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Cinnamon Rolls With Mixed Fruit Filling

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Baking is one of my favorite pastimes. I enjoy baking cookies, cakes, breads, pies, muffins, cupcakes, and much more.

Baking Challenge

Baking is one of my favorite things to do in the winter, and recently I took on a project I'd never tried before: cinnamon rolls. In the past, I'd made cinnamon rolls at home using store-bought dough. All I had to do was unbox the dough, remove the plastic, place it in the oven, and bake. Voila! After 20 minutes, perfectly round cinnamon rolls on a tray waiting for me. Easy right?

But what would it be like to make homemade cinnamon rolls from scratch? Turns out it's a challenge—but one that's perfectly doable.

Recipe Inspiration

For this recipe, I took some inspiration from two different recipes I've made before: raisin buns and swirl cinnamon bread. Both are personal favorites of mine. The ingredients for these cinnamon rolls are quite similar to the cinnamon bread I've made before, but what's different is the filling. For the cinnamon roll filling, I decided to incorporate glace red cherries, dried cranberries, raisins, and orange zest. I soaked them for a few hours (or you can soak overnight) in the orange juice to really get a good depth of flavor.

Baking Technique

When making bread, you can use a stand mixer or you can use the traditional method of kneading the dough by hand. Both methods are equally good. For this recipe, I've used both techniques: I used a stand mixer to incorporate the ingredients and then I kneaded the dough by hand for a few minutes before it rose for about two hours.

By the way, don't forget to brush the top of the rolls with egg wash before putting them in the oven. This is what helps give that lovely golden color when they finish baking.

The Result: Soft and Delicious Sweet Rolls

Call it cinnamon rolls or buns—these turned out perfectly soft and delicious! I was astounded by the results. Enjoy them sweet rolls with a cup of coffee or tea.

By the way, I decided to omit the icing on the top; instead, I brushed them with a simple sugar glaze. To keep them fresh, cover the leftover frosted or unfrosted rolls tightly and store for up to three days at room temperature or up to five days in the refrigerator.

Happy baking!

Cook Time

Prep Time: 3-4 hours (including resting and proofing time)

Total Time: 5 hours

Makes: 12-14 cinnamon rolls (depending on the size)

Ingredients

For the yeast mixture:

  • 1 cup warm whole milk
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons active dry yeast
  • 1 tablespoon granulated sugar

For the dough:

  • 1 large egg plus egg yolk, room temperature and lightly beaten
  • 50 grams butter, softened
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 4 cups bread flour, plus 1-2 tablespoons for kneading
  • 5 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

For the filling:

  • 1 cup mix dried fruits (I used dried cranberries, raisins, glazed red cherries, and 2 tablespoons orange zest)
  • 1/2 cup dark brown sugar
  • 3 tablespoons melted butter
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon (you can add more if you want)

For the egg wash:

  • One large egg yolk (beaten)

For the glaze:

  • Honey
  • Sugar syrup
  • Apricot jam
  • Icing frosting

Note: You can brush baked cinnamon rolls with honey, sugar syrup, apricot jam, or your own icing frosting. I decided to make a simple sugar glaze (water and castor sugar) because I like the shinning effect on the rolls.

Directions

  1. In a pitcher, combine the warm milk, yeast, and sugar. Let the mixture dissolve and set aside for 5 minutes.
  2. In a small bowl, whisk the egg and egg yolk. Set aside.
  3. In a mixing bowl, combine the bread flour, salt, sugar, and cinnamon powder. Use a spatula or whisk to incorporate the ingredients.
  4. Combine the yeast mixture into the flour mixture.
  5. Use a hook attachment to mix the ingredients at a low speed.
  6. Combine the lightly beaten egg into the mixture. Continue mixing at a medium speed.
  7. Pause the mixer to combine the butter into the mixture. Continue mixing until it is well combined.
  8. Transfer the mixture onto a clean surface or baking mat. Use your hands to knead the mixture until smooth and forms a dough. Add a tablespoon of flour if the dough is very sticky. (It won't take long to form the dough as the machine has done a decent job.)
  9. Transfer the dough into a large greased bowl.
  10. Cover the bowl with cling wrap and set aside in a warm place. Let the dough risen or double the size (at least 2 hours).
  11. Make the paste filling: In a small bowl, combine the melted butter, brown sugar and ground cinnamon. Mix well and set aside.
  12. Poke the dough with a finger to let the air out.
  13. Shape the dough: Roll the dough out into a 14×8 inch rectangle. Spread the sugar paste on the dough.
  14. Use your hand to spread the fruit mixture on the dough evenly.
  15. Tightly roll up the dough and cut into 12-14 pieces. Place the rolls in a prepared pan. Loosely cover the rolls with plastic wrap or tea towel. Let the shaped rolls rise for 1 hour or more.
  16. Preheat the oven to 375°F. Brush the rolls with egg wash and bake for 20-25 minutes.
  17. Insert a toothpick in the center of roll and if it comes clean, it is cooked. (The rolls should be golden to dark brown on top and fully baked in the center of the coil.)
  18. Brush the warm cinnamon rolls with honey or apricot jam or sugar syrup and let them stand until set.
  19. Enjoy the cinnamon rolls with a cup of coffee or tea.

© 2020 Liza

Comments

Liza (author) from USA on August 14, 2020:

I love cinnamon rolls, especially with the mixed fruits in it. It is one of my favorite baked goods to bake at home. Now, you have mentioned, I want to bake them too! I bet you make delicious cinnamon rolls, George. Please share your recipe! Thanks for commenting :)

George Howard from Connecticut on August 14, 2020:

I have made cinnamon rolls in the past, but it was a very long time ago! These look great, so I will have to make them again. Thanks for the recipe!

Liza (author) from USA on March 19, 2020:

Thanks for your lovely comment, Mitara N. I really appreciated it :)

Mitara N from South Africa on March 19, 2020:

Home made is always best,

Looks delicious, will definitely use your recipe

Thanks for sharing

Liza (author) from USA on January 25, 2020:

I understood with your concerns, Alyssa. When I first started my enthusiasm for baking bread, I was so nervous. I was fearful of the dough not rising, dry, and dense. It took me a while to get used to it. Practise makes perfect :) So, I hope you'll try this recipe and do let me know how it turns out for you! Thank you for commenting.

Alyssa from Ohio on January 25, 2020:

Yes, I'm definitely a store bought can of cinnamon rolls type of gal! haha! When I see yeast as an ingredient, I run away as fast as I can. Your recipe not only looks delicious, but also doable! I'm going to save this and give it a try! Thank you!

Liza (author) from USA on January 21, 2020:

Thank you, Linda, for commenting. I appreciated it. I admit these rolls are one of the best I've done for my baking challenge at home. I almost tempted to do with different filling next week :)

Liza (author) from USA on January 21, 2020:

@Prantika, thank you for your courteous comment. Yes, these cinnamon rolls were tasty and so delightful to our palate. I had such a joyful time making these rolls at home. Sometimes, I was nervous baking baked goods during winter because I want to make sure the dough is well-risen. Oh, by the way, I hope you'll bake something before the winter ends. Happy Baking!

Linda Crampton from British Columbia, Canada on January 21, 2020:

These cinnamon rolls sound wonderful! I can almost smell the warm rolls in my mind. The written instructions and the photo guide are very useful.

Prantika Samanta from Kolkata, India on January 21, 2020:

The rolls look fantastic and yummy. I do not know when I'm going to bake such delicious rolls, but I want to have them soon with coffee, perhaps before the winter bids adieu. Thank you for sharing the recipe. I am a foodie and your recipes tickle my taste buds.

Liza (author) from USA on January 21, 2020:

Thank you for commenting and being my best critique :)

Daniel Fontaine on January 20, 2020:

I had a few of these myself! They went perfectly with our morning coffee and made a wonderful breakfast.

Liza (author) from USA on January 20, 2020:

Thank you for your compliment, Liz. I second her too, although I don't know how much to get one. A proofing drawer always a great addition to have in the kitchen, especially if you are a devotee baker or into a baker thing. I want one after watching The Great British Baking Off on TV. I bet your friend's kitchen is incredible, Liz.

Liz Westwood from UK on January 20, 2020:

These look very professional. When a friend recently redid her kitchen, she wanted a proofing drawer, but it got scrapped due to going over budget.