Best Cinnamon Rolls | Midwest Living

Best Cinnamon Rolls

Best Cinnamon Rolls

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  • Makes: 24 servings
  • Yield: 24 rolls
  • Prep 45 mins
  • Rise 2 hrs to 2 hrs
  • Bake 25 mins to 30 mins

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White cake mix makes these cinnamon rolls a cut above the rest.


  • 2 packages active dry yeast
  • 2 1/2 cups lukewarm water (105 degrees to 115 degrees F)
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 package white cake mix
  • 6 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 egg
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup butter, melted
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 4 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 recipe Powdered Sugar Icing (see recipe below)


  1. For dough, in a very large mixing bowl, stir the yeast into 1/2 cup of the warm water; add the 1 teaspoon sugar. Let the mixture stand for 5 minutes or until the mixture is foamy.
  2. Stir the cake mix, 1 cup of the flour, the egg, oil, salt, and the remaining water into yeast mixture. Beat with an electric mixer on high speed for 3 minutes, scraping sides of bowl constantly. Using a wooden spoon, stir in the remaining flour to form a soft dough. (Dough will be sticky.)
  3. Cover and let rise about 1 hour or until doubled.
  4. Lightly grease two 13x9x2-inch baking pans. Set aside. Stir dough down. Cover and let rise again until doubled (about 30 minutes). Stir dough again. Divide in half. Turn 1 portion of the dough out onto a well-floured surface*. Turn to coat lightly with flour. Roll or pat the dough into a 12x8-inch rectangle. Brush with half of the melted butter.
  5. For filling, in a small mixing bowl, combine the 1 cup sugar and the cinnamon. Sprinkle half of the filling over dough. Roll up, jelly-roll style, starting from one of the long sides. Pinch edge to seal.
  6. Cut crosswise into 12 pieces. Arrange, cut sides down, in a prepared pan. Repeat with the remaining dough, remaining butter and remaining filling. Cover loosely; let the dough rise in a warm place until nearly doubled (about 30 to 45 minutes).
  7. Uncover pans. Place a baking sheet under each of the pans. Bake in a 350 degrees F oven for 25 to 30 minutes or until lightly brown and rolls sound hollow when lightly tapped.
  8. Invert onto serving plates. Drizzle Powdered Sugar Icing over warm rolls. Serve warm.


  • * For easier handling, chill dough 1 hour before rolling or patting out.

Make Ahead Tip

  • Make Ahead Directions: Prepare as directed except do not let rolls rise after shaping. Cover loosely with oiled waxed paper, then with plastic wrap. Chill for 2 to 24 hours. Before baking let rolls stand, covered, for 30 minutes at room temperature. Uncover and bake as directed.


  • German Chocolate Pecan Rolls: Prepare dough as for Best Cinnamon Rolls, except substitute 1 package (2-layer size) your favorite dark chocolate cake mix for the white cake mix. For filling: Omit cinnamon and add 1 1/4 cups miniature semisweet chocolate pieces and 1 cup flaked or shredded coconut to the sugar. Shape the rolls as directed. In a saucepan, melt 2/3 cup butter. Stir in 1 1/3 cups packed brown sugar and 1/3 cup light-colored corn syrup. Cook and stir until sugar melts. Remove from heat. Stir in 2 cups coarsely chopped pecans. Divide pecan mixture between prepared pans. Slice each roll of dough into 12 pieces. Arrange 12 pieces, cut sides down, in each of the prepared pans. Let rise and bake as directed. Turn out rolls onto serving platter immediately after baking. Omit Powdered Sugar Icing.Nutrition Analysis: 532 calories, 7 g protein, 75 g carb., 24 g total fat (10 g sat. fat), 27 mg cholesterol, 3 g fiber, 5% Vitamin A, 0% Vitamin C, 301 mg sodium, 4% calcium, 15% iron

Powdered Sugar Icing


  • 4 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 3 - 4 tablespoons milk


  1. In a medium bowl stir together powdered sugar, vanilla, and enough milk (3 to 4 tablespoons) to make drizzling consistency.

Nutrition Facts

(Best Cinnamon Rolls)

Servings Per Recipe 24, Trans fatty acid (g) 0, pro. (g) 5, vit. A (IU) 49, iron (mg) 2, cal. (kcal) 356, calcium (mg) 61, Fat, total (g) 8, Thiamin (mg) 0, carb. (g) 67, chol. (mg) 14, Riboflavin (mg) 0, Pyridoxine (Vit. B6) (mg) 0, Monounsaturated fat (g) 4, Niacin (mg) 2, sat. fat (g) 2, fiber (g) 1, Cobalamin (Vit. B12) (µg) 0, Polyunsaturated fat (g) 2, Folate (µg) 93, Potassium (mg) 80, sodium (mg) 213, sugar (g) 37, vit. C (mg) 0

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