These Orange Cinnamon Rolls are so easy, anybody can make them! The tender dough turns out the perfect cinnamon roll every time.
I love homemade cinnamon rolls. There is just something about the whole house filled with the aroma of warm cinnamon spice that makes me happy.
For years I have bought cinnamon rolls. Hello – it’s convenient! Then one day, after several failed attempts to find the only brand Kelsie can have, I decided to make my own.
In that, I perfected a recipe that not only is better than store bought. It’s almost just as easy. 45 minutes from start to finish, is literally all the time you need!
I shared that recipe for Quick & Easy Cinnamon Rolls in January, and it’s doing pretty good. So I thought I’d share another favorite version, Orange Cinnamon Rolls!
A lot of people think cinnamon rolls need to rise. They are wrong. Well, some recipes need to rise, others do not. My recipe for Orange Cinnamon Rolls doesn’t have to rise – I use enough yeast that they rise quiet nicely in the oven while baking.
How do you make Orange Cinnamon Rolls in less than an hour?
Multi task. Here is my breakdown:
- Get all your ingredients out and sit them on the counter.
- While the yeast gets foamy, whisk together the dry ingredients, preheat your oven, and prep your pan. I love using my cast iron skillet, but you could use a sheet pan, or place them in a pie plate.
- Mix together the cinnamon mix, and set aside.
- Once the yeast is ready, pour into the dry ingredients, and mix together with a wooden spoon or spatula. Mix until the dough starts to come together.
- Place the bowl under your mixer attached with a dough hook. If you have to hand knead this by hand, no problem! You can do it.
- Once the dough is ready, roll out, sprinkle, roll up, slice, and bake!
- While baking, mix up the topping.
How do I knead dough for cinnamon rolls?
Start with a space that is floured, and don’t forget to flour your hands. The dough is super sticky when you begin, and it will stick to everything, including your hands.
To knead the dough, place the dough ball onto the floured surface, fold it in half, and push it with the heel of your hands. Turn the dough a quarter of a turn, and continue the same process; fold in half, push it with the heel of your hands. Continue this method until the dough is no longer sticky, it’s smooth, and when you push it with your finger, it bounces back.
If you’re visual like me, here is a great little video.
Can I make these gluten free?
Yes, just use a gluten free flour, and make the recipe as is. They won’t turn out as fluffy, but they taste just the same.
Can I make these cinnamon rolls the night before?
Sure! Make the recipe all the way through, to the step before baking. Cover them with foil, not tightly, and place in the fridge overnight.
Remove from the fridge at least 30 minutes prior to baking.
These are perfect for holidays or a lazy weekend morning!
Mother’s Day – Father’s Day – Christmas – birthdays
Don’t like orange?
Try using lemon zest and lemon juice instead. Or dice up apples or pears, and mix in with your cinnamon sugar. Skip the citrus in the icing. Skip the citrus and use sprinkles inside and on top!
Here are some other breakfast and brunch ideas that I think you’ll enjoy!
- The original – Quick and Easy No Rise Cinnamon Rolls
- Chai Spiced Banana Bread
- Very Berry French Toast Casserole
- Tots and Sausage Casserole
- 1 cup warm water
- 2 1/4 teaspoon active dry yeast or 1 packet
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 1/2 cups flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 4 tablespoons butter, softened to room temperature
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon cinnamon
- 1 tablespoon orange zest
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 1 tablespoon orange zest
- 2 - 3 tablespoons orange juice
- Stir together the water, yeast, sugar, and olive oil in a measuring cup. Allow to rest for 5 minutes to activate the yeast. The yeast should bloom and the top should be some what foamy. If it doesn't bloom, your yeast may not be any good.
- While the yeast is blooming, whisk together the flour and salt in a large bowl, ready to be attached to a stand mixer, fitted with a dough hook. If you do not have a dough hook, you can knead this by hand.
- The yeast should still be blooming, so mix together the cinnamon, sugar, and orange zest. Set aside.
- Your 5 minutes should be up by now, so pour the yeast mixture into the flour, and give it a good stir with a wooden spoon or rubber spatula. Once mixed together, place onto the stand mixer, and allow the dough hook to do the rest. I put mine on medium speed. Set your timer for 10 minutes. During this time, preheat your oven to 350 degrees, and if your using a cast iron skillet, put a little oil on a paper towel and wipe the bottom and sides. I used a 10 inch skillet. You can also bake these in two pie plates or an 11X7 inch pan. Make sure to spray those down with non stick cooking spray, if that is what you use. Check on your dough - if it looks overly sticky, add a tablespoon of flour. Living in the south, if our humidity is high on the day I make these, I may have to add up to 3 tablespoons of flour, one at a time.
- Roll out your dough into a uniform, or as uniform as you can get rectangle. Using an off set spatula or the back of a spoon, spread the butter on to the dough. Sprinkle the entire thing with ALL of the cinnamon sugar mixture. Roll the dough, long ways, where you have a long roll, and slice into 1 inch discs. Place into the prepared pan, and bake for 22 to 25 minutes or until the dough is completely cooked. You can check this by using a knife and pulling one of the rolls in the center away from another one. The dough will look under baked if they aren't ready.
- While the cinnamon rolls are baking, prepare the topping by whisking together the powdered sugar, zest and juice.
- When the cinnamon rolls are baked, remove from the oven, set a timer for 5 minutes. Once the timer has went off, it's time to pour on the topping and enjoy!