Learn how to make a beautiful, fluffy, and soft cinnamon roll cake using my kitchen-tested dough recipe.
- 2 and 3/4 cups (345g) all-purpose flour, divided (spoon & leveled)
- 3 Tablespoons granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 package Red Star Platinum Yeast or any instant yeast* (1 packet = 2 and 1/4 teaspoons)
- 1/2 cup (120ml) water
- 1/4 cup (60ml) milk
- 3 Tablespoons (45g) unsalted butter
- 1 large egg, at room temperature
- 3 Tablespoons (45g) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
- 1 and 1/2 Tablespoons ground cinnamon
- 1/4 cup (50g) granulated sugar
Vanilla Maple Icing
- 1 cup (120g) confectioners’ sugar, sifted
- 1 Tablespoon (15ml) milk or cream
- 1 Tablespoon (15ml) pure maple syrup
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- Make the dough: Set aside 1/2 cup of flour. In a large bowl, toss the 2 and 1/4 cups flour, the sugar, salt, and yeast together until evenly dispersed. Set aside.
- Heat the water, milk, and butter together in the microwave until the butter is melted and the mixture is hot to touch. About 115°F (46°C) – 120°F (49°C). Stir the butter mixture into the flour mixture. Add the egg and only enough of the reserved flour to make a soft dough. I only needed 1/3 cup, but you may need the full 1/2 cup. Dough will be ready when it gently pulls away from the side of the bowl and has an elastic consistency.
- On a lightly floured surface, knead the dough for about 3-4 minutes. Form a ball and place in a lightly greased bowl (I used non-stick spray). Cover tightly and let rest for 30 minutes. The dough will slightly rise.
- Make the filling: After 30 minutes, roll the dough out in a 15×12 inch rectangle. Spread the softened butter on top. Mix together the cinnamon and sugar and sprinkle it all over the dough. Spray a 9-inch round pan with nonstick spray. Set aside.
- Please see above for a visual of this step. Using a very sharp knife or a pizza cutter (I used a pizza cutter), cut the dough into six 2-inch wide strips. Loosely roll up one strip and place it in the center of the pan. You’re rolling it up loosely so the dough has some give as it rises. Coil the remaining 5 strips around the center roll, starting each strip at the end of the previous one to make one large rolled cake. Some of the filling may spill out as you pick up the strips, but I just sprinkled that on top of the cake after I was finished spiraling.
- Loosely cover the cake with aluminum foil or plastic wrap and allow to rise in a warm, draft-free place for 60-90 minutes. Here is what I do: heat the oven to 200°F (93°C). Turn oven off. Place cake inside oven and allow to rise.
- After the cake’s dough has nearly doubled in size, preheat the oven to 350°F (177°C). Bake for 30-35 minutes until lightly browned. I covered the rolls with aluminum foil after 15 minutes to avoid heavy browning. *While the cake is baking, some spots may rise up more than other spots. That’s completely normal and expected! I simply removed the pan from the oven and pressed down on the sides with the back of a spatula that were rising more than others.
- Make the glaze: Remove cake from the oven when it’s done. Allow the cake to cool for about 10 minutes. Then, right before serving, drizzle with glaze. Mix the sifted confectioners’ sugar, milk/cream, maple syrup and vanilla together until smooth and drizzle over rolls. If you prefer a thicker glaze, add more confectioners’ sugar and then add salt to cut the sweetness, if desired.
- Cake is best enjoyed the same day, but will remain fresh covered tightly for up to 4 days in the refrigerator.
- Overnight Instructions: To prepare the night before serving, prepare the roll cake through step 5. Cover tightly and refrigerate for 8-12 hours. The next morning, remove from the refrigerator and allow to rise on the counter for 1-2 hours before continuing with step 7.
- Freezing Instructions: Baked cinnamon roll cake can be frozen up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator and warm up before enjoying. You can also freeze the unbaked cinnamon roll cake and here’s how: bake the cake in step 7 for only about 10 minutes at 375°F (191°C). Cool completely, then cover tightly and freeze. To serve, take the cake out of the freezer and put into the refrigerator a few hours before serving. Then, finish baking it.
- Yeast: If you replace Red Star Platinum with regular active dry yeast, you rise time may be 50% longer.
- Glaze: You can leave out the maple syrup to make it a standard vanilla glaze. Or leave out the vanilla, so it’s a plain maple glaze. Or make a coffee glaze like I did here.
- Reference my Baking with Yeast Guide for answers to common yeast FAQs.
Keywords: cinnamon roll cake, giant cinnamon roll