Recipe Corner: On a roll

Lily Kincaid, Associate A&C Editor

Nothing quite compares to a nice cup of coffee on a Sunday morning. There’s only one thing that could make it even better: fluffy, homemade cinnamon rolls. 

The best thing about breakfast pastries is that they can double as desserts, so this dish could easily pass as a sweet contribution to any potluck. This recipe shows how to make the dough from scratch, but these buns turn out just as tasty with canned dough. Feel free to get creative with the icing and experiment with different flavors like strawberry or caramel.



Prep time: 1 hour 40 minutes

Cook time: 20 minutes

Total time: 2 hours 

Yield: 12 cinnamon rolls



½ cup milk, warmed

2 ¼ teaspoon quick rise yeast 

¼ cup granulated sugar

1 egg

3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled

3 cups all-purpose flour (plus more for kneading)

½ teaspoon kosher salt

Non-stick cooking spray


⅔ cup dark brown sugar

1 ½ tablespoon ground cinnamon 

¼ cup unsalted butter, softened


4 ounces cream cheese

3 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened

¾ cup powdered sugar

½ teaspoon vanilla extract

Note: If using premade dough, skip to step five.

Step one

Microwave the milk until it’s warm but not hot. Add the yeast, egg, sugar and melted butter to the milk and stir until combined. Then, mix in the flour and kosher salt. 

Step two

Sprinkle flour over a clean work surface, and knead the dough for around five minutes. The dough should be a little sticky, but if it sticks to your fingers, add a tablespoon of flour at a time until it reaches the right consistency. 

Step three

Coat a bowl with non-stick cooking spray and place the ball of dough inside. Cover the bowl with a warm towel and let rise for around 30 minutes or until the dough has doubled.

Step four

On a well-floured surface, roll out the dough into a rectangle. Cover the dough with the softened butter. Combine brown sugar and cinnamon and sprinkle the mixture over the dough. 

Step five

Roll up the dough tightly from the shorter side of the rectangle. Once the dough is rolled into one large log, cut evenly into smaller rolls. Place the rolls into a lightly greased baking dish. 

Step six

Cover the dish tightly with plastic wrap or aluminum foil and a warm towel. Let the rolls rise for approximately an hour. 

Step seven

Preheat the oven to 350 F. Uncover the rolls and bake them for 20 minutes or until the tops are lightly browned. Do not overcook, or the cinnamon rolls will be hard in the middle. 

Step eight

Beat the cream cheese, butter, powdered sugar and vanilla extract until the mixture turns into velvety icing. Spread over the rolls and serve warm. Freeze and reheat these delicious breakfast go-to’s and enjoy for up to a week after preparing them.