Sinner-Bons – A Decadent Delight

When I came across this recipe, which claimed to replicate the famous and delicious Cinnabons, I knew I had to try it. There is not a member of my family who would not happily trade another member for a Cinnabon, so being able to make them at home would definitely be a winner.

I’ve had the recipe for over a year, but was re-inspired to give it a try after my sister-in-law’s recent encounter with a rather dry and disappointing cinnamon roll on our regular coffee date.

I have to say that I was quite sorry that I make these yesterday: Sorry that I didn’t make them much sooner, and sorry for my hips which are likely to expand rather rapidly as a direct result.

These cinnamon rolls are so incredibly good, and so deliciously indulgent with the combination of sweet buttery goodness, fluffy pastry and creamy icing, that I truly believe that Sinner-bons are a much better name for them.????????????????????

I do not have photos of the process yet, as I wanted to be sure the original recipe did not exaggerate it’s wonderfulness (it didn’t), and that I could make them successfully (I did). I will add step-by-step photos next time. And there will definitely be a next time. And a next time. And…

The original recipe for The Perfect Cinnabon Cinnamon Roll Recipe (10 Years in the Making) can be found on Joshua Kennon’s blog. It is the result of 10 years of experimentation to get it just right. I will be eternally grateful (and, if you try this, so will you!) to his mom and brother for all their efforts to perfect the recipe and then for sharing it with the rest of us to indulge and enjoy.

I followed the recipe method exactly.

The only changes I made were minor ones to the ingredients: margarine instead of butter, vanilla essence instead of extract, cottage cheese instead of cream cheese. I would have no problem using the original ingredients, I simply used the ingredients we have on hand in our kitchen, and generally use in baking. I also used lemon juice instead of salt in the icing, based on the comments below the original recipe.

I have repeated the recipe here for convenience, and more so as I include the conversions to metric measurements. Enjoy!

Sinner-Bons (just as deliciously wicked as Cinnabons)


1 cup warm milk

2 eggs, room temperature

1/3 cup (76g) butter, melted

4 1/2 cups all purpose/ cake flour

1 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup white sugar

1 package (10g) instant yeast


1 cup dark brown sugar, packed

2 1/2 tablespoons ground cinnamon

1/4 cup (57g) butter, softened

Spread for Dough

1/4 cup (57g) butter, softened


85g cream cheese, softened (I used smooth cottage cheese)

1/4 cup (57g) butter, softened

1 1/2 cups icing sugar

1/2 teaspoon vanilla essence

1 tsp lemon juice


Microwave the milk for 45 to 60 seconds. Then, dissolve the yeast in warm milk in a large bowl. Add sugar, butter, salt, eggs, and flour. Mix well. Dust your hands lightly with flour and then hand knead the cinnamon roll dough into a large ball.

Put the ball of dough into a bowl that is sprayed with cooking spray. Cover the bowl tightly with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place for roughly 1 hour or until dough has doubled in size. We turned the oven on and then put the cinnamon roll dough on top of the stove. The heat generated caused the dough to rise.

Once your dough has risen, it’s time to move on to the next step. In a new, small bowl, combine brown sugar, cinnamon, and butter. Mix them well. Spray a flat surface with cooking spray or sprinkled flour.

Roll out your dough ball into a 40cm x 50cm rectangle roughly 6.5mm thick then spread a 1/4 cup (57g) of softened butter on the dough. Next, sprinkle the rolled, buttered dough evenly with the sugar/cinnamon/butter mixture you prepared in your small bowl.

Roll up the dough starting with the longer side and cut into 14 cinnamon rolls (or smaller rolls, if you prefer). Place the cinnamon rolls in a lightly greased 25cm x 35cm glass baking dish. Cover the dish with aluminium foil and let the cinnamon rolls rise until nearly doubled, which should take around 30 minutes. (My dish was a bit too small – so I had to put the last 3 in a separate dish this time)

Preheat oven to 180 C. Once your cinnamon rolls have risen, bake them in the preheated oven until golden brown, approximately 18 to 20 minutes (I did 20 minutes exactly). The dough should still be soft, though fully cooked, especially toward the centre of the rolls.

As your cinnamon rolls are baking, beat together cream cheese, butter, icing sugar, vanilla essence, and lemon juice for the Cinnabon cinnamon roll icing. The icing should be spread on your cinnamon rolls when they are still warm, shortly after being taken out of the oven so that the frosting melts into the cinnamon rolls. This is reportedly part of the official Cinnabon process according to some of the employees.????????????????????

When the cinnamon rolls are still warm, serve, and enjoy! (If there are leftovers, or if they have cooled by the time you are ready to eat, pop in the microwave for about 15 seconds before enjoying)????????????????????


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