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The Pioneer Woman’s (Crazy Good) Cinnamon Rolls

These are not gluten free. These are not vegan. Not dairy free, either. However, they are incredibility good, surprising easy to make, and are an amazing way to kick off your morning (if you are not gluten free, vegan, or dairy free, that is). I do realize this is a gluten free or vegan blog. I do see the utter irony that I, someone who is trying to be gluten free, is posting a ‘bread’ recipe. Well, none of us are perfect…. right?

The Pioneer Woman, the godmother of food blogs. A self proclaimed “desperate housewife” Ree Drummond’s  blog has  recipes, photography, and stories from life on the ranch. Oh, she also has published two cookbooks and is hosting a show on the Food Network. Her recipes are hearty, homey, and can be found in many kitchens around the world. This recipe comes from her massive archive, and is one I am looking forward to making again.

Back to the rolls…

While in Florida for Thanksgiving I hoped to have some quality kitchen time with my mom during our time together (Hi Mom!). She had been telling me about PW’s cinnamon rolls for a few years now, and how unbelievably good they are, so we decided to make them for breakfast for the following day. Starting the afternoon before, we made the dough and let it set in a warm place. The dough double in size in a few hours, we punched it down, and let it rise again over night. The next morning, we got an early start making the filling and icing. Rolling out the dough, we drizzled the melted butter and sprinkled the cinnamon sugar on the dough, then rolled it up. Cutting into about 1/2 inch thick slices, we made about 50 rolls. No joke. Try to resist eating all in one sitting, and freeze a few tins for future breakfasts.

cinnrolls_doughrising cinnrolls_doughrolled

While the rolls are baking, make the glaze. This is cruel because you will be standing in close proximity to the baking rolls and the smell will drive you bonkers. Totally bonkers. Once the rolls are done place on a cooling rack, still in the tins, and start to glaze. The amount of glaze is up to you, but my advice: be generous. I mean, it is common knowledge  cinnamon rolls aren’t considered “health food”, so go for it. Glaze away.

Cinnamon Rolls - Dough with Butter, Cinnamon & Sugar Cinnamon Rolls Cooling

Once cooled, or you have hit your breaking point, serve with a side of fruit and a hot cup of coffee. Or if no one is looking, eat straight from the pan.

Susan… how does a cinnamon roll face off sound????

Sidebar: I don’t have celiac disease, but gluten doesn’t tend to agree with my system, so I try to live my life as gluten free as possible. I held out as long as I could… I promise. But I caved. I am weak, and I freely admit it.

Pioneer Woman’s Cinnamon Rolls
Taken directly from

Makes about 40-50 rolls

1 quart whole milk
1 c vegetable oil
1 c sugar
2 packets of active dry yeast (0.25 ounce packets)
8 c (plus one c extra, separated) all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1 tbsp salt
3/4 – 1 lb melted butter
2 c sugar

1 bag powdered sugar
2 tsp maple flavoring – if you can’t find, feel free to use vanilla extract or 1 tbsp of maple syrup
1/2 c milk
1/4 c melted butter
1/4 c brewed coffee
1/8 tsp salt

Someone was also interested in the cinnamon rolls...

waiting for something to fall from the counter…

To start the dough, heat the milk, oil, and sugar in a medium sauce pan over medium heat just before a boil. Transfer to a large blow, set aside and let cool to warm. Sprinkle the yeast on top and let sit on the milk for 1 minute. Add the 8 c of flour, and stir until just combined. Cover with a clean kitchen towel, and let rest in a relatively warm place for about 1 hour. After an hour, add the baking soda, baking powder, and remaining cup of flour, stir again to combine. Use the dough right away, or refrigerate up to 3 days. If dough rises above the bowl, punch down. We let refrigerate for 1 day, and the dough was very easy to work with.

Assemble the rolls by removing half the dough from the bowl. On a floured surface, roll the dough into a large rectangle, about 30 x 10 inches. The dough should be rolled very thin. Start the filling by pouring 3/4 c to 1 c of melted butter over the surface of the dough, using your fingers to spread evenly. Generously sprinkle cinnamon and 1 c of sugar over the butter. Let the rolling begin… start at the furthest end from you by rolling the rectangle tightly towards you. Use both hand and work slowly, or get a second pair of hands to help! Reminder: roll tight. The filling will start to come out the side, but don’t fret, and keep rollin’. When you have reached the end, pinch the seam together and flip the roll so the seam is face down. Slip a cutting board underneath the roll, and cut into 1/2 inch slices. Pour some melted butter into disposable foil cake pans and swirl to coat. Place the sliced rolls in the pan, being careful not to overcrowd.

Repeat the same process with the other half of the dough.Preheat the over to 375. Cover the pans with a kitchen towel and let rise for about 20 minutes. Remove towel, and bake for about 15-18 minutes, until golden brown. Don’t over cook.While the rolls are baking, make the glaze. In a large bowl, whisk together the powdered sugar, milk, melted butter, coffee, and salt. Add the maple flavoring. Whisk until smooth. Add more ingredients if the glaze isn’t somewhat thick, but pourable.

Cinnamon Rolls and Fruit

Once rolls are done baking, remove and immediately drizzle with the glaze, making sure to get around the side and in between the rolls. Pace yourself, and enjoy…

6 Comments Post a comment
  1. I’m extremely impressed with your writing
    skills as well as with the layout on your blog. Is this a paid theme or did you customize it yourself?
    Either way keep up the nice quality writing, it’s rare to see a nice blog like this one nowadays.

    December 2, 2013
  2. Very nice blog post. I absolutely appreciate this site.
    Stick with it!

    September 30, 2013
  3. Great information. Lucky me I discovered your website
    by accident (stumbleupon). I have bookmarked it for later!

    April 30, 2013
  4. Count me in for a cinnamon roll Face Off…however, the only rule is you can’t use PW’s recipe.

    February 1, 2013
  5. Like your mom, Joanie is crazy for the Pioneer Woman. OK fine, whatever. But I’ve NEVER had a cinnamon roll better than those made by my grandmother, Tutu…so I may have to try these–or better yet, get Joanie to make them.

    February 1, 2013

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