Old Fashioned Cinnamon Rolls

Old Fashioned Cinnamon Rolls
Old Fashioned Cinnamon Rolls
When I first started baking many years ago, I loved making bread in particular. Long before I had ever heard of a soft, sweet brioche brioche dough, which is the base for my cinnamon rolls these days, I would make them from leftover white bread dough just like our Grandmothers did. The rolls are not quite as sweet or light and airy but I have discovered that some people prefer a more substantial, chewy texture to their cinnamon rolls. One commercial bakery owner I knew made them this way and changed her recipe once to make them softer but her customers balked and asked that she go back to the old recipe. I think the more rustic recipe hit a nostalgic note with her customers which is why they were so popular.

I thought about that one recent weekend when I was making White Bread to go with my Pulled Pork Baked Beans and decided to take part of the dough to make these old fashioned cinnamon rolls. When you think of it, this is a great early morning weekend baking project because you get a pan of great rolls for brunch and a fresh loaf of bread to serve with dinner. ( you can also freeze the remaining dough for later if you prefer.)

Click here to find my standard White Bread recipe.
The bread recipe makes enough for the rolls plus a loaf of bread.

Once you make the dough, cover it and leave to rest and rise for one hour. Punch the dough down and knead it for a few minutes by hand before letting it rest for another 10 minutes.

Roll the rested dough our into a large rectangle about 12x18 inches.


  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • ½ cup very soft butter
  • 2 tsp cinnamon

Spread this mixture on the rolled out dough. At this point you can make plain cinnamon rolls or, if desired, you can sprinkle on raisins, chopped pecans or walnuts, chopped apple pieces or any combination you like.

Starting at the short side of the rectangle, roll the dough into a log, pinching the dough together to seal at the end of the roll.

Cut the roll into 12 equal pieces and place in the bottom of a greased 9x13 baking pan.

(Note: For Sticky Buns combine 1 cup brown sugar and ½ cup melted butter in the bottom of the pan before adding the rolls. Invert onto a platter when baked.)

Cover the baking pan with a clean tea towel and allow the rolls to rise until at least doubled in size, about 1 to 1 ½ hours. (I sometimes let them rise in the fridge overnight and pop them into the oven in the morning. I’ve also frozen them before they rise and take them out of the freezer to rise overnight on the counter top before going to bed)

Bake at 350 degrees F for 30-35 minutes or until the rolls spring back when touched in the middle of the pan. Frost with vanilla glaze if desired.

Vanilla Glaze
  • 1 cup icing sugar
  • ½ tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 tbsp milk

Whisk all three ingredients together until smooth and drizzle over the cinnamon rolls.

Old Fashioned Cinnamon Rolls & White Bread

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