Enjoy a delicious, homemade cinnamon roll with this make-ahead recipe. This recipe yields eight rolls, so you can make the rolls in advance and store them in the freezer, then just pop one out when you're ready to bake. These rolls are made with whole-grain flour and have less sugar than most cinnamon roll recipes, but they're packed with flavor and just as fun to eat.

EatingWell.com, October 2022


Credit: Sara Haas

Recipe Summary

35 mins
2 hrs 55 mins


Ingredient Checklist


Instructions Checklist
  • Combine yeast, warm milk and 1 teaspoon sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer fitting with the dough hook attachment; let stand until foamy, about 5 minutes. Add the remaining 1 tablespoon sugar, all-purpose flour, whole-wheat flour, salt and egg. Mix on medium-low speed until just combined, about 2 minutes. Cover the bowl loosely with a clean towel or plastic wrap and let rest for 20 minutes.

  • Uncover the bowl and knead the mixture at medium-low speed until a soft, tacky dough forms, 5 to 8 minutes. Coat a large bowl generously with cooking spray. Transfer the dough to the bowl; turn a few times to coat with the cooking spray. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let the dough rise in a warm, draft-free place until doubled in size, about 1 hour. 

  • Punch down the dough and turn out onto a lightly floured work surface. Roll out into a 10-by 8-inch rectangle. Spread softened butter over the top. Combine cinnamon and 2 tablespoons plus 2 3/4 teaspoons brown sugar in a small bowl; sprinkle over the butter. Starting from a long side, tightly roll up the dough. Cut the log into 8 portions by sliding a long strand of unflavored dental floss under the log, crossing the ends over the top and pulling to cut the dough. 

  • Place 7 rolls on a parchment-paper-lined baking sheet. Lightly cover and place in the freezer. (Once the rolls are frozen, transfer them to a freezer-safe container and freeze for up to 3 months.)

  • Coat an 8-ounce soufflé dish or high-sided ramekin with cooking spray; dust the bottom with 1/4 teaspoon brown sugar. Place 1 roll in the prepared dish (or ramekin). Cover and let rise in a warm place until nearly doubled in size, 45 minutes to 1 hour. 

  • When about 15 minutes remain in the second rise, preheat oven to 375°F. 

  • Bake the roll, uncovered, until light brown on top, 10 to 12 minutes. Let cool for 5 minutes, then invert the dish (or ramekin) to release the roll.

To make ahead

Prepare rolls through Step 4 and freeze for up to 3 months. For best results, thaw overnight in the refrigerator before proceeding with Step 5.


Unflavored dental floss, 8-ounce soufflé dish or high-sided ramekin, parchment paper

Nutrition Facts

1 cinnamon roll
172 calories; protein 5g; carbohydrates 30g; dietary fiber 2g; sugars 9g; added sugar 8g; fat 4g; saturated fat 2g; mono fat 1g; cholesterol 31mg; vitamin a iu 156IU; vitamin b3 niacin 2mg; vitamin d iu 12IU; folate 66mg; vitamin k 1mg; sodium 137mg; calcium 36mg; iron 1mg; magnesium 23mg; phosphorus 93mg; potassium 101mg; zinc 1mg; niacin equivalents 3mg; selenium 15mcg.