Vanilla Pudding Cinnamon Rolls

Per the requests I got after my last cinnamon roll post, here is the recipe for my tried-and-true vanilla pudding cinnamon rolls with cream cheese frosting. The vanilla pudding is simply added to the dough to make it extremely soft and pliable – and oh, does it ever. (No surprise, this recipe comes direct from my Aunt Marilyn whose recipes have made a great showing on this blog already.) I made these last week and it confirmed my feelings: I am in love with these cinnamon rolls. The dough is so extremely tender and soft, it will blow your mind, and the cream cheese goodness of the frosting is beyond delicious. The filling is made up of brown sugar and cinnamon and it gives a great richness to the standard cinnamon and white sugar combo. Oh my, these really are so good. I’m glad several of you requested the recipe because it gave me a chance to make them and reaffirm my vow to continue making them – it also gave me a great excuse to eat about 13 of them.

Vanilla Pudding Cinnamon Rolls with Cream Cheese Frosting

Vanilla Pudding Cinnamon Rolls with Cream Cheese Frosting

Note: to use instant yeast instead of active dry yeast, decrease the yeast amount to 1 1/2 tablespoons instant yeast. Still mix it with the water and sugar but you don’t need to wait for it to proof – just continue with the recipe, adding in the yeast/water mixture where indicated. Also, as with all yeast doughs, I never use the flour amount called for in the recipe as a hard fast rule (unless a weight measure is given and then I pull out my kitchen scale). Because humidity, temperature, altitude and a multitude of other factors can impact how much flour you need in your yeast doughs, I always judge when to quit adding flour by the texture and look and feel of the dough rather than how much flour I’ve added compared to the recipe. This tutorial on yeast may help identify how a perfectly floured dough should be.


  • ½ cup warm water
  • 2 tablespoons active dry yeast
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 3 ½ ounce package instant vanilla pudding
  • ½ cup butter, melted
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 6+ cups flour
  • Filling:
  • 1 cup butter, softened to room temperature
  • 2 cups brown sugar
  • 4 teaspoons cinnamon
  • Frosting:
  • 8 ounces cream cheese
  • ½ cup butter, softened to room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 3 cups confectioner’s sugar
  • 2-3 tablespoons milk


  1. In a small bowl combine water, yeast and sugar. Stir until dissolved. Set aside. In large bowl, take pudding mix and prepare according to package directions. Add butter, eggs and salt. Mix well. Then add yeast mixture. Blend. Gradually add flour; knead until smooth. Do not overflour the dough! It should be very soft but not sticky. Place in a greased bowl. Cover and let rise until doubled. Then roll out on floured board to 34 X 21 inches in size. Take 1 cup soft butter and spread over surface. In bowl, mix 2 cups brown sugar and 4 teaspoons cinnamon. Sprinkle over the top. Roll up very tightly. With knife put a notch every 1 1/2 inches. Cut with thread or serrated knife. Place on lightly greased cookie sheet 1 inch apart. Cover and let rise until double again.
  2. Bake at 350 degrees for 15-20 minutes. Remove when they start to turn golden (don’t overbake). Frost warm rolls with cream cheese frosting (combine butter and cream cheese and mix well, then add vanilla and sugar and mix again, then add milk for desired consistency). Makes about 24 very large rolls.


Freezable Recipe: After shaping the rolls and placing them on the baking sheet, cover with lightly greased saran wrap and a layer of tin foil. Store in the freezer. The night before you want to serve them take out the rolls and put them in the refrigerator. Let them thaw in the refrigerator. Take them out about 8-9 hours after being in the refrigerator and let them rise until doubled. Bake according to the recipe. (If you have less time, you can take the rolls out of the freezer and let them come to room temperature on the counter – about 4 hours, then let rise until doubled).

342 Responses to Vanilla Pudding Cinnamon Rolls with Cream Cheese Frosting

  1. Dani & Jake says:

    Okay so I just found these and I can’t wait to try them! I am going to be making them for my family’s christmas party but I want to make them before just to make sure I know how to do it. Is it possible to 1/2 the recipe and still turn out okay?

  2. Melanie says:

    Dani and Jake – I’ve never halved the recipe because it’s a little tricky trying to halve the pudding part of it, but I’m sure you could make it work if you take care to get exactly 1/2 of the pudding mix out of the packet. One tip, in case you don’t want to mess with that, is that these freeze exceptionally well. You can freeze them after shaping them into cinnamon rolls – don’t let them rise on the pan, instead cover them with foil (a double layer) and then freeze. Take them out of the freezer about 6 hours before you want to bake them. Good luck!

  3. Kris & Amy Morris says:

    These are AMAZING! The pudding makes these so wonderful! And the frosting… holy cow! I could have eaten the entire bowl! Thanks for this awesome recipe!

  4. Melanie says:

    Kris and Amy Morris – just to let you know…anyone who loves these cinnamon rolls is automatically updated to BFF status so I guess you are kind of stuck with me as your cinnamon soul mate. I’m so glad you liked them…thanks for letting me know!

  5. Melanie says:

    JM – glad these rolls have been a hit with all you have shared with. Thanks for checking in to let me know!

  6. JM says:

    oh, these are lovely little morsels. Okay so there is nothing little about them, but they are divine! I made them today and have shared, and everyone has said good things. Thanks for sharing!


  7. Melanie says:

    Hey Melody – could it be that they need to be baked longer to get rid of the doughy taste? Just a thought. I’m sorry they didn’t work out well for you.

  8. Melody says:


    I don’t know if mine were successful either. I probably started too late last night and I didn’t roll them out to the size you mention. I let them rise to double after making them into rolls and then I refrigerated overnight. I took them out and let them sit for a couple of hours this morning but my husband said they were still “doughy” tasting after I baked them. I may try the instant yeast you mention in your tutorial and see if that makes a difference. I’ll try, try again!

  9. Melanie says:

    Hey Nanci – what a relief and a pleasure to read your comment and realize that yeast tutorial helped someone out! I’m glad that these rolls turned out better the second time!

  10. Nanci & Steve says:

    I’ve never made cinnamon rolls before, and I tired these a couple months ago. Well, they were awful. My yeast didn’t rise at all. AFter reading yoru tutorial on yeast, I decided to try again. Success!! These were so yummy! Thanks for all the wonderful recipes and tips along the way.

  11. Melanie says:

    The Three Amigos – so glad you liked these! Your neighbors are awfully lucky to be living next to you…

  12. The Three Amigos says:

    I just made these today… yum! Thanks for the recipe! Our neighbors heard I was making them and ran right over! Enjoyed by all, thanks!

  13. Melanie says:

    Melissa – thanks so much for your comment. It means a lot to me when someone takes the time to leave me a comment. I’m glad these have become a new tradition! I hope they were just as much a hit last night as they were last year!

  14. Melissa says:

    Hello! I wanted to take a sec to thank you for this great recipe. I made them for the first time last New Year’s and they were such a hit I’m making them again right now to usher in 2010! 🙂 I smell a new tradition in our midst, a delicious one at that.

  15. Melanie says:

    t_patn52 – so very glad you liked these. Adding more flour is not unusual depending on how the flour is measured but I’m glad overall they worked out.

    Julie – thanks for weighing in with your vote – I’m glad you loved these rolls, too!

  16. Julie says:

    I’m t_patn52’s daughter. I requested these rolls this morning and am I glad I did! Wowzers. These things are amazing!!!

  17. Hillviewgoddess says:

    These rolls were amazing!!! I’ve never had rolls this light! However, I did have to add more flour. They were just not ‘workable’ but it didn’t hurt the texture in the least. They were a huge hit with my family!! They had 2 each, (some had more!).
    Thanks for sharing the recipe.

  18. Abby says:

    I was pretty nervous about making these because none of the cinnamon rolls I’ve ever made before have turned out decently. Total garbage usually. But I thought to myself “Melanie never lets you down with a recipe..give it a chance” so I did and I’m SO glad that I did! Total YUM! I had a friend over for dinner (your succulent steak..oh my gosh! YUM again!) and she and my husband both agreed that, yes, these are the best cinnamon rolls ever. They’re not overly perfection. Thanks for another stellar recipe (or two of them, really) keeper! 🙂

  19. Melanie says:

    Abby – your comment was so fun to read. I’m glad you have faith in my recipes…I hope it stays that way (but you still have to let me know if you ever have a bad result!). I’m so glad these cinnamon rolls were a hit…and the steak, too! Thanks for taking the time to let me know.

  20. Danielle says:

    I made these this morning, and they were so delicious. My husband claimed he didn’t want one because he’s “trying to be healthy.” But when they were finished he couldn’t help himself and declared them better than any bakery. My 13-year-old summed it up best when she said,”Freakin’ amazing!” Thanks once again. I had to give some to my primary class or we probably would have eaten them all.

  21. Melanie says:

    Danielle – better than a bakery? You go, girl! That’s high praise from your husband and I hope you took all the credit. Thanks for letting me know!

  22. Michigan says:

    Melanie, My mom made THE best cinnamon rolls and I decided to keep the tradition going. She used pudding for years. This recipe is pretty much like hers, but a little easier to follow! Right now the dough is rising, but I wonder if I kneaded the dough enough…Can you tell me how much kneading is necessary? I am a novice!


  23. Melanie says:

    Hi Glenda – how did the rolls turn out for you? As for kneading, you want to knead until the dough is really smooth and elastic – probably about five minutes in an electric mixer and seven to nine minutes by hand. Good luck!

  24. The Speckled Hen says:

    Thank you for sharing this recipe -these are soooo good. I made them for my BF and he hasn’t stopped raving about them.

  25. Melanie says:

    The Speckled Hen – thanks for checking in to let me know that you liked these! Glad they got rave reviews.

  26. Anissa says:

    I just made these and blogged about them on my new little craft/cooking blog. They are SO DELICIOUS! You’ve got amazing talent!

    ***I copied the recipe into my post and made sure to note where it came from (with links) multiple times. I wasn’t sure if this was “PC” in the blog cooking world since I’m new to it all. If it’s not just let me know and I will only link to it and not put actual recipe in. Thanks again! :)***

  27. Pat says:

    The rolls are amazing and the recipe is very “forgiving” (I added too much butter to the dough). They raised and baked nicely and were pleasantly flakey. Hubby and boys loved them. Thanks so much for the recipe, Melanie.
    This recipe is a keeper!!

  28. Rachel says:

    This was the all-time best homemade cinnamon roll recipe I have ever tried! No lie, thank you so much for sharing this amazing recipe! You rock! P.S. I used bread flour and they turned out super light and fluffy and full of fantasticness!!!

  29. Melanie says:

    Rachel – I bet bread flour made them even more delicious! Thanks for your comment…I am very, very glad you liked them so much.

  30. Melanie says:

    Pat – glad you found these rolls forgiving and that they worked out for you. I’m especially glad your husband boys loved them. Thanks!

  31. AJ says:

    Ooh, I am at a major craving point in my pregnancy and have been wanting some baked roll deliciousness all the time lately. Reading this recipe and all the comments is totally making me want these even more. I am so making these tomorrow. And I’ll probably eat half the pan.

  32. Jessi says:

    Thank you thank you! These were great, and my hubby was so suprised this morning when our normal Sunday canister cinnamon rolls were different. 🙂 Perfect way to start Valentines!

    I did the overnight fridge way, and I just had a little trouble getting them to rise in the morning, but once I got them up, delish!

    Thanks for a great recipe, even this beginner in the kitchen nailed it. 🙂

  33. Shannon says:

    How crazy is that? My sister commented two prior to me (AJ)- we must be on the same wavelength. I made these this past weekend and they were so good. I ate one and started piling them on plates to give away so I wouldn’t eat them all! Thanks for a yummy and easy recipe- the pudding is such a good and simple secret ingredient!

  34. Melanie says:

    Shannon – hey, great minds think alike, right? You and your sister must be brilliant. 🙂 I’m so glad you liked these cinnamon rolls – thanks for taking the time to let me know!

    Jessi – what a nice wife you are! I’m glad these were a hit for Valentine’s and that they ended up rising ok for you.

  35. AJ says:

    So I can’t believe my sister made these the same weekend as me. We didn’t even talk about it. So funny. She introduced me to your site, so I guess that helps.
    I made the cinnamon rolls for a big family dinner and had everyone LOVED them. We had tons left over, so I got to eat them more for the couple of days that they lasted. So good. Soooooo good.

  36. Melanie says:

    AJ – that is a funny coincidence with you and your sister. I’m so glad the cinnamon rolls were such a hit!

  37. Kathya says:

    Okay, I broke down and made these fantastic sounding cinnamon rolls. I have to tell you that hands down, these are the most delicious and tender treats I’ve ever baked. I LOVED this recipe and will make them again this weekend to bring down to my mom, sister and her boys. They will FLIP when they bite into one.

    Thanks for sharing!!!

  38. Mel says:

    Kathya – I hope they really do flip and they should give you major props for making THEM cinnamon rolls. I’m really glad you liked this recipe. Thanks for letting me know!

  39. Carlie says:

    Kinda a random question…..but where did all the pictures go? Love your recipe blog….and loved that you included pictures.

  40. sarah says:

    I’ve made MANY of your recipes and I LOVE them ALL!
    I had a question about this one though. I see the freezer part, but if I make the dough and then just put it in the fridge, will it still rise in there too much? If its ok to do that, how long do I take them out before cooking?
    Thanks so much!

    • Mel says:

      sarah – I’m glad you’ve liked so many recipes – thank you! As for the cinnamon rolls, you could put them already shaped (but not baked) into the refrigerator overnight (or throughout a day). They will probably puff up and rise a little bit in the fridge, but the cold temperature will probably slow much of the rising. If I were you, I’d take them out of the refrigerator 2-3 hours before baking to give them time to come to room temperature and double in size. Let me know if you try them!

  41. Chavah says:

    Just made these today and they are AMAZING! Seriously, I got rave reviews from my friends and family. Btw, they ended up making 36 rolls for me. I put 16 on each *large* cookie sheet plus some on another sheet. They were perfect…and like other reviews said, not too sweet, just tender and soft. Also, I upped my cinnamon to 1 Tbsp. instead of 4 tsp. Great job, they were delish, Mel!

  42. mrs.frisbie says:

    I decided to try these and freeze them for after baby arrives, but we had to bake up a few to taste them. Oh my gosh! These are simply the best. They were fun to make, too. Thank you! Thank you for making me look like such a pro!

    Do you think the icing could be frozen, too? (sorry if that was asked already)

    • Mel says:

      mrs.frisbie – good luck with the new arrival! I’m glad the test run on these cinnamon rolls was pleasing. As for the icing, yes, I have frozen it before. I put it in a freezer safe ziploc bag and throw it in the freezer. The texture isn’t quite the same after defrosting (it is a tad grainy) but it is still delicious and worth not having to fuss over frosting the morning of.

  43. mrs.frisbie says:

    Great! Thank you for your response. These will be such a treat one day.

  44. Nicole says:

    Oh Mel Mel Mel! Why do you do this to me!? LOL
    I only make cinnamon rolls once a year, but now because of you that might all change. To make matters worse, my batch made about 20 gianormous rolls and I ate 3 of them tonight! How on earth do you stay so skinny girl?! Thanks again for a wonderful recipe!
    Oh yeah I did see that someone was asking about halfing the recipe and you weren’t sure about the pudding. The pudding box I had was 5 oz, so I used my scale to measure out the 3 1/2 and made it with 2 cups cold milk (instead of the 3 cups the box said). I’m sure you could just measure out 1.75 and add 1 cup cold milk? They turned out wonderful!

    • Mel says:

      Nicole – you are so funny! I’m glad the cinnamon rolls were a hit. And why on earth do you have to worry about eating three of them, you skinny, silly girl?? All that running negates the three you ate. Thanks for the tips on halving the pudding.

  45. Kensi says:

    I am finally back in the USA and had access to instant vanilla pudding, so I made these this morning! They were so yummy, truly the best and they didn’t last long around 15 neices and nephews! Thanks so much Mel!

  46. Frances says:

    These are the softest gooey-est most delicious cinnamon rolls I’ve ever made! I make cinnamon rolls pretty often but even with bread flour, I don’t think I’ve ever made cinnamon rolls this soft and delicious!! This is my new staple cinnamon roll- Thank you!!! I’m so glad I found your blog and this recipe 🙂

    • Mel says:

      Frances – I’m thrilled you loved these cinnamon rolls so much, since it sounds like you are quite the aficionado about cinnamon rolls! Thanks for letting me know.

  47. Ashlee says:

    Every time I’ve made cinnamon rolls, I’ve used a recipe that calls for cake mix, but I had to try these. These were awesome! Just for others info, whenever I make cinnamon rolls, I freeze them after baking them and my husband can take one to work on crazy mornings for breakfast or whatever. These have been delicious that way so you can enjoy them for longer!

  48. Shelley says:

    I made these last weekend. They were awesome. I had to take the extra to work so I wouldn’t eat all of them.

  49. Carolyn Neeley says:

    The vanilla pudding cinnamon rolls were delish!!

  50. Tiffiny says:

    Hi Mel – I desperately want to make these cinnamon rolls, but my husband won’t go near cream cheese (in any form). What would be a good alternative to the cream cheese frosting?

    • Mel says:

      Tiffiny – what about a traditional powdered sugar glaze? You could use 2 tablespoons butter, let it soften and mix it with 1 cup powdered sugar and 1/2 teaspoon vanilla. Mix well and then add milk or cream and whisk it like crazy until it is smooth and the desired consistency to drizzle over the rolls.

  51. Tiffiny says:

    That sounds great. Thanks for the advice!

  52. Hi Melanie,
    Your blog is incredible. I just made your recipe and took a few pictures and blogged about it and wanted to share the link with you. Thank you for sharing all your amazing recipes, detailed instructions and photos.

  53. Katie C says:

    I’m a college student with limited access to real food, so when I saw this recipe, of COURSE I had to try it! If there’s one thing my mom passed on to me, it’s an appreciation for good baking.
    Well I made these rolls for my dorm-mates, and wow. They were absolutely phenomenal. Rich, fluffy, dreamy. Every single person who tried one listed them in their top favorite things about college :] Thanks for your devotion to this blog and I can’t wait to have my own kitchen to try out more of your ideas!

    • Mel says:

      Katie C – what an honor that you and your dormmates loved these cinnamon rolls so much! Thank you for trying them and checking back in to let me know!

  54. Kate says:

    I had this recipe couple of years ago and lost it… upset. Looking for it this morning and found your version. I think it looks better than my original and can not wait to try it. They are raising right now…I am taking them to work tomorrow…..

    I love your site….found by surfing……great recipes. I am snowed in today and will probably spend the day with your recipes!!!

    • Mel says:

      Kate – I hope you like this version as much as you did your lost recipe! I am snowed in today, too, and just made two recipes that were perfect for a snowy day – just like cinnamon rolls!

  55. Diane says:

    I’m going the try the yummy rolls for xmas morning…if i make them ahead and freeze them…can i let them defrost at room temperature on my counter the night before (as opposed to the refrigerator) so i can bake right when we wake up xmas morning?? Happy Holidays! I enjoy your blog!

    • Mel says:

      Diane – when I freeze my cinnamon rolls ahead of time, I take them out the night before so they have a good 8-9 hours of defrosting/rising time. I let them sit on my counter until the next morning when I pop them in the oven. Hope that helps!

  56. Goomba says:

    Thanks for the recipe. I just made the dough tonight and going to roll them out soon. Question though…. I added 6.5 cups of flour gradually and the dough was still sticky, does this mean I need to add more flour gradually until it is soft but not sticky anymore? I didn’t add more flour cause I didn’t want to overflour.

    Thanks again!

  57. Goomba says:

    Wow! just finished making these and they are awesome!!! The dough is so much more flavorful and softer than the dough recipe I have been using for years…. My wife loves them too. Thanks again for the recipe.

    • Mel says:

      Goomba – I was wondering how they turned out for you after reading your initial comment. I think I may email your comment to my husband and inspire him to make ME some of these beauties!

  58. Nicole says:

    I LOVE this recipe and have traded my grandmothers pass me down recipe (That EVERYONE loves) for this one because I think it’s better! 🙂 (Shhh don’t tell). I froze these so they would be an easy breakfast for the morning. Thawed them all day in my fridge and then set them out on the counter when one of my kids woke up at 4 am until 7 and put them in the oven- so delicious!
    Just curious when my mom has tried this in the past she said they never raise up and they taste really doughy when she freezes them? She leaves hers on the counter all night and bakes them in the morning. Do you think she’s missing the raise and by the time she gets up they fall again?
    Anyways thanks for another great recipe! And I LOVE the frosting too

    • Mel says:

      Nicole – I’m honored these beat out your grandma’s recipe. Don’t worry, I won’t say a word. About your mom’s questions, some dough recipes don’t work quite as well defrosting and baking…but you may be on to something with the rising thing. Maybe she should try letting them rise a few hours less.

  59. Goomba says:

    Hey Mel,

    Goomba again. So I just made another batch of these last Saturday and I think I perfected them. Since Christmas I have made 5 batches of these and here is the trick imo….
    I used 6.5 cups of flour in mixer and the dough is still sticky. no problem. let dough rise until doubled per recipe. add little more flour to make dough soft to roll out, cut, place in pan and let rise a little bit again. BAM! awesome rolls and people praising them.

    I made the mistake with 2 of the batches by letting them rise for many hours (since I let dough rise while I was gone on Christmas eve) and then rolled them out and instead of baking them, let them rise in pan till morning cause I was dog tired at 2 am Christmas morning. I baked them the next morning and although they were good, they had a strong yeast taste… I think I also used too much flour (7 cups) instead of 6.5 (+ the flour used to get dough soft for rolling out). Anyway I corrected the mistake and got the measurements and timing back to the 1st 2 batches I made which were awesome.

    • Mel says:

      Goomba – I just might start referring to you as the VPCR expert. You are on to something with the rising – when I let my breads/rolls over rise, they get the same yeasty taste you are referring to. Thanks for checking back in!

  60. […] Recipe from Mel’s Kitchen Cafe […]

  61. Jay in Oakland says:

    This is the exact same recipe my Dad has been using for years (he had the BEST cinnamon rolls! So good they were mentioned in both his obit AND his eulogies!) I don’t know where he got it – he’s been using it at least the last decade. Fortunately, he taught me to make them, though mine aren’t quite to the same standard as his – as he said, practice makes perfect.

    QUESTION – the ones I made yesterday were a little dense, and tasted a little of flour. After reading Goomba’s comments about flour, I think I, too, probably used too much flour.
    My problem is knowing when to stop working the dough. Dad always said it was easy to over-work it, and I ended up not kneading it long enough. Can anyone give me a guideline/rule of thumb on how long to knead it?
    I found your blog by searching for this recipe. I look forward to checking out your recipes!

  62. Annie D. says:

    I printed this recipe a year ago and finally made them tonight–during our ice storm here in Ohio. The rolls were awesome! So tender. My family loved them. Thank you for the note about the instant yeast.–but didn’t see it till after I made them. The recipe turned out fine with the 2 TBL of instant yeast. I’m going to try freezing the left-overs and then reheat in the mornings. Thank you Mel!

  63. Hannah says:

    I was debating on if I wanted to make these or the buttermilk ones.. I went with these and they are delicious! I have made other recipes and this is the best I have made. They are very soft. Taste like cinnabon to me!

    When I try the buttermilk kind I’ll let you know which ones I liked best. Sounds like it’ll be a close call.

  64. Tamara says:

    Hi Mel, I’ve just stumbled upon your recipe and I love it! I’m going to make these, can you please just tell me about this vanilla instant pudding:you prepare it according to instructions-do you actually cook it in milk or water and then add the rest of the ingredients to it, or you just mix the powder with milk or water (without cooking) and then add yeast etc. ? I’ve never made yeast dough with vanilla pudding so I need to ask, don’t want to do anything wrong 🙂 Looking forward to your answer and making these :))
    All the best

    • Mel says:

      Hi Tamara – you don’t want to use the cook-and-serve vanilla pudding – make sure you are using the instant vanilla pudding. That way you can just mix the powder and milk together and it will thicken up perfectly to use in the recipe. You want to actually whisk together the pudding and milk before adding the other ingredients. Hope that helps! Good luck and let me know if you have any other questions.

  65. Tamara says:

    OK, thank you for your answer, definitely going to give these a try, they look delicious!

  66. Rick says:

    In my best Daffy Duck voice, “You’re dispickable!” LOL

  67. Bliss says:

    Mel, you’ve done it again…. These are FANTASTIC. I even made the subs for my daughter (with almond milk and MSPI-safe butter) and she thoroughly enjoyed them as well, even without frosting!

    Do you think that you could let them do the final rise before freezing, that way they could go straight to the oven, without needing a thaw? I froze them how you suggested, but some mornings, I get a craving for these bad boys, and can’t really wait 4 hours to thaw them! I guess I could have some in the fridge on standby… Going to halve the recipe later this week and let you know how it goes!

    • Mel says:

      Hi Bliss – you could attempt freezing them after the final rise – the only problem with that sometimes is that when they are taken from the freezer and come up to room temperature (in the oven, let’s say, as they are baking), they will sometimes fall because they have risen too much. It’s worth a try, though! Let me know how it turns out if you try it!

  68. Jane says:

    These were incredible. My 5 year old son asked for cinnamon rolls so I made these. I didn’t have cream cheese so I just used a glaze frosting and they were still great. Thanks for another great recipe!!!!

  69. Jenna says:

    The. Best. Ever. You weren’t kidding. My entire family can’t stop eating them. This will be my staple Christmas morning cinnamon roll recipe. Thank you so much! I think that next time, I may use just a little less of the filling. Also, I didn’t use the cream cheese frosting because I don’t like my rolls overly-sweet. But they weren’t gooey at all. The dough is so light and perfect. They’re wonderful.

  70. Laura says:

    Just made these on Sunday. For 5 years I’ve been begging my mother-in-law to share/show me her delicious cinnamon roll recipe. Still haven’t got it from her, and I was on a mission to find one even better! In my husband’s words, “These rival my Grandma’s and Mom’s…actually these are better, but pleeeease don’t tell them I said that!” Hahaha! Thanks Mel, for an amazing recipe.
    Oh, and for the frosting my husband hates cream cheese, so I only put half the recommended amount in, he had no idea until he finished off two rolls, then I told him! Surprisingly he didn’t mind.

  71. Kim says:

    I noticed that in the recipe you said you thaw in the fridge overnight but in the comments you just thawed 8-9 hours. Is that on the counter? I haven’t had the best of luck thawing in the fridge. They don’t rise very evenly and it takes forever to rise after they come out of the fridge. I was thinking that next time I’d just leave them on the counter but I didn’t know if that was a good idea or not. Please advise! Thanks!

    • Mel says:

      Kim – with these and other cinnamon rolls, I’ve done both thawing methods – both in the refrigerator overnight or just on the counter. If I use the refrigerator method, I usually have to let them sit out at room temperature for 2 hours or so to continue to come to room temp and rise. In my honest opinion, cinnamon rolls made and eaten the same day are the only way to go. While the frozen/thawed method works fine, I still prefer them fresh. But there are times when I have to/want to make them in advance so I usually thaw them on the counter or the refrigerator. I agree with you that sometimes I notice they don’t thaw or rise as evenly as if they hadn’t been frozen but those little nuances are worth it when I need to make them in advance. I think leaving them on the counter is just fine, especially if your home is a cool room temperature (a piping hot/sweltering house wouldn’t be a good idea, in my opinion).

  72. RAchel says:

    i made these for fathers day(my first time making cinnamon rolls ever), but i used sugar free pudding so there was six cups of milk in total i ended up having to use a lot more flour and i randomly put in sugar. I guess they tasted alright no one complained about having a hot cinnamon roll. but the dough was kind of tough and i will try this recipe again

  73. stacie says:

    I made these for Father’s Day and they were a huge hit. It was my first time making cinnamon rolls and it all worked like a charm. Thank you for an amazing recipe. This is on my list of favorites now.

  74. tricia says:

    I have the dough for the rolls rising right now. I had to add about 7 cups of flour to make it stiff enough to handle. Husband did not want cake for his birthday but said cinnamon rolls sounded good. Also going to attempt your shrimp penne recipe tonight. Thanks for getting me out of my ordinary, everyday recipe rut I have been in.

  75. Jahna says:

    Do you use bread flour or all purpose?

  76. Jahna says:

    I used half and half just in case. I didn’t expect you to respind so quickly! 🙂 YAY! I made these and the garlic Chicken pasta with spinach(with a tad of extra red pepper) YUMMO- well the bite I snuck. Thanks a bunch

  77. Jnl2211 says:

    Mmmm, I made these with butterscotch pudding instead and they’re heavenly 🙂 thanks for sharing the recipe.

  78. Sandee says:

    made these on wednesday and i confess, they were gone within 24 hours and theres only 4 of us. even with all whole wheat flour they were fluffy and wonderful—maybe even better than my moms recipe…but dont tell her i said that. 😉

  79. Jnl2211 says:

    I made this recipe the first time with butterscotch pudding because that’s what I had on hand. I just made them again today and I used vanilla, I have to say that I like it better with butterscotch, although both were tasty 🙂

  80. Amy says:

    Mel, you’ve done it again: these are, hands-down, the best cinnamon rolls my family and I have ever had. I made these for my sister’s birthday, and they turned out beautifully. Everyone’s bellies are achingly full–and I’ve got a fistful of compliments, thanks to you and Aunt Marilyn! 🙂

  81. Rachel says:

    Whoa, this makes A LOT of cinnamon rolls! I went ahead baked the one pan for our family and froze the rest. I froze them on the sheet pan but then wrapped each one in plastic wrap (probably overkill, I know) and then put them into a freezer bag. The thing I like about that is that we can pull them out individually and make 2 or so at a time if we get a craving for them rather than the whole pan. I just unwrap them, plop ’em on a pan before bed and they’re ready to go in the morning. Thank you for the great recipe!

  82. stace says:

    So I am making these for conference sunday.. do I have a tiny kitchenaid or am I doing something wrong? While trying to knead these the dough kept coming over the top of my hook. I realize this makes 24 rolls.. but am I doing something wrong.. or can I half the recipe next time… I am stressed about how well it was kneaded.

    • Mel says:

      Stace – I’ve never made cinnamon rolls or anything, for that matter, in a kitchen aid, so I’m not sure how the size of your kitchen aid will work with the cinnamon rolls, although I have heard several people mention that whenever they make any yeast/bread recipe in their kitchen aid, they halve the recipe. It sounds like maybe that might be the key next time. Either that or perhaps the dough needed a bit more flour in order to not be so sticky. I hope they turned out ok!

  83. stace says:

    Really? then do you just mix it all by hand flour and everything? You may have said it somewhere, but I dont remember reading it

    • Mel says:

      Stace – I use my Bosch mixer when making these rolls. It has about a 12-15 cup flour capacity so I think it is quite a bit bigger than the Kitchenaid. If you halve the recipe, it might fit better in your mixer.

  84. Steff says:

    I made these last night and they were A-M-A-Z-I-N-G! This is now my go to recipe for cinnamon rolls! Thank you!

  85. Jennifer Smith says:

    So I found out that just thinking about food can impact blood sugar. Tomorrow I am making these glorious rolls. Tonight all the members of my family are suffering from insulin problems. I may start at 6am. mmmmmm. LOVE THESE!!!

  86. […] to go along with it I decided it was time to give yeast dough another try. This recipe is from Mel’s Kitchen Cafe and is a post from way back in 2008.  Who could resist Mel’s description of these […]

  87. […] via Erin on Pinterest Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:LikeBe the first to like this post. […]

  88. Tina says:

    Hi,I really would like to try these rolls,but I do not understand clear about the pudding,if to use a ready pudding? or to make it from powder custard with milk?or make it from vanilla jello?please help me,because it looks delicius!

  89. Lorrie says:

    I am making these before I head to church on sunday. How long do they rise (1st and 2nd time)?

  90. Mel says:

    Tina – you need to use the dry mix pudding where you just add milk (like the instant jello pudding brand). Hope that helps.

  91. Mel says:

    Lorrie – I don’t usually give an exact time because it depends a lot on the temperature of your kitchen, how warm your dough is, etc. But on average, I’d suggest about an hour to an hour and a half for each rise. Good luck!

  92. Rachel Russell says:

    Ok Mel … .we are trying these for X-mas morning and your Buffalo Pretzel bites, 7 layer dip and amazing chocolate cake for X-mas eve. .. .a tad ambitious I am afraid. ..but can’t resist as everything we try of yours comes out fab! Wish I had the confidence to try your fab frosting recipe as well. .! Thanks for the great ideas!! Fingers crossed we don’t mess it all up royally!! Ha ha!

  93. Kristin says:

    Hi Mel! Congratulations on the fifth new one!! If it is a boy, we will be almost twins!! Speaking of five boys, they are hankering for your Pudding Cinnamon Rolls. Just one question, I want to put them together tonight and bake them in the morning. Do I let them rise after cut and then refridgerate? I am new to the yeast endeavor. I did make your french bread rolls for our early Christmas with the in-laws and they were a huge hit!! You are the bomb!!

    Happy Holidays to you and yours!

    Mom of Five boys from Kansas…love them boys!!

  94. Mel says:

    Kristin – love moms of all boys! We have to stick together. As for the cinnamon rolls, yes, they can definitely be shaped and put in the pan the night before. Don’t let them rise in the pan, once they are shaped, stick them on the pan, cover with greased plastic wrap and refrigerate. Pull them out a couple of hours before you need to bake them so they have time to double in size. Hope that helps!

  95. Lacy says:

    I made these last night and took them to my husband’s work this morning, huge hit! Thank you! One question, do you have any tips for rolling them tight? I’m not sure if they weren’t tight enough because I refrigerated them over night and the filling leaked out a bit or I just didn’t roll then tight enough in the first place. Thanks again!

  96. Mel says:

    Lacy – you know, I don’t know that I have any really great tips other than just trying to get that first roll over as tight as possible – it seems like once that first roll is tight, the rest rolls up fine…although, mine don’t always look tight and neat, I have to admit.

  97. Jill Schmidt says:

    i made these today and they turned out super awesome! it was by the weirdest recipe i have ever worked with but it was absolutely delicious. thanks so much for sharing, keep on blogging!!!! 🙂

  98. breaklance says:

    For those about icing, I change mine up for more flavor. So I add pecans to the filing, but for the icing I use honey nut cream cheese and instead of vanilla I use about 3 tbs of maple syrup. Cannot wait to make this again!

  99. Lisa Marie says:

    Just made these to go with chili for the Super Bowl. They are amazing! This will be my ONLY cinnamon roll recipe from now on. Very easy and the dough is so tender!

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