Homemade cinnamon rolls with heavy cream are a true delight. This viral TikTok cinnamon roll hack will elevate your cinnamon roll game, giving you ultra-soft and moist rolls guaranteed!
If you are looking for more cinnamon rolls recipes from scratch, then check out my Cinnamon Rolls with Brown Butter Frosting, next!
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Wondering how to make those famous TikTok cinnamon rolls with heavy cream? You have come to the right place. Homemade classic sweet rolls that are pillowy soft and the perfect balance of sugar and spice and a traditional cinnamon roll icing–what could be better?
Say “goodbye” to dry, stale rolls and “hello” to this easy cinnamon roll hack that you’ll keep with you for luscious, ultra soft, and moist rolls: pour heavy cream over cinnamon rolls before baking.
What Does Heavy Cream do for Cinnamon Rolls?
Due to heavy cream’s high fat content, adding it to the rolls just before baking adds moisture and acts as a tenderizer to baked treats.
As the cinnamon rolls bake, it absorbs the heavy cream and the fat within the cream contributes to the irresistible softness of the roll.
Tools You’ll Need
Ingredients You Will Need for Cinnamon Rolls with Heavy Cream
What’s great about this recipe is that it is made with simple ingredients, most of which you may already have:
Proof yeast by adding it to water and sugar. After about 15 minutes, you will notice a a foamy top, which means the yeast has bloomed.
- Active dry yeast – This must be dissolved into a liquid before being added to the other ingredients.
- Warm water – The temperature should be between 110°-115°F.
- Sugar – Acts as fuel for the yeast and assists with the proofing process.
- All-purpose flour – Be sure to spoon and level the flour as you do not want to overpack the measuring cup.
- Fresh nutmeg – You can use ground and bottled nutmeg, but if you can get your hands on whole nutmeg, freshly grated is even better!
- Sugar – Added to sweeten the rolls.
- Kosher salt – I use Diamond Crystal brand.
- Salted butter – Melted, but temperature should not register over 110°F.
- Eggs – You will need 1 large egg and 1 large egg yolk (for added richness), both at room temperature.
- Whole milk warm – Warmed to 110°F.
- Heavy cream – The trick to getting ULTRA MOIST rolls. This should be used at room temperature and is poured over the rolls after they have risen for the second time, just before baking.
- Salted butter – Use at room temperature.
- Light brown sugar – Packed.
- Cinnamon – A necessary ingredient for that sugar and spice flavor.
Cream Cheese Icing
- Salted butter – Use at room temperature.
- Cream cheese – Make sure it is full-fat and room temperature for smooth mixing.
- Pure vanilla extract – I use this Bourbon Pure Vanilla Extract.
- Kosher salt – I use Diamond Crystal brand.
- Powdered sugar – Sift when adding this to the frosting mixture.
How to Make Cinnamon Rolls with Heavy Cream
A sweet labor of love, but it is truly worth it! This recipe calls for a decent amount of steps, but I’ve made it straightforward and easy to follow.
If you are new to baking cinnamon rolls with heavy cream, rest assured you are in good hands.
- Prepare the yeast: Add yeast, warm water, and sugar to a bowl and wait 10-15 minutes for the yeast to double in size AKA bloom.
- Mix dough. Mix the dry ingredients (just 2 cups of flour) together in a standing mixer bowl. Add the yeast mixture and wet ingredients to that bowl. Use the knead hook to turn the mixer on low and slowly add the rest of the flour. Once ingredients form into a dough, let it sit for 5 minutes, to allow flour to absorb wet ingredients.
- Knead the dough. Knead for 7 minutes under speed 4 setting. Form it into one large ball.
- First rise. Add dough to a greased mixing bowl. Coat with plastic wrap then place it somewhere warm for 1½-2 hours, or until the dough has doubled in size. Then remove the plastic wrap and punch down the dough to remove air.
- Add cinnamon sugar mixture. Roll dough out on a well-floured surface with a rolling pin. Spread the cinnamon sugar mixture evenly over the dough, leaving the border clear of the mixture.
- Roll. Into a log and pinch the seam to keep the log sealed. Trim and discard uneven pieces.
- Slice. Cut the log into 12 pieces using unflavored dental floss.
- Pour Heavy Cream. Just before and bake for 26-30 minutes.
- Slather with Icing and Serve. When rolls come right out of the oven. Enjoy warm!
Tips and Tricks for the Best Cinnamon Rolls with Heavy Cream
- Use warm ingredients. As it aids in the proofing process.
- Spoon and level your flour. Using an appropriate amount of flour is important as you don’t want to add end up with heavy dough due to adding too much flour.
- Temperature is very important. If your water, milk, or butter are too hot or too cold, the cinnamon rolls will be affected. If the ingredients are too hot, it will kill the yeast. And if they’re too cold, the yeast won’t activate.
- Don’t skip the second rise. Allowing the dough to rise twice results in a lighter, chewy texture. You definitely want your cinnamon rolls to have those qualities.
- Dough should have a tacky, not sticky texture. If the dough is still sticky, refer to the remaining ½ cup of flour and add in increments of 1 tablespoon at a time until the dough is no longer sticky.
- You’ve kneaded enough when the dough is smooth. It should also spring back when you poke it.
- Be patient. Keep in mind that dough is rich so it may take some time to rise. If your oven has a proof setting, use that because a warm environment will encourage rising.
- Place foil over the rolls. If rolls begin to brown too quickly when baking, lightly place a piece of foil wrap on top.
Making Cinnamon Rolls Ahead of Time
Prepare cinnamon rolls ahead of time. There’s nothing like a morning filled with the scent of freshly baked goodness. What’s great about making them ahead is that all you’ll have to do the morning of is allow time for a rise, pop them in the oven and spread icing on top.
Can cinnamon rolls be made ahead of time?
Yes. Just before the second rise (stop at step 8), cover them in the pan and refrigerate for up to 12 hours before baking. Then let them rise at room temperature, which will take 1-2 hours. Proceed with pouring heavy cream and bake.
Frequently Asked Questions
Do you put the icing on cinnamon rolls before baking?
Place icing on baked cinnamon rolls. Otherwise, the dough will absorb the frosting as it bakes.
Why are my cinnamon rolls not fluffy?
If your rolls did not puff up while baking, you may have added too much flour to the dough. Be sure to spoon and level flour into a measuring cup for more accurate measuring.
Can I use dark brown sugar instead of light brown sugar in cinnamon rolls?
Yes, you can use either. Dark brown sugar has a deep, sweet flavor. In contrast, light brown sugar has a more subtle sweetness.
How to Reheat Leftovers
If you need to reheat, simply microwave in 10-second intervals.
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Cinnamon Rolls with Heavy Cream
- Standing mixer
- Kitchen instant thermometer
- 13×9 baking pan
- Mesh Sieve, for sifting
- Rolling Pin
- 1 packet active dry yeast, (equals 2¼ teaspoons)
- ¼ cup warm water, (110°-115°F)
- ½ teaspoon sugar
- 4 cups all-purpose flour, spooned and leveled plus ½ cup extra, separated
- ½ cup sugar
- 1¾ teaspoons kosher salt, I use Diamond Crystal brand
- 5 tablespoons salted butter, melted, 110°F
- 1 large egg, room temperature
- 1 large egg yolk, room temperature
- 1 cup whole milk warm (110°F)
- 1 cup heavy cream, (SAVED FOR POURING OVER RISEN ROLLS) room temperature
- 1 stick salted butter, room temperature
- ¾ cup light brown sugar, packed
- 1½ tablespoons cinnamon
Cream Cheese Icing
- 4 tablespoons salted butter, room temperature
- 4 ounces cream cheese, full-fat, room temperature
- 1½ teaspoons pure vanilla extract, I use Nielsen-Massesy
- ¼ teaspoon kosher salt, I use Diamond Crystal brand
- ⅔ cup powdered sugar, sifted
- 1 tablespoon whole milk
- Prepare yeast. In a small bowl, add yeast, warm water (110°-115°F), and sugar. Stir well. Will take roughly 15 minutes for yeast to double in size
- In a standing mixer bowl, add 2 cups of all-purpose flour, sugar, and salt. Whisk until ingredients are well mixed.
- Add 5 tbsps of melted butter, yeast mixture, 1 egg, 1 egg yolk, and warm milk. Using your knead hook, turn standing mixer on low and slowly add remaining 2 cups of flour. Once ingredients form into a dough, leave to sit for 5 minutes to allow flour to absorbs wet ingredients.
- Knead for 7 minutes under speed 4 setting. Dough should have a tacky, not sticky texture. If dough is still sticky, refer to remaining ½ cup of flour and add in increments of 1 tablespoon at a time until dough is not longer sticky. Form dough into one large ball. You will know when you've kneaded enough when the dough is very smooth and spring back after poking it.
- First rise: Grease mixing bowl with ½ teaspoon of butter. Add dough, cover bowl with plastic wrap and place in a warm place for 1½-2 hours, or until dough has doubled in size. Keep in mind that since dough is rich, it may take a little time to rise. If your oven has a proof setting, use that as a warm environment will encourage rising.While waiting, assemble cinnamon-sugar filling.
- Once dough has doubled in size, remove plastic wrap and punch down the dough to remove air. Place dough on a well-floured surface. Use a rolling pin to roll the dough out into a large square that is ¼ inch thick.
- Spread cinnamon sugar mixture evenly over the dough, leaving a ¼ inch border clear of the mixture. Starting on the short end, carefully roll the dough into a log and pinch the seam to keep the log sealed.
- Trim the uneven pieces and discard. Cut the log into 1½ inch thick pieces using unflavored dental floss. You should end up with a total of 12 pieces.
- Second rise: Place rolls into a prepared 13×9 baking pan, cover with plastic wrap or a towel and keep in a warm places for 45 minutes to and hour, or until rolls have doubled in size. 15 minutes before baking, preheat oven to 375°F.While waiting, assemble cream cheese icing.
- Remove plastic wrap or towel from pan. Pour heavy cream over rolls and bake for 26-30 minutes or until lightly brown, turning the pan at the halfway mark. If rolls begin to brown too quickly, lightly place a piece of foil wrap on top.
- After removing from the oven, immediately slather the top with half of the cream cheese frosting. Serve warm. Top with more frosting after serving, if desired.
- In a bowl, add room-temperature butter, brown sugar, and cinnamon. Use a fork to mix ingredients until well combined. Set aside.
Cream Cheese Frosting
- Add room-temp cream cheese and butter to a standing mixer with the whisk attachment. Whisk on high until light and fluffy.
- Add kosher salt, and vanilla. Whisk on high again just until ingredients come together.
- Add sifted powdered sugar in small batches and whisk until ingredients come together. Repeat until all sugar is added.
- Add milk and whisk again to combine. Set frosting aside until ready to use.