Glazed Cinnamon Rolls

This image courtesy of Joseph DeLeo

These rolls are light but rich, with ample butter and modestly spiced—the amount of cinnamon is not overpowering. The shiny glaze finishes them in a pretty manner.

Cooking Methodbaking


Total Timehalf-day

Make Ahead RecipeYes

Kid FriendlyYes

Mealbreakfast, brunch

Taste and Texturebuttery, rich, sweet

Type of Dishyeast bread


  • ¼ cup warm water
  • 1 package dry yeast
  • 1 teaspoon plus ¼ cup sugar
  • 4 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ pound (2 sticks) butter, chilled
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 1 cup milk
  • ¼ cup (½ stick) butter, melted
  • 6 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1½ cups confectioners sugar
  • 2 tablespoons butter, room temperature
  • 1 tablespoon water (a trifle more may be needed to make a manageable glaze)


  1. Put the warm water in a small bowl and sprinkle the yeast over. Add 1 teaspoon sugar, stir, and let dissolve for 5 minutes.

  2. In a large mixing bowl, stir together the flour, ¼ cup sugar, and salt with a fork to mix them well. Cut the butter into pieces the size of small grapes and add to the flour mixture. Using either your hands or a pastry blender, rub or cut the butter into the flour mixture until it is distributed and there are coarse little lumps of butter throughout. Stir in the yeast mixture, the egg yolks, and milk. Beat until blended. Cover with plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator at least 6 hours (this dough can be refrigerated for 12 to 14 hours).

  3. Divide the dough in half. On a lightly floured board, roll out half the dough into a rectangle about 10 by 12 inches. Spread 2 table-spoons of the melted butter over the rectangle. Mix the remaining 6 tablespoons sugar and the 1 teaspoon cinnamon together in a small bowl. Sprinkle half the sugar mixture evenly over the rectangle. Starting with the wide side, roll up the rectangle like a jelly roll. Divide the roll into 12 pieces by first cutting the roll into 4 equal portions, then cutting each portion into 3. Put the rolls cut side down in a greased muffin tin. Repeat these steps with the other half of the dough. Cover loosely and let rise for 1 hour.

  4. Bake in a preheated 400°F oven for 20 to 25 minutes. Remove the rolls and put them on a rack set over a piece of waxed paper. To make the glaze, sift the confectioners” sugar into a small bowl, then beat in the butter and water until smooth. Spoon a little of the glaze over each roll while still hot.


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Cinnamon rolls are one of those delightful dishes that everyone likes to have for breakfast, or after an especially hard day. I love the gooey texture, and my favorite icings are the ones that use cream cheese. The rich and tangy flavor profile gets me every time I make them.


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