Cinnamon Rolls

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[Update 1/12/16: I made these rolls last weekend for the first time since I posted this recipe.  I changed the recipe up a little bit for experimentation, and ended up liking the new recipe more.  I added more butter (yikes, I know), tried traditional scalded milk instead of buttermilk, and used a different icing.  The original recipe is in the body of the post, and the new recipe is on a recipe card at the bottom of the post.  The new rolls are more fluffy, but if you prefer the old recipe, it’s still there, no worries!  I also updated some new pictures, since my photography has gotten significantly better (but still left the old ones with instructions and whatnot).  Hope you guys love!  Xo.]

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Guys.

These are so good.

Have you ever had like, a really really really good cinnamon roll?  Not like a Cinnabon one, but a really delicious, homemade cinnamon roll?  It’s a special kind of experience everyone should get to have.

I’m happy to report that you may now make your own if you truly wish to experience the phenomenon of eating an out-of-this-world cinnamon roll.

I have truly done it.  I have created the perfect cinnamon rolls.

They take pretty much all day to make, but they’re super easy.  I promise, you can make these!  Just make sure you have new yeast and everything is going to be okay.  You can do anything.

Sara Lynn: motivator and cinnamon roll goddess.

Maybe that’s a little dramatic.  Maybe it’s not.  Maybe you should make these cinnamon rolls and let me know if you think that I’m a cinnamon roll goddess.

A disclaimer about the following pictures:

1. My nail color randomly changes from red to sparkly pink because I got my nails done while the dough was rising.  I highly recommend you find something time consuming to do while you wait because cinnamon rolls take a long time to rise and a long time to make in general (but still so worth it).

2. The pictures change from good quality to bad quality because, again, they take a while to make and I ran out of daylight.

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Shall we get started?

Cinnamon Rolls:

1/2 c. warm water

1 package instant yeast

1/2 c. + 1 Tbs. sugar

1/4 tsp. salt

1/2 c. buttermilk

1 egg

1/3 c. melted butter

4 1/2 c. flour

Filling:

1/2 stick butter

1/2 c. brown sugar

1/2 c. white sugar

2 1/2 Tbs. cinnamon

Pinch salt

Icing:

4 oz. cream cheese

2 Tbs. butter

1 1/2-2 c. powdered sugar (depending on how sweet you like your icing!)

1/2 tsp. vanilla

2-3 Tbs. milk, to thin

Pinch salt

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First, you’re going to want to mix together your warm water, yeast, and a tablespoon of sugar.  Set it aside to double in size!

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Mix 1/2 c. sugar, flour, and salt in a bowl.

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Nice and doubled!  Yay!

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Mix together buttermilk, egg, and butter.

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Add half of the flour mixture until it’s incorporated.

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Add the yeast mixture and stir together.

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It might not mix very well because it’s going to be very lumpy and thin like pancake batter.

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Mix in the rest of the flour and knead a few times with your hands.

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Knead until smooth and beautiful.

Set aside in a warm place covered with plastic wrap or a towel.  Let rise for 1-2 hours.

*insert random photo and nail color change*

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Once it has risen, punch the dough a few times.DSCN4128

Roll until about 1/8 inch thick.

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Brush with melted butter.

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Mix together cinnamon, sugars, and salt for your filling.

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And spread it all around!

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Roll it up.

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Brush it with more butter (sorry cholesterol).

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Cut into rolls that are about 2 inches wide.  You should have about 8 pretty ones.

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And a few not so pretty ones 🙁  Oops!

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Brush a parchment lined casserole dish with more butter.

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Sprinkle with remaining cinnamon and sugar.

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Line the cinnamon rolls in the casserole dish.  Set them aside, covered, to rise for another hour or two.

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Look how pretty!!!  (That top left one is so sad.  Poor little guy.  Still delicious).

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Bake at 350* F for about 14-16 minutes, or until a light golden brown.

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Meanwhile, mix together the icing!  Whip butter and cream cheese together until incorporated.  Add sifted powdered sugar and vanilla.  Thin with milk.

(Uhm, is this not just the worst picture you’ve ever seen?  Did I even try?  Just trust me, it’s a delicious icing).

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Yay, they’re baked and beautiful!

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Spread frosting over warm cinnamon rolls.

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Hell yeah.

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Do you see that cinnamon filling?  Oh my gosh.  I might go grab one of my extras from the freezer right now.  They’re sooooo good.

Which reminds me, if you have too many because you made 11 cinnamon rolls and you live by yourself, just go ahead, wrap them in some plastic wrap individually and then place them in freezer bags.  They’ll stay good for a few months and you can indulge in cinnamon bun goodness whenever you want!

Go make these.  Right.  Now.

cinnamon roll recipe

cinnamon roll icing

* Notes*:  1. I use my mixer with dough hook, but these can also be made with a mixing bowl and wooden spoon!  I’ve done tries both methods and either works! 2. If your dough won’t rise, try heating oven to 250* F, turning oven off, and placing covered bowl of dough in warm oven (make sure bowl is oven proof!).  Leave alone for 2 hours.  3. If dough still won’t rise, your yeast is probably old.  Buy new yeast and start again.  4. Rolls can be made one night, and baked in the morning!  Just form the rolls and let them do their second rise in the fridge overnight (8-12 hours).  In the morning, remove from fridge, and let warm up for about an hour.  They will take longer to bake (upwards of about 30 or 40 minutes, so don’t worry if they don’t bake quickly!  Cover with foil halfway through if they start to brown too much.)

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*Song of the Day: Won’t You Come Over by Devendra Banhart

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Soft Sugar Cookies with Sour Cream Frosting

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I know that you’re probably over cookies right now after the holidays.  You’re probably really over all of my cookie recipes.

And if you’re still doing well with your New Year’s resolution to work out and eat healthy, then you’re probably mad at me for rubbing these in your face.

I get it.  I’m over cookies/shouldn’t be looking at pictures of cookies too, but for some reason that’s not stopping me.

They’re actually a copycat Swig recipe from Vintage Revivals.  I’ve never actually been to Swig, which I’m sad about because they’re located in St. George which I used to pass by at least once a month when my family and I would go to our cabin.  But if I ever end up in St. George again, I’ll stop by and give you an update.  Mandi from Vintage Revivals claims that these are not only the best sugar cookies ever, but the best cookies ever in general.

And while I wouldn’t say they’re the best cookies I’ve ever had, I would agree that they’re pretty damn good.  Plus my friends were obsessed with them soooo…

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Anyways, sorry I haven’t posted in a week (or two or something).  I’ve had food poisoning for the past few days, which makes me both repulsively nauseous and ravenously hungry, which seems contradicting, because it is.

Anyways, today I actually made myself get out of bed (I’ve been on a Friends Netflix marathon for 3 days since I’ve been sick) and organize my closet, run some errands, and clean my house, which makes me feel a little better about the Friends marathon.

Now that I’ve told you all about my gross sickness, here’s a delicious recipe!

I’m the best.

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*Recipe slightly adapted from Vintage Revivals*

Cookie Ingredients:

1 c. butter, softened

3/4 c. vegetable oil

1 1/4 c. sugar + 1/4 c. extra for top

3/4 c. powdered sugar

2 Tbs. water

2 eggs

1 tsp. vanilla

1/2 tsp. baking soda

1/2 tsp. cream of tartar

1 tsp. salt

5 1/2 c. flour

Frosting Ingredients:

1/2 c. butter, softened

3/4 c. sour cream

1 1/2-2 c. powdered sugar

1/4 tsp. salt

1/4 c. milk

1 tsp. vanilla

Sprinkles (optional–I actually only used them for pictures)

Preheat oven to 350* F.

Cream together the butter, vegetable oil, sugars, water, eggs, and vanilla.  Combine dry ingredients and add to wet ingredients in increments.  Mix until well incorporated, but not overmixed.  Roll into larger balls–about 2 inches.

Spread remaining sugar onto a plate.  Using the bottom of a glass (I found the wine glass was best), press the bottom into the sugar, and use the bottom of the glass to flatten each cookie.  If the sugar won’t stick at first, slightly dampen the bottom of your glass by rubbing water on with your finger.

Bake for about 8-10 minutes, or until the bottoms are slightly brown.

Cool.

Meanwhile, for the frosting, cream the butter and sour cream until smooth.  Add powdered sugar, salt, and vanilla until it is a thick frosting.  Thin to desired consistency with milk.

Spread frosting on cooled cookies.  Add sprinkles, if desired.  Keep in fridge until ready to serve.

Enjoy!

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According to Vintage Revival’s instructions, the cookies should be cold while the frosting is room temp in order to get the real Swig experience.  I wouldn’t know, but I’m sure it’s a good combo.  Since I didn’t have time to frost cold cookies as my guests were coming in, I left them in the fridge and let them come slightly to room temp.  I also added vanilla because I think every baked good should have vanilla in them.

XO Sara