How To Make The Very Best Cinnamon Rolls
Today it’s all about how to make the very best cinnamon rolls! By now you know I love to make bread, dinner rolls, and of course, cinnamon rolls. So, when one of my favorite online stores Pleasant Hill Grain asked me to do a review on a “proofer,” I was thrilled to try one. It’s called a Brod and Taylor Bread Proofing Box.
What is a Proofer?
A proofer is really a dough proofer. It is basically a warming chamber used in baking that helps encourage the fermentation of the dough by the yeast through warm temperatures and controlled humidity. You may hear it called a proofer, proofing box, proofing oven, or proofing cabinet.
While the proofer is helpful year-round, it’s especially helpful if your kitchen is drafty, or cool (through the winter, for example), and dry.
How Can You Use A Bread Proofing Box?
- It’s perfect for yeast bread and sourdough with just the right humidity and low consistent temperature needed.
- You can turn any metal stockpot or Dutch oven into its own slow cooker by placing the pan directly on the heating plate.
- It’s a dry proofer as well, which is perfect for culturing yogurt, butter, and fermenting foods such as kombucha, kefir, and tempeh. You will love melting chocolate, it’s so easy.
How To Make Cinnamon Rolls Using a Proofer
When I used to teach bread making classes in a few kitchen stores, I would see the “proofers” people would buy. I had never used one, so you can just imagine my excitement when I was asked to review one. I decided to show you how I make cinnamon rolls and how evenly the rolls were rising in this proofer.
These cinnamon rolls are super easy to make and come out so delicious. Here is how I made them using a proofer!
You can mix the dough by hand, but I recommend a bread machine. The first thing is to roll out the dough about 1/2 inch thick into a rectangle 10-inches by 18-inches. Spread a layer of butter over the dough.
After you spread the butter on the dough, sprinkle a lot of cinnamon on the dough. When I taught a class once a class member was surprised at how much cinnamon I use. That’s the secret, a lot of cinnamon makes the best cinnamon rolls.
Sprinkle a little brown sugar on the top of the cinnamon.
Now, you roll the dough and get ready to cut the slices. Is your mouth watering, yet? I use a dough scraper to cut the cinnamon rolls. As you cut the slice you will tuck the end under the cinnamon roll and place it on the greased cookie sheet. I have the recipe below.
Set-Up The Bread Proofing Box for the Best Cinnamon Rolls
Set up the Brod and Taylor Bread Proofing Box. It’s really quite simple to do. Because this dough is a yeast dough I filled the water tray with a little water to place in the proofer.
Set The Box In Place
You can see how I unfolded the box and put it in place, it’s very simple to set up.
Fill The Water Tray-Place The Rack
Fill the water tray and place it in the box. Next, you place the rack with the legs facing down.
Turn It On-Set The Temperature
Plugin the power cord and push the start button and set it at 90 degrees (yeast bread setting). You can see the button on the left showing pink/red.
It’s Ready When It Turns Green
Once the button on the left turns green it’s ready for the cinnamon rolls to be placed inside the box. You will not need a wet cloth/towel or greased plastic wrap to cover your cinnamon rolls because it has the correct humidity right inside the proofer.
You Can See The Best Cinnamon Rolls Rising as they cook.
Cinnamon Rolls Rise Evenly In The Proofer. That is why it is such a great idea to have one.
Bake As Directed-Cool-Close And Store
My Review after making the Best Cinnamon Rolls
This Brod and Taylor bread proofing box is amazing! I have been making bread for over 50 years and never knew what I was missing. My cinnamon rolls came out better than ever! Here is what I love about the Brod and Taylor bread proofing box:
It Stores Easily
It’s so easy to store this box after closing it. You can store the power cord, the rack and water tray inside. It lays flat and measures 18 x 14.5 x 3″ high or 46 x 37 x 8 cm high.
It Maintains Temperature
The Brod and Taylor proofer accurately maintains the temperature you set. There is a range of 70-195 degrees Fahrenheit.
It has a Big Viewing Window
With a super-tough reinforced polypropylene large viewing window on this Brod and Taylor unit, I can see exactly how my dough is rising the whole way through the process.
It Comes with a Recipe Book
Included with my Brod and Taylor Bread Proofer was a 55-page booklet with recipes for yeast bread, sourdough, yogurt, butter, cheese, kefir, kombucha, tempeh, and various slow cooker recipes.
It Doubles as a Slow Cooker
If I don’t need two appliances to cook meals differently, I call that a win. This amazing appliance is not only a bread proofer, but also a slow cooker and a yogurt fermentor.
To use this as a slow cooker, you simply put it in slow cooker mode. The temperatures can be set from 85-195 degrees Fahrenheit. When using this mode, you will always want to cook on low temps and keep a lid on the pot. Keep in mind the rack and water tray are not used when slow cooking.
The Best Cinnamon Rolls Recipe
- 4 Teaspoons SAF Instant Yeast
- 1/2 Cup Water
- 2 Cups Warm Milk
- 1/4 Cup Olive Oil
- 1 Cup Sugar
- 1-1/2 Teaspoons Sea Salt
- 4 Teaspoons Dough Enhancer
- 2 Eggs
- 6-7 Cups White Bread Flour
- 1/2 Cup Softened Butter (1/4 cup for each rectangle of dough)
- Cinnamon- Cover the dough with the desired amount of cinnamon. I use a lot!
- 1 Cup Brown sugar (1/2 cup for each rectangle of dough)
First, in a large mixing bowl, whisk together the yeast, warm milk, olive oil, sugar, sea salt, dough enhancer, butter, and eggs.
Next, add half the flour. Then, keep adding the flour gradually until the dough pulls away from the sides of the mixing bowl.
Cover your mixing bowl with plastic wrap and place the bowl with the dough on the countertop. You want to let it rise for about an hour.
After an hour, remove the dough from the bowl. Punch the dough down and roll it into two 12” by 18” rectangles.
Lather each 12" by 18" rectangle dough with softened butter. Each rectangle will need about 1/4 cup. Add your desired amount of cinnamon on top of the dough. Then, sprinkle 1/4 cup brown sugar on EACH 12" by 18" rectangle of dough.
Roll the dough tightly into a tube. Then, cut it into 1-1/2-inch rolls. Tuck the "tail" under the cinnamon roll. Place the rolls on a greased cookie sheet and cover them with greased plastic wrap and let them rise one more time for about an hour or until the dough doubles in size.
Finally, preheat your oven to (350°F) = (176°C). Then, bake your cinnamon rolls on a greased cookie sheet for 15-20 minutes, or until golden brown.
Frost your cinnamon rolls while they are still warm so that the frosting melts on top of them.
Don’t overheat the milk. Warm your milk to about (110°F) = (43°C)
Anything over that will kill the yeast, and anything lower can increase the time it takes the dough to rise. Dip your finger in the milk, it should be warm, but not hot.
- Use soft butter. The secret to super tender cinnamon rolls is the butter! You want very soft butter, but not melted butter. Take it out and set it on the counter a few hours before you start the recipe.
- Do Not scoop the flour with the measuring cup! Flour packs tightly so if you use your measuring cup to scoop it, you will use too much flour and your rolls will be dry. Instead, use a spoon to scoop the flour into the measuring cup, and then scrape the excess off with a butter knife.
- Use room temperature butter for the rectangles. When lathering with butter before adding the cinnamon, it’s best to use room temperature butter rather than melted butter. This prevents the cinnamon and brown sugar from seeping out of the sides. Use the back of a spoon to gently spread the soft butter on the dough.
- Don’t overbake the rolls. Your cinnamon rolls should be a golden brown. If you overbake them, they will not be as soft and moist as you would like them. Check them after 15-minutes of baking.
Related: Linda’s Cream Cheese Frosting Recipe
Please let me know if you try making my cinnamon rolls and if you use a proofer! You know I love to hear from you! Life is so good when we know how to make bread, dinner rolls, and the very best cinnamon rolls.
Please be prepared for the unexpected, we can do this, I promise. May God bless this world, Linda
16 thoughts on “How To Make The Very Best Cinnamon Rolls”
Mmmm, have to try those cinnamon rolls! *Anything * with cinnamon (which is good as anti-inflammatory and blood-sugar regulation–yeah I suppose we *do* need that with the rolls…)
I don’t have a proofing box… I use my microwave. No, really. I set a small glass of water in it and run it for 30-60 seconds, then quickly push the glass into the back corner and set in the bowl of dough. Close the door and leave it. It’s warm and moist in there, well insulated, usually rises quite well. (Of course it might not be big enough for a pan of rolls!) It’s one of the few ways I really use a microwave.
HI Rhonda, I was sent that proofing box to do a review on it, I have made cinnamon rolls for 50 years and never “proofed” my bread or cinnamon rolls before. It was fun to try. I love making bread and cinnamon rolls with LOTS of cinnamon on them. I love hearing your proofing idea in the microwave! Love it! Linda
So yummy! We make cinnamon rolls for Christmas morning.
Hi Tiffany, oh my gosh, it’s all about the memories, right??? Linda
Thanks so much for this info! Wondering how much is “a lot of cinnamon”. A recipe I found says 3 tbsp. cinnamon and 1 1/4 cup brown sugar. Is that enough?
Hi Kathy, it really depends on how much you like cinnamon. I love cinnamon, so I sprinkle it on until it’s fully covered. I’m working on a small batch of cinnamon rolls right now. I’m not sure how much brown sugar I use. I will fine-tune the recipe. I’ve made these for about 50 years so I just roll and sprinkle. It sounds like I better get going on my smaller batch of cinnamon rolls. Stay tuned, Linda
Linda, I finally got around to making the dinner rolls from your recipe. I used dough enhancer, but didn’t have bread flour so used regular all purpose flour instead. They were quite tasty, especially with honey, but instead of coming out light an fluffy they were fairly heavy.
The dough was so sticky I had to keep adding flour as I kneaded it and I’m guessing ended up with maybe 2 1/4 or 2 1/3 cups of flour in it. I did knead it for about 5 minutes.
Any idea what I did wrong? Could it be I added too much flour, or just didn’t use bread flour?
Since my wife said they’d never rise in our 68 F home, I covered them with a damp, warm towel and put them in our oven, which has a bread proofing function, for an hour before turning up the temp and baking them as directed. They took 30 minutes to brown.
Anyhow, I have GOT to try your cinnamon rolls.
Hi Ray, how old is your flour? I have to have fresh ingredients. The dough enhancer and yeast must be fresh or at least stored in the frig or freezer. I think you added too much flour if they are heavy. I will not make any bread recipe if it’s a cloudy day. It may an old wives tale but I believe it. The 68 degrees is probably another culprit. I keep my heat at 74 in the winter and 75 in the summer. Please do not give up, you can make these!! Linda
The flour, yeast and dough enhancer I used were all fresh. I just had another thought though. I only had skim milk so that’s what I used. Do you use whole milk?
Since I proofed the rolls at 100 F in my oven I don’t think the house temp mattered. Oh, and it was a bright, sunny, beautiful Christmas day. Like I said, the rolls tasted great. They were just heavy (more like biscuits than light fluffy rolls) so I must have a different definition of “too sticky” than you do. My definition of too sticky is, if it sticks to my fingers while I’m kneading it, I add more flour.
Oh, I’m eating the left over rolls this morning–biscuits and sausage gravy with eggs. I’ll probably have some hot chocolate too. I am SO bad.
Hi Ray, oh sausage gravy is the best!!! Not bad at all! Oh, I love it!!!! Linda
I will have to try the recipe. But I will have to forgo getting a proofer. I talked my husband into buying a Food Saver and extra bag for over $300 on amazon for Christmas. Maybe for our 51st anniversary if both of us are still around. He growls like a bear but he is a squishy teddy bear when it really comes down to it. I don’t like pushing things with him because i know how tight our budget is. He offered to buy me a cheaper brand of food saver but I have had several of them and they never really worked right. My youngest sister was able to get a steal on one several years ago and she said she had food in her freezer for a year and it didn’t get freezer burn and everything was just like she had put it up yesterday. She makes a Turkey (20-25lb) each year and put 99% of it up because she is single. She makes sandwiches for lunch at work and makes all sorts of things out of it. I get a 25# turkey and it is gone in 3 days. Of course there are 5 of us eating at it so that takes a toll on the meat left but we also make soup if it is cold after Thanksgiving.
Hi Jakie, you do not need a proofer. This company sent me one to do a review on one and show people how to use it. I have made bread, dinner rolls, and cinnamon rolls for 50 years and never needed one. I would want a FoodSaver over a proofer any day. Linda
That is what I said to myself when I read the recipe. I have had those cheep bagger machines and they just don’t work. My little sister has the Food saver and she saves everything. She makes a up to a 25# turkey at Thanksgiving and puts most of it up and a 25# ham at Christmas and she has enough meat except things like hamburger or steaks or pork chops or roasts and she buys them on sale and that lasts her all year. I think she spends about maybe $100 a year on meat all year. Not to shabby for a single girl.
Hi Jackie, I love hearing this! That is impressive $100 for meat for a year! That’s my kind of budget! Linda
I would love to have her meat budget also. She lives near a store run by the Amish and they sell their meat inexpensively. They sell it just above cost just enough to keep them in the blue. Enough to buy food for the animals and keep them sheltered until they are butchered. They all have a pristine butcher shop on their farms. It’s the best meat you can find.
Hi Jackie, it sounds like we all need to learn from the Amish! That’s so awesome! Linda