Go Back
+ servings
Print Recipe
4.93 from 53 votes

Overnight Cinnamon Rolls Recipe

Overnight cinnamon rolls that are ooey and gooey and soft. Make the dough the night before and allow it to rise in the fridge overnight. Assemble the next morning! 
Prep Time35 mins
Cook Time25 mins
Rising Time1 hr 15 mins
Total Time1 hr
Course: Breakfast, Dessert
Cuisine: American, Breakfast
Keyword: cinnamon buns, cinnamon roll recipe, cinnamon rolls, homemade cinnamon rolls, make-ahead cinnamon rolls, overnight breakfast, overnight cinnamon rolls, sticky buns
Servings: 16 cinnamon rolls
Calories: 405kcal
Cost: $12

Equipment

  • 1 (quarter) baking sheet or baking dish

Ingredients

Dough:

  • 1/4 cup lukewarm milk (you can also use orange juice for an added tang)
  • 1 tablespoon active dry yeast (see below for instructions on using *instant* yeast)
  • 2 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 3 large eggs beaten in a bowl
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract or vanilla paste
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter at room temperature, cut into cubes

Cinnamon Roll Filling:

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter at room temperature
  • 1/3 cup ground cinnamon
  • 3 tablespoons light or dark brown sugar
  • 3 tablespoons white granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract or vanilla paste
  • Pinch kosher salt

Cream Cheese Glaze:

  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter at room temperature
  • 4 ounces cream cheese at room temperature
  • 2 cups powdered sugar sifted
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract or vanilla paste
  • Pinch kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon heavy cream

Instructions

To Make the Dough:

  • To the bowl with of a stand-up mixer (alternatively, you can do this in a large bowl by hand), add the lukewarm milk. Mix in the active dry yeast and allow to stand and activate, about 8 minutes, until foamy and alive! 
  • To a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar and salt. To the bowl with the yeast mixture, add the beaten eggs and vanilla extract; then all at once, add the flour mixture. Attach the dough hook to your mixer and mix on low until the dough starts to become cohesive. With the mixer running on low, slowly add the cubes of butter. 
  • Knead on medium speed for about 5 minutes. Alternatively, if you’re doing this by hand, you’ll need to knead the dough for about 10 to 15 minutes. The dough will go from crumbly and separate to completely cohesive and smooth. The dough shouldn’t be sticky. Remove the dough from the hook and the bowl and form it into a ball. 
  • Transfer the ball of dough to a clean, lightly greased bowl (I used the flour bowl and just wiped it clean with a kitchen towel and then greased it). Cover with plastic wrap or a clean kitchen towel and transfer to the fridge to rise for at least 2 hours or overnight. 

To Make the Filling:

  • To the bowl of a stand-up mixer (with the paddle attachment) or using a medium bowl and a fork, add the butter, cinnamon, brown sugar, white sugar, vanilla and salt. Mix and mash until the filling is completely smooth. 
  • *If you’re looking to save yourself a step in the morning, you can make this filling let it sit on the counter overnight so it stays softened. 

To Assemble the Cinnamon Rolls:

  • The following morning (or after the 2-hour mark), remove the dough from the fridge. Lightly flour your work surface and place the dough into the center. Lightly flour your rolling pin and roll the dough into a 1/8-inch thick rectangle that measures 15“ x 22“ If it’s not a perfect rectangle, then that’s totally ok. 
  • Add the filling to the dough and spread into a thin layer, using a butter knife or offset spatula. I smeared the filling pretty close to the edges. Starting from the edge furthest from you, roll the dough towards you, horizontally, into a firm log. 
  • Slice the dough into two and transfer and carefully transfer them to a cutting board. Place them in the freezer to chill for 10 minutes. I find that slicing cold dough is WAY easier. 
  • Remove from the freezer and slice the rolls into 1 1/2-inch rolls, about 12-16 rolls, trimming the ends off. 
  • Transfer to a greased 9 x 13 baking sheet (or something comparable). Cover with a kitchen towel and allow to rise for an additional 45 minutes, or until doubled in size.
    *If you're house is particularly cold, it may take longer for the rolls to rise. I like to place my cinnamon rolls by the oven because it's usually warmer in that part of my house.
  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Bake for 18 to 20 minutes. 

To Make the Cream Cheese Icing:

  • To the bowl of a stand-up mixer (or a large bowl) with the paddle attachment, mix together the butter and cream cheese until smooth. Add the sugars, vanilla paste, salt and heavy cream. Beat for about 20 seconds. 

To Serve:

  • When the cinnamon rolls come out of the oven, pour the icing over the cinnamon rolls and smother them with icing. 
    *See below for instructions on assembling the rolls and then allowing them to rise overnight in the fridge.

Notes

Using Instant Yeast: 
Instant yeast is different than active dry yeast. Active dry yeast has to be activated in liquid until it's foamy and alive. Instant yeast can be added to dry ingredients. You can use instant yeast with this recipe. To do that, mix into the dry ingredients (you can skip activating it). 
You Have Other Overnight Options: 
If you like, you can assemble the rolls (don't bake them), place them in a baking dish or baking sheet, cover them with plastic wrap and place them in the fridge overnight. 
In the morning, let them come to room temp (about 1 hour) and then bake them. 
Equipment: 
Pyrex Bowl with Lids | Quarter Baking Sheet | KitchenAid Stand-Up Mixer 

Nutrition

Serving: 12g | Calories: 405kcal | Carbohydrates: 25.7g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 9.3g | Saturated Fat: 5.3g | Cholesterol: 67mg | Sodium: 264mg | Potassium: 81mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 3.5g | Calcium: 140mg | Iron: 0.4mg