Cinnamon Rolls with Cream Cheese Icing

These cinnamon rolls were definitely a labor of love…I certainly do not spend as much time as I did on these on other desserts or even full meals for that matter! But let me tell you, these are absolutely worth the amount of time they take to make. I made these over the weekend, where I thought I would at least have my husband home to help keep the kids entertained, but even then, it literally took me all day. I woke up craving Cinnabon and knew I had to have cinnamon rolls for breakfast. Well, we ended up having them for dessert…and for breakfast the next day.
I combined 2 different recipes – actually, the dough is from Martha Stewart and the filling and icing are adapted from Lauren’s Latest. I mean, she literally calls her recipe “My Cinnabon Cinnamon Rolls”, so how could I go wrong? You’ll start by making a dough, which you need to let rise for a hour until it doubles in size.

Once it has doubled like this, you punch down the dough and divide into 2 equal pieces. Roll out each to about 14×22 or close (I know that’s an odd measurement, but that’s how both ended up without even trying to get them the same). Then you get to slather the dough with butter and an incredible brown sugar/cinnamon mixture and roll ’em up.
Roll up the dough as tight as you can and cut off the uneven ends and where it seems thinner. Score the log every two inches and cut through – I ended up with 12 rolls to put into a 9×13 pan and an extra 9 that I put into an 8×8 pan. Line the pans with parchment paper and spray with non-stick cooking spray before placing the rolls into them.

Then cover them with a kitchen towel and keep in a warm place for another hour or two and they will rise and be perfect! Once they are out of the oven, slather (don’t hold back!) the prepared cream cheese icing. And enjoy…whether it’s dessert or breakfast or anytime in between…
Makes approximately 20-22 rolls
Cinnamon Rolls with Cream Cheese Icing

For the dough:
2 tablespoons fast rise yeast
1/3 cup warm water
1 cup of milk, room temperature
1 cup (2 sticks) butter, cut into small pieces
3 large eggs
1/3 cup sugar
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
6-7 cups flour, plus more for work surface
For the filling:
1/2 cup softened butter (I used spreadable butter from a tub, but you can let a stick of butter sit to room temperature)
1 1/4 cups packed light brown sugar
2 1/2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
2 tablespoons cornstarch
For the icing:
2 oz cream cheese, room temperature
1/4 cup butter, room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 tablespoon corn syrup
1 1/4 cups confectioner’s sugar
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, mix yeast, water, milk, butter, eggs, sugar, salt and vanilla on low speed until eggs are incorporated, about 2 minutes (the butter might seem not quite mixed in yet – this is ok). Add 4 cups of flour and mix until smooth.
Switch to the dough hook, continue mixing and add more flour, 1/2 cup at at time, just until the dough no longer sticks to the bowl (I ended up with a total of 7 cups). Beat dough on medium-high speed for 10 minutes.
On a lightly floured surface, knead the dough until very smooth, about 2 minutes. Transfer dough to a large bowl sprayed with non-stick cooking spray. Cover dough with a clean kitchen towel and let rise until doubled in size, about an hour.
Punch down the dough and transfer to a lightly floured work surface. Divide dough into 2 equal pieces. Roll out each piece of dough to approximately 14×22 inches. Spread butter onto dough (about a 1/4 cup on each rolled out piece), leaving a 1-inch border on one of the long sides.
Make the filling: combine the brown sugar, cinnamon and cornstarch in a bowl and sprinkle evenly over the butter on each piece of rolled out dough, making sure to leave that 1-inch border untouched. Lightly press the sugar mixture into the butter with your rolling pin.
Roll the dough into a log, ending with the untouched dough on the bottom to seal the whole thing together. Cut off the uneven ends, score your dough every 2 inches and then cut through using those marks. Place parchment paper in the pans you are using (I used one 9×13 (for 12 rolls) and one 8×8 (for 9 rolls)) and then spray with non-stick cooking spray. Cover with a dish towel and let them rise again, about 1-2 hours.
Bake at 350 degrees for 18-20 minutes until the tops are golden brown.
While they are baking, make the icing. In a food processor, whip the cream cheese and butter until smooth. Add vanilla and corn syrup and mix again. Scrape down the sides and add the confectioner’s sugar. Mix for a couple of minutes until smooth and frosting starts to lighten in color. Scrape down sides and mix again briefly.
Once you pull the cinnamon rolls out the oven, frost with half of the amount of icing made (it will melt down into the rolls). Then once they have cooled, frost again with the remaining icing (it will stay on top of the rolls).

(Source: recipe adapted from Lauren’s Latest and Martha Stewart)