Soft and sweet cinnamon rolls take on a festive wreath shape. They are a perfect holiday breakfast or something fabulous for overnight guests.
Treating your family or friends to an extra special breakfast is a great way to start the day off right. The cinnamon roll wreath can be shaped the night ahead and refrigerated. Then in the morning all you have to do is proof and bake it. Drizzling a nice glaze over the warm rolls takes them to the next level. This is sure to wow everyone at the table.
There is something about waking up to the aroma of cinnamon rolls in the oven. Not only do you get the sweet smells of cinnamon wafting through the house, but also you get the fresh bread goodness.
Talk about a one two punch of fabulous scents. It is way better than any candle money can buy.
If you get to be the lucky one who rises from bed knowing they are in the oven, all the better. The anticipation changes the whole mood of getting up to start the day.
You can give that gift of high expectations and smiles to your family or overnight guests and still maintain a small surprise by serving those cinnamon rolls in wreath form. It makes it just that little bit more special and festive.
Cinnamon rolls happen to be one of Little Dude’s favorite treats, so I knew these would be a hit with him. I was right, his eyes were as big as saucers when he saw them.
My brothers were hooked too. They were having a hard time waiting to eat them.
Even my husband, who takes great pride in skipping sweets, had multiple helpings. That is always a good sign!
Making and forming a cinnamon roll wreath
These cinnamon rolls are made with a soft enriched yeast dough. It is easy to work with, but does take a little bit of time.
I enjoy kneading dough by hand. I find it a little bit therapeutic and fun.
However you can use your mixer’s dough hook. Once the dough comes together, let the hook work the dough on medium speed for about five minutes or until the dough is smooth and elastic.
The butter and eggs make that first proof take a little extra long. You can speed it up a bit by letting your dough rise in a warm spot.
You can cover the bowl your dough is in with a damp towel or plastic wrap and place it in a warm spot in your kitchen. Alternatively you can preheat your oven to 200 F, then turn off the oven and allow your dough to rise in the residual heat.
I don’t even bother using a rolling pin for the dough. You can use your fingers to spread the dough and using your baking sheet pan as a template helps you to get the right size.
I like using melted butter and brown sugar in the filling. It makes spreading it easy and adds great color and flavor.
Making the wreath is pretty simple. Just roll the dough the way you normally would, but instead of cutting all the way through the dough log leave a little bit intact.
Arrange the rolls in a circle, slightly overlapping each slice as you work your way around. Add a ramekin or small bowl in the center or the wreath to help it keep its shape.
At this point you can cover the dough and refrigerate it overnight. Just let it come to room temperature and then allow it to rise for 45 minutes in the morning.
Then bake until the are soft but golden. I love drizzling them with icing while they are still hot because it has the best chance of soaking in and making everything that much more gooey and delicious.
Feel free to add nuts or plumped raisins to the filling if desired or add festive sprinkles on top. Customizing recipes to your tastes is one of the best parts of cooking!
Keeping leftover cinnamon rolls soft
Store any leftover cinnamon rolls in an airtight container at room temperature for up to several days. Add a slice of sandwich bread to the container to help keep them soft.
For longer storage, wrap individual cinnamon rolls in plastic wrap and freeze for up to three months. To serve, unwrap the roll and microwave it for fifteen to twenty seconds to have an instant breakfast!
More festive breakfast recipes
For more festive breakfast ideas, check out my collection of easy and make ahead holiday breakfasts. Or check out my collection of baked oatmeal recipes, they are a low fuss and nutritious way to have a tasty breakfast.
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- 1 cup whole milk
- ⅔ cup sugar
- 1.5 Tablespoons yeast (2 packets)
- ½ cup salted butter
- 2 large eggs, at room temperature
- 4.5 cups flour plus extra for dusting surfaces
- 6 Tablespoons butter
- ½ cup brown sugar
- 1.5 Tablespoons cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
- 2 cups powdered sugar
- 2 Tablespoons melted butter
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 4 Tablespoons milk
- Heat milk to about 100℉. If you don’t have a thermometer, you can check the temperature with a finger. It should feel warm but not so hot you can’t leave your finger in it.
- Stir in the sugar and yeast. Allow to sit for 5-10 minutes. It should foam if your yeast is active. If it doesn’t, start over with new yeast.
- While your yeast is getting bubbly, melt the butter in a large and set aside to cool.
- When the yeast is ready, stir the mixture into the butter. Lightly beat the eggs and add to the bowl, mixing to combine.
- Add the flour a bit at a time, stirring as you go. Once all of the flour is added, stir until it comes together in a ball.
- Turn out onto a lightly floured surface and knead for about 10 minutes, or until the dough is smooth and elastic.
- Place in an oiled bowl and cover with plastic wrap or a damp towel. Allow to rise until doubled in size, 1-2 hours.
- Put dough on a lightly floured piece of parchment paper or silicone mat, roughly 8x13-inch in size. Gently press the dough out to evenly cover the rectangle.
- Prepare the filling by melting the butter then stirring in the brown sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg. Spread over the dough.
- Roll into a tight log, then cut the dough into 16 equal pieces without going all the way through.
- Transfer the baking mat or parchment paper onto a baking sheet. Form the dough into a wreath by tipping a roll on its side, then slightly overlapping with the next roll, working your way around.
- Place a small bowl or ramekin in the center of the wreath to help it hold its shape, then cover with plastic wrap or a damp towel. Allow them to rise for 45 minutes. (If you want to make overnight rolls, they can be covered and refrigerated for up to 14 hours after you form the wreath. Just bring them to room temperature and let them rise for 45 minutes before baking.)
- Bake in a preheated 350℉ oven for 25 minutes.
- To make the glaze whisk together the sugar, melted butter, vanilla and 2 Tablespoons of milk until smooth. Add more milk as needed to get your desired consistency. Drizzle over warm cinnamon rolls. Top with sprinkles if desired.
- These rolls are best enjoyed warm, but keep well. Store leftovers in an airtight container at room temperature for up to three days. Otherwise wrap the individual rolls and freeze them for later. A few seconds in the microwave will perk them right up.
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Amount Per Serving: Calories: 364Total Fat: 13gSaturated Fat: 8gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 4gCholesterol: 56mgSodium: 112mgCarbohydrates: 57gFiber: 2gSugar: 28gProtein: 6g
All nutritional information is estimated and will depend on the exact ingredients you use.