Heaven in a Cinnamon Roll

Don’t argue with the title. I am dead serious here.

Pioneer Woman talks about these cinnamon rolls as if they are the best thing in the world, recipe so I thought I would make them for Christmas morning breakfast. I made the dough on the 24th and put it in the fridge. Even with making the dough a day in advance, it took a while to make these on Christmas morning. But it was SO worth it. We usually just make cinnamon rolls out of a can for Thanksgiving and Christmas morning but I can tell you that my family will never be able to go back to those inferior things!

Don’t worry about fat content, calories, gaining weight, health, or any of those nonsense things. Just make these. Tomorrow. You will be forever grateful…and eat cinnamon roll for every meal like I have been.

By the time we got up, opened presents, and I made these, it was 11am. We would usually have eaten around 2 but nobody was hungry! We decided to eat around 3 or 3:30 (which got pushed to 4:30 when the oven stopped working for a while). Needless to say, these rolls are very filling. My rolls ended up much bigger than Pioneer Woman rolls (I couldn’t roll the dough tight enough apparently) but they turned out absolutely delicious. These rolls are buttery, sweet, with a delicious maple frosting and light fluffy bread.

The New Year has not started yet! Eat cinnamon rolls and work out later :) Another recipe I want to try is Pioneer Woman baked french toast…I’m a reaaaal health nut ;)

Pioneer Woman Cinnamon Rolls with Maple Frosting

Update: Check out this post for tips on making these, including how to make them ahead of time.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups 2% Milk
  • 1/2 cup Vegetable Oil
  • 1/2 cup Sugar
  • 1 package Active Dry Yeast, 0.25 Ounce Packet
  • 4 cups (Plus 1/2 cup extra, separated) All-purpose Flour
  • 1 teaspoon (heaping) Baking Powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon (scant) Baking Soda
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons (heaping) Salt
  • 3 sticks melted butter (don’t be scared!)
  • 1 cup Sugar
  • Generous Sprinkling Of Cinnamon

MAPLE FROSTING:

  • 1/2 bag Powdered Sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons Maple Flavoring
  • 1/4 cup Milk
  • 1/8 cup Melted Butter
  • 1/4 cup Brewed Coffee (I omitted this and added a little extra milk instead)
  • Pinch of Salt

Directions:

  1. For the dough, heat the milk, vegetable oil, and sugar in a large pot over medium heat to just below a boil. Set aside and cool to warm (about 1 hour). When the mixture is warm but not hot, sprinkle the yeast on top and let it sit on the milk for 1 minute.
  2. Add 4 cups of the flour. Stir until just combined, then cover with a clean kitchen towel, and set aside in a relatively warm place for 1 hour. After 1 hour, remove the towel and add the baking powder, baking soda, salt, and the remaining 1/2 cup flour. Stir thoroughly to combine. Use the dough right away, or place in a mixing bowl and refrigerate for up to 3 days, punching down the dough if it rises to the top of the bowl. (Note: dough is easier to work with if it’s been chilled for at least an hour or so beforehand.)
  3. When you’re ready to make the cinnamon rolls, preheat the oven to 375°F.
  4. To assemble the rolls, remove the dough from the pan/bowl. On a floured baking surface, roll the dough into a large rectangle, about 30 x 10 inches. The dough should be rolled very thin.
  5. To make the filling, pour the melted butter over the surface of the dough. Use your fingers to spread the butter evenly. Generously sprinkle half of the ground cinnamon and 1 cup of the sugar over the butter. Don’t be afraid to drizzle on more butter or more sugar! Gooey is the goal.
  6. Beginning at the end farthest from you, roll the rectangle tightly towards you. Use both hands and work slowly, being careful to keep the roll tight (I had issues rolling the dough. Butter was oozing out of the sides and I couldn’t roll it very tight. Don’t worry about it, they turn out wonderful). When you reach the end, pinch the seam together and flip the roll so that the seam is face down. When you’re finished, you’ll wind up with one long buttery, cinnamony, sugary, gooey log.
  7. With a sharp knife, make 1/2-inch slices (oops I think I cut mine bigger than this). One “log “will produce anywhere from 14 to 25 rolls. I only got 14, Pioneer Woman gets 20-25. Pour a couple of teaspoons of melted butter into disposable foil cake pans and swirl to coat. Place the sliced rolls in the pans, being careful not to overcrowd. Pioneer woman says each pan will hold 7 to 9 rolls but I only put 4-5 in mine.
  8. Cover all the pans with a kitchen towel and set aside to rise on the counter for at least 20 minutes before baking. Remove the towel and bake for 15 to 18 minutes, until golden brown. Don’t allow the rolls to become overly brown.
  9. While the rolls are baking, make the maple icing: In a large bowl, whisk together the powdered sugar, milk, butter, coffee (if you choose to add it), and salt. Splash in the maple flavoring. Whisk until very smooth. Taste and add in more maple, sugar, butter, or other ingredients as needed until the icing reaches the desired consistency. The icing should be somewhat thick but still very pourable.
  10. Remove pans from the oven. Immediately drizzle icing over the top. Be sure to get it all around the edges and over the top. As they sit, the rolls will absorb some of the icing’s moisture and flavor.

I found Pioneer Woman’s step by step instructions helpful…especially since I’m scared of working with yeast. Check them out if you’re unsure of how to do anything :)

Makes 14 big cinnamon rolls or 20-25 smaller ones.

Enjoy…and imagine you’re in heaven :)

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