Overnight Buttermilk Soft and Fluffy Cinnamon Rolls

Homemade cinnamon rolls sound great in theory until you do the math and realize in order to have a warm cinnamon roll with your 10am coffee, you need to wake up about 5am.

No thanks. I solved that problem and made the fluffiest, softest, and best cinnamon rolls I’ve ever had.

Overnight Buttermilk Soft and Fluffy Cinnamon Rolls averiecooks.com

Every recipe out there promises the best cinnamon rolls, and I have more recipes to try. Consider this the first installment in my Cinnamon Roll Recipe Showdown, but to date these are the best cinnamon rolls either my husband or I have ever had, and I’m super picky. The next recipe will happen when I have time to work in an extra cardio to make up for all the fluffiness I consumed.

Even if you’ve never worked with yeast or made cinnamon rolls, this recipe is do-able, but it’s not for everyone. There are no shortcuts, this is not bread-in-a-hurry, which is why I made the recipe work as overnight rolls. At 5am the last thing I am is wide awake and wanting to dive right into a yeast bread recipe. However, you can make it through if preferred, and start to finish you’re looking at about 5 hours. You’re either getting up at the wee hours, or you’re having afternoon cinnamon rolls.

Overnight Buttermilk Soft and Fluffy Cinnamon Rolls averiecooks.com

A stand mixer will make your life immensely easier because the dough needs to be kneaded for a minimum of 10 minutes, but you can do it by hand. And in the process, you’ll burn off enough calories that you easily deserve a couple rolls. If you want no-knead, make Challah or English Muffins.

I wrote the recipe in the recipe section (below) as clearly and descriptively as possible, and before making these, read it over at least three times so you know where you’re going, what’s next, and more importantly, how much butter you need to set aside.

To the bowl of your stand mixer add four cups of all-purpose flour, instant dry yeast, sugar, optional salt. I love bread flour for producing extra chewy bread, rolls, and cookies, but for these rolls I didn’t want any chewiness. I wanted softness and fluffiness, and AP is the way to go. It has a lower protein and thus lower gluten content, meaning the finished rolls will be more tender and soft with less chew-factor.

Overnight Buttermilk Soft and Fluffy Cinnamon Rolls averiecooks.com

I used Red Star Platinum yeast, which is my gold standard. It’s an instant dry yeast so you don’t have to proof it first with water and wait for it to get bubbly and foamy. Just sprinkle it right into the bowl with the other ingredients and then pour the liquids over the top of everything. When I deviate from Platinum and use other yeast, my dough doesn’t rise as well and doesn’t bake up as puffy and fluffy.

Let the dry ingredients hang out in the mixing bowl while you melt some butter, lightly beat 3 eggs, and warm the buttermilk. I warm it in the microwave for about 45 seconds in a glass measuring cup. If after warming the buttermilk, it’s separated or gotten a little foamy, whisk it and it will smooth out.

Overnight Buttermilk Soft and Fluffy Cinnamon Rolls averiecooks.com

The type of yeast you use and the manufacturer’s directions will dictate the necessary buttermilk temperature. For Platinum yeast, the water should be warmed to about 120F to 130F, which is notably warmer than most other instant dry yeast, which typically call for temps in the 100F range. Follow the manufacturer’s recommendations for whatever yeast you use.

Some people just dip their finger into the liquid and if that’s the method you’re using, err on the side of warm bath water rather than hot because you don’t want to risk killing the yeast. In bread-making, I don’t like to guess and always use a candy thermometer. I just never use it for candy. I urge you to buy a (cheapie) thermometer. They’re about $5.99 at the grocery store, Bed Bath & Beyond, or Target. It could save you from a bread fail and if you’re going to go to the work of making cinnamon rolls, having one is a no-brainer.

Overnight Buttermilk Soft and Fluffy Cinnamon Rolls averiecooks.com

Beat the dry and wet ingredients together with the paddle, and after a minute, switch to the dough hook. Moist, wet batter will be stuck to your paddle and just pick it off as best you can. Allow the dough hook to knead for 10 to 12 minutes. If after 5 minutes the dough is still extremely wet and sloppy and not coming together, add one-quarter cup more flour, one tablespoon at a time, until it firms up.

The most important thing you can do in this entire recipe is trust that the high moisture level of the dough is high and not over-flour it. The more flour you add, the denser the dough becomes, and the heavier the rolls will be. No way to have fluffy, light rolls with dense dough. It’s nice in theory to have a smooth, round, mound of satiny, non-sticky dough, but that’s not this dough. It’s wet, gloppy, moist, messy, sticky, and of all the bread I’ve ever made, this dough gets the award as the sloppiest. I was cursing it.

I wanted to add flour so badly to it. Another half-cup and it would have been that satiny, smooth globe I love to see, but resisted the temptation and so should you. When kneading in a mixer, the rule of thumb for this type of dough is that it clears the sides of the bowl, but sticking the bottom of the bowl is fine.

Overnight Buttermilk Soft and Fluffy Cinnamon Rolls averiecooks.com

Transfer the sloppy mess to a cooking-sprayed large mixing bowl, cover it with plasticwrap, and let it rise for 2 to 2 1/2 hours, or until doubled in size, in a warm, draft-free environment. The sloppiness factor will diminish as the dough rises and all the moisture helps create light and fluffy rolls.

A trick for creating a warm environment is to turn on the oven for one minute to 400F, then shut the oven off. Repeat: don’t leave the oven on, you are just blasting in hot air for one minute only. Quickly slide your bowl into the oven and let it stay there to rise. It will be about 85F inside the oven after the brief one minute blast. This tricks the yeast into thinking it’s a nice, warm summer day in your kitchen, which is how do their best work. For the 2 1/2 hours the dough bowl was parked inside my powered-off oven, I powered it on 3 times, every 45 minutes or so, for 1 minute each time. This kept the oven toasty because it was a cold night I made the dough and the oven and my warm environment was cooling off.

Just look at the blubbery, wobbly, jiggly puffiness after 2 1/2 hours.

Overnight Buttermilk Soft and Fluffy Cinnamon Rolls averiecooks.com

It was literally pillowy soft. It felt like I was punching a pillow.

Overnight Buttermilk Soft and Fluffy Cinnamon Rolls averiecooks.com

Pssssssss. Deflation. Trapped gases released. Talk about a limp, deflated state of affairs after the punchdown.

Overnight Buttermilk Soft and Fluffy Cinnamon Rolls averiecooks.com

On a floured Silpat or counter, roll the dough out to a large rectangle, about 16×10 inches. I didn’t measure with a ruler because I know that’s just slightly larger than my Silpat, so I rolled it about that size.

Spread a stick of very soft butter over the dough and sprinkle with about 1 cup brown sugar and shake on the cinnamon. I used almost 5 teaspoons cinnamon, but wrote to use 3 teaspoons in the recipe, or to taste. I love cinnamon, especially in cinnamon rolls, hence their name.  In no way was 5 teaspoons overpowering. That’s a lot of dough and it needs to be properly flavored, but season to taste.

Overnight Buttermilk Soft and Fluffy Cinnamon Rolls averiecooks.com

Starting on a long edge (I started where you can see some letters on the Silpat peeking out), roll up the dough into as tightly coiled log as possible. It’s messy and if your log isn’t perfect, that’s okay. Slice it into 12 pieces and put them onto the baking sheet. For slicing, use a serrated knife or unwaxed and unflavored dental floss works great. You can pinch off the slices without compressing and squishing down the log. I used my trusty bench scraper.

I used a large jellyroll or sheetcake-style baking sheet with a raised edge, 11-by-16-inches. You could use a 9×13 pan, but I prefer the jellyroll pan because the rolls are less squished, have more room to spread out and rise, and baking is more uniform. Some people complain their cinnamon rolls get too browned on the top before the center cooks through, which can happen if they’re too cramped in a pan. The jellyroll pan was $5.99 in my grocery store baking aisle and did the trick. I imagine that you could also make two eight-inch round pans.

Overnight Buttermilk Soft and Fluffy Cinnamon Rolls averiecooks.com

Cover with plasticwrap and now it’s decision time:

If you’re doing the overnight make-ahead option, slide the pan into the fridge and keep it there for up to 16 hours before baking the rolls. When it’s time to bake the next day, allow the rolls to come up to room temperature and rise for 1 hour on the counter, or until almost doubled in size. And then bake.

If you’re making them straight through, allow the rolls to rise in a warm, draft-free place for 60 to 90 minutes, or until almost doubled in size. And then bake.

Bake them at 350F for 22 to 25 minutes, or until lightly golden on top and cooked through, but not overly browned. I prefer these on the paler side. Nothing says dealbreaker like a hard or crusty cinnamon roll.

After 12 hours in the fridge, this is what my rolls looked like. They sat on the counter for 1 hour before I baked them.

Overnight Buttermilk Soft and Fluffy Cinnamon Rolls averiecooks.com

I baked for 23 minutes, and rotated the pan once. It’s amazing how much they puffed during the 1 hour rise and in the oven. The term for it is called oven spring. Yes, they sprung, which is why I can’t imagine a 9×13 pan.

While they bake, make the cream cheese frosting. However, if you’re doing the overnight option, I highly suggest making it the night before so it’s one less thing to think about the next day before you’ve had your coffee. Put the frosting into an airtight container and slide it into the fridge along with rolls. The next morning, take them both out at the same time. You want the cream cheese frosting to be very soft so that it spreads smoothly over the rolls.

Immediately after taking the rolls out of the oven, generously frost them so it drips into all the cracks and crevices. And dig into a little piece of heaven.

Overnight Buttermilk Soft and Fluffy Cinnamon Rolls averiecooks.com

The recipe for cream cheese frosting, like all frosting, is dictated by personal preference. I simply use butter, cream cheese, vanilla, and confectioners’ sugar. Adding milk, cream, buttermilk, orange zest, almond extract, or whatever you like in your frosting is all up to you.

The amount I made is in excess of what you may need for your rolls if you don’t like a lot of frosting, but I do. Plus, frosting keeps for a couple weeks in the refrigerator and I have also frozen it for months. When I am dirtying the mixer to make it, I may as well make a decent amount. Halve the recipe if preferred, but you’d be surprised that if you make it, people will want it and eat it. It’s not like making extra lima beans where requests for extra are nonexistent. A smear of extra frosting before nuking leftover rolls is extra wonderful.

The rolls are best eaten fresh, but will keep in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 5 days. Reheat leftover rolls for a few seconds in the microwave before serving. If you have issues with cream cheese frosting at room temperature, then refrigerate the leftover rolls; I don’t.

Overnight Buttermilk Soft and Fluffy Cinnamon Rolls averiecooks.com

Soft, fluffy, tender dough that’s buttery and scrumptious. They’re as light and feathery as cinnamon rolls can get. They’re lighter and not as dense, heavy, and ‘bready’ as Cinnabons. They still are heavy and filling, but less like a ton of bricks in your stomach. Maybe just a half ton.

While baking, the filling mixture of brown sugar and butter melts and caramelizes, producing a thick, sweet, caramely sauce, pleasantly spiced with cinnamon. That saucy filling, along with melted frosting, is what a cinnamon roll is all about.

Just like Carrot Cake needs cream cheese frosting, so do cinnamon rolls. The frosting is tangy from the cream cheese, rich from the butter, and densely satisfying. There is nothing like homemade cream cheese frosting. So smooth, creamy, indulgent, and blissful.

Overnight Buttermilk Soft and Fluffy Cinnamon Rolls averiecooks.com

They were every bit as wonderful as I had hoped. Future recipes have their work cutout for them.

To date, the best cinnamon roll I’ve ever had, and the family concurs.

Overnight Buttermilk Soft and Fluffy Cinnamon Rolls averiecooks.com

Overnight Buttermilk Soft and Fluffy Cinnamon Rolls - Move over Cinnabon, this recipe is my favorite! Easy recipe at averiecooks.com

Print Print Recipe

Overnight Buttermilk Soft and Fluffy Cinnamon Rolls with Cream Cheese Frosting

To date, the best cinnamon rolls I've ever had. They're soft and fluffy and taste better than the kind you get at the mall. The recipe is very do-able even if you've never made cinnamon rolls. The overnight make-ahead option means you can wake up, pop cinnamon rolls into the oven, and enjoy fresh, warm, gooey rolls with your morning coffee. The dough is buttery soft, light, and fluffy. The cinnamon and brown sugar filling caramelizes and thickens while the rolls bake, creating a caramely, sweet sauce. The cream cheese frosting is a must-have and takes an already great roll into a league of it's own.

Yield: 1 dozen generously-sized rolls

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 22 minutes

Total Time: 5 hours


up to 4 1/4 cups all-purpose flour, divided
1/3 cup granulated sugar
2 1/4 teaspoons instant dry yeast (one 1/4-ounce packet, I use Red Star Platinum)
pinch salt, optional and to taste
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted (3/4 of one stick)
3 large eggs, lightly whisked
3/4 cup buttermilk

1/2 cup unsalted butter (1 stick), very soft - let it sit out while dough rises
1 to 1 1/4 cups light brown sugar, packed
about 3 teaspoons cinnamon (I used almost 5 teaspoons)

Cream Cheese Frosting - batch may be halved
1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
6 ounces cream cheese, softened
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 pound confectioners' sugar (4 cups)


  1. Dough - To the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine 4 cups flour, 1/3 cup sugar, yeast, salt to taste; set aside.
  2. Place 6 tablespoons butter in a small microwave-safe bowl, and heat to melt, about 45 seconds; set aside. Crack eggs in another bowl and whisk; set aside.
  3. Add buttermilk to a glass measuring cup and warm to temperature, about 45 seconds on high power in the microwave. (Based on the type of yeast used, milk temperatures will vary. Red Star Platinum yeast calls for warmer temperatures than most, 120 to 130F; other brands and yeast call for much lower temperatures, about 95 to 105F. Warm milk according to manufacturer's recommendations on the packaging. Taking the temperature with a digital thermometer is highly recommended, but if you're not, make sure the milk is warm, not hot. Err on the cooler rather than hotter side so you don't kill the yeast.) If the milk separates or gets a little funny looking after being warmed, whisk it to smooth it out.
  4. To the dry ingredients in the stand mixer, add the melted butter, eggs, buttermilk, and beat on medium-low speed for about 1 minute, or until combined.
  5. Switch to the dough hook (the dough will have stuck to the paddle and just pick off what you can and put it into the bowl) and knead for 10 to 12 minutes (15 to 18 minutes by hand). If after 5 minutes more flour is needed, add the remaining 1/4 cup flour, 1 tablespoon at a time, until the dough clears the side of the bowl but sticks to the bottom. This is a very sticky, tacky, moist, and borderline sloppy dough; don't be tempted to over-flour it. It's supposed to be that way. The more flour you add now, the less fluffy and more dense the rolls will be. Dough should clear the sides of the mixer while kneading but sticking to the bottom is fine.
  6. Remove the dough from the mixing bowl, spray a large mixing with cooking spray, and place the dough in the bowl. Cover with plasticwrap and place it in a warm, draft-free place to rise for about 2 to 2 1/2 hours, or doubled in size. I keep my bowl inside a powered-off oven. Every 45 minutes or so, I power on the oven for 1 minute to 400F, as if I am preheating it, then I power it off. Do not, repeat not, keep the oven on. These short bursts of 1 minute of heat create a stable 85F-ish warm environment, ideal for the yeast. If your rising spot is cold, it will take longer than 2 1/2 hours.
  7. Prepare a 11-by-17-inch or similar sized jellyroll pan or sheetcake pan with a raised edge, or use a 9-by-13-inch pan. I prefer a jellyroll pan because it's slightly larger so the rolls are less squished, have more room to rise, and bake more evenly. Line pan with aluminum foil, spray with cooking spray; set aside.
  8. Rolling Out the Dough - After dough has doubled in size, punch it down. Turn dough out onto a floured Silpat or floured countertop. Knead it lightly for about 2 minutes. With a rolling pin, roll it out to a 16-by-12-inch rectangle; just slightly larger than a standard Silpat.
  9. Filling - With a knife, butter the dough with 1/2 cup soft butter, leaving a 3/4-inch border around the edges. Sprinkle the brown sugar over it. Sprinkle the cinnamon over the brown sugar; I was very generous with the cinnamon and used almost 5 teaspoons and recommend at least 3; just eyeball it and shake it on.
  10. Slicing the Dough - Loosen the dough from the counter using a bench scraper (or metal spatula), and starting with a long edge, roll the dough into a tight log. Pinch the seam closed and turn log so seam side is down. Gently stretch the log to be 18 inches in length with an even diameter all the way around and pat the ends to even them up. Don't fret if your log isn't perfect; it's okay.
  11. Slice the cylinder into 12 evenly sized rolls (about 1 1/2 inches wide) using a bench scraper, serrated knife, or plain unwaxed dental floss (works great to not squish and compact the log). Arrange the rolls cut side down in the prepared baking pan. Cover with plastic wrap.
  12. Decide to Make Straight Through - Let rise in a warm, draft-free place until the rolls have nearly doubled in size, 1 to 1 1/2 hours.
  13. Or...Decide to Make as Overnight Rolls - Don't let rolls rise after they've been sliced and placed in covered pan. Place pan in refrigerator for up to 16 hours. Before baking, let the rolls sit at room temperature until they have nearly doubled in size, about 1 hour.
  14. Baking -For either version, bake at 350F for 22 to 25 minutes, or until lightly golden on top and cooked through but not overly browned. Immediately and generously, spread cream cheese frosting on the warm rolls. Serve immediately. Rolls are best eaten fresh, but will keep in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 5 days. Reheat leftover rolls for a few seconds in the microwave before serving. If you have issues with cream cheese frosting at room temperature, then refrigerate the leftover rolls; I don't. For longterm storage, I recommend making the rolls as directed and then freezing unfrosted rolls; allow to thaw at room temp prior to serving and frost as directed. I prefer freezing finished rolls rather than freezing uncooked dough.
  15. Cream Cheese Frosting - I recommend making this at night if you're doing the overnight version, refrigerating it, and taking out along with the rolls as they rise so when you need it, it's well softened.
  16. Frosting may be halved (makes about 3 cups as written), but unused frosting can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks and I have frozen frosting for up to 3 months; I'd rather have too much than not enough. All measurements and ingredients are to taste; consider adding buttermilk, almond extract, orange zest, heavy cream, or your other favorite specialty tweaks as desired. I keep it very simple.
  17. To the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine 1/2 cup butter, cream cheese, and beat on medium speed to combine, about 1 minute. Add the vanilla, 3 cups confectioners' sugar (I don't bother sifting), and beat until smooth and fluffy, about 3 minutes, stopping to scrape down the sides of the bowl as necessary. Add remaining 1 cup of sugar (or more, or none) as necessary, to taste, based on desired frosting consistency and flavor.

Dough base ingredients loosely adapted from America's Test Kitchen Cinnamon Rolls; the filling, cream cheese frosting, preparation methods and techniques are my own.

Related Recipes:

Cinnamon Swirl Bread – This cinnamon swirl bread is as close to cinnamon buns as bread gets. Filled with a sweet cinnamon-sugar and butter mixture that’s swirled throughout, this is a tender, buttery, sweet loaf that even new bread-makers can successfully tackle

Cinnamon Bun Pie  (Shortcut Recipe)- Topped with cinnamon-sugar streusel, use a shortcut, ready from start to finish in less than 30 minutes, and give Cinnabons a run for their money

Nutella Cinnamon Rolls with Vanilla Glaze (Shortcut Recipe) – A can of crescent rolls never tasted so good as when they’re stuffed with Nutella and rolled up. Ready from start to finish in 15 minutes, no joke

Browned Butter Buttermilk Banana Bread with Strawberry Butter – Use your leftover buttermilk for this easy quickbread, full of richness of flavor from the browned butter, softness from the bananas, and fluffiness from the buttermilk

Cinnamon Raisin English Muffin Bread with Cinnamon Sugar Butter – If you’ve never made bread before, this is a goofproof, foolproof, no-knead recipe that’s perfect for the first-time bread maker. You’ll never have a need for storebought English muffins again, especially because this bread is spiked with cinnamon-sugar and raisins

Honey Dinner Rolls – My favorite dinner roll recipe, lightly sweetened with honey, soft and chewy. A family favorite and a very goof-proof yeast recipe because this dough loves to rise

Healthy Oatmeal Raisin Rolls – Hearty oats, chewy raisins, cinnamon-and-sugar combine to create these texture-filled, chewy and hearty rolls

Have you ever made cinnamon rolls? Do you have a favorite recipe?

Please share recipe links to your favorites.

Thanks for the Deluxe Six-Piece Bakeware Set Giveaway and Pure Protein Prize-Pack Giveaway entries!


  1. I wanted to stop by and tell you how amazing these cinnamon rolls were. I live in Denver, CO and did not make any high altitude changes and they still turned out wonderful (I’m always worried about the altitude and how it is going to change a recipe). I followed your recipe exactly and thoroughly enjoyed learning about how to speed up the first rise. Thank you for this awesome cinnamon roll recipe!

    • Wow, what a great comment & so glad you loved the rolls! Thanks for LMK that you didn’t change a thing even for altitude baking (I am really not versed in that, at all) and glad to know they turned out great (people ask me this, so this is helpful). And glad you liked the tip for the first rise!

  2. Do you have a suggestion for good cinnamon? The last two bottles I bought were not good. I want to give this a good chance to be perfect.

    • I just buy whatever is on sale, McCormick, storebrand, etc. or Trader Joe’s if I’m there. I have spent a ton of money on cinnamon before and high end cinnamon is actually a different type of cinnamon (cassia vs. ceylon, google it for more info) and I really don’t prefer the taste in baking.

  3. These re fabu-tastic! I was craving cinnamon rolls, but was so disappointed by several recipes I found online. Not these! Like you, I used on the upper end of the cinnamon and I think the only issue I had was because we a so dry here, I think I need to not be lazy used sifted flour for measuring. I did the spoon into the cup technique, but with the initial amount of flour but when it mixed it turned into that elastic nice ball that is great to work with, but not quite as soft as you described. They were till delicious and the guys thought they were the best cinnamon rolls they ever had! Thanks for an amazing recipe! Another keeper!

    • So glad that the guys thought they were the best cinnamon rolls they ever had! I love cinnamon too and glad to hear you do and yes, San Diego is super dry too compared to say TX or Fla and so I have to be very careful because dough can get so dry in a hurry. Glad everything worked out beautifully for you!

  4. I’ve just found this recipe (and your site) so I haven’t tried it yet. I’ve made recipes for years and for some reason the bottoms of mine always get hard. What am I doing wrong? Thank you and I look forward to trying these this weekend.

  5. Rebecca Heidenreich Reply

    I have made these several times, and they are always great. But they aren’t ever quite as fluffy as your’s. I also have this problem with all cinnamon rolls I make (and I have been making them from scratch for years and years), the sugar and cinnamon puddles in the bottom of the pan, while these sit overnight in the fridge overnight especially, and then while they cook, they become a melted sheet of sugar on the bottom of the pan while hot…which isn’t awful, but as they cool, the buns get quite crunchy where the sugar crusted around the bottom. Anything I can do to prevent this?!

    • Sounds like you’re maybe not rolling up the dough log as tightly as you could, therefore it’s leaking out. I would take your time, roll tighter, and maybe that will work? Just guessing based on what you say happens with every recipe you try. You could also reduce the amount of filling mixture (less to leak out that way).

  6. Can these be frozen? And if so at what point? Thank you

  7. Hi! I just made these cinnamon roll and they came out great! This was my first time working with yeast and everything worked perfectly. Thank you for the clear instructions and great recipe!

    • Wow this was your first time EVER working with yeast and you made cinnamon rolls (not as easy as say just a plain old loaf of bread)! That’s impressive and so happy that they worked out great and glad my instructions/recipe worked out so well for you!

  8. I love that this is an overnight recipe! I don’t want to wake up at 5 either. I’m so wxcited to make these I’ve beem craving cinnamon rolls for a long time!

  9. Hi!
    I see that medium-low is the speed with the paddle, but what speed to you kneed to dough at for 10-12 minutes? I’m always unsure of that and afraid to do it too fast or too slow and mess it up. I’ve always wanted to perfect yeast dough and have failed every time.
    Thanks in advance for the info!

  10. I pinnee this a while ago but I hace been wanting to make these for the past month. I have little yeast experience I used rapid rise yeast cause the store I went to didn’t have the other kind. So I only had let it rise for 1.5 hours. They turned out perfect! Anyways they were sooooo amazingly delicious! Thank you so much for sharing. These will be our new Christmas tradition! Yum yum!

  11. Hi, I surely would like to try this recipe because the two times I have tried on another recipe the dough when cooked was too hard for my and my husband’s liking. I hope that with this I can achieve the softness that I want. I still have quite an amount of active yeast in my pantry and maybe you could help me with the measurement of it for this particular recipe of yours.

    Thanks heaps!

  12. Love the detail. I was looking for something to do while waiting for the church council to show up for their meeting this evening. Wonderful recipe, wonderful guidelines, thank you so much. I know they will turn out great. Best line? “If you want no-knead, make Challah or English Muffins.” LOL

  13. Pingback: Cake and My Fun Time with Cinnamon Rolls! | Ramblings from Rebekah

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  15. Ok, first, these are hands down THE. BEST. CINNAMON. ROLLS. EVER. Second, I have been curious how I could make the same recipe a pumplin cinnamon roll. Any thoughts or suggestions?

  16. Hello! First let me say that I love ALL of your recipes. I just can’t decide if I should make this overnight recipe or your one hour cinnamon bun recipe for Christmas morning. I am not skilled in baking bread but would try the best recipe no matter what. Time is not an issue. Can you please suggest your favorite of the two? I have read and read the two recipes and cannot decide. Thank you and Merry Christmas!! Kristen

  17. I am trying these with a gluten free yeast and flour and I can’t wait! Can they be in the fridge for 24 hours instead of just 16?

  18. Waiting for my dough to double right now, but thought I’d ask why you lay foil down? Sorry if it’s a silly question. I’ve made tons of cinnamon rolls before and have never laid foil down before baking. Can I omit this step? So excited to try them out! :)

  19. O-M-G. These were SO amazing, even reheated the next day. Thank you for the incredible, step-by-step and detailed instructions. I don’t make a lot of recipes with yeast, but used the Red Star Platinum and it worked out beautifully. I ended up adding the 3 extra tbsp of flour – it did not come out doughy at all. My parent’s oven also stays pretty warn in between the 45 minute blasts so my dough doubled in 1 hour and 40 minutes. I had no problems rolling it out, likely because of that extra 3T of flour. I did the overnight option and stuck them into a warm oven to rise again and that worked out well for me.

    I hardly ever comment on blog posts, but I just HAD to on this one. Thank you so much for the amazing recipe!

    • Thanks for commenting and glad you loved these rolls as much as I do and so glad they were a hit! They’re truly my fave cinn roll and so happy they turned out amazing for you too!

  20. Waiting for my dough to double right now, but thought I’d ask why you lay foil down? Sorry if it’s a silly question. I’ve made tons of cinnamon rolls before and have never laid foil down before baking. Can I omit this step? So excited to try them out! :)

    • I lay foil down to save with cleanup – it truly makes cleanup soooo fast and I can just lift all the rolls out of the pan with ease, all at once, but you can omit it if you prefer.

  21. I’ve made these now four times and every time I’ve been disappointed. Disappointed when others discover that I’ve made them and then eat them… because then I have fewer to eat. Because they’re delicious. I do not like difficult recipes, and I love how genuinely easy these are. I brought these to work one day and had a coworker tell me that they reminded her of when she was little and her dad would take her to the mall and they would get Cinnabon. So not only did she call these Cinnabon quality, but they also had serious nostalgia bonus points. Thanks to this recipe my coworkers and husband continue to tolerate me.

  22. Was really looking forward to this recipe, I have been making my own cinnamon rolls for over 35 years, so I would say I have some experience, and I will admit, these did not turn out like I had hoped. I really felt like adding a dry yeast into the mix was the reason the rising just didn’t turn out. I am sorry because I do love buttermilk in any recipe. I may try it again but using a yeast in a warm water mix, and adding more flour.

    • You cannot add any old dry yeast without proofing it…you have to make sure it’s INSTANT dry yeast. The one I swear by and never lets me down is Platinum by Red Star Yeast. You possibly grabbed active dry yeast which does need to be proofed and cannot be added dry. If you’ve been making your own rolls for 35 years, you probably have an amazing recipe already but I am thinking there was just one little thing that didn’t come together for you on mine and that’s the reason they didn’t rise. Also make sure your yeast is fresh – things you probably know, but just going down my mental checklist. Thanks for trying the recipe.

  23. I did you Red Star Platinum like you suggested, but possibly my buttermilk was too warm, I did it for 45 second and it seemed to be correct but I did not take it’s temperature. I see others have had success so I am sure it was something I did. Could you send me a pan so I can taste them? :) They look delicious..

    • Too hot can definitely kill yeast and cause non-rising issues. If you didn’t take the temp, then no one really knows where things went wrong but honestly, I have had novice (never made ANY yeasted dough before, never made cinn rolls, etc.) bakers make these with success so after 35 years, I know it’s something very small in your case and that you will crack the code!

  24. Thank you so much for sharing this awesome recipe. This was the first time ever baking with yeast. It was super exciting to watch the cut cinnamon rolls double in size. The rolls not only looked beautiful but tasted delightful! My husband claims they are superior to Cinnabon! Thank you for making me look like a true baker!!

    • Thanks for trying the recipe and I’m glad it came out great for you! My favorite kind of comments are when a brand new (never made a yeast recipe in their life) baker makes a yeast recipe of mine and nails it AND their entire family goes nuts :) That’s so wonderful and if you can make cinn rolls, you can make ANY kind of bread now you want!

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  26. I just made these and popped them into my fridge for the night. Question — should I let them come up to room temperature on my countertop, or in my oven, or in my oven after it’s been warmed up at 400 for a minute?

    • By this time you probably made them but I allow them to rise on my counter or in my oven after the 400F/1 minute trick. Kind of depends on the weather and season, and whether my kitchen is really chilly or not. If it’s chilly, I keep them in the oven. In the summer, just on the counter.

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  28. So, I am working on my 2nd batch of this dough because I thought I had messed up the first batch. Neither of my batches were “wet” as you describe. I was wondering if anyone else had this “problem”? My dough didn’t ever stick to the sides of my bowl or the bottom. It was very nice and pliable, but never wet or sticky to the touch. Any insights? Thanks.

    • Neither of my batches were “wet” as you describe <— you probably added more flour than I did. Easy fix: add less flour. It’s not ‘bad’ that it’s not a wetter dough; but the wetter you can deal with the dough (to a point!) the softer and lighter the rolls will be b/c they’re not weighed down with heavy flour. Newer bread-makers tend to overflour and people tend to over-measure their flour in general so this is common, but easily fixed :)

  29. Averie, these were amazing!! Always great to start with an America’s Test Kitchen base. I let the dough rise longer than 2 hours the first time, so it was really quick to rise again once they were rolled up. Also, I can’t imagine someone halving the frosting recipe. I thought it was just enough (though I have a bit of a sweet tooth…). Will definitely be making these again!

    • Thanks for trying the recipe and I’m glad it came out great for you! And I like to do a long first rise with any bread recipe if I have the time and planned well for it…glad you had great luck with that, and then yes the 2nd rise is much quicker. And glad you’re a full-batch frosting person just like me :) Can’t go wrong with ATK recipes, plus some tweaks to make them more user-friendly!

  30. Pingback: 21 Ways To Make The Coziest Cinnamon Rolls | Pekanbaru.mx

  31. Averie-
    Okay so the first time around I messed up on the oven 1 min trick.. Yes I had a Rock of bread by the time I realized :(:( I cried for about twenty min. but I just made them again today with much more patience And attention and they are amazing!!! Thank you for sharing! First timE (well I guess second time ;) ) making cinnamon rolls from scratch! 

    • Thanks for trying the recipe and glad the 2nd time was a charm! Cinn rolls aren’t the easiest first-ever yeasted bread to make so I commend you for making these and so glad they came out amazing for you!

  32. Averie, thank you so much!! I made these for Easter brunch yesterday and they were incredible. Way better recipe than other cinnamon rolls I’ve made. And thank you for the DETAILED instructions!

  33. These were truly the best cinnamon rolls I’ve ever had, and they were surprisingly easy to make!  Can’t wait to make them again!

    • Thanks for trying the recipe and I’m glad they were truly the best cinnamon rolls you’ve ever had, and that they were so easy for you to make! Wonderful to hear!

  34. I just pulled the rolls out of the oven.  The filling appears to be a lake in the bottom of the pan.  I made the overnight version.  What happened??

    • I think that you probably didn’t roll them tightly enough and upon baking, the buttery mixture slid toward the bottom as it warmed up. Next time really concentrate on making a tight log when you’re rolling. Also, some leakage is normal but sounds like you have more than that. But I’m sure they still taste great. Just scoop up the saucy goodness and scoop it over the top of the rolls with a spoon and enjoy!

  35. Just wanted to say these are the best cinnamon rolls, and whenever I need homemade cinnamon rolls, this is my go to recipe. I’m only seventeen, and I only just started working with yeast in my baking, and these were easy and amazingly delicious. The only thing I changed when I made them a second time was rolling out the dough into a 26 by 13 inch rectangle like the glazed orange rolls, so I could make 20 rolls instead of 12 and have a little better portion control. The glaze is also amazing and addictive.

    • Thanks for trying the recipe and I’m glad it’s your favorite recipe! Good call on making the rolls a little smaller (like my recipe for the orange ones) and I am so impressed that you’re 17 and making scratch cinnamon rolls! I was making poptarts at your age…LOL :)

  36. Hi Avery!

    I congratulate you for your site and your recipes. I am a fan of cinnamon rolls, and now one of your fan. After revising a lot or recipes, I decided to make your recipe for the detailed instruction of the recipe and the lot of comments you have. Definitively this recipe ROCKS!!!! What a amazing results!. Prepared two batches this weekend. In the first one, I warm the oven at 170°F, shut off and wait 10 minutes before introduce the bowl with the dough. The dough rised more than doubled its volume in less than 1 hour. Even though I dislike the texture of the dough because it was little dry externally. The results were great, but I considered the taste was low in cinnamon. So I repeat the recipe with these changes: 

    Dough: 492 grams of all purpose flour (4 cups + 1 tbsp), more sugar (up to 90 g vs 65 g original) to balance the salt in butter and buttermilk. Rise on the countertop – no oven. 1st rise: 1 hour 2nd rise: 1 hour + 15 minutes 

    Filling: less butter (used brush instead of knife), white sugar (I didn’t have brown sugar), 2 tablespoons of cinnamon. Raisins and pine nuts added over cinnamon

    Topping: Butter brushed on top of every roll and some granulated sugar added over butter

    The results were AWESOME!!!! What delicious!!!! THE PERFECT CINNAMON ROLL.  I am very excited with the results. Thanks for sharing your recipe.

  37. Averie,

    I am so thrilled I gave your recipe a try!
    Since I live in Switzerland I wasn’t sure about the whole ingredient list and was a bit curious to see how the dough will turn out. 
    Eventually I’ve noticed that my dough was way too sticky and had to add extra flour to it.
    Then I’ve left it the whole night for the 1st rise. Then rolled the dough and 2nd rise for about 45 minutes.
    Then in the oven.
    Well I have to say that since I had a bunch of cinnabons when I was in NJ,…I am so THRILLED about these cinnamon rolls. The dough is PERFECT and I love its fluffiness and just perfect moist.
    I have now MY perfect recipe and for that I am so thankful. 


  38. Btw today is my b.day and I made the cinnamon rolls this morning.
    Is there a best way to celebrate my breakfast B-DAY ?! 

    • Happy birthday and thanks for trying the recipe and glad the rolls worked out great for you and that you’re able to enjoy them on your special day!!! I hope the rolls were just the beginning :)

  39. I just made these and they were so amazing! Took me longer than the prep time said but I think each time I’ll get the hang of it more. I didn’t have buttermilk on hand so I used 2% and they were still lovely. I think the buttermilk will def make them fluffier but these were still the best i ever had. I also only used three cups of powdered sugar and that was plenty.. I’ll prob use 2.5 next time. I loved that you could taste the tanginess of the cream cheese still. Thanks for sharing!

    • Thanks for trying the recipe and I’m glad it came out great for you even without using buttermilk! That will DEFINITELY make them even softer and fluffier next time, so you’re in for a treat. And yes, the more you make rolls, the faster you get!

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  42. Hi Averie, thank you so much for sharing your awesome recipe. I just made it today and it turned out great. The texture that I am looking for. Soft and fluffy. So far this is the best compared with the rest that I have tried. 
    The only issue for me was the dough is still sticky after the 10 to 12 mins hook knead plus 5 mins hand knead. The dough kept on sticking to my hand but as advice by you on above, I do it patiently although it is still sticky. Is this normal or the dough texture should be shiny and smooth ? Mine is not smooth and it is sticky. I even have to roll it slowly by scraping the dough. Did I do something wrong here ?
    Once again thank you. 

    • The stickier and wetter the dough is, the softer and fluffier the rolls tend to turn out. Adding flour is going to vary greatly based on climate, humidity, brand of flour, etc. but since you loved the texture, I say just deal with the stickiness. If you add more flour, the dough will be easier to work with but the finished rolls will be denser and more heavy from the extra flour. Glad you love the recipe!

  43. Hi Averie, 
    Thank you so much for replying and guess I have to deal with the stickiness. This gonna be my keeper. Once again thank you so much for the awesome recipe. God blessed you

  44. Pingback: The Greatest Cinnamon Rolls Ev-ah! | The Owl Queen

  45. Hi Averie – Thanks for the wonderful recipe! It’s my go-to for cinnamon rolls and they’re always a hit! I have to make 5-6 batches, and I was wondering if you’ve ever tried freezing the rolls once you’ve formed them, before baking? Just trying to figure out how I might make it easier to make so many at one time. :) Thanks for the help!

    • So glad you’re a fan of this recipe! I have never frozen unbaked dough. I have only frozen the rolls after they’ve been baked. You could try it with one batch to see how it goes. I do worry a little that freezing the dough will deactivate the yeast and they won’t puff up nicely in the oven but then again, there is storebought freezer dough for pizza (but that has lots of commercial additives and ‘tricks’…) so I would say try one batch if you’re curious. LMK how it goes!

    • Hey! Wanted to stop back and let you know I tried freezing them, and it worked beautifully! I couldn’t tell the difference between the ones that were frozen and the ones that were refrigerated. I formed the dough into rolls, placed them on the baking sheets, then covered them with plastic wrap, then a layer of tin foil. I froze them, then took them out the night before I wanted to bake them and let them rise on the counter overnight. It was awesome – they rose perfectly! Anyway, I just wanted to share that with you in case you ever find that you need to do it, too! :)

    • Thanks for the followup comments and details about what you did and that you couldn’t tell the difference between the ones that were frozen and the ones that were refrigerated! That’s awesome and I’m sure this info will help others that may see it, too!

  46. hey, 
    can they be made in mini cupcake pans? 
    will i have to grease them?
    thank you :)

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