pioneer woman cinnamon rolls – pinterest finds friday.

i love pinterest for crafts and diy projects, obviously, but i also love finding all the food recipes. there are great healthy snacks and dinner ideas and then there are recipes that i am sure make me gain a pound just looking at the photograph.  for this pinterest finds friday installment, i went with food.  and food that will most definitely NOT fall into the healthy snack category.

it all started when the husband asked if i could make something special for his morning presentation on friday, today.  i immediately went to pinterest and found pioneer woman’s cinnamon rolls.  apparently, they are out of this world amazing.  i have never made homemade cinnamon rolls, so i felt it would be a great challenge!

here is the original pin:

click for source.

here is the original, pioneer woman cinnamon roll recipe. i rolled my sleeves up yesterday morning and finished last night.  it was not a “work every minute of the day” on this recipe kinda deal.  it was more, make the dough, let is rise for an hour. add some flour, let is rise for an hour.  punch it down, then refrigerate it for 3-4 hours.  refrigeration is optional but i highly recommend it.  it makes the dough less sticky (aka, pain in the ass to deal with) and the rolls hold their shape better.  i mean, if you are going to spend all this time making something homemade, you might as well make it pretty.

here is the recipe:

ingredients for the rolls:
1 quart whole milk
1 cup vegetable oil
1 cup sugar
2 packages active dry yeast, 0.25 ounce packets
8 cups (plus 1 cup extra, separated) all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon (heaping) baking powder
1 teaspoon (scant) baking soda
1 tablespoon (heaping) salt
2-3 cups of melted butter
2 cups sugar
generous sprinkling of cinnamon

for the maple frosting:
1 bag 2lb. powdered sugar
2 teaspoons maple flavoring
½ cups milk
¼ cups melted Butter
¼ cups brewed coffee
⅛ teaspoons salt


  • for the dough, heat the milk, vegetable oil, and sugar in a medium saucepan over medium heat to just below a boil. set aside and cool to warm. sprinkle the yeast on top and let it sit on the milk for 1 minute.
  • add 8 cups of the flour. stir until just combined, then cover with a clean kitchen towel, and set aside in a relatively warm place for 1 hour. after 1 hour, remove the towel and add the baking powder, baking soda, salt, and the remaining 1 cup flour. Stir thoroughly to combine. use the dough right away, or place in a mixing bowl and refrigerate for up to 3 days, punching down the dough if it rises to the top of the bowl. (note: dough is easier to work with if it’s been chilled for at least an hour or so beforehand.)
  • to assemble the rolls, remove half the dough from the bowl. on a floured baking surface, roll the dough into a large rectangle, about 30 x 10 inches. the dough should be rolled very thin.
  • to make the filling, pour 3/4 cup to 1 cup of the melted butter over the surface of the dough. use your fingers to spread the butter evenly. generously sprinkle half of the ground cinnamon and 1 cup of the sugar over the butter.
  • now, beginning at the end farthest from you, roll the rectangle tightly towards you. use both hands and work slowly, being careful to keep the roll tight. don’t worry if the filling oozes as you work; that just means the rolls are going to be divine. when you reach the end, pinch the seam together and flip the roll so that the seam is face down. when you’re finished, you’ll wind up with one long buttery, cinnamony, sugary, gooey log.
here is my rolled up roll of goodness.

after all logs cut and rolls placed in the pans. lots of clean up to be done :)

  • slip a cutting board underneath the roll and with a sharp knife, make 1/2-inch slices. one “log “will produce 20 to 25 rolls. pour a couple of teaspoons of melted butter into disposable foil cake pans and swirl to coat. place the sliced rolls in the pans, being careful not to overcrowd.
  • repeat the rolling/sugar/butter process with the other half of the dough and more pans. preheat the oven to 375°F. cover all the pans with a kitchen towel and set aside to rise on the countertop for at least 20 minutes before baking. Remove the towel and bake for 15 to 18 minutes, until golden brown. don’t allow the rolls to become overly brown.
  • while the rolls are baking, make the maple icing: in a large bowl, whisk together the powdered sugar, milk, butter, coffee, and salt. splash in the maple flavoring. whisk until very smooth. the icing should be somewhat thick but still very pourable.
  • remove pans from the oven. immediately drizzle icing over the top. be sure to get it all around the edges and over the top. as they sit, the rolls will absorb some of the icing’s moisture and flavor.

this recipe made a TON of rolls. which is perfect in my book.  it was a lot of work, so if there is lots to freeze and enjoy later the better in my eyes.  i sent the husband off with three large rectangle pans (40+ rolls) and i have two small 8×8 pans in the freezer waiting for out of town thanksgiving guests.  thats right, i am already planning for november cooking. below are the rolls after they had risen.  now ready for the oven.

all done. baked and iced and ready to go.

i intentionally made these with all-purpose regular flour.  i didn’t want the temptation.  i may play around with a smaller batch of gluten free rolls.  i can’t to hear how these were when the husband comes home tonight. i did give him two last night and he enjoyed them.  quote, “these may be the best thing you have ever made.”

i have my supplies ready (now i just need to find the time) to work on the pinterest find for next week. i am super excited!

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