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BBA Challenge #8: Cinnamon Rolls

I don’t really like cinnamon rolls. I told that to several people this week, and I don’t think any of them believed me. But I am not a huge fan of cinnamon. It’s okay in baked goods as a minor ingredient, but I am generally not a fan of things that are steeped in cinnamon flavor. I don’t like Red Hots. And as far as I am concerned, the best thing about cinnamon rolls is the icing.

Now that I have gotten that heresy out of the way, I will turn to the actual recipe, which struck me as pretty good, for a cinnamon roll.

It starts with creaming together sugar and butter (I used butter instead of shortening). You don’t know how excited I was to see that instruction. I am pretty sure that the best recipes on the planet usually start with creaming together sugar and butter. There is also some salt in there, and my powdered milk, since I didn’t have whole or buttermilk.

Butter and Sugar

Then we add egg and lemon extract. I am using lemon oil from KAF instead of extract. It worked fine in the rolls, but I think it was a little overpowering in the icing. I might use less next time.

Butter and Sugar

Then added flour, yeast, and water to make a nice dough. I did this all with my Kitchen Aid this time.


The dough was very smooth, and I think if I had the chance to do it over again, I might have added a little more flour. I don’t know if it was that or the butter instead of shortening, but the dough seemed too slack. I also had to let it rise for longer than two hours to double, even though it was in the 80s that day. My dough was not very ambitious.

I also didn’t even really need to roll it out. I could press it out with my hands into a vaguely rectangular shape.

Rolled Out

I used the last of my Penzey’s cinnamon to make the cinnamon sugar filling. I thought it was almost TOO cinnamon-y, but I can’t really trust my judgment, since I am not a big cinnamon fan.

Cinnamon Sugar

Does this look like too much?


I had a hard time rolling it up, too.

Rolled Up

Since I was using my pastry mat, I used my plastic pizza wheel to cut the roll into 16 pieces. I definitely think that part would have gone much easier with a knife. As it was, I had to try and squish them together to keep them from completely unrolling. Learn from my mistakes!


I let them proof again until they were puffy.


Then baked them for about 25 minutes. In the meantime, I made the icing.


Luckily after all of my issues, they baked up fine. I don’t think they were as tall as I would have liked, but I don’t know if that’s because I cut them on the small side or because of my problems with the dough.


Can I properly ice a cinnamon roll? I think the answer to that question is no.

With Icing

Those ones in the back are for me.

So, I think was a decent recipe, although I probably should have used a little more flour in the dough and a little less lemon oil in the icing. I’ll give this recipe 4 out of 5, although I think people who like cinnamon rolls might rate it higher than that.

7 thoughts on “BBA Challenge #8: Cinnamon Rolls

  1. I love penzey’s spices… especially their cinnamon. I wished we were neighbors so I could help you get these off your hands…I love cinnamon rolls. 🙂

    Great job!

    (I love the ones you frosted for yourself)

  2. Despite your icing problems, they look great. A tip for next time – put the icing in a small zip loc bag and cut off a small bit off one bottom corner and squeeze it out like an icing bag. Much neater and easier!! Mine also took almost 4 hours to double for the first rising. Not quite sure why. I used butter also.

  3. No! You don’t like cinnamon? Blasphemy! I agree with you about the lemon flavor in the icing.

    Why didn’t you make the sticky buns variation instead of the cinnamon buns?

  4. tip for cutting: slide unflavored dental floss under roll to desired distance, cross over on top and pull 🙂

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