You want something special for breakfast tomorrow morning. I guess you could drive to the bakery and get something good. While that is okay, the stuff that you bake at home is usually much, much better, but what to make? This is my recipe for sourdough cinnamon rolls.
Cinnamon rolls are the stuff of legends. It’s ambrosia. Food of the Gods. When you walk past a bakery or even a 7eleven, and the smell of something freshly baked with cinnamon in it, you just start to instantly salivate. How many people do you know that don’t like a cinnamon bun? If you do, do you trust them?
The perfect companion for a wonderful homemade breakfast, is, in my very humble opinion these delicious crusty sourdough rolls. Together with the cinnamon rolls, this is the breakfast of champions.
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The dough composition
|Total weight||1200 grams|
|Yield||12 cinnamon rolls|
The dough in this sourdough cinnamon rolls recipe
The dough for these cinnamon buns is highly enriched. Milk, sugar, egg, and butter. Essentially a poor man’s brioche.
Part of the dough is cooked into a tangzhong, or water roux, which encapsulates part of the water into the starch cells of the flour. This helps give superior moisture and shelf life, but also an unparalleled fluffy texture to the finished baked roll.
There’s enough salt to not have it taste bland, but not salty at all. The hydration is about 70%, but your flour’s absorption is not going to be important, because we’ll add as much flour that’s needed to get to a tacky, but not sticky dough.
The inoculation is around 17%, and you should assume a very long fermentation, even if you use a proofer, which I would highly recommend.
The filling is made from equal parts sugar, dark brown sugar, and butter. The holy trinity of sweet baking.
The mixture of the dark brown sugar and the butter makes this delicious caramel that runs out while baking. That’s the baker’s prerogative. You get to pick that off the parchment paper afterward and eat it. Yum!
To that mixture, we add about 2 tablespoons of cinnamon. Just the perfect amount to not be overpowering, but just bring that wonderful warm and spicy smell and taste.
The glaze and the frosting
I give you two choices of topping on these cinnamon rolls. A white glaze and a cream cheese frosting.
The white glaze is very much the standard for cinnamon rolls in Denmark, so that’s no doubt why that is my preferred frosting, but I also know that the many of my readers (and watchers) are from the grand ol’ US of A, and they love their cream cheese frosting.
So you get to choose the kind you like.
Head to the formula playground
If you want to play around with the formula, change hydration, quantity, inoculation, and many other things, you can do so here in my Bread Calculator.
The conclusion of this sourdough cinnamon rolls recipe
For me, many different variables make for delicious cinnamon rolls.
The most important being moisture. There’s nothing worse than a cinnamon roll that is dry. No amount of glaze, frosting, or cinnamon can fix that. The dough needs to be either made with a wonderfully layered dough or have the softest, pillowy, fluffy texture.
Another important thing is that it needs to have a rich buttery smell and taste. The filling needs to be sweet, buttery, and moist and have delicious complex dark caramel notes.
These cinnamon rolls meet all those criteria and more. It is by far the fluffiest, moistest cinnamon bun I’ve ever had. The filling is delicious.
The smells that come off these things are off the charts. Freshly baked bread, cinnamon, butter, caramel, your nose is telling your brain to just dig in, and never stop.
If you like cinnamon rolls, and who doesn’t? This is your jam. Well, not literally, but you should make them.
Please share this recipe for sourdough cinnamon rolls on social media
This is my recipe for sourdough cinnamon rolls. If you like the recipe please consider sharing it with like-minded snack lovers on social media.
If you make it and post it on Instagram, please tag me as @foodgeek.dk so I can see it. That would make me very happy.
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Sourdough Cinnamon Rolls
- baking sheet
- parchment paper
- 30 g bread flour
- 150 g water
- 520 g bread flour divided
- 70 g sugar
- 10 g salt
- 170 g whole milk
- 70 g egg a bit less than 2 small eggs
- 90 g starter fed and grown to its peak
- 90 g butter
- 100 g dark brown sugar
- 100 g sugar
- 100 g butter
- 15 g cinnamon
- 150 g powdered sugar
- 40 g egg white
Cream Cheese Frosting
- 200 g cream cheese
- 50 g butter
- 200 g powdered sugar divided
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 egg
- 1 tbsp water
- To a microwave-safe container add: 30 g bread flour and 150 g water and mix it up.30 g bread flour, 150 g water
- Put it in the microwave on full for about a minute, then check the temperature.
- It should be at or above 65°C/150°F. If it’s not warm enough, heat in 10-second increments until it is.
- Then mix it all and put it somewhere cool until it’s below 30°C/86°F.
- Once it’s cooled down, it’s time to make the dough.
- To a medium bowl add: 420 g bread flour (we'll ad the rest later), 70 g sugar, and 10 g salt. Then mix it up.520 g bread flour, 70 g sugar, 10 g salt
- Then add: The entire cooled tangzhong, 70 g egg, 90 g starter, and 170 g whole milk. Mix it all together.70 g egg, 90 g starter, 170 g whole milk
- Once it comes together, we can start adding extra flour. Start by adding the remaining 100 g little by little.520 g bread flour
- Once it's added, start kneading the dough and add enough flour to have a tacky but not sticky dough. You can use more flour if needed.
- Then leave the dough covered to rest the gluten for about 30 minutes. While you’re waiting, you should cube 90 grams of butter to let it soften.
Knead in butter
- Knead in the butter, little by little. Keep going until it's all been absorbed by the dough.
- If the dough is still sticky at the end, you can knead in some more flour.
- Put the dough in a proofing container somewhere warm to double in size. I put mine in my Brød & Taylor proofer set to 30°C/86°F.
- It took around 7 hours in my proofer, so it'll probably take longer if you proof at a lower temperature. Be patient.
- Once the dough has risen, put it in the fridge until the following day so you can have freshly baked cinnamon rolls with breakfast.
- Or you can go straight to shaping.
- To a small bowl add: 100 g dark brown sugar, 100 g regular sugar, and 15 g cinnamon. Use a fork to knead the sugars and cinnamon into the butter.100 g dark brown sugar, 100 g sugar, 100 g butter, 15 g cinnamon
- Keep going until it’s pretty uniform. Then put it away until you need it.
Shape cinnamon rolls
- In the morning, I turn my oven on to 180°C/350°F.
- Now it’s time to shape the rolls. Flour your counter.
- Take the dough out of the bulking container onto the floured counter. Flour the dough on both sides.
- Then roll it out into a rectangle about 50 cm x 30 cm, about 20 inches x 12 inches.
- Spread the filling on top of the dough. Leave about 2.5 cms/1 inches of room at the top, but go to the edge on the rest of the sides.
- Then roll the dough tightly. Cut off the edges to get to the filling.
- Slice them into 12 equally sized pieces, and put the pieces on two baking sheets lined with parchment paper.
- Then mix an egg wash made from one egg and one tablespoon of water. Brush the cinnamon rolls lightly with egg wash.1 egg, 1 tbsp water
Bake cinnamon rolls
- Then put both sheets in the hot oven, and bake for about 18 to 20 minutes until golden brown.
- If your oven heats unevenly, rotate the sheets after about 10 minutes.
- Then when they are done, remove them from the oven, And place them on a wire rack to cool off.
Make the glaze or frosting
- To make the glaze, do the following: To a small bowl, add: 40 g egg white, sift in 150 g powdered sugar, and mix it.
- To make the frosting do the following: To a small bowl, add: 200 g cream cheese and 50 g butter. Mix it until it pales.
- Add 100 g sifted powdered sugar and mix for about 1½ minutes. Then add the rest of the powdered sugar, and mix until it turns fluffy.200 g powdered sugar
- Fold in the vanilla extract.
Add frosting or glaze
- Pour the mixture onto the rolls in any design or way you like. You can be creative or just put a big glob in the middle. There are no rules.
- Then you can leave them for the glaze to set, but honestly, who has the time or patience for that?