I shared my recipe for homemade rolls a while ago and now I can share with you how to make them into cinnamon rolls! Start with the homemade rolls recipe found here. When you get to the part where you punch down the dough a second time, hop back on over here!
If you want large cinnamon rolls (24), split your dough in half. If you’d like smaller rolls, split it into thirds (~45). Since I was making this batch for work I split it into thirds. Shape 1 hunk of dough into a loaf shape. *I apologize for the poor lighting in our kitchen.
Put a light dusting of flour on your counter and also a light dusting on your rolling pin. Roll the dough out into as close of a rectangle as you can get it. I promise – this was more rectangular than it looks – wrong lens/wrong angle.
Next I add in the filling. There are a million and one combos and if you are a perfectionist, go ahead and Google the proportions. I just drizzle on some melted butter (and please use butter, not margarine), a dusting of sugar, a healthy dose of brown sugar (make sure there aren’t any clumps!), and of course as much cinnamon as your heart desires.
Now you roll it up. I find it is usually easiest to start on the side farthest from me and rolling it toward me. Keep it as tight as possible without squishing it.
Now you need a nice sharp knife! I dip my knife edge into my flour bin since the dough can be a little sticky as you cut through it. I slice each roll into 1 inch pieces. You will follow these steps for each of your hunks of dough (so 2-3 times depending on how many rolls you need).
Now, place your rolls into 9 x 13 cake pans. I have never tried baking them in non-stick pans so if you do, you might need to alter baking time later on.
Now comes the waiting part. I usually cover my pans with a tea towel to prevent any drafts, but it isn’t a must. Now it is time to sit an wait A LOT. You need to let these babies rise for at least 3 hours. So, plan a shopping trip – go to a movie – whatever you want to do! Then come back and see the magic that has happened.
Heat your oven up to 350. If you made smaller rolls, bake for 15-17 minutes. If you made larger rolls, bake them for about 20 minutes. They should be slighltly golden on top.
A good way to spend your time while the rolls are rising for the last time is to make the icing. Once again, there are a million and one icing recipes out there. Here’s the one I love. You will need:
1 package cream cheese
1 stick butter or margarine (I had run out of butter at this point, but the margarine worked just fine)
3 tsp. of milk…cream…half & half – whatever liquid dairy product you prefer
1 tsp. of vanilla (almond would probably be good, too)
3 C. powdered sugar
Cream the butter and cream cheese together until well blended and smooth. If you have the paddle attachment for your mixer, it works really well for this recipe. Add in the milk and vanilla and blend. Then add the powdered sugar a cup at a time. If at this point it looks a little thick for your liking, add powdered sugar 1/4 C. at a time to desired thickness. Cover your bowl with the icing in it until you are ready to use it!
I usually put the icing in a baggy and cut a corner out to drizzle it all over the rolls. While this may all sound like a complicated process and time consuming, they are pretty easy and worth it in the end. And everyone who gets to eat one will love you