One of our favorite winter pastimes is baking. Well, to be perfectly honest, we love any excuse to get in the kitchen and bake, but when the weather is cold and blustery, there is nothing better than whipping up something sinfully delicious to warm us (and our visitors!) right to the core. During the recent snow storm here in Oxford, cinnamon buns seemed like the perfect fit, bringing a sweet and fresh aroma to the house that lingered long after the buns came out of the oven. After building a snowman and exploring the beauty of freshly fallen snow on our 30-acre property, these scrumptious cinnamon buns sure did hit the spot!
We’ve been baking these beauties for our guests at the Combsberry Inn for a few years now, and they are always a crowd pleaser. The ooey-gooey goodness of the fresh dough, topped with the heavenly icing, will have you unabashedly licking your fingers while simultaneously reaching out your plate for seconds. It’s ok – indulge! So what’s the secret recipe you ask??
Well ask and you shall receive. We commandeered our popular sticky bun recipe from the Pioneer Woman and we are passing it along to you:
- 1 quart whole milk
- 1 cup vegetable oil
- 1 cup sugar
- 2 packages active dry yeast, 0.25 ounce packages
- 8 cups all-purpose flour (plus 1 extra cup, separated)
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 Tablespoon Baking soda
- 1 Tablespoon salt
- Plenty of melted butter
- 2 cups sugar
- Generous sprinkling of sugar
Maple Frosting Ingredients:
- 1 bag powdered sugar
- 2 teaspoons maple flavoring
- ½ cup milk
- ¼ cup melted butter
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
When playing in the kitchen, we like to keep in mind that we are playing. Stressing out while baking has always seemed counterintuitive, so relax and have some fun! Experiment with the recipe or strictly adhere to the measurements, either way, enjoy rolling up your sleeves and digging your hands into a delicious project…baking!
We’ll start with the dough. Heat the milk, vegetable oil, and sugar in a medium saucepan over medium heat until the mixture is just below a boil. Remove from heat, set aside, and cool to warm. Sprinkle yeast on top and let it sit for 1 minute.
Next, add your 8 cups of flour, stirring until combined before covering with a clean kitchen towel. Set the dough in a relatively warm place for 1 hour. Then, remove the towel and add the baking powder, baking soda, salt, and the remaining 1 cup of flour. Stir thoroughly. Tip: use the dough right away or place in a mixing bowl and refrigerate for up to three days.
Preheat the oven to 375.
Remove half the dough and roll into a large rectangle across a floured surface. The rectangle should be roughly 30×10 inches and the dough should be rolled very thin.
Pour ¾ cup to 1 cup of the melted butter over the surface of the dough and spread evenly. Sprinkle half of the ground cinnamon and 1 cup of the sugar over the butter. Be generous!
Next, starting at the farthest end from you, roll the rectangle tightly back towards you. Slowly and carefully, roll the dough tight. Once you are at the end, pinch the seam together and turn the roll so that the seam is face down. If the gooey goodness of the inside starts the spill out – all the better!
Now that you are face to face with a tempting looking cinnamon-sugar-butter-laden log, slide a cutting board underneath and slice into ½ inch slices. You should end up with 20-25 rolls. Line your cake pans with melted butter and place sliced rolls into the pan. A typical cake pan will hold 7-9 rolls.
Repeat the filling/rolling process with the rest of the dough and more pans. Cover each of your pans with a kitchen towel and set aside for at least 20 minutes before baking. Bake for 15 to 19 minutes.
As your dough is happily baking, prepare the maple icing. In a large bowl, whisk together powdered sugar, milk, butter and salt. Add maple flavoring and whisk until smooth. Feel free to keep adding ingredients as needed until the icing is at your desired consistency.
Now for the fun part! Remove your pans from the oven and immediately drizzle the icing on top.
Finally – enjoy!! Make them for friends or family and pair with a tall glass of cold milk or enjoy over a hot cup of coffee or tea. Or wait to enjoy them the next time you are staying with us at the Combsberry Inn! We love feedback from our guests, so be sure to let us know how your cinnamon rolls turn out!
Find the original Pioneer Woman recipe here!