I remember waking on Christmas morning to the smell of homemade cinnamon rolls cooking in the oven. Growing up we got to open our stockings first then we enjoyed delicious Cinnamon Rolls, crispy bacon and fresh squeezed orange juice. After our bellies were full and our fingers sticky from the gooey icing we ran to open presents under the tree. What are your Christmas morning family traditions?
I have carried on this tradition with our kids and I hope it’s something they look forward to just as we did! I’m warning you these are a two day production but if you make these for your family on Christmas morning I PROMISE they will praise you and be SO happy you did! Yes these are indulgent but it’s Christmas morning and after the year we have all had you deserve it!
Best-Ever Cinnamon Rolls
– 4 1/2 to 5 cups all purpose flour in total*
– 1 pkg active dry yeast
– 1 cup milk
– 1/3 cup butter (room temp)
– 1/3 cup sugar
– 3 eggs (room temp)
– 3/4 packed brown sugar
– 1/4 cup all purpose flour
– 1 tbsp ground cinnamon
– 1/2 cup butter (cold as it will be cut up into small squares)
– 1/2 cup light raisins
– 1/2 cup chopped pecans (you can omit but it adds a nice texture to the roll)
Powdered Sugar Glaze
– 1 1/4 cups sifted powdered sugar
– 1 tsp corn syrup
– 1/2 tsp vanilla
– 1-2 tbsp of half and half or light cream
In a large mixer bowl combine 2 1/4 cups of the flour and the yeast. In a small saucepan heat the milk, the 1/3 cup of butter, the 1/3 cup sugar, and salt just till warm (120-130 degrees) and butter is almost melted, stirring constantly. Add to flour mixture. Add 3 eggs. Beat with an electric mixer on low speed for 30 seconds, scraping sides of the bowl constantly. Beat on high speed for 3 minutes. Using a wooden spoon, stir in is as much of the remaining 2 1/4 to 2 3/4 cups flour as you can.
Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Knead in enough of the remaining flour to make a moderately soft dough that is smooth and elastic (3 to 5 minutes total). Shape into a ball. Place in a greased bowl, turning once. Cover; let rise in a warm place until double (about 1 hour).
For filling, combine brown sugar, the 1/4 cup flour, and cinnamon. Cut in remaining butter till crumbly; set aside.
Punch dough down. Turn onto a lightly floured surface. Cover and let rest for 10 minutes. Roll the dough into a 12-inch square.
Sprinkle filling over dough square; top with raisins and pecans. Roll up jelly-roll style, pinch edges to seal. Slice roll into eight 1 1/2 in pieces. Arrange dough pieces, cut side up, in a greased 13x9x2 inch baking pan.
Cover dough loosely with clear plastic wrap, leaving room for rolls to rise. Refrigerate over night. In the morning (about 30 minutes before you want to eat breakfast) uncover the rolls and let stand room temp for 30 minutes. Set oven to 375 degrees. Brush the dough with half and half or light cream. Bake uncovered for 25-30 minutes or until lightly brown. Remove rolls from oven, brush again with half and half or light cream. Cool for 1 minute. Carefully invert cinnamon rolls onto a wire rack. Cool slightly, invert again onto a serving platter. Drizzle with powdered sugar glaze and serve warm. Recipe makes 8 rolls.
These cinnamon rolls are SOOO good! Enjoy and Merry Christmas!