Cream Cheese Cinnamon Buns

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Yield: 9 buns

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These cinnamon buns are irresistibly flaky and tender; a layer of cream cheese adds richness to their filling. Thanks to Red Star Yeast, one of our valued partners, for this recipe.

Cream Cheese Cinnamon Buns

star rating (27) rate this recipe »
Hands-on time:
Baking time:
Total time:
Yield: 9 buns
Published: 12/20/2011



  • 3/4 cup lukewarm milk
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • ½ cup (8 tablespoons) unsalted butter, softened
  • 3 cups King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
  • 2 ¼ teaspoons Red Star Platinum, Active Dry or Quick Rise yeast
  • 2 tablespoons light brown sugar
  • ¾ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract


  • ¼ cup finely chopped walnuts
  • ¼ cup finely chopped pecans
  • 1 cup Baker's Cinnamon Filling*
  • ¼ cup water*
  • 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • *See substitute in tips, below.


  • 1 ½ tablespoons milk
  • 3/4 cup confectioners' sugar or glazing sugar

Tips from our bakers

  • No Baker's Cinnamon Filling on hand? Substitute the following: 1/3 cup (2 5/8 ounces) unsalted butter, softened; 1 cup (7 1/4 ounces) brown sugar, packed; and 3 tablespoons (3/4 ounce) ground cinnamon. OMIT the ¼ cup water.
  • Want fresh-baked, oven-warm buns in the morning? Prepare the buns through their rise in the pan (step 8). Cover and refrigerator overnight. Next day, allow the buns to rest at room temperature for 15 minutes before baking; you may need to increase the baking time by a few minutes.
  • If you ice the buns while they're warm, the icing will soak in and disappear. If you want the icing to stay on top, remove the buns from the oven, and turn them out of the pan onto a rack to cool. When completely cool, drizzle with icing.


1) To make the dough: Mix and knead together all of the dough ingredients to make a smooth, soft dough.

2) Place the dough in a lightly greased bowl or in an 8-cup measure; the measure helps you judge how much it's risen. Let it rise until it's almost double in size, about 2 hours.

3) To make the filling: Combine the nuts in one bowl, and the Baker's Cinnamon Filling and water (or substitute ingredients) in another.

4) Roll the dough into a 14" x 12" rectangle. Spread the softened cream cheese evenly over the surface.

5) Fold one short end into the center. Fold the other short end over the first, like you were folding a letter.

6) Roll the dough into a 14" x 12" rectangle again, and fold it like a letter again.

7) Roll the dough into a 12" x 18" rectangle. Spread the cinnamon filling evenly over the dough, followed by the nuts.

8) Beginning with one long edge, roll the dough into a log. Cut the log into 9 equal slices. Place the slices in a greased 9" square or 10" square baking pan, cover with plastic wrap, and let rise for 2 hours. Towards the end of the rising time, preheat the oven to 375°F.

9) Bake the rolls for 30 to 35 minutes, until they're golden brown. Remove the rolls from the oven.

10) To ice, whisk together the sugar and milk, drizzle icing over the buns, and serve warm.

Yield: 9 buns.


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  • star rating 04/01/2015
  • pepper from ny
  • Couldn't have been happier with the results! Great taste and texture, as good as bake shop and everyone loved them! Will certainly be top on my favorites list, thanks!
  • star rating 02/17/2015
  • TH from New York
  • Easy recipe to follow and they come out just the way they look. The taste was fabulous, this is a keeper.Thanks!
  • star rating 01/04/2015
  • baking diva from KAF Community
  • These were the best cinnamon buns I've ever made and I've made many. I thought I had messed up when rolling the dough I had cream cheese coming out the ends. It was messy, I got it on my rolling pin, but I kept going and they were so worth it. Light, some flakiness and perfect amount of sweetness. Excellent recipe! It's a keeper!
  • star rating 12/28/2014
  • Meg from Texas
  • Love these cinnamon rolls! The bread has a great flavor on its own thanks to the cream cheese, which also helps keep it moist when reheating. I make them every Christmas Eve, sans the glaze, and simply reheat Christmas morning and glaze for a warm delicious treat that makes the house smell amazing! Highly recommend!
  • star rating 01/01/2014
  • Mary from New York
  • These buns are amazing...I was a little nervous making them, as a beginner bread baker, but the directions and reading through the tips were a big help. They came out perfect! And even my mother-in-law loved them.
  • star rating 10/15/2013
  • Eleanor from
  • Delicious! This will be my new go-to cinnamon roll recipe. I substituted 2 1/4 t regular yeast for instant yeast and had no issues. It took about 2 hours to double for the first rise with the regular yeast. I did the refrigerate overnight method, and would recommend letting the cinnamon rolls sit out for 30 minutes or so before baking. With only 15 minutes, my outer rolls heated up significantly more than the center roll, which lead to uneven rising in the oven and uneven baking times - the outer rolls were very definitely done while the center roll was still partially raw. I will definitely be making these again - either without refrigeration or I'll pull the rolls out 30-45 minutes before I want to bake.
  • star rating 10/13/2013
  • Linda from LA
  • This recipe bombed! Did not rise at all! I don't think the directions are very good. Wasted all the money on ingredients and the new KA yeast I got for my birthday. Sad disappointment.
    So sad for the disappointment, Linda. There are several reasons why this may have happened - water temperature, rising location, flour measurement, etc. We'd love to help problem solve this - please call our baker's hotline at 855-371-2253. Happy Baking - Irene@KAF
  • star rating 09/06/2013
  • Linh from Florida
  • This recipe is great. The texture of the dough is light and flaky. The cream cheese gives the rolls an extra rich flavor. Laminating the dough with cream cheese is easy and not overly time consuming. The only change I made was cutting down the sugar in the filling. I will definitely make this again.
  • star rating 07/10/2013
  • from
  • star rating 05/15/2013
  • Nancy from Trondheim, Norway
  • As other reviewers have commented, these require a little more work than you might think but the results are pretty delicious -- a little TOO delicious, in fact. They were so good I don't think I can make them again, since I'll eat too many of them! They're pretty sweet, too, so you can easily get away without the powdered sugar glaze. One thing that other bakers should be aware of is that the dough after you mix it and let it rise can be really gooey. It was so gooey that I thought I had done something wrong, even though I followed the directions exactly. I just decided to proceed anyway, and it all turned out just fine.
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