Good morning from these oh so delicious maple cinnamon rolls topped with a maple cream cheese frosting! The ultimate sweet addition to your brunch — option to prepare them the night before and bake in the morning.
It’s time to make these amazing maple cinnamon rolls. You’re going to absolutely love these chewy and fluffy and (of course) oh so maple-y cinnamon rolls. Plus, we’ll show you how to prepare the rolls the night before so all you need to do is bake them in the morning.
Oh, and don’t you even dare think about skipping our perfectly sweet maple cream cheese frosting. Seriously.
why you’ll love these cinnamon rolls
No white sugar: instead this recipe uses 2 forms of maple – syrup and sugar. Never heard of maple sugar, no fear! It’s pretty easy to find.
Prepare the night before: you can prepare your rolls the night before and store in the fridge overnight. Simply bake in the morning, and ENJOY.
Amazing flavor: we love a good cinnamon roll as much as the next person, but can’t get enough of the maple-y twist to a classic cinnamon roll. You’ll find amazing maple flavor in every bite — because there is maple in the dough, filling AND frosting 🙂
Maple Cinnamon Rolls – What You Need
The ingredients for these maple cinnamon rolls can be broken down to 3 elements: the dough, the filling and the maple cream cheese frosting. Here’s what you’ll need:
For the Dough
- Milk (we prefer 2%!)
- Maple sugar
- Quick rise yeast
- All purpose flour
- Vanilla extract
For the Filling
- Maple sugar
- Brown sugar
- Maple syrup
For the Maple Cream Cheese Frosting
- Cream cheese
- Powdered sugar
- Maple syrup
- Vanilla extract
Helpful Cooking Tools
Make sure to set yourself up for success and get out any necessary baking tools for these maple cinnamon rolls.
Let’s Talk Maple Sugar
Because much of the maple flavor bakes off when using maple sugar, we’ve incorporated maple sugar into these cinnamon rolls.
Never heard of maple sugar? It’s the granulated version of maple syrup, and it has AMAZING FLAVOR.
Where can I buy maple sugar? We’ve been able to find maple sugar at a variety of different grocery stores, but our favorite brand is Coombs Family Farms. You can get it on Amazon or find it at Fresh Thyme or Whole Foods.
How to Make Maple Cinnamon Rolls
For the full recipe, scroll down to the recipe card for a list of ingredients and instructions.
Start with the Dough
Prepare the yeast by adding the warm milk, maple sugar and quick rise yeast packet to a bowl for at least 5 minutes or until the yeast has bloomed.
then, whisk together the rest of the wet ingredients and combine with the bloomed yeast mixture.
Then, with your stand mixer on low-medium speed with a dough hook, and slowly add the flour and salt to the wet ingredients until it forms a shaggy dough. And then continue until the dough is smooth and elastic (it should bounce back when you poke it).
Don’t have a stand mixer? You can use a wooden spoon until the dough is formed enough to knead by hand. Then hand knead the dough until it’s smooth and elastic.
Let the Dough Rise
Transfer you ball of dough to a lightly oiled bowl and cover with plastic wrap and then a tea towel. Place in a warm place (we like to set ours IN the oven with the oven OFF) until the dough has doubled in size. This will take approximately 1-1.5 hours.
Make the Filling
While your dough rises, it’s time to make the filling. Simply measure the following in a small bowl and stir together until fully combined:
- Softened butter (softened / room temperature butter is CRITICAL to ensure you don’t have clumps of butter in your filling)
- Maple sugar
- Brown sugar
- Maple syrup
Roll the Dough
Now that your dough has risen, it’s time to turn it out. Using a rolling pin, roll your dough into a rectangle that’s approximately 18” long, 12” wide, and 1/4” thick.
Then, spread the filling over the dough, and roll it into a tight log.
Want larger rolls?
You’ll see that we rolled our dough starting on the LONG SIDE, but if you prefer larger more over-sized maple cinnamon rolls (and thus, less total rolls), simply roll your dough starting on the SHORT SIDE.
Next, slice the log into 1” rolls. To do this, start in middle of the roll, and mark the dough with a knife, then mark every inch on each side of the middle mark. This will ensure you have equal sized rolls 😀
Add the maple cinnamon rolls to your prepared dish, cover with plastic wrap and a tea towel again, and place in a warm location to rise for a 2nd time, this time for around 30 minutes.
Making these rolls for tomorrow? Instead of placing in a warm location, cover and place in the fridge overnight for baking in the morning. Just make sure you allow your rolls to come to room temperature before baking in the morning.
Make the Frosting
Combine the butter and softened cream cheese in your stand mixer with a paddle attachment. Once combined, slowly add the powdered sugar and salt. Then, finish with adding the maple syrup and vanilla extract. Beat the frosting on medium speed until it’s light and fluffy.
Time to Bake
Once your rolls have risen for a 2nd time, it’s time to bake at 350°F for 20-25 minutes. Your house is about to smell AMAZING.
Frost & Enjoy
Wait at least 10 minutes after your rolls have come out of the oven before spreading on the maple cream cheese frosting. Then, SERVE AND ENJOY!
Pro Tips for Maple Cinnamon Rolls
We have a few pro tips to share when it comes to making these maple cinnamon rolls. Follow these tips to cinnamon roll perfection:
Don’t Overheat the milk
Because the yeast is getting started in the warm milk, you don’t want it to be TOO WARM. Yeast will bloom perfectly when the milk is around 110°F. If the milk is too warm, it can kill the yeast. Conversely, if the milk is too cold, the yeast will have a tough time blooming, which can result in dense rolls — no one wants that!
Quick Rise Yeast vs Active Dry Yeast
We love using quick rise yeast for these rolls! Technically, quick rise yeast doesn’t require you to let it bloom before mixing into the dough, but we like to get it started in warm milk to allow for perfect rising.
Does active dry yeast work, too? Yes! Follow the same instructions, but be mindful that your rise times may increase slightly.
EXPECT A LITTLE FIlling OOZING
Expect a small amount of maple filling to ooze out from your dough when rolling and cutting your cinnamon rolls. Simply take this filling and either spread it on top of the cinnamon rolls once they’re cut, or lick that deliciousness off your finger and enjoy 😀
TO CUT EQUAL-SIZE CINNAMON ROLLS
For equal-sized cinnamon rolls, you’ll need to evenly divide the roll of dough into 1 inch cinnamon rolls. Start in middle of the roll, and mark the dough with a knife, then mark every inch on each side of the middle mark.
USE A SHARP serrated KNIFE TO CUT ROLLS
Use a SHARP serrated knife and gently slice your maple cinnamon rolls using a gentle back and forth motion, making sure to not squish the rolls. This will help keep the form, but don’t you worry if the rolls squish a bit — you can reform the rolls easily with your hands.
Overnight Maple Cinnamon Rolls Instructions
To prepare these cinnamon rolls the night before so all you need to do the morning you serve them is bake, follow these simple instructions:
- Make the rolls as instructed up to step 11.
- Then, in the morning, take the rolls out of the fridge and allow them to come to room temperature (approximately 30 minutes).
- Bake as instructed.
- Frost & enjoy!
Store these maple cinnamon rolls in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days.
To reheat: while reheating in the microwave absolutely works, our preferred method is in the oven. Reheat rolls covered at 350°F for 10 minutes or until the rolls are warm and just as delicious as the first time you took them out of the oven.
Maple Cinnamon Rolls Recipe
- 1 cup 2% milk warmed to 100-110°F
- 2 tablespoons maple sugar
- 1 packet quick rise yeast
- ¼ cup maple syrup
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter melted
- 1 large egg room temperature
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 4 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter softened
- ½ cup maple sugar
- ¼ cup light brown sugar
- 3 tablespoons maple syrup
- 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
- Maple Cream Cheese Frosting
- 2 ounces cream cheese softened
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter softened
- 1 ¼ cups powdered sugar
- 2 tablespoons maple syrup
- ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- ½ teaspoon salt
- Add the warm milk, maple sugar, and yeast to a large bowl. Set aside until the yeast has bloomed-- about 5 minutes.
- Next add the maple syrup, melted butter, egg, and vanilla. Whisk to combine.
- Using a stand mixer on low - medium speed with the dough hook attachment, slowly stir the flour and salt into the wet ingredients. Once all of the flour has been added and a shaggy dough has formed, knead for 2-3 minutes or until the dough is smooth and elastic (it should bounce back when you poke it).
- Transfer the dough to a lightly oiled bowl and cover it with plastic wrap and then a tea towel. Place it in a warm place to rise until doubled in size -- about 1-1.5 hours.
- While the dough rises, make the filling. In a small bowl, combine the softened butter, maple sugar, brown sugar, maple syrup, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Set aside until ready to use.
- Once the dough has risen, turn it out onto a lightly floured surface.
- Roll it into a rectangle that is approximately 18” long, 12” wide, and 1/4” thick.
- Spread the filling over the dough and then roll it into a tight log, starting at one of the long sides. For larger rolls, roll the tight log starting at one of the short sides.
- Slice the log into 1” rolls. This will yield 9-12 rolls, depending on how tightly you roll your log and whether you start rolling at a long or short side of the dough.
- Butter a 9x13 baking dish or line it with parchment paper. Add the rolls to the dish, making sure they just barely touch. Depending on how tightly you rolled dough into the log, you can either place rolls 3x4 OR 2x4 with extra rolls in another baking dish.
- If you’re making the rolls in advance, wrap them in plastic and place them in the fridge for up to 12 hours. Bring the rolls to room temperature (about 30 minutes) when you’re ready to bake and then skip to step 13.
- If you aren’t making the rolls in advance, cover with plastic wrap and then a tea towel, and place them in a warm spot to rise until the rolls begin to touch -- about 30 minutes. While the rolls rise, preheat your oven to 350°F.
- Bake the cinnamon rolls for 20-25 minutes or until the centers are set and the top is golden brown.
- While the cinnamon rolls are baking, make the maple frosting. Combine the cream cheese and butter in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment.
- When the cream cheese and butter are smooth, turn the mixer to low speed and slowly add the powdered sugar and salt.
- Once all of the powdered sugar has been incorporated, add the maple syrup and vanilla.
- Scrape down the sides of the bowl and turn the mixer to medium speed. Beat for 30-45 seconds or until the frosting is light and fluffy.
- Allow the cinnamon rolls to cool for at least 10 minutes before frosting.
Tips & Notes
- Storage: Store these maple cinnamon rolls in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days.
Can I use white whole wheat flour in place of the all purpose flour?
Hi! We haven’t tried this yet, so we can’t say!
Does it have to be pure maple syrup or will the cheaper kind work?