Quick Cinnamon Rolls

My cinnamon roll cravings come on fast, so it’s a good thing that these come together in just about an hour.

Adapted from America’s Test Kitchen

Makes 8


4 teaspoons (2 packets) instant/rapid rise yeast

1 1/4 cups plus 2 tablespoons whole milk, divided

3/4 cup light brown sugar

5 teaspoons plus 1/4 cup, divided

1 tablespoon cinnamon

1 teaspoon kosher salt, divided

10 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided

1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract, divided

2 3/4 cups AP flour

2 1/2 teaspoon baking powder

3 ounces cream cheese, softened

3/4 cup powdered sugar


Line the bottom of a 9-inch round baking pan with parchment paper and spray with non-stick spray.


Mix yeast with 1/4 cup cup 110 degree and 1 teaspoon sugar. Let stand 6-8 minutes (mixture will foam).


Meanwhile, mix brown sugar, 1/4 cup sugar, cinnamon, 1/8 teaspoon salt, 2 tablespoons melted butter and vanilla. Mixture will look and feel like wet sand. Set aside.


Whisk together flour, baking powder, 3/4 teaspoon salt and 4 teaspoons sugar. Add yeast mixture, 2 tablespoons melted butter, and 1 cup room-temperature milk. Stir until shaggy (don’t worry about any dry bits).


Turn out onto a lightly dusted counter and knead 2 minutes. Roll out to 9 x 12-inch rectangle. Brush with 2 tablespoons melted butter, except the top 1/2-inch of the length. Spread with cinnamon mixture (again, leaving the top 1/2-inch bare) and roll tightly, seam-side down. Cut into 8 equal slices. Pat down and place in baking pan. Brush top with 2 tablespoons melted butter. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise for 30 minutes. Preheat oven to 350 degree.


Remove plastic wrap and bake for 22 minutes, rotating halfway through baking.


Mix cream cheese, 2 tablespoons softened butter, 2 tablespoons milk, 1/2 teaspoon vanilla, 1/8 teaspoon salt until smooth. Spread over rolls once they have cooled slightly.