Not just a cinnamon roll. Not just cinnamon cookies. These, my friends, are Cinnamon Roll Cookies! Let’s pause and relish the idea.
Why? …you may ask. Why not leave things be and let a spice cookie be a spice cookie and a cinnamon roll be a cinnamon roll?
Well for starters, I’m an overachiever. (Haven’t you noticed?)
Second, cinnamon cookies and spice cookies are generally not that visually appealing.
Third, cinnamon rolls take all day to make.
Fourth, cinnamon rolls do not fit in your pocket.
…I knew you’d see it my way sooner or later.
Cinnamon Roll Cookies, however, are perfect for lunchbox treats and your holiday cookie exchange. They look as good and they smell, and taste EVEN BETTER.
There are two secret ingredients that takes these little beauties to the next level.
First, cream cheese because:
- The cream cheese gives the cookies a light and tangy flavor with a tender texture.
- It makes the chilled dough easier to roll out.
- It helps the cookies to stand up a little–like cinnamon rolls!
Second, dry active yeast because it gives the cookies that underlying flavor that makes cinnamon rolls so irresistible. The goal here is to include the yeasty essence without activating it. So mix the yeast with cool vanilla prior to adding it to the dough. As long as it’s not warm, it will infuse with the vanilla, but shouldn’t foam and cause the cookie dough to rise more than needed.
Make a batch and bake half the cookies now and wrap the other roll for later. You can slice and bake homemade Cinnamon Roll Cookies in minutes whenever you need them!
Cinnamon Roll Cookies
Yield: 64-72 cookies
Prep Time: 1 hour
Cook Time: 10 minutes
2 ½ sticks unsalted butter, softened (1 ¼ cups)
4 ounces softened cream cheese
3 teaspoons vanilla extract, divided
1 teaspoon dry active yeast
1 cup granulated sugar
3 ¾ cups all-purpose flour
½ teaspoon salt
½ cup brown sugar
1 ½ tablespoons cinnamon
3 tablespoons whole milk
1 cup powdered sugar
Mix 2 tsp. vanilla extract with 1 tsp. of dry active yeast.
Cream the butter, cream cheese, vanilla with yeast, and granulated sugar with an electric mixer until light and fluffy—2-3 minutes.
Turn the mixer on low. Add the salt, then slowly add the flour. Scrape the bowl and mix until well combined.
Press the dough into a flat disk. Wrap and refrigerate the dough for (at least) 30 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Mix the brown sugar and cinnamon together in a small bowl.
Cut the dough in half and leave one half in the fridge while working with the first half.
Flour a piece of wax paper and roll the dough into a 7 X 18 inch rectangle that is approximately ¼ inch thick.
Sprinkle half the cinnamon sugar over the dough leaving 1 1/2 inches bare along the long edge. Starting on the cinnamon covered side, carefully roll the dough tightly toward the bare edge. You may want to cut the dough into two sections to make the rolling easier. *At this point, you can place the rolls back in the fridge and save for weeks if needed.
Press the seam firmly, then cut the roll into 1/3-1/2 inch slices and lay on parchment paper lined cookie sheets.
Repeat with the remaining dough and cinnamon sugar.
Bake for 9-12 minutes. Cool completely. Then whisk the powdered sugar, milk and remaining vanilla extract together in a small bowl. Dip the face of each cookie into the glaze and set on a rack to dry.
Making this recipe? Why not take a quick shot and share it on Instagram! Make sure to tag it #ASpicyPerspective so we can see what you're cooking!
More Fabulous Cookies:
Chocolate Pretzel Cookies ~ Smitten Kitchen
Cranberry Pumpkin Ricotta Cookies ~ Family Fresh Cooking
Snickers Bar Cookies ~ Recipe Girl
Pumpkin Whoopie Pies ~ Steamy Kitchen