What’s the perfect lazy day breakfast? Of course it’s cinnamon rolls! Buttery and sweet and dripping with icing, who could resist?
Cinnamon rolls are made with a yeasted dough. For those that don’t know, yeast is a single celled fungi. It feeds off of sugars. In my cinnamon rolls recipe there is sugar added but yeast can also feed off of sugar from starch. They break down the starch granules in wheat flour and use it as energy. As yeast “eats” it produces carbon dioxide as a bi-product. Flour in bread dough keeps the carbon dioxide from escaping and makes the bread rise.
Another key player in yeasted dough is gluten. Recently gluten has gotten a bad name, but most people don’t even know what it is. Gluten is the general name given to proteins found in wheat flour. Gluten in yeasted doughs, makes the dough rise (because the carbon dioxide from the yeast gets trapped) and allows the bread to keep its shape while baking. Gluten is made up of 2 main proteins: glutenin and gliadin. Glutenin contributes to the elasticity and gliadin for the extensibility. Gluten forms when liquid is mixed with wheat flour; in this recipe I use milk as the liquid.
And now, recipe time!
- 1 packet instant rise yeast (about 2 1/4 teaspoons)
- 3/4 cup warm whole milk
- 1/3 cup sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1/4 cup unsalted butter
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
- 3 1/2 cups flour
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 2/3 cup brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons cinnamon
- 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1/4 cup melted unsalted butter
- 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
- 4 tablespoons butter
- 2 cups powdered sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 4 tablespoons milk (I used almond milk)
- Warm whole milk in microwave until 100 degrees (if it gets hotter it will kill the yeast)
- Add warm milk to bowl of a stand mixer and whisk in the yeast. Let sit until dissolved, about 5 minutes.
- Melt the butter in the microwave and let cool slightly.
- Add sugar, eggs, melted butter and vanilla to milk mixture. Mix together until combined.
- Add one cup of flour at a time, mixing in until combined. Add in the salt.
- Using a dough hook, mix dough on medium speed for 7 minutes.
- Lightly oil a bowl and place the ball of dough in it. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise until doubled in size (about an hour). While dough rises make the filling: Combine sugar, spices an salt in small bowl and mix together, melt butter in separate bowl.
- Once fully proofed, place dough onto a floured surface. Roll into a 10×15 rectangle.
- Brush butter onto dough, sprinkle with filling and pat the filling down.
- Roll the dough from the opposite toward you.
- Measure 1 1/2 inches down the length of the dough and cut into rolls with a sharp knife.
- Fold the end of the rolls under each piece and place in a greased 9 inch in pie plate. Let rolls rise for 30 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place risen rolls into oven and bake for 20-30 minutes, until golden brown.
- While baking mix all the icing ingredients together.
- Once cinnamon rolls are done baking, let them cool for 10 minutes before pouring icing over top or else it will dissolve into the rolls.