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.

1090 Comments

  1. These turned out amazing. I used bread flour instead of AP. Thanks for the recipe! I’ll make them again.

  2. Karen Kirkerud says:

    Is it possible to cut out the egg here? My son is allergic to eggs and I always look for recepies without…

    1. I have not tested this dough with an egg substitute but let me know if you try!

    2. I made these without the egg (simply forgot to add it). They are awesome. Awe inspiring. Outstanding. The-stuff-you -sneak- out- of -bed -in- the -middle -of -the- night -to -take -another -piece kind of thing.

  3. Can you make these the night before and bake them in the morning?

    1. Yes, see recipe note #1. Enjoy!

  4. Sally, finding your website has been a God send and honestly, has got me back to baking after a few years of giving up! The only problem is I now need to get to the gym more often!

  5. These were GREAT. I made a caramel icing though (don’t like coffee) and slathered it all over when the buns were done. SO gooey and yummy!

  6. Hi Sally! I’m wondering what is the difference (in terms of taste and texture) between this recipe and your other recipe “Overnight Cinnamon Rolls”? I’m trying to decide which recipe to make 🙂

    1. Hi Olivia! My overnight cinnamon rolls are extra soft, a little more buttery, and HUGE! It’s a big pan of big cinnamon rolls. I like to use this recipe as a quicker version. 🙂

  7. Gannier L Fulghum says:

    Hi, I want to try this recipe and I have a question. After the rise in oven at 150 degrees do you close the door and turn rhe heat to 350 degrees? Or remove and preheat?

    1. I remove the rolls from the oven after they rise, turn it on to heat up to 375 – and then place them back in to bake. Enjoy!

  8. This is the BEST recipe I have ever tried in my life!!! The dough was so fluffy but crunchy SO goooooddd!!! I will definitely be using this recipe again!!!! <3

  9. This is an incredibly easy recipe to follow. The rolls were delicious. A touch of sweetness without being overly sweet. We will be making these again.

  10. Tia Malkin-Fontecchio says:

    These were very tasty. I made them with half and half instead of milk because that’s what I had and used brown sugar in the filling because that’s my preference. And I subbed your cream cheese frosting from the overnight rolls at my daughter’s request (yummy!). I prefer the overnight rolls, but when you want cinnamon rolls ASAP this definitely more than does the trick. It was even faster than your time estimates. I let the rolls rise on the bread proof setting in my oven and they were about to overflow the pan after 45 minutes.

  11. I tried this recipe, but I used margarine for the dough and butter for the spread (as butter is pretty expensive in Nigeria )and it turned out pretty great.
    Also this was my first time baking with yeast, followed the steps and it was flawless.
    Thank you

  12. If using a mixer, which attachment should I use? If I just do it by hand, do I use a spatula to mix?

    1. Hi Elle, you can use the regular paddle/flat beater attachment or a rubber spatula if you’re doing it by hand.

  13. This was my first time making cinnamon rolls from scratch and they turned out amazing! The recipe was easy to follow. Thank you for another great recipe Sally!

  14. Sally – LOVE LOVE LOVE this recipe! I really appreciate how easy and simple it was. Yeast is hard for me but this recipe seemed to completely turn that around! God bless you and your recipes!

  15. Not even done yet, but these cinnamon rolls already smell and look amazing this is my first time ever marking theme!! Great recipe!!

  16. Oladara Abrams says:

    I made this cinnamon rolls yesterday (24), for my 2 sisters and myself. I was told this was my best rolls so far. Thank you. You keep posting and I will keep attempting them 🙂

    1. I’m thrilled they were such a hit!

  17. If I make these up the night before, can I still do the warm oven trick in the morning for the rise, or would you recommend taking the full hour on the counter instead?

    1. Either way would be fine the next morning.

  18. Easy to follow! I did roll the wrong way though and ended up with about 18 tiny rolls… Still delicious and will know to roll the opposite for next time! Definitely a keeper!

  19. Kofoworola Ishola says:

    I have always loved cinnamon rolls, but never have I had homemade ones. I used your recipe, and the rolls were amazing! It will be difficult for me to buy cinnamon rolls as from now on. My husband loved them too.

  20. They were good, but not the best. not enough cinnamon in the mixture. The rolls were a little dense compared to other recipes I have tried. But all in all they were easy to make.

  21. These are amazing!! This is a great recipe with little effort! They are so soft and moist on the inside. I couldn’t make the frosting as I didn’t have cream cheese (and didn’t want to make a trip to the store) so I made a glaze by adding a couple tablespoons of boiling water to about 1/4 cup of sugar and poured it over the rolls out of the oven. 10/10!

  22. In all my years, I have never had success with dough or yeast recipes. These were effortless and were so delicious! The whole pan was gone in minutes. I cannot wait to make some more. Yum!

  23. This dough is super forgiving, I measured with my eyes and they turned out amazing! Thanks for a great recipe!

  24. Made these yesterday and although I was wondering about using plain flour and the amount of yeast compared to my other recipe, these were super soft and delicious, definitely making again – and will probably make them too often to be good for my waistline

  25. McKayla Brown says:

    Hi sally,
    Can I sub heavy (whipping) cream for the milk? Thanks

    1. Hi McKayla, no, heavy cream is too thick for this dough.

  26. Hi Sally! I don’t think my milk/water was warm enough because mine didn’t raise like it should. I know it was something that I did because I’m a total beginner.
    They tasted good but were a little dry and the dough was was thin.
    Any advice is welcome!!

    1. Hi Carla! I think you will find my Baking with Yeast Guide helpful. (Many reasons dough may not rise!) Warm water/milk is KEY!

      1. I tried it again and it raised but not quite enough.
        Thank you for replying and I will definitely check out the link you sent me!
        I’m really wanting to perfect them for gifts for the holidays but it’s going to take a bit to get it right!

    2. Lynn Giddens says:

      Karla, I use a meat thermometer to test the temperature of my milk mixture, if that helps you at all

  27. If you let the dough rise in the oven, does it only take 30 minutes instead of 60-90? And then would you take the rolls out of them oven while it preheats for baking?

    1. Hi Keisha! No, the rolls will take a bit longer. The 30 minutes is how long to keep the oven door cracked open before you close the rising rolls instead.

      1. Keisha Dokken says:

        Can you also let them rise on the counter at room temp?

      2. Absolutely!

  28. Did a triple header bakeoff test of cinny roll recipes and these won. Few tips:
    Use buttermilk
    Use alton Brown’s glaze recipe (sub 1 pt coffee to 2 pts milk)
    Use melted cooled butter for filling and add cinnamon and sugar to thicken into goodness
    JUST A SMIDGE of cardamom!

    So so good, thanks for another hit sally!!!!

    1. You used the same amount of buttermilk and followed the instructions the same as they are here?
      You put the cardamom in the filling?

      1. Nancy Mcleary says:

        When I was a kid my mom made incredible chocolate cinnamon rolls. Raisins were also in the filling. They were ooey, gooey, deliciousness!!! Any ideas for converting your recipe into the one in my memory? She never wrote it down!!!
        I am going to surprise the friends I am with for Christmas morning with these yummy treats! I know you will be able to help me recreate these !

  29. Would it be ok if I made these the night before and then baked them in the morning?

    1. Yes, see make ahead instructions.

  30. Can I use eggnog in place of the milk in this recipe?

    1. Hi Anna! I haven’t personally tried it, so I can’t say for sure. IF you try it, still use the 1/4 cup of water.

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