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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 these homemade 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. 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.

More Shortcut Homemade Recipes

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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: 1112 rolls 1x
  • 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

Scale

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 (or more whole milk)
  • 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 as you get the filling ingredients ready.
  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.

Keywords: easy cinnamon rolls from scratch

Reader Questions and Reviews

  1. Disclaimer, I have made a lot of cinnamon rolls! This is the perfect “smaller batch” recipe when you don’t want to spend a lot of time. Dough came together quickly, very easy to work with, loved the 10 min first rise. I made these right before bed, put the unbaked rolls in a dish and into the refrigerator. Next morning took them out about an hour to rise, 25 minutes to bake and then a slathering of the cream cheese icing I had made the night before – perfection! I like my cinnamon rolls thicker so I cut them in 2″ pieces which yielded 6 rolls.

    1. Hey there. How do I make sure that my rolls are baking in the middle? I have issues with soggy middles!

      1. Hi Emma, feel free to add an extra minute or two of bake time if the middles seem under baked to you. If the edges are browning too quickly in the meantime, you can tent the edges with foil. Hope this helps!

    2. I’m new to baking, is it possible to use this dough recipe and make doughnuts out of it instead of cinnamon rolls ?

  2. Wonderful and easy recipe! First, I like that it was scaled down from the traditional large pan of cinnamon rolls- 9in pie plate was just the right size. Second, followed the recipe as instructed- steps 1-6, overnight in the fridge and then the remaining steps. The rolls doubled while in the fridge overnight and let them rest 30 minutes while preheat oven. Third, I did change up spice profile to pumpkin cinnamon rolls with orange icing idea from orange cinnamon rolls (same recipe as this one). It’s October it’s all about pumpkin spice ! They are awesome!!

    Now, to the naysayers. This is a bread recipe and you do have to be a little intuitive to know that you may have to flour the counter, the rolling pin and your hands! You may even have to dust a little extra flour on the dough itself. If your rolls don’t rise that isn’t a recipe issue that is a yeast issue and it is old/dead or your proofing liquid was to hot and you killed it. Not a Sally problem.

    Thank you Sally Team for the recipe ❤️

  3. This cinnamon roll recipe was the first one I tried, they were amazing! ! I am on a low sodium diet so I left out the salt, as I have found doesn’t change the taste of many recipes. I’ve tried no yeast cinnamon roll recipes which are ok, but I always find myself making this recipe. I made cream cheese frosting every time but I made sour cream frosting last time and oh my they were so yummy! Thankyou sally for your recipes you are a baking genius !

  4. An unmitigated disaster. The dough was a sticky mess even after I added probably an extra 1.5 cups of flour. I had to hose everything down with baking spray – the work surface, the knife, and it STILL stuck to everything. It’s rising right now because I refuse to give up, but it’s going to be more like monkey bread.
    I love the site, but the recipe isn’t a keeper for me! It left me wishing I’d bought the canned Pillsbury’s rolls!

    1. No problem with the dough sticking to anything for me and this is the first time I made these. You must not of followed the directions.

    2. I’m not sure what happened to yours, but it’s just about the best dough recipe I’ve ever used. In fact, I was concerned that my dough wasn’t sticky enough.
      Barely needed to flour my parchment paper to roll it out.

  5. Hi I made these and they were awesome! My only complaint would be that while rising they lost their shape-any tips on getting them to stay till shaped??

    1. Hi F, tightly rolling is the best way to help the rolls keep their shape!

      1. Can i use powdered sugar instead of granulated sugar in filling of dough?

      2. Hi Nabiha! Powdered sugar will melt into the dough, we recommend sticking with granulated sugar.

  6. Just baked these! tasted amazing and turned our really well!!!
    First time ever using yeast so was a little nervous but super happy with how they turned out and how they taste!!!

    read someone complain the dough is very very sticky, I found it sticky but it goes when you knead it, i just needed to knead it for longer than 3mins till it was the right consistency. took me about ~10min kneading but this is also my first time doing a bread/yeast recipe so knew it would take more time to do this step.

    overall really good tasting recpie!

  7. Made these today. First time making anything like this, and haven’t used yeast much in recipes, but this was a winner. Easy and delicious!

  8. This was a GREAT recipe. I would only charge one thing; I would put the rolls on a cookie sheet so that they don’t touch. It was difficult to separate them. Other than that they were perfect. The recipe is very easy and my family LOVED them.

    Thank You

  9. I’ve tried these again and again failed. This time they puffed up in the oven, in fact the center snaked out. I iced them after a bit and let them fully cool. When I returned to them later they had sunk, shrinking to half their size when they came out of the oven and were too gooey, as if under baked even though I was getting some browning on the edges. Not sure what went wrong.

  10. I mean… stop it! I LOVE pretty much every recipe I try from your blog! My first time attempting cinnamon rolls and your recipe definitely made it seem super easy! Absolutely delicious. Covered with cream cheese frosting, huge hit for my 4 boys at breakfast! Thank you!

  11. Great recipe! First time I’ve made dough of any kind from scratch to be honest. They were absolutely delicious! Baked for 25 minutes at 180 fan. Covered them with foil about five minutes before I took them out the oven to stop any further browning!

  12. this has got to be the softest dough I’ve ever kneaded..amazing texture..tastes just as amazing after it’s baked..however my 1st trial got a little too brown..but rectified using the aluminium foil the next time..

  13. So….. I made this recipe for the first time and they came out beautiful! I did have to loosely cover them with foil , the end result was a terrific cinnamon roll. Thanks ill be making these from now on.

  14. Dear Sally! I have been absolutely craving cinnamon rolls for an year now. This is the best and the EASIEST recipe ever! All i did was follow your instructions that you write so well and the cinnamon rolls are perfectly soft, sugary and fluffy!
    Many thanks!

  15. I am an experienced baker. I make bread several times a week. Wanted cinnamon rolls for a treat as my husband loves them. This recipe is perfect. Easy to follow and no waiting to rise the second time to bake.
    Wish I had seen this years ago. Thank you

  16. I tried and failed. 375 is too much. Burnt my rolls in 25 minutes lol! Maybe I will try 350 or 325 next time

    1. Hi Jessica, for best results, we recommend sticking with regular whole milk here.

  17. I would like to make a batch big enough for a regular size cake pan. Could I just double the recipe?

    1. Hi Kristy, 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.

  18. WOW! Delicious. Although i only had 2% milk, it still was satisfying. I’ll try whole milk next time. Appreciate you sharing your recipe. Ive tried so many other recipes, but this is a winner for me.
    Btw: Hubby was very very happy!
    Thank you!

  19. I’ve been making cinnamon rolls with store-bought dough for 10 years. It’s one of my favorite breakfast pastries. This was my first time working with yeast and they turned out SO GOOD! I brought them to work for my one-year anniversary, and my coworkers loved them along with three of my other favorite treats (sugar cookies, pumpkin muffins and snickerdoodles). This was easy to follow as well!

  20. how long am I supposed to put the butter in the microwave? Also, do I put the butter on top of the dough than in the microwave?

    1. Hi Alli, we only recommend leaving the dough in the refrigerator overnight at the longest. See recipe notes for more details.

  21. I saw a reply that using powdered sugar in the filling would have it melt into the dough, would that be a problem? Would it melt to the bottom and cause a problem or just preference?

    1. You’re going to want to stick with granulated sugar for cinnamon rolls. Happy baking!

  22. Super easy to make and the results are great! I made the dough and refrigerated the night before a breakfast party and then finished in the morning; they came out perfect.

  23. I only have Strong Bread flour in and wanted to know if I could the all purpose flour for this?

  24. Phenomenal recipe! Works so well. I forgot to add the egg when I started mixing the dough, but added it at the kneading stage and just added a bit more flour so that the egg would bind. It’s a very forgiving recipe! Worked a treat. I’ve shared this link with so many friends and am prepping for Christmas morning today! THANK YOU!!!

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