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Fast and Easy Cinnamon Rolls

Cinnamon rolls

These cinnamon rolls are fast, easy, and delicious, especially when they’re slathered with homemade cream cheese frosting and on the table in under an hour.

What are you to do on a Saturday morning when you have a taste for fresh cinnamon rolls (with cream cheese frosting), but you don’t want to wait three hours for a traditional roll to rise and bake? I found myself in this predicament and began scouring the Internet. The goal? Find an easy cinnamon roll recipe that takes under an hour to make with ingredients that I already have on hand.

To my surprise, I found several recipes that fit my requirements, however, the one that stood out required buttermilk which I didn’t have, and I definitely wasn’t going to make a trip to the store. Before I tossed out the recipe, I did a quick Google search for “buttermilk substitutes” and found a super simple fix (and it worked)! Any time you need buttermilk and you don’t have it, all you have to do is this:

  1. In a measuring cup, add 1 tablespoon of lemon juice or vinegar
  2. Add enough milk until you have 1 cup and stir with a spoon
  3. Let it stand for five minutes, then use what you need

What this recipe IS: Delicious, and definitely satisfies the craving for a cinnamon roll

What this recipe ISN’T: This is definitely not the same as your traditional yeast cinnamon roll. While it is quite delicious and super quick to make, don’t expect it to be the same, otherwise you’ll be disappointed. There’s a place for traditional cinnamon rolls, and there’s definitely a place for this quick one too.

These cinnamon rolls would not be the same without a delicious cream cheese frosting which compliments them perfectly. Enjoy!

Fast and Easy Cinnamon Rolls

Cinnamon rolls

Prep Time: 22mn
Cook Time: 25mn
Total Time: 47mn

You will need a total of around 8 tablespoons of unsalted melted butter, divided for different portions of this recipe. Make it easy on yourself and melt it all at once before you start.

CINNAMON ROLL DOUGH INGREDIENTS

  • 2 1/2 cups flour
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon table salt
  • 1 1/4 cups buttermilk
  • 2 tablespoons melted butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

CINNAMON SUGAR FILLING INGREDIENTS

  • 3/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 3 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt

CREAM CHEESE FROSTING INGREDIENTS

  • 3 ounces cream cheese (room temp)
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt

DIRECTIONS

  1. Pre-heat your oven to 425 degrees.
  2. Melt 8 tablespoons of butter which you’ll use throughout this entire recipe (1 minute in the microwave does the trick).
  3. Brush a 9 inch cake pan with 1 tablespoon of butter to coat bottom and sides.
  4. In a large bowl combine flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
  5. Combine buttermilk, melted butter, and vanilla in a small bowl.
  6. Add liquids to the dry ingredients and mix well. You may need to add a little more flour until you get a consistency that’s not too sticky. Knead the dough until it is smooth.
  7. In a bowl combine all of the ingredients for the cinnamon sugar filling, then add 1 tablespoon of the melted butter and mix it in until it is crumbly.
  8. Flour your work surface and roll the dough out into a 12 by 9 inch rectangle.
  9. Brush the dough with a tablespoon or two of butter.
  10. Sprinkle the cinnamon sugar mixture on top leaving a 1/2 inch border around the edge. Gently press the mixture into the dough.
  11. Begin rolling the dough up starting with the longer side. Roll tightly so that the yummy cinnamon sugar mixture stays inside the roll while it bakes.
  12. Once the dough has been rolled up tightly, cut into 8 equal pieces and place into your greased cake pan.
  13. Brush the tops of the cinnamon rolls with the remaining butter
  14. Bake for 25-28 minutes
  15. While rolls bake, mix together the cream cheese frosting ingredients until smooth.
  16. When the cinnamon rolls are done baking, let them cool for about 5 minutes. Remove from the pan, and slather with cream cheese frosting.

Other Recipes To Try

Comments (44)

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  1. These look great, I’ll have to try them!

  2. These turned out wonderful and I loved that I didn’t have to mess around with trying to get yeast to work for me!

  3. I was wondering of you’ve ever made these and then freezed them before baking them? And if so did you bake
    Them from frozen or Thawed? I’d like to make some for My grandma so she could take a few out at a time
    And bake them? Thanks in advance :) suzanne

    • Hi Suzanne,
      I haven’t tried freezing them before because well…. they don’t ever last that long! But, what a great idea for your grandma. Here’s what I would do if I were to freeze them: prepare them as directed, but don’t bake them. Wrap the rolls tightly with plastic wrap and foil and freeze. Let them thaw completely before baking and then bake as directed and frost. Hope this helps and hope it turns out! Without trying it myself, I can’t tell you with 100% certainty that it’ll work but I don’t see why it wouldn’t. :)

      • Thanks so much Ashley for your super quick response!! I am going to try it right now, and hopefully grandma will enjoy them next week sometime when no one is around to have to share them with :)

  4. These look wonderful! I’d love to have one of these cinnamon rolls for breakfast! Beautiful photography.

  5. DELICIOUS! I loved that they were a little crunchy. I used a different cream cheese recipe that I had left over. Definitely a good go-to recipe if you don’t have any yeast. I didn’t feel like waiting 5 hours to eat some Sunday cinnamon rolls, and these took less than an hour. Thank you!

  6. Thanks for these! I was looking for some simple cinnamon rolls I can make for tough school mornings.

  7. Can I just say…AMAZING!! I have been on the hunt for 2 months for a perfect cinnamon roll recipe. I even LOVE your tip about buttermilk. This is not a yeast recipe, sure but it is BETTER!! Thank you so much for sharing. I can’t believe how amazing they tasted!! I used my own cinnamon icing, but the roll…takes the cake!! :P Again, THANK YOU!!

  8. What sort of flour do you recommend?

  9. Really? Ok will try that – I tried out the recipe on tuesday but with plain flour because of the raising agents in the ingredients. I’ll let you know how this batch turn out! SO glad I found a yeast free recipe!

  10. Gressielle A. Falsis

    I am am interested in learning new things and your recipe seem easy, I would like to try it one of these days. Thanks!

  11. Great recipes….easy and delish….will you marry me and just cook. I’ll clean and wash dishes….deal??? jk

  12. Thank you for this recipe. I moved to Australia from the US and I have been craving those Grands cinnamon things like crazy. I halved the recipe and they are currently in the oven looking fantastic! My partner and I can’t wait to give them a try. :)

  13. this is my fav quick c. roll recipe by far…my kids love it and so do I…

  14. This looks great. Going to try these real soon.

  15. Do you have other quick homemade recipes?

  16. Yummy and easy…my favorite kind of recipe! Great post! =D

  17. Most anyone who bakes knows how to sub buttermilk…even me..lol…gonna try these tho..sounds yummy

  18. Looks wonderfully yum ;-). I wish I could eat sweets like that for breakfast, but if I did I would sink for the rest of the day. Protein (eggs – omelette) and a piece of toast is best for me mid-morning.

  19. no yeast and no rising, does this make them heavier? Sounds interesting.

  20. I’m 81. Dont tell anyone I make yeast roll in the bread machine. Did it the old way for 75 of them.

  21. I’m 81. Don’t tell anyone I make yeast rolls in the bread machine. Did it the old way a lot of years.

  22. Can you use self~rising flour for this recipe?

  23. Thank you so much for this reciepe at mid adulthood my gallbladder was removed and suddenly I developed allergies. One big one was yeast and this broke my heart. I grew up making bread, cinnamon rolls etc. I have learned to make fry bread not the same but at least I can have a sandwich this is great.ThankYou so much you put a smile on my face

  24. baking in the oven as we speak……smells yum!! May add some orange flavoring to the cream cheese icing…..anyone tried this??

  25. I’m making country fried steak with hash browns, eggs and toast. Now I fell like making this too…

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