Well…the time commitment. Even supposedly “quick and easy” recipes take three hours. The problem is the yeast. It takes a while. Like multiple-long-rises a while. Add to that the fact that working with yeast strikes fear into the hearts of many casual bakers. I’ve learned that yeast is nothing to fear, but still. When I want cinnamon rolls, I want them *now.* Not in three or six or eight hours–NOW.
I clearly have some pretty serious breakfast pastry needs.
What if I told you that you could have some seriously good cinnamon rolls on your table in less than 90 minutes? And that you didn’t have to proof any yeast or let anything rise? Would you be interested?
Yeah, I thought so.
Enter Mini Biscuit Cinnamon Rolls. All the sweet cinnamon goodness of classic cinnamon rolls, wrapped up in a delightfully easy cream biscuit dough and positively smothered in cream cheese frosting. Oh my word, are these good. And they’re miniature, because tiny food just tastes better somehow.
The dough base is the same as the one I used in my Scratch Biscuit Monkey Bread. It’s super easy: mix together flour, sugar, salt, and baking powder, and stir in 2 cups of cream (I said quick and easy, not healthy). That’s it. Seriously easy. I do not recommend using a regular buttermilk biscuit dough here–the butter in that dough must be kept cold, or your results will be bricks. No, thank you. This simple cream biscuit dough has no butter, so it doesn’t need to be kept absolutely frigid to bake up properly. Using this base, you can roll and flip and handle the dough as much as you want!
Once the dough is made, divide it in half. Take one half and roll it into a large rectangle on a floured surface. Then, take some butter that’s been spiked with granulated sugar, dark brown sugar, cinnamon, and salt, and spread it over the whole thing, leaving only a thin border. Gently roll the long edge of the dough toward your body until you have a tight cylinder.
Cut the rolled dough into 1-inch rolls and place them close together in a buttered pan. Repeat that process with the other half of the dough, and then bake the rolls for 15-20 minutes at 400F.
Make a half-batch of my cream cheese frosting, and spread it over the warm rolls. Yes, this is a lot of frosting, but that’s how I roll. <–Ha! Roll.
If a metric ton of frosting isn’t your thing, you may halve the recipe. The frosting will melt into every nook and cranny of the cinnamon rolls and make everything super gooey and delicious. In fact, the frosting is so thick, I had a hard time seeing while cutting out individual rolls–but when they’re this good, I don’t care if they’re totally gorgeous. The tang of the frosting with the fluffy biscuit base and sweet cinnamon filling is just…everything.
So, the next time you have a craving for cinnamon rolls, make these Mini Biscuit Cinnamon Rolls. In less than 90 minutes, you’ll be tucking into a full pan of amazingness, and you won’t have fretted over yeast or waited an eternity! These are perfect for any weekend morning or brunch party. Nobody can resist these sweet little rolls 😊
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup dark brown sugar, packed
2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon Kosher or sea salt
3 cups all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 teaspoon Kosher or sea salt
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 pint (2 cups) heavy cream, cold
4-ounces (1/2 brick) full-fat cream cheese, softened to room temperature
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
2 cups confectioner’s sugar
pinch of Kosher or sea salt
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 400F. Grease a 9-inch round cake pan with butter. Set aside.
Make the filling. In a small mixing bowl, use a fork to mash together softened unsalted butter, granulated sugar, dark brown sugar, cinnamon, and salt, until it’s completely combined. Set aside.
Make the biscuit dough. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together flour, granulated sugar, salt, and baking powder. Use a silicone spatula or wooden spoon to fold in heavy cream, making sure to scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl. Dough will be shaggy. Divide dough in halves.
On a floured surface, roll half the dough into a 14×8-inch rectangle. Use an offset knife (or butter knife) to spread half the filling onto the rectangle, leaving a 1-inch border at the edge. Starting at the long edge furthest away from your body, tightly roll the dough toward you until you have one large cylinder. Slice into 1-inch pieces, and place close together in the prepared pan. Repeat process with the second half of the dough.
Bake rolls for 15-20 minutes, until light golden and fully cooked. Let cool ten minutes while you make the frosting.
In a large mixing bowl, use an electric mixer to beat cream cheese and butter until light and fluffy. Beat in confectioner’s sugar and salt, followed by vanilla. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as necessary. Drop frosting in dollops over the top of the warm rolls. Spread with an offset knife to cover the entire top of the rolls. Let set for ten minutes before serving.
Mini Biscuit Cinnamon Rolls are best served the day they are made, but may be kept covered at room temperature for up to three days.