Skillet Cinnamon Buns with Cream Cheese Frosting

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I have one question for you today – is there anything better than homemade cinnamon buns? Honestly, I haven’t made a batch of cinnamon buns in a long time, {pure craziness I know}, but his past Saturday I had such a craving for them, I had absolutely no choice but to make a fresh batch.

Now I have always had a little bit of a thing for cinnamon buns – and by a little thing I mean I’m basically addicted to them {you can read all about my cinnamon bun addiction in my previous post for Dark Chocolate Espresso Cinnamon Buns}.

However; I guess because it had been so long since I had actually made & eaten a batch of classic cinnamon buns, I forgot just how incredibly special they are, and I just can’t help but think that they really are the best thing to bake for a weekend breakfast in all of the land.

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Okay so that was a pretty big statement – but seriously though, for me, cinnamon buns are the ultimate – Not only because of the amazingness that a warm, soft, ooey, gooey cinnamon bun brings to your tummy, but also because of the irresistible aroma that they proceed to fill your house with as you bake them.

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There really is nothing quite like the smell of baking cinnamon buns – am I right? Because when it comes to cinnamon buns, in addition to the amazing smell of fresh bread that you get from the activation of the yeast, {which is enough to make you swoon all on its own}, you also get the wondrous smell of the cinnamon and brown sugar as it bakes together with the yeasty buns in pure, sweet, delectable harmony…

Honestly the smell of fresh cinnamon buns is just plain intoxicating. So much so, I can usually wait no more than about 10 seconds after I pull them from the oven to dig in.

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So after Cole and I ate about five cinnamon buns each, I had a thought, and realized that I have never actually shared my favourite, classic cinnamon bun recipe with you guys! I couldn’t believe it and instantly knew that this wrong had to be righted as soon as possible – hence my enthusiasm to share this recipe with you all today!

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Now, being that I am something of a cinnamon bun addict, I have to be honest and say, that I am pretty picky when it comes to my cinnamon buns… Okay so I’m basically a cinnamon bun snob – and what I mean by that, is that when it comes to cinnamon buns, I will accept nothing short of perfection.

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So if you have ever struggled to find a good homemade cinnamon bun recipe – this recipe will be your new best friend because I promise you, it comes out absolutely perfect every time.

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These cinnamon buns rise up beautifully, they have the softest, fluffiest, most beautiful cinnamon bun texture, and the filling is just pure ooey, gooey, brown sugary, cinnamon bliss. Oh and what would a cinnamon bun be without a healthy slather of cream cheese frosting of course?

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Now my favourite way to bake cinnamon buns is actually in a nice cast iron skillet, but if you don’t have one in the house, you can always use a regular round or square cake pan – however if you do have a skillet in your house, and you have never tried this method of cinnamon bun baking – I highly encourage you to give it a try with this recipe.

I just find that baking the cinnamon buns in the skillet, creates the most amazing caramelization on the bottom of the buns as the filling oozes out slightly, without burning it, and I don’t know what it is, but they always seem to come out extra soft and amazing when I bake them in a skillet.

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So here is my recipe for classic cinnamon buns lovelies an I hope you enjoy <3 <3

Skillet Pecan Cinnamon Buns with Cream Cheese Frosting

Makes: 12 Cinnamon Buns

Things you need…
1 pckg dry instant yeast
1/4 cup whole milk, warmed
1/4 cup buttermilk, warmed
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1 egg, room temp
1/4 cup butter, room temp
2 1/4 cups all purpose flour
1/4 tsp salt

Brown Sugar -Pecan Filling
1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup dark brown sugar
2 tbsp all purpose flour
1/2 tbsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup toasted pecans, chopped {optional}

Cream Cheese Frosting
1/4 cup butter, softened
1/2 package cream cheese, softened
3 cups icing sugar
1 tsp vanilla

How to make…
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook add your yeast and a couple tsp of the sugar. Pour the warmed milks over the yeast and sugar and lightly whisk to combine. Allow your yeast to sit in the warm milk like this for 5-10 minutes to proof. When you come back to your yeast after 5-10 minutes it should be frothy – this indicates that your yeast is active and good to go. If you come back and your yeast hasn’t gotten frothy or foamed up, discard the contents in your bowl and start over with new fresh packages of yeast and proof again using the same technique.

Once you have proofed your yeast, add the remaining sugar to the mixture as well as the softened butter and turn your mixer onto low to begin combining the ingredients. Mix for a minute or so until the softened butter is broken up into chunks. Add your beaten egg and allow to mix until combined. Slowly begin to add your flour 1/2 cup at a time allow the flour to incorporate slightly before each addition.

Once you have added all of your flour, turn your mixer onto medium speed and allow it to mix the dough until a large smooth mass forms. The dough should be soft and a bit sticky, but not so wet that it is sticking to the sides of the bowl. If you find that your dough is sticking to the sides of your bowl, add a bit more flour 1 tbsp at a time until it comes away from the sides of the bowl. Allow to turn on medium speed for 5 minutes.

Remove dough from bowl – it should be smooth and elastic. Knead with your hands for an additional 2 minutes on a lightly floured surface. Next, place your dough into a large greased bowl, lightly grease the top of your dough and cover with a dry tea towel. Set your dough aside to rise in a warm place for 1 1/2 – 2 hours or until doubled in size.

** My oven has a warming function, so I usually set the warming function to low and let my dough sit in here to rise. If your oven has this feature, this is a great way to let your dough rise. If not, simply preheat your oven to about 200 degrees, shut it off and place the dough in there to rise as there will be enough residual heat in your oven to keep it nice a warm.

Brown Sugar Filling
In a small mixing bowl beat together butter, brown sugar, cinnamon and vanilla until fluffy. Add flour and beat until combined.

Assembly
Once your cinnamon bun dough has risen, punch dough down and turn out onto a lightly floured surface. Roll out into a rectangle that is 1/4 inch thick.

Spread brown sugar filling out across the dough, leaving a 1 inch border at the bottom. Sprinkle the toasted pecans (if using) across the surface of the dough evenly and gently press down into the sugar filling.

Roll dough up jelly-roll style and pinch the end together to seal. Cut into 12 even 1 inch rolls. Place rolls into two parchment lined 9×9 inch cast iron skillets – 6 per skillet. Set aside to rise again in a warm place for another 30 – 45.

While your rolls are rising, preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Sprinkle with granulated sugar and bake for 20-25 minutes or until golden. Remove from oven and allow to cool 5-10 minutes before frosting with cream cheese icing.

Cream Cheese Frosting

While your cinnamon buns are baking, whip up your cream cheese frosting.

In a medium bowl, beat together butter and cream cheese using an electric mixer until completely smooth and there are no lumps. Add in icing sugar 1/2 cup at a time, beating until combined before each addition. Once all of your icing sugar is mixed in, add in vanilla and turn the mixer onto high and beat for 3-4 minutes until pale and fluffy. Set aside until your cinnamon buns are ready to be frosted.

Spread a generous helping on top of each cinnamon bun, serve warm, and enjoy!

Happy cinnamon bun baking <3

KP xoxo

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8 thoughts on “Skillet Cinnamon Buns with Cream Cheese Frosting

  1. I can’t find the bourbon pecan praline cinnamon buns recipe on here, but thefeedfeed.com cited you ! I was wondering if I can make them ahead and bake them the next day, will they turn out?? They look fabulous! I will make them anyways, but want to take them on a trip!

    1. Hi Lauren!

      Thanks so much for popping by! The Bourbon Praline Buns you mentioned were part of a project I did with the feedfeed so the recipe is hosted in their website and you can find it here https://thefeedfeed.com/story-article/thefeedfeed/bourbon-pecan-praline-cinnamon-buns . If you make them the day before, I would suggest doing it the night before and setting them in the fridge overnight & then set them in a warm place to rise for an hour to an hour and a half for their second rise before baking them the next morning. I have done this many times and they always turn out great 🙂

      Happy baking!

      KP

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