Easy Cinnamon Rolls (from scratch)

These easy cinnamon rolls 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. 😉

My BEST ever Cinnamon Rolls - totally from scratch, great beginner recipe! Recipe on sallysbakingaddiction.com

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 overnight 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.

My BEST ever Cinnamon Rolls - totally from scratch, great beginner recipe! Recipe on sallysbakingaddiction.com

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.

My BEST ever Cinnamon Roll recipe - these fluffy, gooey cinnamon rolls are made from scratch and are a great recipe for beginners!

My BEST ever Cinnamon Roll recipe - these fluffy, gooey cinnamon rolls are made from scratch and are a great recipe for beginners!

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!

Easy cinnamon rolls recipe

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

More Shortcut Homemade Recipes

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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 (345g) all-purpose flour (spoon & leveled)
  • 1/4 cup (50g) granulated sugar
  • 1 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. 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.
If you're new to working with yeast, these soft and fluffy homemade cinnamon rolls are a perfect place to start! Click through for the recipe.
If you're new to working with yeast, these soft and fluffy homemade cinnamon rolls are a perfect place to start! Click through for the recipe.

1092 Comments

  1. Can we use salted butter in this recipe ?

    1. Sure can! No changes necessary.

    2. Hi Sally!
      I made this recipe today and it tasted amazing! My who,e family enjoyed and it was fun to make!

  2. These turned out better than another recipe I tried that didn’t allow the dough to rise. This brings me back to childhood with the Pillsbury rolls but these are healthier and taste so much better!

  3. Easy and really tasty. Added extra butter, sugar, cinnamon and raisins. Will be one of my favorite!

  4. Hi Sally,

    Why are you adding the yeast and the salt at the same time?
    Did you know salt can kill the yeast?
    I tried this recipe twice but the dough didn’t rise that well.. I did a little research on the internet to see what might have be the problem and I found out that salt could kill yeast if you mix them together, while the yeast hasn’t started working yet.
    Don’t you think it’s better to make a mixture of the warm water and yeast first and then add it to the rest of the ingredients? Like your pizza crust recipe.. cause that one is really great and rises very well.

    1. Hi Lizzy, instant yeast is typically added right to the dry ingredients. Most modern active-dry yeasts are already active, so we can get away with that here using active-dry as well. This recipe has been working for me for years following this exact method but feel free to make changes based on your preferences!

  5. Hi Sally,
    I only have medium eggs in the house, would it still work with 1 mediun egg?
    Thank you

    1. Shouldn’t be a problem.

  6. Avani Kudalkar says:

    Hey Sally! Planning to give this recipe a try tomorrow. Wanted to know if it’s possible to incorporate whole wheat flour in the recipe as an alternative?

    1. You can try substituting some of the flour with whole wheat flour, but the rolls will taste dense. (And the dough won’t rise quite as high.) Here are all of my recipes using whole wheat flour if you’re interested!

  7. Hi Sally,
    I was wondering if I am able to use almond milk in place of the regular milk for this recipe?

    1. Sure can! See recipe note.

      1. sorry I didn’t see that. Thank you so much!

  8. Great recipe, I used bread maker dough I got from club grocery stores, put the dough on top of my oven toaster (heated up at 150 deg), and it was raised almost double in half an hour. Delicious even without icing. I also used lactose free skim milk and coconut butter.

  9. Millah Marrinan says:

    Best cinnamon scrolls I have ever seen. Were easy to make, looked sensational and best of all they tasted delicious.

  10. After trying multiple recipes THIS is the one that finally worked! The perfect bread texture.

  11. Made these this morning and they turned out fantastic, soft and delicious – even though I completely forgot to add the egg! What a great, forgiving dough. Thanks for sharing.

  12. Lynn franklin says:

    Hi sally! Can I use hook attachment to knead dough for orange cinnamon rolls? Also made dinner rolls and they turned out perfect ! And easy! Thank you Lynn

    1. Stephanie @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Lynn, Yes you can use your mixer with a dough hook or hands to knead this dough!

  13. Jmardz261020 says:

    I read the recipe and tips and followed the instructions religiously and “perfect”. I just made it now for our midnight snack and its really delicious,. Thank you for sharing your recipe with us…..

  14. My first time making yeast cinnamon rolls and they look and smell incredible! Can’t wait to dive in!

  15. GOD LOVE YOU Woman those were AMAZING!

  16. I’m a novice to dough–I find it intimidating. I tried this recipe and MY GOSH THESE WERE SUPERB!!!!! It’s hot and humid here in the midwest, so I let these beauties rise outside for 90 minutes. I had zero issues. The recipe is well written and easy to follow. I can now say that I make a killer cinnamon roll thanks to you!

  17. Hi sally,
    I was wondering if you’ve ever doubled this recipe before? I need to make quite a big batch but I’m not sure if I should make the recipe twice (separately) or if I can double the ingredients in the same bowl at the same time. I want it to come out the same way so I was just wondering if you’ve done it otherwise I’m not going to try to .

    1. Stephanie @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Madison, You can double the recipe, yes, but we always find that the taste and texture are better when making two separate batches.

  18. Hi! I may have missed it above…
    If using a stand mixer to knead, is it the same amount of time?

    Thanks!

  19. Are there any alternatives to use besides milk? Thanks

  20. My husband and I have just recently gotten into making bread and other delicious pastries from scratch. Cinnamon rolls always intimidated both of us because of the overnight rise process so when I found this recipe we decided to give it a shot. These were AMAZING. So easy and so delicious! We added some nutmeg to the filling and used dark brown sugar in the filling. We also threw in about 4 oz of softened cream cheese to the coffee icing and this was a great addition to our Sunday brunch! We have already found some other recipes we want to try on this site!

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