A Christmas Morning Cinnamon Roll Recipe
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
This easy cinnamon roll recipe makes great cinnamon rolls but why not turn them into a cinnamon roll Christmas tree for a special breakfast treat?
Recipe type: Breakfast
Cuisine: American
Serves: 6-8
  • For Cinnamon Rolls
  • 1 Cup Whole Milk (or 2%)
  • 3 Tablespoons Unsalted Butter
  • 3½ Cups Unbleached All Purpose Flour (divided)
  • ½ Cup Sugar
  • 1 Large Egg
  • 2¼ Teaspoons Rapid-Rise Yeast (from 2 envelopes yeast)
  • 1 Teaspoon salt
  • Vegetable Oil Spray (or butter)
  • For Cinnamon Roll Filling
  • ¾ Cup Brown Sugar (packed)
  • 2 Tablespoons Ground Cinnamon
  • ¼ Cup (1/2 stick) Unsalted Butter (softened, room temperature)
  • For Cinnamon Roll Icing
  • ½ Cup Confectioner's Sugar
  • Milk
  1. For Cinnamon Rolls
  2. Add the milk and butter in a glass measuring cup and pop into the microwave, on high, until butter melts and mixture is just warmed to 120°F to 130°F. (Do this in 30-45 second increments and stir the butter in between each session).
  3. Pour milk mixture into the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment. Add 1 cup of the flour, sugar, egg, yeast, and salt to the bowl.
  4. Beat on low speed for 3 minutes and stop from time to time to scrape down sides of bowl.
  5. Add the remaining 2½ cups of flour and continue to beat on low (you can increase the speed of your mixer to keep up with the consistency) until flour is absorbed and dough is sticky, scraping down sides of bowl.
  6. If dough is still really sticky, add a bit more flour (a tablespoon at a time) until dough begins to form ball and pulls away from sides of bowl. It will still be slightly sticky to the touch.
  7. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured work surface and knead until smooth and elastic, adding more flour if sticky, about 8 minutes.
  8. Form the dough into a ball.
  9. Lightly coat a large bowl with the vegetable spray, or butter.
  10. Drop the dough into the bowl and turn it over to coat the whole thing.
  11. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap, then a kitchen towel. Let dough rise in warm draft-free area until doubled in size, about 2 hours.
  12. For Cinnamon Roll Filling
  13. Mix brown sugar and cinnamon together in a bowl.
  14. Punch down the dough.
  15. Slide the dough onto a lightly floured work surface. Roll out to a 24 x 12 inch rectangle.
  16. Cut the dough in half and spread butter over both halves of dough.
  17. Sprinkle cinnamon sugar evenly over butter on one half of dough only.
  18. Carefully cover the cinnamon sugar with the other half of the dough (butter side toward the cinnamon sugar) and line up the edges as much as possible.
  19. Line a baking pan with parchment paper and carefully slide the dough onto the pan.
  20. Make the desired outline of the tree you want then cut the shape out of the dough. (Carefully remove the scraps, because you can cut and roll them into rolls.)
  21. Decide how wide you want the trunk of your tree to be and carefully make horizontal slices up one side of the tree.
  22. Make equally sized slices on the other side of the tree. Make sure to leave some amount in the center for the trunk.
  23. Gently pat the two halves together before carefully twisting each one of the branches. (The dough may be a bit springy, but you'll get them all to work out evenly.)
  24. Cover with a towel and let sit in a draft-free warm place for 40-45 minutes.
  25. Pre-heat oven to 375 degrees Farenheit.
  26. Bake for 15-20 minutes.
  27. Remove from heat and let cool before icing.
  28. For Cinnamon Roll Icing
  29. Start by adding ½ cup confectioner's sugar to a bowl.
  30. Add 1 tablespoon of milk and stir to combine.
  31. Continue adding a little bit of milk at a time until you reach the consistency you like.
  32. Drizzle or pour over top of cinnamon rolls.
Take the scraps that were cut away from the tree and cut them into strips then roll them into traditionally shaped cinnamon rolls. Lightly grease an 8 x 8 inch pan and tightly arrange the rolls in the pan. You may not fill the entire pan. Start at a corner and work out from there so they are tightly arranged. Let rest and bake as directed for the tree.
Recipe by My Man's Belly at http://mymansbelly.com/2013/12/20/christmas-morning-cinnamon-roll-recipe/