Easy Cinnamon Roll Muffins

Just the thought of cinnamon rolls-  warm, gooey, soft, sweet- makes me literally swoon.  I love them.  If I were a baking superhero (I’m working on it) my weakness would be cinnamon rolls.

As much as I love the little devils (and I hate to say this) I hate to bake them.  The problem is not the sweet yeast dough or the rolling or the slicing.  I simply have no patience for the waiting that is required of me during the proofing, rolling, slicing and proofing again process.  I realize this is totally unreasonable, but it’s just the truth.

Nicole at Baking Bites seems the understand my need for instant, yet stubbornly homemade cinnamon roll goodness.

I’d like to introduce you to Cinnamon Roll Muffins-  add the yeast, subtract the long rising.

Imagine my glee when I had cinnamon roll-esque goodness coming out of my oven in well under an hour.  These muffins rise for a short 15 minutes in the bowl and then are placed into a cold oven to cook as the oven preheats to 350 degrees.  After 20 minutes in the oven, they’re risen and golden and bubbling with cinnamon and brown sugar.

Easy Cinnamon Roll Muffins

Baking Bites

Print this Recipe!

1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1/3 cup sugar
1/4 tsp salt
4 tsp active dry or rapid rise yeast
2/3 cup warm milk (100-110F; low fat is fine)
3 tbsp vegetable oil
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 large egg


2 tbsp butter, room temperature
2/3 cup brown sugar
3/4 tsp ground cinnamon
pinch ground cardamom

1 cup powdered sugar
1-2 tbsp milk or cream

In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar and salt. Dissolve the yeast in a measuring cup filled with the warmed milk, then stir milk mixture, vegetable oil, vanilla extract and egg into the flour mixture. Mix well, until very smooth. Pour into prepared pan and let rest for 15 minutes.
While the dough rests, mix together butter, brown sugar, cinnamon and cardamom in a small bowl using a fork until all the butter has been incorporated into the sugar and mixture is crumbly.  Divide the batter between 12 greased muffin cups. Sprinkle evenly on top of rested dough and press the mixture down into the dough with your fingertips (or swirl in with a spatula.)
Place pan into a cold oven, then set the oven temperature to 350F.
Bake for about 20 minutes, until bread is lightly browned at the edges and the center of the bread springs back when lightly pressed. Some of the sugar mixture on top may still be bubbling.
Cool for at least 30 minutes before whisking the powdered sugar and milk together to form an icing and drizzling it onto the bread.
Serve warm. Leftovers can be reheated in the microwave.

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200 thoughts on “Easy Cinnamon Roll Muffins

  1. These look wonderful, actually better than a cinnamon roll. I love scones and muffins partly because they are one handed. Thanks for the comment about people, I sometimes wonder if I am almost alone in this thought. I forgot about where you live…both of my daughters are in C.M. Orange County, so depending on traffic, 45 minutes or 3 hours from you.

  2. I love making cinnamon rolls but I LOVE the speed of these-and oh the cinnamon-ey (is that a word???…Is NOW!) goodness! I’ve gotta try these and soon!!!!

  3. I’m with you, I lack the patience to make proper cinnamon rolls although I do love them. The smell of cinnamon rolls baking could bring me to my knees. I will definitely be giving these a try.

  4. making these tomorrow! my gran and i used to make cinnamon rolls together (although ours were a yeast and rising free afair). now i live in her house, and cook in her kitchen. i think she’d be very pleased if i cooked these.

  5. OH. MY. !!!

    I was thinking about getting up and making pancakes for the kids tomorrow before going to class, but to heck with that – it’s cinnamon roll muffins, baby! If mine turn out half as good as your pictures look (and I LOVE your photography!), then I will be able to die happy.

    *drools for the rest of the day in anticipation of tomorrow’s breakfast*

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