Speedy Homemade Cinnamon Rolls

I can make a batch of these Speedy Cinnamon Rolls from start to finish in about 1 hour and 10 minutes, including the time it takes for the rolls to raise.  This recipe will make 12 very large cinnamon rolls (1 sheet pan), 16 small cinnamon rolls, or 2 large braided rings. 

Get warm, homemade cinnamon rolls on the table in just over an hour – start to finish! This recipe for Speedy Homemade Cinnamon Rolls provides detailed step-by-step instructions for making soft and tender cinnamon rolls every single time.

Speedy Homemade Cinnamon Rolls Recipe

Upclose shot of a frosted cinnamon roll

Howdy! Chef Alli Here. Let’s Get You Cookin’…. Shall We?? 🙂

Everybody loves cinnamon rolls – that’s for sure. As a matter of face, we love another version of this cinnamon roll recipe almost as much – Speedy Cinnamon Rolls with Maple Frosting. And, because my family enjoys the flavor of maple so much, I also like to make these Maple-Glazed Breakfast Meatballs for them.

Here in the Midwest, it’s “a thing” to serve cinnamon rolls along side a big bowl of steaming Hill Billy Chili. If you’ve never tried it, I bet you’ll find that the flavors compliment each other perfectly. I’ve even seen some people dipping hunks of their cinnamon rolls right into the chili!

We are big fan of Instant Pot Pulled Pork Chili and also this Low-Carb version of chili – Instant Pot Chili-Dog-Chili. My Mom always made a more soup-like chili (my favorite) that was more broth-y than it was thick, and of course, it’s called Tastes-Like-Mom’s Chili.

And, if you’re looking for a non-traditional chili for your family – check out White Chicken and Rice Chili – it’s made with a box of Rice-A-Roni, oddly enough. Oh gosh! I almost forgot this Beef Chili over Jalapeno Cheddar Cornbread Waffles recipe – did you know you can make savory waffles in your waffle maker? Sometimes I forget about that.

For an award-winning chili, I recommend you try Rio Grande Chili (again this recipe is a cross between a soup and a chili). This chili features hominy, making it pretty unusual, but absolutely delicious.

A big, fat, fluffy and tender cinnamon roll.

Why This is the Best Homemade Cinnamon Roll Recipe in the Land

  • I am thankful for this recipe because it got me started making cinnamon rolls on a regular basis for my family. It made me successful at baking them and now I want to make them over and over again!
  • I believe that the biggest reason this recipe makes us so successful in making homemade cinnamon rolls is one big thing: The yeast is mixed in with the flour so it’s protected and foolproof, just in case the water you add may be bit too hot. (Hot water kills yeast and then your rolls can’t raise properly…such a disappointment!)
  • Another big reason this recipe is wonderful? I’ts a TIME SAVER. These cinnamon rolls can be made, start-to-finish in just over an hour.  Making cinnamon rolls doesn’t have to take all day!
Up close shot of two frosted cinnamon rolls.

Why These Easy-Peasy Cinnamon Rolls Can Be Made So Quickly

The reason these cinnamon rolls can be cranked out so quickly is that there is only one raise of the dough required. This raise of the dough is following the placement of the cinnamon rolls onto the baking sheet and will take about 20-30 minutes at the most. that is after you’ve created the cinnamon rolls and placed them onto the baking sheet. 

Tips for Making The Best Homemade Cinnamon Rolls……Evah!

I like really tender cinnamon rolls.  Is there something I should do to ensure that my cinnamon rolls turn out light and tender?

  • Yep, a couple of things, actually.  First, be careful you don’t add too much flour.  The cinnamon roll dough should be pretty tacky to the touch when you get ready to pull the dough out of the mixing bowl.
  • TACKY to the touch is ok, but not STICKY and MESSY. If your dough is sticky, you will need to add more flour, but only as needed, a little at a time.
  • To also keep your dough light and tender, don’t over work the dough as this can make it tough, and be sure you don’t over bake the cinnamon rolls, as well.

When I’m trying to roll out the dough to being making the cinnamon rolls, I feel like I’m fighting with the dough. What should I do?

  • Your dough is telling you it hasn’t rested enough just let. If the dough pulls right back as you try to roll it out into the rectangle, lay down your rolling pin and walk about for 5-10 minutes. Once you return, I bet you’ll see that the dough cooperates completely at that point. It just needed a little nap!
A cast iron skillet loaded with homemade cinnamon rolls.

Answers to Common Questions Asked About This Recipe

Which tools are helpful for making homemade cinnamon rolls?

Rimmed baking sheets – Heavy-duty bakeware is essential for proper browning. I like aluminum baking sheets with a rimmed edge, 13×18 inches in size. If you make sure to always hand-wash your baking sheets (instead of using the dishwasher) they will last soooo much longer!

Silicone spatula spoons – Of all the tools in my kitchen, silicone spatula spoons are what I use the most. They make stirring and sautéing a breeze and I love all the pretty silicone colors available. Silicone spatula spoons are completely heat-proof so they won’t melt, even when used over high temperatures. I like to have different sizes on hand for different kitchen tasks – soooo handy!

Rolling pin – My rolling pin of preference is a French 16-inch wooden rolling pin; the tapered design makes it easy to maneuver when rolling out dough.

Stand mixer – Making cinnamon rolls in a stand mixer definitely makes the whole process easier and faster. I can highly recommend the Bosch stand mixer – it is powerful, easy to use, and I love how the motor is in the base of the mixer so there’s nothing in your way as you’re working in the bowl.

Frosting spreaders – Using an off-set spatula spreader for spreading the icing over warm cinnamon rolls makes the job an easy one. I like having different sizes depending on the task at hand.

Spice shaker – I like a lot of cinnamon in my rolls, but I want the cinnamon to be well dispersed in a nice thin layer. This stainless-steel shaker works great and I really like the handle on the side.

A pan of frosted cinnamon rolls

Can I freeze cinnamon rolls to raise and bake fresh later?

Yes!!! Here’s how to do it:

  1. Double the amount of yeast this recipe calls for then proceed just as directed, cutting the dough into 16 cinnamon rolls.
  2. Place 5-6 rolls into a greased 10×12-inch aluminum pan (I use disposable pans since I give away a lot of cinnamon rolls), leaving enough room around each roll so they can freeze and raise. 
  3. Freeze the cinnamon rolls until ready to use, then place the pan into the fridge the night before you want to bake them (or 8-10 hours of fridge time). About an hour before you want to bake them, remove the rolls from the fridge and uncover on the counter, letting the rolls raise.  
  4. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Place the cinnamon roll pan onto a baking sheet (doubling up like this helps the rolls to brown better on the bottom); bake for 15-18 minutes or until golden brown and done at the center. Let the cinnamon rolls cool for 15-20 minutes, then frost as directed in the recipe. 

If I’m in a hurry, can I use canned frosting for my cinnamon rolls?

Sure. I like to use the cream cheese frosting, but have even used the chocolate frosting before, too. No matter which frosting you are using, homemade or store-purchased, I think it’s best to frost the cinnamon rolls while still warm.

How can I make my cinnamon rolls all the same size?

See the photos below for how I cut up my cinnamon rolls to make sure they are all really close in size.   I always struggled with my rolls being slightly different sizes, and the slicing method below fixed all that! (Cutting them all the same size also helps them bake more evenly.)

1.  Once you have the cinnamon rolls rolled up into one long long, cut that log in half.
2.  Now place each of those halves horizontally before you on your work surface, one above the other, but not touching.
3.  Using your serrated knife, mark the dough in 3 places evenly across both logs – I just eye ball it.
4. Use those marks to evenly slice both of the logs of dough into quarters into this into 3 rolls each to make 12 large cinnamon rolls. If you want 16 smaller cinnamon rolls, slice each of those logs of dough into 4 rolls each.
5.  Place the rolls onto a greased baking sheet and let them raise in a warm, draft-free spot in your kitchen. Bake as directed in the recipe below, then frost the rolls while they are still a bit warm, but not super hot.

How to make a quick and easy bulk-batch of cinnamon roll frosting –

In your stand mixer, beat together 1 1/2 cups of softened butter and 8 oz. softened cream cheese until smooth; add 1 Tbs. vanilla extract, 1 tsp. kosher salt, 2 lbs. powdered sugar, and 2-3 Tbs. milk, beating until frosting is the desired consistency. Divide into thirds and freeze to use later. Recipe makes enough for 3 batches of cinnamon rolls.

Other Favorite Recipes My Family Really Enjoys –

Easy No-Knead English Muffin Bread with Instant Pot Strawberry Jam

Cherry Cream Cheese Danish

Buttered Rosemary Rolls

Crowd-Pleasing Sheet Pan French Toast Bake

Dutch Oven No-Knead Crusty Bread

Cinnamon Sugar Bear Paws

Ham and Bacon Pastry Ring

How to Make Jumbo Cinnamon Rolls….The Easy Way!

Printable Speedy Cinnamon Rolls Recipe

I can make a batch of these Speedy Cinnamon Rolls from start to finish in about 1 hour and 10 minutes, including the time it takes for the rolls to raise.  This recipe will make 12 very large cinnamon rolls (1 sheet pan), 16 small cinnamon rolls, or 2 large braided rings. 

Speedy Cinnamon Rolls

Get warm, homemade cinnamon rolls on the table in just over an hour- start to finish! And, rest assured you will always be successful with this recipe – it's the best cinnamon rolls recipe in the history of ever…and the easiest one, too.
5 from 4 votes
Print Pin Rate
Prep Time: 50 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
Servings: 16 cinnamon rolls
Calories: 383kcal
Author: Chef Alli

Ingredients

Cinnamon Rolls

  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 cup water
  • ½ cup vegetable oil
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1 egg
  • 6 1/2 – 6 3/4 cups all-purpose flour, as needed to make a nice, soft dough
  • 5 tsp. instant yeast, I use quick rise
  • ½ cup unsalted butter, very softened
  • 1-2 Tbs. cinnamon
  • 1 cup dark brown sugar, or substitute 1/2 cup granulated sugar and 1/2 cup dark brown sugar

Creamy Cinnamon Roll Icing

  • 3 oz. cream cheese, softened
  • 8 Tbs. unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 3-4 Tbs. milk, as needed
  • 3 cups confectioner’s sugar (powdered sugar)
  • 1/4 tsp. kosher salt

Instructions

Cinnamon Rolls

  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
    Combine milk, water, oil, sugar and salt in microwave safe bowl; heat 1-2 minutes, or until the temperature is to 120 – 130 degrees F. at the center.
  • While the liquids are heating, measure 3 cups of flour into the bowl of a stand mixer; add yeast, combining it with the flour.
    Pour the heated liquids into the flour/yeast mixture. Using the whisk attachment, beat at medium speed for 30 seconds, then add the egg and beat one more minute.
  • Switch to the dough hook and add 3 cups of flour, kneading the dough until the flour is fully incorporated. At this point, the dough is likely to still be pretty sticky; add the remaining 1/2 cup of flour, a little at a time, only adding as much as needed, until the dough is soft and pliable, slightly tacky to the touch and no longer sticking to the sides of the bowl.
    **Typically, when the dough has reached the perfect consistency (slightly tacky and still soft and tender), it will come all together on one side of your mixing bowl. As soon as this happens, STOP KNEADING!
    **At this point, if you have time, which I usually don't, place the dough into a large greased mixing bowl and cover with a lightweight towel; let the dough raise until double in size, approx. 40-45 minutes. This extra first raise will make your cinnamon rolls extra tender. If you don't have time for this step, just proceed to the next step.
  • Remove the dough to a lightly floured work surface, allowing it to rest for 5 minutes. Punch the dough down, then allow it to rest for another 5 minutes.
    Using your favorite rolling pin, roll the dough into a large rectangle, approx. 22"wide x 18" tall in size. **If you begin rolling out the dough into the rectangle and the dough keeps pulling back each time, let the dough rest for an additional 5 minutes. Once the dough has fully relaxed, it will roll out easily.
    **As you roll out the dough, make sure you roll from the center towards the edges so that the center of the dough isn't thicker than the rest. Also, try to be sure to roll out the dough into a RECTANGULAR sheet, not an oval sheet. These two steps really help you wind up with cinnamon rolls that are all uniform in size.
  • Spread the softened butter over the surface of dough; sprinkle the dough evenly with cinnamon first, and then the brown sugar. Using your palms, lightly press down over the brown sugar to kind of "adhere" it into the dough a bit.
  • Roll up the dough starting from the long edge closest to you, gently tucking and rolling the  dough and the filling as you go.  
  • Using a sharp serrated knife or a piece of dental floss, cut the log of dough evenly in half. Now place both halves horizontally before you on the work surface, one above the other on the counter, but not touching. 
    **Please see the photos above this post to better see what I'm referring to here so you can understand this better – it's kind of confusing to just write it out without showing.
  • Make incisions on top of each log of dough at the same time, marking where you want to slice so that both logs of dough can be cut into equal pieces. Slice each one at the incisions you made on top of the rolls of dough, then place the cinnamon rolls onto a greased, rimmed baking sheet, 13" x 18" in size.
    **You can slice 12 large cinnamon rolls from the dough, 16 medium cinnamon rolls, or 20 small cinnamon rolls. (Again – see the photos in the blog post for this recipe above to make these cutting steps more clear!)
  • Let the rolls raise in a warm, draft-free place for 15-20 minutes. Bake in a preheated 350 degree F. oven for approx. 14-15 minutes (20 small rolls) 16-18 minutes (16 rolls) 19-20 minutes (12 large rolls) or until lightly golden brown, taking care not to over bake.
    Let the cinnamon rolls cool slightly, 10-15 minutes, then frost with the cream cheese icing.

Creamy Cinnamon Roll Icing

  • Using an electric mixer, beat together the cream cheese and butter in a large mixing bowl until creamy. Beat in the vanilla and milk, then gradually mix in the confectioners' sugar and salt until the icing is smooth and fluffy. Spread over the cinnamon rolls while they are still slightly warm. Serve at once!

Notes

**Be sure to check the blog post for tips and tricks, specific instructions, recommended tools, and FAQ’s for making this recipe.
My Top Tips for Making Homemade Cinnamon Rolls 
  • Yep, a couple of things, actually.  First, be careful you don’t add too much flour.  The cinnamon roll dough should be pretty tacky to the touch when you get ready to pull the dough out of the mixing bowl.
  • TACKY to the touch is ok, but not STICKY. If your dough is sticky, you DO need more flour added, but only as needed, a little at a time. Also, if you have time, letting the dough raise BEFORE you make the cinnamon rolls makes the dough even more light and tender, but I rarely do this extra raise.
  • To also keep your dough light and tender, don’t over work the dough as this can make it tough, and be sure you don’t over bake the cinnamon rolls, as well.

    How to freeze cinnamon rolls to raise and bake later

    1. Double the amount of yeast this recipe calls for then proceed just as directed, cutting the dough into 16 cinnamon rolls.
    2. Place 5-6 rolls into a greased 10×12-inch aluminum pan (I use disposable pans since I give away a lot of cinnamon rolls), leaving enough room around each roll so they can freeze and raise. 
    3. Freeze the cinnamon rolls until ready to use, then place the pan into the fridge the night before you want to bake them (or 8-10 hours of fridge time). About an hour before you want to bake them, remove the rolls from the fridge and uncover on the counter, letting the rolls raise.  
    4. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Place the cinnamon roll pan onto a baking sheet (doubling up like this helps the rolls to brown better on the bottom); bake for 15-18 minutes or until golden brown and done at the center. Let the cinnamon rolls cool for 15-20 minutes, then frost as directed in the recipe. 
 
Course: Breakfast
Cuisine: American
Keyword: cinnamon rolls, Comfort Food, sheet pan

Nutrition

Calories: 383kcal | Carbohydrates: 43g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 23g | Saturated Fat: 16g | Cholesterol: 51mg | Sodium: 233mg | Potassium: 61mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 41g | Vitamin A: 469IU | Calcium: 43mg | Iron: 1mg

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Let’s Get You Cookin’,
Chef Alli

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Chef Alli

Chef Alli is a home-grown Kansas girl on a mission to strengthen families through enabling kitchen confidence, educating the family cook, and encouraging better food relationships. She believes with her whole heart that time spent with our loved ones and our overall quality of life is greatly enhanced by nutritious food made at home with simple, wholesome ingredients. She loves being able to connect and share this passion with others through her website, her social media presence, and her coveted speaking engagements.

Blog Comments

[…] rolls! But if you’re NOT familiar with that trend, you really should give it a try with my Speedy Cinnamon Rolls. The combination will not […]

5 stars
Great recipe! I used the rapid rise yeast and followed the recipe and they were so yummy. I did have to use a little bit more flour because my dough was sticky. Best homemade cinnamon rolls I have made so far.

Hi Amy –
I’m so happy you enjoyed this cinnamon roll recipe. My family loves these cinnamon rolls and I just made a double batch for a Christmas dinner at my sister’s house last weekend. I’m glad you realized the dough need a little more flour and went with it. There are lots of things that can make the amount of flour needed vary.
Thanks for your comment here,
Chef Alli

5 stars
All the gluten!!! Yummy! Thank you for giving me the chance to look like a rock star… FINALLY! (I have struggled with cinnamon rolls)

Hi Beth –
Thanks goodness for GLUTEN!!! Right???? Completely and totally YUMMY….you are correct. So glad I could help you be the rock star you are – my pleasure. 🙂
Sincerely,
Chef Alli

These are definitely the fastest and easiest cinnamon rolls I’ve ever made! They bake up nice and light too! The icing is just sweet enough! Definitely a keeper!

Hi Clyta –
I’m so glad you enjoyed this cinnamon roll recipe. It’s supposed to snow and rain tomorrow here in NE Kansas so I think a pan of these cinnamon rolls will be a hit for my guys – I better get busy.
Thanks so much for you comment.
Sincerely,
Chef Alli

I saw your Jumbo Cinnamon Rolls on FB Live tonight – they look delicious and I am going to make them this weekend for my family. You make the process look so fun and easy. We love your recipes Alli.

Hi Maureen –
I’m so glad you could watch the FB Live cinnamon roll segment this eve – thanks for being there. I’m not sure why in the heck it’s taken me SO LONG to figure out a better way of cutting the dough to make the jumbo cinnamon rolls….good grief! Any cinnamon roll is a gift, but a JUMBO cinnamon roll really takes the cake!!
Your fan,
Alli

5 stars
I’ve made this recipe before. Absolutley loved them. I can’t wait to make the jumbo ones‼️??

Hi Debi –
Let me know when you make the jumbo cinnamon rolls using this recipe. I’m going to make an entire new post for the jumbo cinnamon rolls, too. I want to show the new way of cutting the dough to make it easier when rolling up the rolls. Cinnamon roll heaven!!!
Thanks for your comment here,
Chef Alli

5 stars
Love the tips on how to raise dough in the oven and putting the tail of the roll underneath the roll when placing them on the pan!! For the frosting, I like to add a couple drops of maple flavoring in the powdered sugar. So good!!!!

Hi Peggy –
Thanks so much – I love it when I can share helpful tips for making cooking/baking easier. Love your idea of the maple flavoring in the frosting – sometimes I even add a bit of coffee, too. Hard to go wrong with ANY kind of cinnamon roll and frosting – right?? So heavenly.
Let’s Keep Cookin’,
Chef Alli

What size pan do you recommend? You mentioned putting them on a baking sheet. A cookie baking sheet with no sides? Or a 9×13 baking pan?

Hi Patricia – Thank you for pointing this out to me. I made an adjustment to the recipe so the pan size is noted. I use a rimmed baking sheet that is 13″ x 18″ in size. Sorry that was clear previously!
Sincerely,
Chef Alli

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