The Pioneer Woman’s Cinnamon Rolls are so light and fluffy, a decadent buttery treat. A make ahead yeast dough with no kneading required. Perfect for brunch or breakfast.
You’ll Love this Cinnamon Roll Recipe Pioneer Woman Made
Everyone loves The Pioneer Woman and I am no exception, she seems like such a genuine person. Everything I’ve tried from her cookbooks or website have all been great recipes. Sometimes she uses more butter or sugar than I would, but otherwise I’m a big fan.
Pioneer woman cinnamon rolls are very similar to the ones that I’ve been making for years except her technique yields a lighter and fluffier roll. I’ve made substantial changes to her recipe but I do love her technique of adding baking powder and baking soda after the first rise. I think you’ll love my version and you can easily cut it in half but really, just freeze the extras, they are just as good.
Cinnamon Roll Recipe Pioneer Woman Ingredients
- Yeast – Instant or active will both work for cinnamon rolls.
- Milk – whole milk works best but you can use 2%, the dough will be richer if you use whole milk.
- Butter – lots of it! You’ll need a cup for the dough itself and one and a half cups for the filling.
- Flour – all purpose flour works the best for cinnamon rolls.
- Baking soda and baking powder – this is what makes this recipe unique from other cinnamon roll recipes.
- Sugar – three kinds are used, granulated white, brown sugar and powdered sugar for the frosting.
- Cinnamon and vanilla – you need the cinnamon for the filling and vanilla for the frosting.
How to Make Pioneer Woman Cinnamon Rolls
- Almost all cinnamon roll recipes are similar in that you let the yeast activate in warm milk.
- Then add flour, sugar and oil and let the dough rise for an hour.
- Punch down the dough, but before you form the dough into rolls, add baking powder, baking soda and salt. This gives them a lighter texture when baked.
- Roll out the dough and fill it with the gooey center. Then just cut into equal slices to help them cook evenly.
What to fill Pioneer Woman’s Cinnamon Rolls with:
Always start with a layer of butter, you can be as generous as your dough will allow, just pour the melted, slightly cooled, butter over the rolled out dough. The butter will not only make them taste fabulous, but it helps hold the sugar and fillings in place. I like to add a mixture of brown and white sugar. I normally don’t measure but just cover the butter with the two sugars and then add a generous amount of cinnamon to the top.
If you are a nut and raisin lover, then add a handful of these to the mixture and press them into the dough a bit so they don’t ooze out while you’re rolling. Now you are ready to roll the dough into a tight roll.
Ree Drummond Cinnamon Roll Recipe Variations
Try these additions to the filling when a plain cinnamon roll is not enough:
- Nuts are an easy, and must have, addition for me, try pecans or walnuts.
- Try adding caramelized apples.
- Fresh or frozen peaches are amazing.
- Throw in a handful of raisins.
- Spread a layer of your favorite jam in the filling instead of brown sugar and cinnamon.
What’s the best way to CUT cinnamon rolls
Believe it or not, dental floss will help you get a nice smooth cut. This won’t work as well if you have added nuts or raisins. I normally use a serrated knife.
Truly, these are so soft and fluffy, nothing like the dried out ones you see in so many bakeries. I generally make them in 10 inch pie pans, and freeze the extras, but they will work in any container with sides. Frozen are just as good as fresh.
Can you refrigerate the yeast dough for cinnamon rolls
Most yeast doughs can be refrigerated after the first rise. These are no exception. After you have made them into rolls, just cover them tightly with plastic wrap so that no air can get in and refrigerate overnight. They will rise some in the refrigerator. Remove them and let them double in size before baking.
Can you freeze cinnamon rolls
After the cinnamon rolls have cooled, wrap them in plastic wrap and place them in a ziplock and then freeze. When you are ready to eat them, let them thaw and reheat in the oven at 250º for about about fifteen minutes. You can hardly tell the difference between freshly baked and frozen cinnamon rolls as long as you keep them air tight in the freezer.
Do you frost Ree Drummond Cinnamon Rolls?
I say no, just eat them with some added butter on top, the dough is too good to cover up with frosting. However, I realize I’m in the minority and everyone else loves frosting. This frosting just has the basics, butter, milk, powdered sugar and vanilla. But try leaving a few without frosting and give them a try, you might find you’re like me and enjoy the buttery rich goodness of a perfect cinnamon roll.
Preparing these this week was bittersweet as Natalie wanted to take something in for her last advising breakfast of high school. Throughout the year they rotate who will bring something in and normally I don’t even know when it’s her turn, she just stops and gets bagels on the way to school. But when she mentioned it, I wanted to send something special. We were home on a snow day so we got to sample them before she took them the following day. I don’t think these would survive a care package to college, but I could make a batch and bring them for parent’s weekend.
More cinnamon roll recipes
- Add pineapple juice for a sweeter dough
- Peaches make a great cinnamon roll
- In the mood for apples, check out cinnamon rolls made in a muffin tin.
- Make some Dollywood cinnamon bread in a loaf pan.
All would be good on a lazy weekend morning or for brunch. We always have a batch while opening presents on Christmas Morning.
How to Serve Pioneer Woman Cinnamon Rolls
Cinnamon rolls are so sweet that it’s nice to pair them with a savory breakfast recipe.
- My favorite is sausage balls either traditional or with almond flour
- Try a crustless quiche
- Egg cups are easy to adapt
- Try some pesto eggs in pastry cups
Cinnamon Roll Storage
Cinnamon rolls like any bread recipe will dry out in the refrigerator. You can store them on the counter in an airtight container for a couple of days. After that, store them in the freezer.
How do you reheat frozen cinnamon rolls?
Let frozen cinnamon rolls thaw before trying to reheat them. Once thawed, wrap in aluminum foil and heat in the oven at 350º for about 5-8 minutes. Don’t reheat in the microwave, the dough will get rubbery.
Cinnamon Rolls Pioneer Woman FAQ
All purpose flour is the best flour to use for cinnamon rolls. It has just enough protein to allow the gluten to form but not so much protein that it will be tough or chewy like you could see if you use bread flour.
You should use all purpose flour as bread flour has more protein which can cause the dough to be tough.
If you find that your cinnamon rolls are not fluffy, it could be that they did not have enough time to rise. Make sure you are placing the dough in a warm and humid place to rise.
Typically the glaze on cinnamon rolls is made with powdered sugar and milk and a little butter. You can also make a cream cheese frosting which is a little thicker and has the tang from cream cheese. You can’t go wrong with either.
If you have tough cinnamon rolls it is probably due to too much protein in the flour you used. Try using an all purpose flour that has 9-12% protein.
To roll the cinnamon rolls, form the dough into a rectangle and start rolling on the long side. If you roll them from the short side, they will be too thick and the outside will overcook before the inside is done.
More Sweet Breakfast Recipes You’ll Like
- Streusel muffins with blueberries
- Pastry braid with berries
- Banana bread with vanilla butter
- Apple Dutch baby
Adapted from The Pioneer Woman Cooks
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Cinnamon Rolls Pioneer Woman
- 4 cups whole milk
- 1 cup butter 2 sticks
- 1 cup sugar
- 2 packages active dry yeast 4 ½ teaspoons
- 9 plus cups flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 tablespoon salt
- 1½ cups butter
- ¼ cup cinnamon
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 1 lb powdered sugar
- ½ cup milk
- 3 tablespoons melted butter
- 2 teaspoons vanilla
- pinch salt
- Melt the butter in a microwave safe bowl. Add milk and sugar and microwave for 1-2 minutes until the sugar has melted. Do not let it come to a boil. Let it cool to lukewarm and then sprinkle the yeast on top and let it sit for 1 minute. Add 8 cups of flour, stir until just combined. Cover with a plastic wrap and set aside in a warm place to rise for an hour.
- Whisk together the baking powder, soda, salt and remaining flour and stir into risen dough.
- To assemble the rolls, punch down the dough and divide in half. Place one half on a floured baking surface. Roll into a large rectangle about 24 X 10 inches. Cover with ½ of the melted butter using your fingers to spread it out. Generously sprinkle cinnamon and ½ cup of brown sugar and ½ cup of white sugar over the butter. If you are adding raisins or nuts, sprinkle them over now.
- Roll the rectangle tightly toward you, using both hands to keep the roll tight. Pinch the seam together when you have finished rolling. Cut into 11/2 inch slices and place in pie pans or a rimmed baking sheet that has been greased with butter. Do not overcrowd the rolls. Repeat with remaining dough.
- Preheat the oven to 375º and let rolls rise while the oven is preheating, about 20 minutes. Bake for 13-17 minutes, until golden brown.
- Icing: In a large bowl, whisk together the powdered sugar, melted butter, milk and salt, then add the vanilla. Whisk until very smooth. It should be thin but pourable. If it is too thick, add additional milk. When the rolls come out of the oven, drizzle the icing over the top.
Barbara’s Tips + Notes
- Let the dough rise in a warm humid place – heat a bowl of water in the microwave. then put the dough in the microwave and shut the door. It will create a warm humid draft free place for the dough to rise.
- You can refrigerate the dough after you have formed them into rolls. Remove when ready to serve and let warm to room temperature while the oven pre-heats.
- To freeze, allow to cool and then place in a resealable bag.
- If you choose to freeze them after they have baked, warm them in a 250º oven for 15 minutes.
If you make my version of The Pioneer Woman’s Cinnamon Rolls, be sure to leave a comment and/or give this recipe a rating! Above all, I love to hear from you guys and always do my best to respond to each and every comment. And of course, if you do make this recipe, don’t forget to also tag me on Instagram! I would love to see your creation.
Camille Johnson says
Only 15 min.?
Barbara Curry says
Since they are already baked, it should only take about 15 minutes to thaw and warm up.