Mini Cinnamon Rolls

Give these 90 minute Mini Cinnamon Rolls a try and you’ll fall in love with their tender, sweet centers and irresistible cream cheese frosting!

If you ever need a variation of your classic Cinnamon Rolls, you can always try this bite sized version, or even our Maple Bacon Cinnamon Rolls!

Close up of a mini cinnamon roll

ready in Less Than 90 Minutes!

I don’t know about you, but I absolutely adore cinnamon rolls! We make them for special occasions and they’re always the first thing to disappear. Instead of making big cinnamon rolls like usual, we decided to try Mini Cinnamon Rolls!

These are perfect for parties because one batch makes two dozen bite-size rolls. It’s the perfect gooey finger-food. But let’s be honest, you don’t need an excuse to make these yummy rolls—they’re also a great weekend breakfast treat.

They only require a few extra minutes of prep work than regular cinnamon rolls (you’ll use a pizza cutter to cut out strips vs. doing one big roll and slicing it), which is totally worth it, trust me! Plus, these mini cinnamon rolls are ready to go in a little under 90 minutes… not too shabby, right?

Dough covered with cinnamon filling and cut into strips

How to Make Them

DOUGH. In a large bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the flour, yeast and salt. In a small microwave safe bowl (or glass measuring cup), combine the sugar, butter, water and milk. Heat in the microwave until the mixture is hot and the butter is almost melted (it took about 1 minute on HIGH in my microwave). Let the mixture come down to 120 degrees. Gradually add the milk mixture into the flour mixture. Add the egg and mix until a soft and sticky dough forms.

OVEN. Preheat the ovEn to 200 degrees.

KNEAD + REST. If using a stand mixer, switch to the dough hook and set on the lowest mixing setting for 4 minutes or until the dough becomes elastic or knead by hand on a lightly floured surface for 3-4 minutes. Cover the dough with plastic wrap and allow it to rest on the counter for 10 minutes.

FILLING. Once the dough has rested, roll it out on a lightly floured surface until it measures a 24×16 inch rectangle. Prepare the filling by combining all of the ingredients in a small mixing bowl except for the butter. Spread the butter over the top of the rolled dough, then cover with the filling.

CUT + ROLL. Using a pizza roller/cutter, cut out 24 strips of dough (show in pictures below). Roll each up into a tight roll.
Place the rolls into a lightly greased 9×13 baking dish and gently place a piece of aluminum foil over top.

RISE. Turn OFF your oven and place the covered rolls inside to rise for 45 minutes.

BAKE. Remove the rolls from the oven and turn ON your oven to 375 degrees. Once heated, remove the foil and bake the rolls for 15-18 minutes or until the centers are lightly golden brown in color.

FROST. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for a few minutes before frosting. While rolls are cooling, prepare the frosting by combining all of the ingredients in a small mixing bowl and beating by hand or with a hand mixer until smooth. Spread over the tops of the rolls.

Dough rolled into mini cinnamon rolls

Tips for making Mini Cinnamon Rolls

Keep these tips in mind when making these delicious mini treats!

  • After you heat the milk, sugar, butter, and milk in the microwave, let the mixture cool to about 120°F before gradually adding it to the flour mixture.
  • If you aren’t using a stand mixer, just knead the dough by hand on a lightly floured surface for 3-4 minutes until it becomes elastic.
  • When kneading the flour by hand just use a little flour to keep it from sticking to the counter. Too much added flour can cause the rolls to be dense and harder when baked.
  • You can use all purpose or bread flour in the recipe.
  • After kneading the dough, make sure you let it rest for the full 10 minutes.
  • Wait to frost the mini cinnamon rolls until they’ve cooled.

Variations & Troubleshooting

Variations: My family loves these rolls as they are so we don’t often make any changes, but you certainly can. You can easily change the cream cheese topping for a simple vanilla glaze or a dusting of powdered sugar. You can also switch up the spices and include some of your favorites like nutmeg or use a pumpkin spice. Finally, if you are one of those odd people ? who like raisins in their rolls you can sprinkle some on before you roll them.

Why didn’t my rolls rise? These are some of the easiest rolls ever! However, with baking sometimes even the smallest change can cause problems. Here a couple common issues that can cause your rolls not to rise properly. 

  • Expired yeast or killing the yeast by using too hot/too cold water.
  • Not allowing enough time for the dough to rise. 
  • The oven was hotter than 200°F when proofing your dough. If the oven is too hot the rolls will start baking which halt the rise. If you’re worried this will happen simply heat the oven to 200°F then turn it off while the rolls are rising. The oven will stay hot long enough for the rolls to rise.

Small Cinnamon Rolls in a glass baking dish

Making Ahead & Storing Cinnamon Rolls

Make ahead: You can make and shape the dough ahead of time then store it to be baked later. I do have to caution that they don’t seem to rise quite as well this way as they do when baked right away. Even so, they still come out quite deliciously. You can keep the shaped rolls in the fridge or put them in the freezer. 

  • Fridge: Place the shaped rolls in a baking pan. Spray one side of plastic wrap with cooking spray  and cover the rolls with the sprayed side down. (this will help keep the dough from sticking to the plastic when they rise.) Store in the fridge overnight. The dough will rise, but much more slowly. When you’re ready to bake them, remove the pan from the fridge and let the dough rise on the counter for 30-45 minutes. 
  • Freezer: Use a freezer safe baking pan to place your rolls in. Cover with plastic and then again with foil. Freeze for 1-2 months. When you’re ready to bake remove the foil and plastic. Spray one side of the plastic and then put it back on with the spayed side down. Allow the rolls to rise for several hours. You can speed up the rise time by placing the rolls in the oven. Preheat it to 200°F then turn it off. Don’t use a plastic cover instead place a bowl of hot water in the oven along with the rolls. Allow the rolls to thaw and rise. They should be bigger than their original size but not double in size. 

Storage: You can store these frosted or unfrosted in an airtight container at room temperature for 3-4 days. They can also be frozen for up to 6 months. When freezing them be sure to wrap them in plastic wrap and then in foil or place them in a freezer Ziploc. 

Reheat: Allow the frozen rolls to thaw and then reheat them in the oven. Preheat it to 350⁰F and heat for 10-15 minute or until warm throughout. You can also reheat them in the microwave. Just eat them before they cool otherwise they get pretty hard and stale.

Close up of 90 minute mini cinnamon rolls

The 90 minutes it takes to make these babies is TOTALLY worth it. I think your family will agree. 😉

For more cinnamon roll recipes, try:

 

Mini Cinnamon Rolls Recipe

4.98 from 36 votes
Give these 90 minute Mini Cinnamon Rolls a try and you'll fall in love with their tender, sweet centers and irresistible cream cheese frosting! 
Course Breakfast
Cuisine American
Prep Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Servings 24 rolls
Calories 169 kcal
Author Lil' Luna

Ingredients

Cinnamon Roll

  • 2 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tbsp instant yeast
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/4 cup whole milk
  • 1 tsp salt

Filling

Cream Cheese Frosting

  • 4 oz cream cheese room temperature
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter room temperature
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1-2 tbsp whole milk (to desired thickness)
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract

Instructions
 

  • In a large bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the flour, yeast and salt.
  • In a small microwave safe bowl (or glass measuring cup), combine the sugar, butter, water and milk. Heat in the microwave until the mixture is hot and the butter is almost melted (it took about 1 minute on HIGH in my microwave). Let the mixture come down to 120 degrees. Gradually add the milk mixture into the flour mixture. Add the egg and mix until a soft and sticky dough forms.
  • Preheat the oven to 200 degrees.
  • If using a stand mixer, switch to the dough hook and set on the lowest mixing setting for 4 minutes or until the dough becomes elastic or knead by hand on a lightly floured surface for 3-4 minutes. Cover the dough with plastic wrap and allow it to rest on the counter for 10 minutes.
  • Once the dough has rested, roll it out on a lightly floured surface until it measures a 24x16 inch rectangle. Prepare the filling by combining all of the ingredients in a small mixing bowl except for the butter. Spread the butter over the top of the rolled dough, then cover with the filling. Using a pizza roller/cutter, cut out 24 strips of dough (show in pictures below). Roll each up into a tight roll.
  • Place the rolls into a lightly greased 9x13 baking dish and gently place a piece of aluminum foil over top. Turn OFF your oven and place the covered rolls inside to rise for 45 minutes.
  • Remove the rolls from the oven and turn ON your oven to 375 degrees. Once heated, remove the foil and bake the rolls for 15-18 minutes or until the centers are lightly golden brown in color.
  • Remove from the oven and allow to cool for a few minutes before frosting. While rolls are cooling, prepare the frosting by combining all of the ingredients in a small mixing bowl and beating by hand or with a hand mixer until smooth. Spread over the tops of the rolls.

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About Natalie

I'm the food photographer and blogger behind Life Made Simple. I'm passionate about creating from scratch family-friendly recipes ranging from healthy to decadent.

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Comments:

  1. 5 stars
    I want to make them today. I will go to the supermarket right now to buy what I need. I hope I can make them like those in the pictures. I will let you know. Thank you!

  2. 5 stars
    This looks amazing! I will definately give it a try!
    I hope I will manage as I am not a great cook!

  3. Plan on making these ahead for an event for 100 people, would it work to make, rise, freeze then bake day of the event

    1. Oh, man I wish I knew for sure. I haven’t tried it that way. Has anyone tried freezing them, after they rose?

      1. Mine have never responded quite as well this way (freezing before baking). I’ve had good luck when I bake them completely, let them cool to room temperature, then wrap well in plastic wrap and aluminum foil. Then freeze.
        On the day I want to prepare them, I set them out to defrost, then warm up in oven, then frost. It’s worked the best for me that way. Hope this helps!

  4. 5 stars
    Looking them very attractive! Only eating them!!! 😀 I will try to making it. Thank you for sharing the post for us.

  5. These are awesome. Quick and easy, plus delicious equals a recipe keeper.

    The only question I have is what other spice becomes cinnamon do you recommend for this recipe? Your instructions say a teaspoon of cinnamon and a teaspoon of …. but nothing listed. I did a pumpkin spice combo of nutmeg, cloves and allspice along with the cinnamon. So good!

    1. You could add another spice, the recipe is the 1 tablespoon of cinnamon plus 1 teaspoon. That’s what that is 🙂

  6. Can you make the dough ahead of time (like the night before) or do you think they would rise too much if you did?

    1. I know there are recipes that you can make the night before, but I haven’t honestly tried with this recipe. I am not sure what would happen to the dough. I guess there’s one way to find out 😉

  7. What about making the dougH in a bread machine? I have a stand mixer but typically do dough in my handy brEAdmaKer.

  8. 5 stars
    This was just what i was looking for. DELIcious! Perfect size FOR kids or part of a brunch…or anytime!

  9. These look amazing! How do these do when made ahead of time and froze? Making for wedding desserts table so anything I can make ahead of time is a huge bonus!

    1. I haven’t tried freezing them, so honestly, I am not sure when the best time to freeze cinnamon roll dough. I would think, right before you’d bake them.

  10. 5 stars
    I dont noRmally Go tO the website to leave a review but i have to… THESE CINNAMON ROLLS were amAzing!!! A huge hit! And so easy! Thank you! Im keeping this recipe to be used many many times again!

  11. 4 stars
    Hi, I made these rolls for my daughter birthday party ..they taste so delicious but my concern was that the dough turned out too hard and I even couldn’t even roll it out easily big enough to have 24 pieces.I don’t have stand mixer so i knead the dough by hand an dit was really hard.
    I am thinking maybe 2 and 3/4 flour is too much that cause this problem..Could you please advise me how I can fix this problem for the next try .

    1. That is the amount of flour I use & never have that issue, so I am trying think what would have made it too hard. I know if you knead dough to much, the dough does get tougher. Do you think that might have been the issue? I am glad they still tasted good.

  12. 5 stars
    Excellent recipe!! Will make again and again. Delish.

    I was not able to get the dough rolled out thin large enough for The recipe, but Still made a ton of mini rolls. I baked them in a slightly smaller pan becAuse of this, but still turned out Fine.

  13. 5 stars
    Mini cinnamon rolls are the best!! They really are the perfect size, where I don’t feel guilty eating the whole thing. They are so so & gooey!

  14. 5 stars
    Really yummy! 100% RECOMMEND. I think ACCIDENTALLY burnt mine a little bit so they are a bit dry but still taste amazing! I DIDN’T use the cream cheese icing instead i used a normal glaze icing and it still tastes really good. Really good, thanks for the recipe!

    1. You are so welcome!! Thank you so much for saying that! Using a glaze icing is just as yummy 🙂

  15. 5 stars
    THESE WERE SUCH A HIT!!!! I BARELY GOT TO EAT ANY. i MADE THE MISTAKE OF POSTING THESE ON SOCIAL MEDIA AND NEXT THING I KNEW ALL MY FRIENDS WERE SHOWING UP AT MY HOUSE TO TEST THEM OUT. WILL BE SAVING THIS RECIPE

  16. Hi!

    this may be a silly questions lol but, When you say to spread the butter overtop of the rolled dough, do you melt the butter first?

    can’t wait to try!

  17. 5 stars
    Love your cinnamon buns delicious this is the third time baking them. I always like to present as gifts or share with neighbors. I love them but have to watch my diet.
    Thanks for you great effort to share.
    Best and kind regards
    June

  18. 5 stars
    Just love your cinnamon bun recipe. I use the very dark brown sugar which gives it a caramel taste.I also use
    my mixture of Garam Masala (this mixture i make from scratch I dont buy it ready made) plus the fine cinnamon which gives it that oriental flavour. I made some the weekend shared with the neighbour and family. Next time I double the amount because they are devine and not enough !!!

    All the best

    June

  19. 5 stars
    I have made these and love them! I am wondering if it would be possible to make the dough and refrigerate/freeze it for when I want to make these in a pinch. Do you think that would work?

    1. Thank you! You can make and shape the dough ahead of time then store it to be baked later. I do have to caution that they don’t seem to rise quite as well this way as they do when baked right away. Even so, they still come out quite deliciously. You can keep the shaped rolls in the fridge or put them in the freezer. Fridge: Place the shaped rolls in a baking pan. Spray one side of plastic wrap with cooking spray and cover the rolls with the sprayed side down. (this will help keep the dough from sticking to the plastic when they rise.) Store in the fridge overnight. The dough will rise, but much more slowly. When you’re ready to bake them, remove the pan from the fridge and let the dough rise on the counter for 30-45 minutes. Freezer: Use a freezer safe baking pan to place your rolls in. Cover with plastic and then again with foil. Freeze for 1-2 months. When you’re ready to bake remove the foil and plastic. Spray one side of the plastic and then put it back on with the spayed side down. Allow the rolls to rise for several hours. You can speed up the rise time by placing the rolls in the oven. Preheat it to 200°F then turn it off. Don’t use a plastic cover instead place a bowl of hot water in the oven along with the rolls. Allow the rolls to thaw and rise. They should be bigger than their original size but not double in size.

  20. 5 stars
    These were wonderful! Had multiple people coming over and saying they were the best cinnamon rolls they’ve ever had. Great recipe, thank you!

  21. 5 stars
    Delightful!! I brought these to mother/ son bowling a while back and I was the most loved mom there! I’ve made these time and time again and they are fail proof and always devoured!

  22. 5 stars
    What’s not to love about cinnamon rolls?! I try lots ofCinnamon roll Recipes and this has quickly
    Become a favorite! Ooey and gooey!

  23. 5 stars
    These were a big hit with the baseball team. I used them for a snack with a tag that said let’s keep rolling through the season! I think I need more practice baking… but everyone LOVED them!

  24. Haven’t made these yet, as I am confused with the directions. Says it makes 24. Cut the 16×24 into one inch strips. That means that you would have 24 16 inch strips that you would roll up. However, the picture shows 13 strips cut in half. That would make 26. How do I cut the rectangle to get the right strip dimensions?

    1. Good question! You could honestly do it either way and the rolls would turn out delicious. I’d probably suggest doing what the directions say. Cut 24 16 inch strips. If you did end up cutting the 16 in side into long strips, then you could cut those in half like in the picture. But I’d suggest follow the directions in the recipe.

  25. 5 stars
    LOVE these so much!! I made them for my son’s birthday and they all requested them for Christmas morning!

  26. 5 stars
    We loved these mini rolls! They were super easy and my daughter thought they were adorable. We plan on making them again for a holiday breakfast.

  27. 5 stars
    I hosted a small brunch for my mom-friends and needed a small treat for them and they ALL said that these were their favorite thing on the table! Thank you!!!

      1. You bet! We have some tips on how to freeze and then how to cook after they have been frozen in the post. 🙂

  28. I can’t wait to try these for Easter morning! I have never made homemade from scratch cinnamon rolls before so I am a little hesitant but super excited! This may be a dumb question but when you say to mix the butter, sugar, milks, and water until the butter is almost melted and then let it cool, do you mix all of this after heating and if so by hand or via mixer? Also when you then add the milk mixture and flour mixture and eggs, do you mix by hand or mixer. Thanks!!

    1. Hi Haley! I hope that the cinnamon rolls turned out well. It’s always a little intimidating to bake from scratch, but hopefully this recipe was simple enough. 🙂 To answer your question (and you may have figured it out already) but I combine all those ingredients in a microwave safe bowl and just mix with a spoon. Then when I add that milk mixture to the flour, I do it in the mixer. However, you could totally do it all by hand and then just knead yourself rather than having the mixer knead for you. We’d love to hear how the cinnamon rolls turned out!