Recipe: Cinnamon Rolls With Cream Cheese Icing

Posted on 13 December, 2017

Brunch is a meal to be savoured: eaten late morning – early afternoon, it's a time to relax with the paper or in the company of friends, and enjoy the indulgence of a leisurely meal. Pots of freshly brewed coffee, bread hot from the oven, eggs, avocado, bacon...however you like to do brunch, The Little Book of Brunch is the perfect accompaniment. Filled with recipes sourced from around the world, it's packed with brilliant brunch ideas from the savoury to the sweet treats. 

Warming, comforting and downright delicious, cinnamon rolls are one of the many wonderful recipes to be found in The Little Book of Brunch.  

"The Little Book Of Brunch is a collection of recipes for what many consider to be the best meal of the day. But what's the deal with brunch - why is the breakfast-lunch composite so increasingly popular?

Brunch is about simple, unpretentious yet delicious fare. It's a meal that allows you to gorge on bread without being judged (who's to know you're not doing a 10k later?), to be able to cook food for those you love without spending or slaving too much, or simply to treat yourself to a good, nourishing, homemade meal, even if you missed breakfast. 

Unlike, say, Sunday lunch, a weekend brunch holds all the promise of the day(s) ahead. It can provide the stomach-lining foundation for afternoons and nights out, or the carb-laced stupor for hours spent lolling on the sofa."

'The Little Book of Brunch' by Caroline Craig & Sophie Missing.  Available now from the Gift Shop, £16

Recipe: Cinnamon Rolls with Cream Cheese Icing

"Somewhere between a sticky bun and an American iced cinnamon roll, these pastries are just as good with builder’s tea as they are with filter coffee.

Bar bacon frying or coffee brewing, there are few things more pleasant or enticing than the smell of cinnamon buns baking, and any annoyance you might have felt at the mild faff of the thing will soon be forgotten as you take your first bite of a just-iced bun."


  • 350ml milk 
  • 75g unsalted butter, plus extra for greasing 
  • 2 x 7g sachets fast-action dried yeast 
  • 750g plain flour, plus extra for dusting 
  • 75g sugar 
  • ½ tsp salt 
  • 100g yoghurt or buttermilk 
  • Oil for greasing 
  • 50g demerara sugar 
  • Milk, for brushing 

For The Filling 

  • 50g unsalted butter 
  • 200g soft brown sugar 
  • 2 tbsp ground cinnamon 
  • ½ tbsp allspice 

For The Icing 

  • 120g cream cheese 
  • 40g icing sugar 
  • Pinch of salt (optional)


  1. In a small pan, warm the milk over a medium heat (don’t let it bubble), then add the butter and leave to melt. Sprinkle over the yeast and mix together until any lumps dissolve. 
  2. Whisk the flour, sugar and salt together in a large bowl. Gradually add the milk-butter mixture, mixing together with a wooden spoon. When combined, add the yoghurt or buttermilk and mix again. 
  3. The dough should be fairly sticky, with an almost porridge-like consistency. 
  4. Flour your work surface generously, turn the dough onto it and knead until smooth and supple – this should take about 5–10 minutes. Grease a large bowl with a little oil, add the dough to it and cover with cling film. Leave somewhere warm for 2 hours. While the dough is proving you can make the filling. Melt the butter and leave to cool slightly. Combine the sugar and spices in a small bowl. 
  5. When the dough has doubled in size, line a large rectangular baking tray with greaseproof paper, grease with a little butter and sprinkle with the demerara sugar. Clear a large area of your work surface and lightly flour. Turn out the dough, punch it down and roll out to a large, even rectangle – around ½cm thick and 50 x 35cm. Brush the butter over the dough, then sprinkle over the sugar and spices, covering it right up to the edges. 
  6. Roll the longer side of the dough in on itself to make a fat sausage – try to keep it as even as you can so you end up with similar sized buns. Cut the dough sausage in half, then cut the two halves in half again so you have 4 pieces. Cut each of these into 3 equal pieces. Place on your lined tray, spacing them a couple of centimetres apart, then cover with cling film and leave for at least an hour, or pop in the fridge overnight. 
  7. In the morning, or when you’re ready to bake, preheat the oven to 180°C/gas 4. Remove the buns from the fridge (if necessary) and brush the tops with milk – this will help them to turn a nice golden brown. Bake in the hot oven for 30 minutes. 
  8. Beat the icing ingredients together in a bowl and spread on the buns a couple of minutes after removing from the oven. Eat immediately.