Favorite Cinnamon Rolls

It’s autumn and a good season for baking. The warmth from the oven along with the aroma of fresh cinnamon rolls makes a cool day welcome and cozy. I usually make cinnamon rolls some afternoon, knowing they’ll be great for breakfast the next day, but of course, we’ll have some hot from the oven. They are also great to share with friends, who exclaim ‘oooh Cinnamon Rolls! Did you make these?’

My family has a long line of bakers, not by trade, but with a rich background of many recipes passed from generation to generation. I can picture in my mind, Grandma visiting our house, and spending a day in the kitchen, wearing herapron, warm breads and rolls lining the counter top. I feel that I learned from a ‘master baker’ because she would teach
me how to stir in the ingredients and let me help knead the bread, learning how that dough should look and feel, how itshould rise, and the fun part, punching down the dough for it’s second rise. My reward would be a small loaf of bread,just for me, straight from the oven, with butter melting on the tiny slices. I imagine my Grandmother as a young child at the turn of the 20th century learning to bake from her own mother and possibly enjoying her own little loaf of bread.

In that same tradition, my own children also bake. As kids, they always enjoyed helping make this cinnamon roll recipe. Maybe it was because the helper had their own little cinnamon roll baked in a small pan, straight from the oven. As adults, they still bake and these rolls are oftentimes in our plans when we are together . Many glasses of milk, cups of coffee, and great conversations have been shared at the table while enjoying these rolls.

These rolls can be made with many variations, plain, iced, or the transformation to pecan rolls, which is my favorite.
Plan on this taking an afternoon because of the rising, and know also it is a large batch so you can share with friends.


Cinnamon Rolls
makes about 32 rolls

1/2 c sugar
2 t. salt
2 c milk (warmed)
2 pkg yeast dissolved in 1/2 c lukewarm water
2 eggs (beaten)
6-6 1/2 c flour
1/2 c butter melted and cooled
stir sugar and salt into milk, mixing to dissolve. Add yeast/water mixture to milk. add eggs. gradually add 3 c flour mixing well by hand. Add melted butter, mixing well. add additional flour to make a soft dough. Place dough on board and cover and let rest for 10 minutes
knead about 10 minutes, adding only enough flour to keep dough from sticking.Place in a large bowl cover and let rise until double (about 2 hours) punch down and let rise about 45 minutes
stir together

Cinnamon Roll Filling:
1 c softened butter
2 c sugar
6 t cinnamon
Divide dough in half and roll out in a rectangle that is about 15 × 12 inches and 1/2 inch thick
Spread with half of the cinnamon mixture. roll up, seal, and cut into slices about 1 1/2 to 2 inches thick.
Repeat with other half of dough and filling
grease a baking pan (about 12x 14 with sides on the pan)

For Pecan Rolls:
in the bottom of the pan put a layer of pecans, then sprinkle a light layer of brown sugar over that. Sometimes I sprinkle a bit of cinnamon on that too.
Then place the cut rolls on that layered goodness, with the spirals facing up and down, spacing the rolls slightly apart with room for them to touch when they rise.
Cover and let the rolls rise till they’re noticeably puffy, they should spread out and start to crowd one another.
Bake 350 for 20 minutes. If they are brown too fast on top, put a loose piece of aluminum foil over them.
Bake the rolls till they’re brown around the edges and beginning to turn golden brown across the center.
when done, invert pan on top of foil and let sit for a minute. remove pan.

For Rolls With No Pecans: follow above directions but  omit the pecans and sprinkle a layer of brown sugar into the bottom of the greased pan.
When the rolls are done drizzle a glaze over them while they are still warm (but not hot from the oven)

Cinnamon Roll Glaze
1 Cup powdered sugar
3 Tablespoon milk
1/2 Teaspoons vanilla