Cinnamon Rolls

This recipe is to die for. I will be eternally grateful to The Pioneer Woman for it. The original recipe is here.

I improvised from the recipe and replaced some white sugar with brown sugar, cut the salt and added pecan nuts. I also made my own icing. It’s freaking good, you must add icing to the rolls.

Make the whole batch. You can freeze whatever you didn’t bake. You won’t regret it.

If the rolls are cold by the next day, simply warm them up in the microwave oven (uncovered) for 15 secs and they will be soft and wonderful again!

So here’s my version. I hope you like it.

1 litre (4 Cups) Whole Milk
1 Cup Vegetable Oil
1 Cup Sugar
2 packages Active Dry Yeast (16g)
9 Cups Plain Flour
1 teaspoon (heaping) Baking Powder
1 teaspoon (scant) Baking Soda
2 teaspoons Salt
3 Cup Melted Butter (I just melted a whole block 500g of butter)
1 Cup Caster Sugar
1 Cup Brown Sugar
1/4 Cup Ground Cinnamon
2 Cups Chopped Pecan Nuts

1/4 Cup Strong Instant Coffee (I used one pack of 3-in-1 mix, that had instant coffee powder, coffee creamer & sugar in it)
1 Tablespoon Good Quality Honey (I used a coffee flavoured Manuka honey)
6 Tablespoons Melted Butter
A pinch of Salt
2 Cups Icing Sugar
1 to 2 Tablespoons of Fresh Cream


Begin by pouring 4 Cups of whole milk into a large cooking pot.

Add 1 Cup of sugar.

Add 1 Cup of vegetable oil.

Heat it over a medium flame and stir till sugar has dissolved. Do NOT boil.

Set the mixture aside to cool till lukewarm.

Check with your finger right into the mixture. If it’s hot, then cool some more. I should be just very mildly comfortably warm to the touch.

When the mixture is lukewarm, add 2 packets of instant dry yeast (about 16g, 4.5 teaspoons).

Sprinkle the yeast on the surface of the mixture. Leave it for 3 to 5 minutes.

If the yeast is fresh and alive, you will see it growing and poofing up.

Add 8 Cups of plain flour.

Mix it all up together. Don’t overmix.

Cover with a table cloth and set aside covered in a warm place for 1 hour.

After an hour, the dough would have risen to twice its size.

Punch the dough down.

Add the last cup of flour.

Add 1 heaping teaspoon of baking powder.

Add 1 scant teaspoon of baking soda.

Add 2 teaspoons of salt.

Mix it up. Cover the dough again. And this time, either leave it in a warm place again for 1 hour. Or leave it covered in the fridge for 3 hours to rise slowly.

Note: I left it in the fridge for 3 hours. The dough may be easier to manage when left to rise this way instead as it will be colder and harder.

After the mentioned time, the dough would have risen again. Punch it down.

Knead the dough for a few moments and then transfer the dough to the working table that has been lightly floured.

If the dough is too wet at this stage. Chill it in the fridge for a while. It’ll help.

Flour a rolling pin. And roll out the dough into a huge long rectangle.

Cut the dough into 2 parts. So that there are two long pieces of dough.

Pour 2 cups of melted butter onto the rolled out dough.

Note: Check your dough. If it’s VERY wet, reduce the amount of melted butter added at this stage. When the rolls are laid out in the pan later, pour the rest of the melted butter on them instead. I really prefer to add all the melted butter at this stage because the flavour goes right into the dough.

Using fingers, evenly distribute the butter.

Sprinkle 1/4 cup of cinnamon over the dough.

Sprinkle 1 cup of castor sugar over the dough.

Sprinkle 1 cup of brown sugar over the dough. As brown sugar gets clumpy. I scattered the sugar on the dough with my fingers.

Chop some pecan nuts to get about 2 cups worth of chopped pecans.

Sprinkle the chopped pecan nuts onto the rolled dough.

Roll up the dough, lengthwise. It will be a really long roll. If the dough is very wet and you are struggling to roll it, add some flour to the surfaces to help you roll.

Cut into 1 inch thick rolls.

Rub pans or baking dishes generously with more melted butter. Place the cinnamon rolls comfortably in each pan/dish. Do not overcrowd as they will expand alot in the pan. Pour remaining butter over the rolls. Don’t be afraid!

Set them aside for 1 hour. If there’s wind/draft in your kitchen, cover the rolls with table cloths. The rolls will rise some more.

Pop the rolls into a oven, preheated at 180 deg Celsius. Bake for 15 to 17 minutes.

While the rolls are baking, make the icing. Don’t get stressed about the proportions. Just mix the ingredients till you get a gooey consistency to pour over like syrup.

Make a 1/4 cup of strong coffee with 1/4 cup water and one 3-in-1 coffee mix.

Add 1 tablespoon of the best honey you can get your hands on. Maple syrup works too.

Stir the honey into the coffee.

Add a pinch of salt.

Add 6 tablespoons of melted butter.

Add 2 cup of icing sugar.

Whisk it all up.

Add 1 to 2 tablespoons of fresh cream.

Stir in the cream.

Pour the icing over the rolls while they are still hot.

So yummilicious!

The printable version of this recipe is here –
Cinnamon Rolls by Bing on FoodistaCinnamon Rolls by Bing

Main Blog – Story of Bing


  1. wah! thanks for the pictures and instructions! You make baking sound so fun and easy!

    • I’m glad u liked it! Baking is pretty fun.. especially when the end result tastes good. Haha.. but I have my flops too. Hmm.. maybe I should share those sometimes. 😉

  2. Hi Karen, I have qns :-)
    1) should it be 8C or 9C plain flour?
    2) The ‘t’ you used, little t for teaspoon and capital T for tablespoon?

    • Hi SK, it’s 9 cups of plain flour. The final 9th cup is added after punching down the dough the first time. Add this final cup of flour with the baking soda, baking powder and salt.

      Yes, I was lazy.. t is teaspoon and T is Tablespoon. =p

  3. hey Karen, thanks for highlighting. I can be so sotong. :-p
    coz am trying to do conversion to metric. *sweat* think better for me to buy the measuring spoon and cup. :-)

  4. Hi Bing,

    These rolls look fabulous. Tempting.

    How can I substitute the fresh cream if I don’t have one for the icing?



    • You can use milk in place of cream for the icing. It’ll just be more runny and probably less rich though.

      We just made these yesterday and had them for breakfast this morning. They are fabulous! =)

  5. Thank you. I’ve been opening this page since afternoon. Trying to study recipe and follow exactly what you do here. Another 45 mins to go before adding a cup of flour in the wet dough :-) Haha.. Hope I don’t screw up again in rolling the dough. Looks quite wet dough to roll though.

    • It IS disgustingly wet. Flour your hands and rolling pin when you roll it out. By the time you add the butter, it will be a huge mess. Gently roll up the dough, pushing in the ingredients as much as you can. Slice gently. You have to handle the dough with a tender touch here. When you get the cut dough into the pan, you can scoop up the rest of the butter-sugar-nut mixture and tuck it back into the cut rolls. The messier it looks, the better it’s going to taste later. Remember to pour melted butter over the rolls before baking.

      Even the most picky children in my family love these. =)

      • Wah sounds so serious business here with the wet dough but the result is rewarding.. Need to jot down your tips here. I’m making half recipe first now :-) Once I know the drill better, I will make the whole recipe. Hey, thanks a lot for the kind and prompt advice!

        • Btw, sorry, another question. How long do you need to knead the dough?

          • Hi Christine, sorry for the late reply, I was stuck in the wilderness and had no internet access for days.

            I usually knead it till it becomes a nice elastic ball. Hope that helps!

  6. Many many Thanks!!! I’ve tried this one yesterday and its a success! the dough and the frosting is really good…my hubby says, the final verdict is if its still soft the day after…and this morning.. still soft and fluffy and very yummy!!!! i would surely not miss cinnabon with pecan nuts bec. i can make A LOT at home!!

    My hubby and my BFF really really love it.. They are my guinea pigs for every first attempts.. not to mention the Japanese cheesecake,they like it so much too!
    Thanks so much!

    God Bless you more.

    PS> Is this totally different to Joanne Chang’s Sticky Buns?….
    Any plans to try french macarons in the future?

  7. hi karen ,

    I love to view your pages. ^^

    May i know for the icing part can i substitute with others instead of instant coffee and it still taste delicious.
    Coz my mum not really like the taste of coffee.
    Can karen suggest ?
    thanks thanks ..

    • hi karen ,

      i need ur advise and suggestion for this .

      thanks alot ^^

      • You can skip the icing if you don’t like it. Cheers!

  8. about this spectacular cinnamon roll by Bing:
    1. most requested afternoon snack by my friends…i think almost 80% of my community tasted this.
    2. Most frequently cooked dessert after my cathedral gelatine dessert. I’ve cooked this for more than 15x.
    3. i can made around 50 buns out of this recipe
    4. i also slightly modify my frosting by adding cream cheese and lessen the sugar.
    5. way better than cinnabon.
    6. the bun is fantastic. so soft!!

    hope to have more from you Karen. Kudos!

    • Hi Eden, I’m glad to know you love this recipe. It’s our daughter’s favourite thing to make too. She’s made this numerous times. =) I can’t take credit for the recipe. It originated from The Pioneer Woman.

      Keep baking!

  9. Hi Bing,

    I love your step by step tutorials. You make cooking seem so easy :)

    Attempting to make some cinnamon roles this weekend and wondering if I can substitute vegetable oil with extra light olive oil or extra virgin olive oil?


    • Hi Shwu, I wouldn’t use Extra Virgin Olive Oil in this recipe. The flavours are too strong and would affect the taste of the bread. I would use canola or sunflower oil. Have fun!

  10. Hi Bing

    I am wondering how long can I leave my dough in the fridge and if longer would it make any difference.

    The reason being, I get home late evening and would like to make the dough one eveing and bake the next evening.

    Any suggestion is appreciated.

    Note: I left it in the fridge for 3 hours. The dough may be easier to manage when left to rise this way instead as it will be colder and harder

    • I’m not sure if it’s a good idea to let the dough rest for so long. Perhaps you can consider freezing the dough the night before and then leaving the frozen dough in the fridge before you leave for work the next day. By evening, the dough would have defrosted nicely and risen nicely in the fridge. Hope that works. Good luck!

  11. Hi,
    I made these yesterday, it took me all of 6 hours before the first batch went into the oven. For the second rise, I left in a previously heated oven for an hour instead of leaving in the fridge as I had time constraints. The dough was ok when I rolled as I added quite abit of flour. The rolls turned out superb!!! Everyone loved it even though I skipped the icing as we are not too crazy about sweet stuff. The rolls were soft and chewy and the hint of sweetness and cinnamon was perfect.

    Thank you so much for the picture tutorial it really helped! It was my first time baking bread and credit goes all to you as I use the pictures as a guide to help me along so that I know exactly how my dough should look like at each stage. Great blog!

  12. I would like to try making this wonderful rolls. I need to know if I can use nescafe for the coffee. Or can you recommend / suggest the coffee to be used here. Thanks.


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