Easy Cinnamon Rolls From Scratch

These easy cinnamon rolls from scratch are perfect for yeast beginners because they only require 1 rise. Each cinnamon roll is extra soft with the most delicious cinnamon swirl!

This cinnamon roll recipe makes classic, home-style cinnamon rolls. They’re fluffy, soft, and topped with vanilla glaze. It’s taken me some time to develop quick cinnamon rolls that maintain all the flavor of traditional overnight cinnamon rolls. I have the winner for you right here and I baked two batches just to be sure.

cinnamon rolls in a glass baking dish

Yeast Beginners Rejoice!

Do you love homemade cinnamon rolls, but are nervous to bake with yeast? Join the club. I was too! But this recipe changed everything for me. They’re perfect for anyone who wants to learn how to bake with yeast. Unlike cinnamon rolls that require hours of rise time, plus a 2nd rise time after the rolls are shaped, this easy cinnamon rolls recipe only requires 1 rise.

Here’s my #1 tip: I recommend using a strong and dependable yeast. Red Star Platinum Yeast is an instant yeast, which cuts down on rise time. Its careful formula strengthens your dough and makes working with yeast simple. And simple is always good, right?

Baking with Yeast Guide

Reference this Baking with Yeast Guide whenever you work with baker’s yeast. I include practical answers to all of your common yeast questions.

3 cinnamon rolls on a blue plate

How to Make Easy Cinnamon Rolls from Scratch

Bakery style goodness for beginners!

  1. Make the dough: The ingredients are pretty standard: flour, sugar, salt, yeast, water, milk, butter, and 1 egg. Heat the butter, milk, and water together. Next, stir the butter mixture into the dry ingredients, then add the egg. At this point, your dough is ready to knead!
  2. Knead the dough: You can use your mixer or hands to knead the dough. Want to learn more about the process of kneading? I study this helpful guide often. When you’re finished kneading, cover the dough and let it rest for a few minutes so the gluten settles. During this time, get your filling ingredients ready: butter, cinnamon, and sugar.
  3. Shape the cinnamon rolls: Roll the dough out into a 14×8 inch rectangle. Spread the butter on top, then sprinkle with cinnamon and sugar. You can use regular white granulated sugar or brown sugar in the filling. Tightly roll up the dough and cut into 11-12 pieces. Place in a greased round pan and get ready to rise.
  4. Rise: Let the shaped rolls rise for 60-90 minutes. Remember, this is the only rise time for the rolls.
  5. Bake: After the cinnamon rolls are nice and puffy, bake until golden brown.

cinnamon rolls in a glass baking dish before baking

cinnamon rolls in a glass baking dish after baking

The TRICK to Easy Cinnamon Rolls

Let the dough rise in your oven.

Here’s what I do: I heat the oven to 150°F (66°C). Turn the oven off. Cover the rolls and place them inside. Leave the oven door cracked open for about 30 minutes, then shut it closed. There, that’s it!

cinnamon rolls in a glass baking dish

After baking, the rolls are ready for a finishing touch. You can serve with vanilla icing or salted caramel, but I love drenching these easy cinnamon rolls in coffee icing. Simply mix 1 cup of confectioners’ sugar with 2 Tablespoons of strong coffee.

These easy cinnamon rolls from scratch are completely irresistible and they take half the time. If you’re looking for that perfect cinnamon roll recipe, this is the winner.

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cinnamon rolls topped with icing in a glass baking dish

Easy Cinnamon Rolls (from scratch)

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 1 hour, 40 minutes
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Total Time: 2 hours, 5 minutes
  • Yield: 11-12 rolls
  • Category: Breakfast
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American

Description

These easy cinnamon rolls are perfect for yeast beginners because they only require 1 rise. Top with vanilla icing or my favorite coffee icing below.


Ingredients

Rolls

  • 2 and 3/4 cups (344g) all-purpose flour (spoon & leveled)
  • 1/4 cup (50g) granulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 and 1/4 teaspoons Red Star Platinum Yeast or any instant yeast (1 packet)
  • 1/2 cup (120ml) whole milk
  • 1/4 cup (60ml) water
  • 3 Tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 large egg

Filling

  • 3 Tablespoons (45g) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 1 Tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup (50g) granulated sugar or packed light or dark brown sugar

Icing

  • 1 cup (120g) confectioners’ sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 23 Tablespoons (30-45ml) strong brewed coffee or milk

Instructions

  1. Make the dough: Whisk the flour, sugar, salt, and yeast together in a large bowl. Set aside.
  2. Combine the milk, water, and butter together in a heatproof bowl. Microwave or use the stove and heat until the butter is melted and the mixture is warm to touch (about 110°F). Pour into the dry ingredients, add the egg, and stir until it forms a soft dough or use your mixer.
  3. On a lightly floured surface using floured hands, knead the dough for 3 minutes. Place in a lightly greased bowl (I use non-stick spray), cover loosely, and let rest for about 10 minutes.
  4. Fill the rolls: After 10 minutes, roll the dough out in a 14×8 inch rectangle. Spread the softened butter on top. Mix together the cinnamon and sugar. Sprinkle it all over the dough. Roll up the dough tightly to make a 14 inch log. Cut into 10-12 even rolls and arrange in a lightly greased 9-inch round cake pan or pie dish.
  5. Rise: Tightly cover the rolls with aluminum foil or plastic wrap and allow to rise in a warm, draft-free environment for 60-90 minutes. See blog post above for my trick to this step!
  6. Bake the rolls: After the rolls have doubled in size, preheat the oven to 375°F (190°C). Bake for 25-28 minutes until lightly browned. If you notice the tops are getting too brown too quickly, loosely cover the rolls with aluminum foil and continue baking.
  7. Make the icing: Whisk the confectioners’ sugar, vanilla extract, and coffee/milk together. Drizzle or spread over warm rolls.
  8. Cover leftover frosted or unfrosted rolls tightly and store for up to 3 days at room temperature or up to 5 days in the refrigerator.

Notes

  1. Make Ahead Instructions: This dough can be made the night before through step 4. Cover with plastic wrap and let rest in the refrigerator overnight. The next morning, remove from the refrigerator and allow to rise in a warm environment, about 1 hour. Continue with step 6.
  2. Freezing Instructions: Baked rolls can be frozen up to 2-3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator and warm up before enjoying. You can also freeze the unbaked rolls and here’s how: bake the rolls in step 6 for only about 10 minutes at 375°F (191°C). Cool completely, then cover tightly and freeze. To serve, take the rolls out of the freezer and put into the refrigerator a few hours before serving. Then, finish baking them.
  3. Yeast: I highly recommend instant yeast. If you only have active dry yeast, you can use that instead. Active dry and instant yeast can be used interchangeably in recipes (1:1). Active dry yeast has a moderate rate of rising and instant dry yeast has a faster rate of rising; active dry yeast will create a slower rise time.
  4. Milk: Whole milk is ideal for this dough. If needed, you can substitute nondairy milk.
  5. Reference my Baking with Yeast Guide for answers to common yeast FAQs.

483 Comments

  1. Super simple! The dough was definitely too wet for me, rolling was a nightmare so next time I’ll need to add at least a half cup of four extra. Flour was weighed and sifted, used whole milk and water in ml as directed. I saw that in your video on YouTube you did add an extra bit of flour after the egg – was that just adding remaining flour? Or was it because the dough was a little wetter than it should have been? Thanks!

    1. Trina @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Thomas! That was remaining flour, but there are a lot of variables that go into the consistency of dough, even down to the weather and humidity in the air. There’s nothing wrong with adding just a little more flour to bring the dough into a less sticky and knead-able consistency.

      1. Thanks! It’s winter here and has been raining a lot so the humidity is definitely high at that moment. I’ll bear that in mind next time I make them – thanks 🙂

  2. These came out perfect!

  3. I made these just this morning. Just TOO wet of a dough. Had it sticking everywhere and the point I couldn’t roll it up. Did the best I could but don’t see using this recipe again.

    1. Lexi @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Stella, there are a lot of variables that go into the consistency of dough, even down to the weather and humidity in the air. There’s nothing wrong with adding just a little more flour to bring the dough into a less sticky and knead-able consistency, if you decide to give this recipe another try. Thanks for giving it a go!

    2. That happened to me as well, but I found out I was using 1 3/4 cup flour isted of 2 3/4 cup. Maybe you had a similar problem?

  4. I’ve made these dozens of times during Covid. My family loves them, easy and delicous.

  5. First time making cinnamon rolls. They came out great. Thank you.

  6. I tried this recipe a year ago and just tried it again yesterday and it was amazingggg. But i did notice a problem with the dough. It is extremely sticky. Usually when I make bread, the dough would go from sticky to non-sticky but it’s the opposite with this dough. It went from slightly sticky, so I added more bench flour as I kept hand kneading it to more and more sticky again. But it passed the windowpane test so I stopped there afterwards. Can I add less liquid? And do you have a cream cheese frosting recipe for this cinnamon roll?

    1. Stephanie @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Veronica, How did your baked rolls turn out? There are a lot of variables that go into the consistency of dough, even down to the weather and humidity in the air. There’s nothing wrong with adding just a little more flour to bring the dough into a less sticky and knead-able consistency. You can certainly try adding a bit less liquid next time also. We love the cream cheese frosting from these Overnight Cinnamon Rolls.

      1. The rolls actually turned out amazing! I made 9 in total using your recipe (guess I cut bigger rolls) and they proof super nicely during the 2nd time, I don’t think I’ve seen them doubling that big before when I made bread. The only problem was how it was super sticky even kneading it for so long. But how much liquid should I add less, in the milk or water section? Or less butter?

  7. Kelly Halvorson says:

    Followed recipe wasn’t real sure about having the yeast mixed in with the four but did it any way. The dough rolled out beautiful no sticking just nice and easy ☺️
    Problem came did not rise very well even with extra time!! Went ahead and baked not light and fluffy more like a cinnamon biscuit.

  8. Great recipe, wished I had read the comments about sicky dough as I had the same issue. Adding dough to the rolling pin and board helped a lot but would recommend an extra 1/2 cup or 1/4 cup of extra flour just so you don’t run into the same issues I did.

  9. Ok so I hate cream cheese frosting and don’t really like Royal icing on my cinnamon rolls. Can I use store bought cake frosting? Do you think that would be good? Should I melt it in the microwave or let the heat from the cinnamon rolls melt it?

  10. Emily and Tiara says:

    We loved this recipe! The cinnamon rolls were soft and delicious – and went perfectly with the icing! Thanks Sally!

  11. I made these a few months ago and they were 100% amazing. Question: if we use the oven trick to get them to rise quicker, do we just then uncover the rolls and crank the oven up to 375 without a full preheat?

    1. Lexi @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Rose, we’d recommend taking the rolls out of the oven after the rise, allowing the oven to preheat to 375 degrees, and then sticking them back in for the bake time.

  12. Hello Sally,

    I am going to try this amazing recipe. I will let you know how it turns out.

    Alesha

    1. Trina @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hope you love these cinnamon rolls, Alesha!

  13. Thank you for including weights in your recipe! I prefer this method to using measuring cups. Love the recipe. I added a bit of cardamom and allspice to the filling, it comes out abfab! Definitely a wet dough, glad I read the comments first. Thanks for the recipe!

  14. I made these for my boys after my mom made the mistake of opening a can of chemical tasting Pillsbury easy bake cinnamon buns! These filled the bill and then some. No difficulty with the dough and I followed the recipe exactly. My only error was not rolling tightly enough. Still turned out great!

  15. These cinnamon rolls are so good and easy. My wife and son love them! Question: Can I lay these out separately on a pan and bake them so that I have individual cinnamon rolls or does this recipe require that they be cooked together in a dish? I’d be interested to try them individually, if you think that would be acceptable. I’m new to the baking game and don’t know what might prevent that from being successful.

    1. Hi Russ, so glad to read that your family enjoys these cinnamon rolls. You can definitely spread them apart on a baking sheet and bake them that way. Same oven temperature, but I’m unsure of the best bake time.

  16. Worked great for me and I am not a baker/cook at all, lol. Hubby says I am now in charge of homemade cinnamon rolls. Not sure how I feel about that. I couldn’t find our rolling pin because we just moved but I was able to roll them with a glass which I sprayed lightly with oil. Thanks for the recipe!

  17. I have made this recipe many times and love it the doe is sticky so I usually let it rise for about 10 minutes in warm oven before I roll it out and I don’t have any issues.

  18. The recipe was simple and easy to follow especially for a novice like me. My dough was a little bit dry after mixing the ingredients, so i add 1 egg yolk, the roll came out really good, but a little airy(like the bread of ensaymada) how can i fix this? And is it okay to add more sugar to the dough, to make it swetter?

  19. I read the comments and was concerned that the dough might be wet. But i followed the recipe (even followed the oven tip) and it turned out PERFECT. Granted, I did sprinkle a little flour here and there when I was kneading and rolling. Turned out better than expected. Beyond thrilled with the outcome. People are having second helpings. It’s that good. Thank you.

  20. This is my go-to cinnamon roll recipe! Super easy– the dough is a great consistency, and they’re so delicious. I do increase the amount of topping a little. 🙂 I like to make them the night before, and then let them rise and bake in the morning. Highly recommend!

  21. This is my go-to cinnamon roll recipe! If I wanted to double the batch would that affect rising time or anything? Is it better two make two separate batches or doesn’t matter?

    1. Lexi @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi SK, You can double the recipe, but we always find that the taste and texture are better when making two separate batches. The rise time as well as the bake time would be longer if doubling (same oven temperature) but we’re unsure of the exact times needed.

  22. Hi Sally, So I made the mistake of trying to do an overnight version of these I i ended up leaving them out of the fridge the whole night.. Are these still good to eat if I bake them?
    Thank you!

    1. Lexi @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Brooklyn, the taste and texture will likely be altered since the dough was over proofed. You can certainly still give them a try, though. Thanks for giving this recipe a go!

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