This recipe for Easy Homemade Cinnamon Rolls is the best ever! Make ahead overnight, and serve for breakfast – perfect for the holidays or for weekends. Pairs perfectly with a hot homemade Cinnamon Dolce Latte or Crockpot Hot Chocolate!
Don’t you think that cinnamon rolls are one of the best breakfasts on Earth!?! There are few things more comforting than this soft, gooey, and “cinnamon-y,” indulgence. YUM!
The most well-known cinnamon rolls on Earth are…Hmmm, probably from Cinnabon? Oh my goodness, I remember going to the mall as a teen and getting so excited for a warm and sweet cinnamon roll fresh from the oven.
Thing is, we don’t usually go to the mall for a Cinnabon anymore, and they are not exactly a frugal treat after all, are they?
So after many requests from the hubs and kiddos to make homemade cinnamon rolls – since they’ve already had my homemade cinnamon oatmeal waffles, cinnamon granola, and apple oatmeal breakfast bars – I’ve created a recipe that rivals any Cinnabon cinnamon roll you’ve ever tasted!
Call them “better than Cinnabon homemade cinnamon rolls” if you must. 😉
Homemade Cinnamon Rolls
Not only are they absolutely amazing for breakfast or a special treat for company or holidays, they are also:
- Healthier and versatile. You can use whole wheat flour or spelt, for example, as a sub for all or some of the all-purpose flour.
- Made with natural sugars. Rather than using refined granulated sugar, I’ve used natural coconut or palm sugar, which are made from the sap of trees.
- Freezer-friendly. This recipe can be frozen and thawed for a yummy weekend breakfast – or for the holidays!
Ingredients for Cinnamon Rolls
- active dry yeast
- warm water
- all-purpose flour* (or any whole wheat /spelt substitute)
- organic coconut or palm sugar
- unsalted butter
Inside the rolls
How do you make cinnamon rolls from scratch?
- Combine the yeast and warm water in a bowl (either from a mixer or large free-standing bowl). Allow it to sit.
- Add the eggs, sugar, salt, and remaining flour to the yeast mixture. Knead. Add butter and continue to knead. Cover and let rise until doubled.
- Transfer the dough to a floured surface and roll out into a rectangle. Brush with half of the melted butter. Sprinkle the cinnamon sugar over the butter. Roll and slice. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise in the refrigerator overnight.
- The next morning, remove the cinnamon rolls from the refrigerator and let them rise. Bake them until golden brown and cool. Spread optional glaze over the warm rolls and enjoy!
What is the difference between cinnamon rolls and cinnamon buns?
There is no difference. A cinnamon roll is a cinnamon bun, and vice versa! Both are made of dough, cinnamon, sugar and butter.
Why are my cinnamon rolls hard?
Cinnamon rolls might turn out hard if:
- You’ve used too much flour…
- Or you did not allow the yeast to bloom before adding the flour.
- You did not allow the dough to rise (proof) long enough.
Do homemade cinnamon rolls freeze well?
Yes! They do freeze well. Follow the whole recipe, then separate and freeze individually on a cookie sheet. After they are frozen individually, you can place them in freezer bags or airtight containers.
Warm/thaw them in the oven. I’d also make a small amount of icing – maybe for 2 days worth of rolls – and keep it in the fridge, pulling it out while the rolls are in the oven. Then they’ll taste fresh AND be iced.
Can I make cinnamon rolls gluten free?
Sure you can! Just use an all purpose GF flour like this one in equal parts.
How do I make vanilla glaze for cinnamon rolls?
Glaze is, of course, an optional topping. This recipe is still amazing without the glaze, but it does add a sweet, creamy yumminess! In case you’d like to make a glaze, here is how to do it. Store it in the fridge in an air-tight container and drizzle on individual rolls as you serve them!
- confectioners sugar
- unsalted butter, melted
- whole milk
- In a small bowl, sift sugar and salt. In a separate bowl, whisk butter, milk and vanilla. Stir into the sugar to form a smooth paste. Spread over warm cinnamon rolls. Store covered in the fridge.
More Easy Breakfast Recipes
- Stovetop Breakfast Oatmeal & Porridge
- Apple Oatmeal Breakfast Bars
- Breakfast Sweet Potato Apple Bake
- Homemade Breakfast Sausage Recipe
- Cinnamon Oatmeal Blender Waffles
Two Week SampleDo you need step-by-step help with meal planning? Frugal Real Food Meal Plans is an all-in-one meal plan with recipes, shopping lists, shopping guides, money saving tips and more! Sign up below for a free sample!
Overnight Cinnamon Rolls
This recipe for Easy Homemade Cinnamon Rolls is the best ever! Make ahead overnight and serve for breakfast. Great for holidays or weekends!
- Prep Time: 12 hours
- Cook Time: 30 mins
- Total Time: 12 hours 30 minutes
- Yield: 10 rolls 1x
- Category: Breakfast
- Method: Oven
- Cuisine: American
- 1 Tbsp yeast
- 1/2 cup warm water (105–110 degrees)
- 4 1/2 cups all-purpose flour*
- 4 large eggs
- 1/4 cup organic coconut or palm sugar
- 2 tsp salt
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
Inside the Rolls
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted
- 1/2 cup organic coconut or palm sugar, mixed with 1/2 tbsp molasses & 2 Tbsp ground cinnamon
- 1 cup confectioners sugar
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 2 Tbsp unsalted butter, melted
- 2 Tbsp whole milk
- 1 tsp vanilla
- Combine yeast and warm water in a bowl (either from a mixer or large free-standing bowl). Allow to bloom for 5 minutes, then whisk until smooth. Whisk in 1/2 cup flour and cover with a towel. Allow to sit in a warm spot for 30 minutes.
- Add eggs, sugar, salt, and remaining 4 cups of flour to the yeast mixture. Knead with a dough hook on medium speed for 4 minutes, or until smooth if mixing by hand. Add room temperature butter and continue to knead for 10-12 minutes, or until the dough is smooth. Add a little flour to reduce stickiness, if needed. Cover with a towel and let rise in a warm spot until doubled in size, approximately 2 hours.
- Butter a 9×13 inch baking dish. Transfer the dough to a floured surface and, using a rolling pin, roll out into a 15×10 inch rectangle. Brush the rectangle with half of the melted butter, leaving a 2-inch wide strip unbrushed on one long side. Sprinkle the cinnamon sugar over the butter. Starting at the long side covered with sugar, roll up the rectangle snugly and pinch the seam together. With the seam facing down, cut dough into 10 equal pieces**. Place the pieces cut side up in the dish and brush the tops with the remaining butter. Cover with plastic wrap and let the rolls rise in the refrigerator overnight.
- The next morning, remove the cinnamon rolls from the refrigerator and let rise until half again as high, about 1 hour. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Bake until golden brown, about 30 minutes. Let cool in the baking pan for 15 minutes. Spread optional glaze over the warm rolls and enjoy!
Vanilla Glaze Instructions
- In a small bowl, sift sugar and salt. In a separate bowl, whisk butter, milk and vanilla. Stir into the sugar to form a smooth paste. Spread over warm cinnamon rolls.
*You can substitute whole wheat flour or spelt for some or all of the AP Flour.
** Dividing the dough into 10 rolls will make very large rolls in the end. Divide into 12 pieces to have a few more, yet still very ample, servings. Notice how big the half-batch is in the 8×8 glass pan above.
Adapted from Family Meals