Indulge in the sweet, comforting aroma and taste of Bakery Style Cinnamon Rolls. These delectable rolls are perfect for anyone who loves the classic combination of cinnamon and sugar, wrapped in a soft, fluffy dough and topped with a rich cream cheese frosting. Honestly, these are the best homemade cinnamon rolls I have ever tried. Whether you’re a novice, first time cinnamon roll baker or a seasoned pro, this recipe will guide you to create cinnamon rolls that are sure to be a hit with friends and family.

Creating the perfect cinnamon roll that could rival those from a beloved bakery has been a delightful challenge. This recipe is the result of numerous trials and a whole lot of love. Each element, from the dough to the filling and frosting, is crafted to bring about a cinnamon roll that is not just food, but an experience – a warm, comforting embrace in the form of a pastry. Perfect for holiday mornings, special occasions, or any time you want to fill your home with the sweet scent of cinnamon and happiness.

I love making these rolls on Christmas morning or for a special occasion. If you are a fan of sweet breakfasts like me, you must also try my Chocolate Liege Waffles and my Raspberry Orange Rolls. They are my absolutely favorite breakfast recipes… along with these bakery-style cinnamon rolls.

freshly made bakery style cinnamon rolls

The Chemistry of Bakery Style Cinnamon Rolls

The soft, fluffy texture of these cinnamon rolls starts with the yeast, which is activated by warm water and sugar, setting off a fermentation process that makes the dough rise and develop its airy structure. The filling, a rich blend of sugars, cinnamon, and cornstarch, not only imparts flavor but also thickens to create a gooey, delicious filling that stays put within each swirl. The simple syrup, drizzled on the hot rolls, adds moisture and a light sweetness that balances the richness of the frosting. The cream cheese frosting, whipped until fluffy with butter, powered sugar, and cream, melts into the warm rolls to create a luscious finish.

How do I ensure my cinnamon rolls are fluffy and not too dense?

Proper proofing is key. Allow the dough to rise in a warm, draft-free environment until it’s doubled in size, which can take about 2-3 hours depending on the room temperature.

Can I make cinnamon rolls ahead of time?

Yes, you can prepare them the night before up to the second rise, cover them tightly in the pan, an refrigerate. The next morning, let them rise at room temperature for an hour before baking.

freshly made bakery style cinnamon rolls

Why use cornstarch in the filling?

Cornstarch helps to thicken the filling, preventing it from leaking out during baking and ensuring each roll is richly coated with cinnamon flavor.

What’s the best way to apply the frosting?

For best results, frost the cinnamon rolls while they are still warm so the frosting melts slightly and spreads easily, soaking into the rolls for extra flavor and texture. You can even pop the frosting in the microwave for 15-30 seconds so its easier to spread.

freshly made bakery style cinnamon rolls

What is in bakery style cinnamon rolls?

Yeast

Provides flavor and carbon dioxide, making your dough rise. It must be mixed with a warm liquid and sugar in order to activate.

Eggs

Adds both a protein (egg whites) and fat (egg yolks). The egg whites help with rising because, when foamed, little air pockets get trapped inside the egg white mixture. The water content in egg whites encourages steam while baking, which helps with gluten formation, resulting in nice and thick treats. Egg yolks have emulsifying properties that bring batters and doughs together and help them from collapsing. Unless otherwise specified, always use large eggs.

Fine Sea Salt

Enhances flavor, adds balance, masks any bitter flavors. Salt is the most powerful and oldest preservative. Always make sure to use fine sea salt so it melts down at the right speed in the heat of the oven. If you use larger granule salt, it will not melt down fully when baked and will leave salt crystals throughout your treat, making it crunch like you dropped it into sand.

All-purpose Flour

Builds structure as it absorbs liquids and expands. All-purpose flour falls in the middle of bread flour (high in gluten) and cake flour (low in gluten). It’s exactly what it is named, all-purpose, the most universal flour that can be used in most baked goods.

Brown Sugar

Is granulated sugar with a little molasses mixed in. Molasses is a somewhat smoky flavored natural sweetener, which makes brown sugar a bit sweeter than granulated sugar. Brown sugar draws more moisture into your treat, keeping it softer for longer. It’s also more acidic, which means it will help activate your baking soda.

Granulated Sugar

Adds sweetness, provides a caramelized flavor and crisp texture. Sugar assists with rising when creamed with butter. It helps add moisture to your treat and helps it evenly spread as it melts into a liquid in the heat of the oven. Sugar also helps with naturally preserving your baked treat.

Cinnamon

A seasoning that adds a nice spice to your treat.

Cornstarch

Helps create a crumbly tender texture to toppings. Softens cookies, brownies and cakes. And it can also thicken sauces and fillings.

Cream cheese

Provides a unique, tangy flavor. When baked it adds moisture to your treat.

Unsalted butter

Often the main ingredient of frosting, it adds structure to your buttercream. It also adds a smooth and velvety texture. Butter melts at body temperature, so it will make your frosting have a melt-in-your-mouth sensation.

Powdered Sugar

Is just finely ground granulated sugar. It will absorb moisture in your batter or dough. It dissolves easily, ensuring a smooth texture without grittiness. Because it is so fine, it can melt quickly in the oven and spread cookies out more. Powdered sugar also stabilizes and thickens the frosting, thanks to the small amount of cornstarch it contains.

Heavy Whipping Cream

Makes a softer, more spreadable frosting. When melted with chocolate it adds more fat and moisture to the mixture, resulting in a silkier blend.

Vanilla Extract

When using pure vanilla extract, as opposed to imitation flavoring, it will add the deep rich flavor that everybody wants in a treat.

Step by Step Instructions

Rolls

  1. Add warm water & heavy cream together (you can substitute the warm heavy cream with warm milk if you’d prefer). Ensure the mixture is warm but not hot; the yeast will die if it is too hot. Add 1 tablespoon of sugar & yeast (I use active dry yeast but instant yeast works too). Mix and let it sit for 5-10 minutes until it bubbles. If the mixture doesn’t bubble, your yeast is dead, and you must start over with new yeast.
  2. Add 1 cup sugar, butter, eggs & salt. Stir until combined
  3. Add yeast mixture to standing mixer, stir until combined
  4. Add flour & knead in mixer until it is 1 ball of dough
  5. Cover the bowl and let it sit in a warm spot for 2-3 hours until it is doubled in size. If it is a chilly day, place your dough in the OFF oven with just the oven lights on.

Filling

  1. Once the cinnamon roll dough has doubled, mix sugars, cinnamon & cornstarch together. This makes a delicious cinnamon brown sugar filling.

Assemble

  1. Roll out your dough with a rolling pin on a lightly floured work surface into a large rectangle. I like my dough about ¼ inch thick
  2. Spread the melted butter all over your dough
  3. Sprinkle sugar mixture and spread until evenly distributed on the dough
  4. Roll the dough
  5. Cut the dough into large rolls, this recipe only makes 16 rolls. I use a serrated knife, but you can also use dental floss. Wrap the floss around the dough, cross it, and pull tight. It will uncross as it cuts the dough.
  6. Place the rolls on 2 light metal, greased 9×13 pans, I put 8 in each pan. You can also put them in a round pan if you prefer. I would use a large cake pan.
  7. Cover the rolls lightly with plastic wrap and let them sit for another 2 hours. If you don’t have that much rise time, you can put them back in the OFF oven with just the light on, and they will double in size in less time.

Simple Syrup

  1. In a medium sized sauce pan add the water and sugar. Turn the heat on medium high and whisk until the sugar is fully dissolved.
  2. Turn the heat up to high and allow the mixture to come to a boil
  3. Boil until it reduces into half. This takes about 5-7 minutes. Allow the syrup to cool completely. In fact it is best to make ahead of time and store in the fridge. Simple Syrup can keep for up to 1 week.

Baking

  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees, and bake for 27-30 minutes until set and lightly golden brown on the edges of the rolls.
  2. After you remove the cinnamon rolls from the oven, drizzle the cold simple syrup over the top and allow it to soak into the rolls.

Frosting

  1. While baking, prepare your cream cheese icing and mix all the frosting ingredients in a standing mixer on medium speed. Once combined, scrap the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula and whip on high speed for 2 minutes until fluffy
  2. Frost while still warm
  3. Now for the best part: enjoy the best cinnamon rolls

Storage Tips

Cinnamon rolls are best enjoyed fresh but can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 days. For longer storage, refrigerate for up to a week or freeze for up to a month. Reheat in the oven or microwave for best results.

freshly made bakery style cinnamon rolls

Freezing Options

These cinnamon rolls can be frozen for later enjoyment. Here’s how:

Not Baked and Freeze

Freeze the unbaked rolls covered on a pan. Once frozen, you can transfer to a bag. They can be frozen for up to 1 month.

Fully Bake and Freeze

Bake the cinnamon rolls as directed, allow them to cool completely, then wrap them tightly with aluminum foil and freeze. When ready to enjoy, thaw at room temperature or in the refrigerator overnight, then reheat in the oven to refresh texture.

Making Ahead

To make cinnamon rolls ahead of time, prepare the cinnamon roll dough and form the rolls, then cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight. The next morning, let them rise in a warm place for 1 hour, then bake. This not only breaks up the prep time but also enhances the flavor of the dough.

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Why make bakery style cinnamon rolls?

These fluffy cinnamon rolls are exactly what you need to make a perfect morning. I like to make these rolls for holidays and birthdays. It’s so nice that I can prepare them the night before. In the morning, I pull them out of the fridge, and they are in the oven within the hour.

Recipes You May Love

Bakery Style Cinnamon Rolls

5 from 5 votes
Author: Madison Reid
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 27 minutes
Rising Time: 4 hours
Servings: 16 rolls
These huge, soft cinnamon rolls will fill your home with the sweet scent of homemade bread along with sugary cinnamon goodness. Topped with tangy cream cheese frosting, it is sure to be a crowd pleaser!

Ingredients 

Rolls

  • 2 tbsp yeast
  • 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1 cup +1 tbsp granulated sugar
  • 1 cup warm water
  • 1 cup unsalted butter **melted
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 tbsp fine sea salt
  • 7 cups all-purpose flour

Filling

  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter

Simple Syrup

  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar

Frosting

  • 8 ounces cream cheese
  • 1 cup unsalted butter
  • 5 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tbsp heavy cream

Instructions

Rolls

  • Add warm water & cream together. Make sure the mixture is warm but not hot, if too hot the yeast will die. Add 1 tablespoon of sugar & yeast. Mix and let it sit for 5-10 minutes until it bubbles up. If mixture doesn’t bubble, your yeast is dead and you must start over with new yeast.
  • In a standing mixer add 1 cup sugar, butter, eggs & salt. Stir until combined
  • Add yeast mixture to standing mixer, stir until combined
  • Add flour & knead in mixer until it is 1 ball of dough
  • Cover bowl and let sit for 2-3 hours or until doubled in size

Filling

  • Once dough has doubled, mix sugars, cinnamon & cornstarch together

Assemble

  • Roll out your dough on a lightly floured surface into a large rectangle. I like my dough about ¼ inch thick
  • Spread the melted butter all over your dough
  • Sprinkle sugar mixture and spread until evenly distributed on the dough
  • Roll the dough
  • Cut the dough into large rolls. This recipe only makes 16.
  • Place the rolls on 2 light metal, greased 9×13 pans, I put 8 in each pan.
  • Cover lightly with plastic wrap and let sit for another 2 hours

Simple Syrup

  • In a medium sized sauce pan add the water and sugar. Turn the heat on medium high and whisk until the sugar is fully dissolved.
  • Turn the heat up to high and allow the mixture to come to a boil
  • Boil until it reduces into half. This takes about 5-7 minutes. Allow the syrup to cool completely. In fact it is best to make ahead of time and store in the fridge. Simple Syrup can keep for up to 1 week.

Baking

  • Preheat your oven to 350 degrees, bake for 27-30 minutes until set and lightly golden
  • After you remove the cinnamon rolls from the oven, drizzle the simple syrup over the top and allow it to soak into the rolls.

Frosting

  • While baking, mix all the frosting ingredients in a standing mixer. Whip for 2 minutes until fluffy
  • Frost while still warm

Nutrition

Calories: 833kcal Carbohydrates: 117g Protein: 8g Fat: 38g Saturated Fat: 23g Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g Monounsaturated Fat: 10g Trans Fat: 1g Cholesterol: 131mg Sodium: 506mg Potassium: 146mg Fiber: 4g Sugar: 70g Vitamin A: 1255IU Vitamin C: 0.2mg Calcium: 91mg Iron: 3mg

Have you tried this recipe?

I’d love to see it! Follow @_mrs.madi_ on Instagram and tag your photos with #mrsmadi.

freshly made bakery style cinnamon rolls