refrigerator. Allow to rest at room temperature for at least 30 minutes to 1 hour, then bake accordingly.
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