Looking for an easy, sourdough cinnamon roll recipe that can be made with minimal effort? This is it!
These sourdough cinnamon rolls are light, fluffy and perfect for any morning of the week.
No stand mixer or complicated steps needed with this recipe! We guide you through the process step-by-step!
This is a great time to start experimenting with other sourdough baked goods!
You guys, this is seriously the easiest sourdough cinnamon roll you will ever find. And an amazingly delicious one at that!
The best part about this recipe is that you can use your sourdough starter discard to make them instead of throwing it away!
Also, there’s no need to break out your stand mixer. The dough is mixed the night before you bake and allowed to ferment on the counter.
When you wake up, add the remaining ingredients, roll out the dough and bake right away. There’s no need for a second rise!
This is truly a beginner’s sourdough cinnamon roll recipe!
Step by step instructions
Before we get into the details, let’s go over the basic steps.
- 8PM – Mix the butter, flour, sourdough starter, buttermilk and honey in a bowl. Cover and let rest overnight.
- 8AM – Sprinkle the salt, baking powder and baking soda over the dough and mix in with your hands.
- Roll the dough onto a floured surface and brush with melted butter. Sprinkle the cinnamon sugar mixture over the top and roll the dough into a log shape. Cut the log into 12 equal portions and place them in a buttered cast iron skillet.
- Bake in a 375 degree preheated oven for 30-40 minutes or until golden brown on top. Remove the sourdough cinnamon rolls from the oven and glaze.
That’s it in a nutshell!
Tips for success
There’s a few steps that need a little more explaining.
- Cutting butter into flour
- Rolling out the dough
- Choosing a baking vessel
- Sourdough Cinnamon Roll Glaze
So let’s go over these areas one at a time!
1. Cutting Butter into Flour
Most recipes for sourdough cinnamon rolls call for the use of a stand mixer to mix the butter into the dough. However, a stand mixer is not needed here!
The first step in this recipe is to cut the butter into the flour, which you will do by hand. (Very easily!)
- Using the large holes of a cheese grater, grate the butter into a mixing bowl. Add the flour to the bowl and toss with a fork to coat the butter.
- Use a bench scraper to “cut” the butter into the flour. Use a chopping motion to break the pieces of butter up until they form very small crumbs with the flour.
If you do not have a bench scraper, use a pastry cutter or a fork for this step.
2. Rolling Out the Dough
Let’s take a look at how to roll and cut sourdough cinnamon rolls.
Generously flour your work surface and turn the dough out onto it. Flour the top of the dough. Don’t be afraid to use too much flour in this step!
Use a rolling pin to roll the dough out into a rectangle with a 1/4″ thickness. (about 12″ x 24″)
- Use a pastry brush to Brush the melted butter onto the dough.
- Sprinkle the cinnamon-sugar mixture evenly over the top, leaving a 1/2 inch around the edges bare.
- Starting on one side of a long edge, roll the dough into the shape of a log.
- Use a bench-scraper or a knife to cut the log into 12 equal portions. (About 1.5 inch pieces)
TIP – If the dough is sticking to the surface as you are rolling the dough into a log shape, use a bench scraper to gently loosen and lift it and continue to roll.
3. Choosing a Baking Vessel
Place the portions into a 12″ cast iron skillet and bake right away in a 375 degree oven for 35-40 minutes. Because we add baking soda and baking powder to the dough before rolling out, there is no need for a second rise!
TIP -If you’d like to assemble them and bake them at a later time, place the unbaked rolls in a baking dish, cover and refrigerate for up to 24 hours. Remove from fridge and let sit at room temperature while the oven is preheating.
Other baking vessels you can use:
- 10″ spring-form pan
- 9″ x 13″ baking dish
- baking sheet lined with parchment paper
Make sure that the cinnamon rolls have space to expand between each other while baking.
4. Sourdough Cinnamon Roll Glaze
How do you like your cinnamon roll glaze? Thick and sweet or barely there?
This is an area of great debate!
I’ve got mixed feelings on this one! Sometimes I LOVE it thick and gooey. The kind so messy, you need to lick it right off your fingers because paper towels just won’t do!
If you’re craving that kind of sweetness, try the sourdough cinnamon roll glaze in the recipe card below. It’s a full throttle, hold on to your pants, delicious glaze that will have everyone begging for more!
These sourdough cinnamon rolls are delicious with no topping at all but I think most people like a little bit of glaze, even if it’s just a hint.
TIP – For a lighter cinnamon roll glaze, mix 1 cup of powdered sugar with a teaspoon of milk. Give it a stir and add a little more milk at a time until you get the consistency you’re looking for.
Make sure you glaze the rolls while they’re hot and remove them from the pan. If they cool in the pan, the sugar on the bottom of the rolls will start to harden up making them difficult to remove from the cast iron skillet.
Check out this article from Lodge on how to properly clean cast iron!
If you like baking with cast iron, make sure you check out our recipe for sourdough biscuits. They are light, fluffy and easy to make!
Sourdough Cinnamon Rolls
- 12" Cast Iron Skillet
- Mixing Bowls
- Cheese Grater
- Pastry Brush
- 113 grams butter cold
- 300 grams all-purpose flour
- 100 grams sourdough starter discard active starter can be used
- 240 grams buttermilk
- 25 grams honey
- 4 grams fine sea salt
- 5 grams baking powder
- 3 grams baking soda
- 150 grams light brown sugar
- 10 grams ground cinnamon
- 56 grams butter melted
Cinnamon Roll Glaze
- 120 grams powdered sugar
- 14 grams butter melted
- 5 grams vanilla extract
- 30 grams milk
- Mix the dough 12 hours before you plan to bake: Use a cheese grater to grate the cold butter into a mixing bowl. Add the flour and use a bench scraper to cut the butter into the flour. Add the sourdough starter discard, buttermilk and honey. Mix with a spatula until the ingredients are well incorporated. Cover the bowl and let rest on the counter for 12 hours. (DO NOT add the salt, baking soda or baking powder. This will be added right before rolling out the dough)
- Preheat oven to 375° and butter a 12" cast iron skillet. Mix the brown sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl, set aside. In a separate bowl, mix the glaze ingredients and set aside.
- Sprinkle the salt, baking powder and baking soda on top of the dough and mix it in with your hands. Generously flour your work surface and turn the dough onto it. Flour the top of the dough. Use a rolling pin to roll the dough into a 12" x 22" rectangle.
- Use a pastry brush to coat the top of the dough with melted butter and sprinkle the cinnamon-sugar mixture evenly over the surface, leaving a half inch bare along the edges. Starting on one side, roll the dough into a log shape. Use the bench-scraper to cut the log into 12 pieces. (1.5 inches) Arrange the portions in the cast iron skillet, leaving space in between each piece to expand.
- Bake the cinnamon rolls for 30-40 minutes or until the tops are golden brown. Remove from the oven and glaze while hot.
- A pastry cutter or a fork can be used to cut the butter into the flour.
- For a lighter cinnamon roll glaze, mix 1 cup of powdered sugar with a teaspoon of milk. Give it a stir and add a little more milk at a time until you get the consistency you’re looking for.
- If you don’t have a cast iron skillet, use a baking sheet, baking dish or spring-form pan. Arrange the rolls with space in between to allow them to expand.