I don’t make these orange cinnamon rolls often because, frankly, I eat the whole pan, give or take.
The smell in your kitchen makes it impossible to resist them. If you’re like me and try everything warm from the oven, you will get into trouble. Ideally, they should be eaten within a few hours of baking them. BUT, make no mistake, you can freeze them and reheat briefly before eating. It’s the little things you guys. Like a warm orange cinnamon roll.
There is something about working with yeast that is irresistible to me. But I know it’s not everyone’s favorite subject. It takes a bit of work and organization. You have to adapt to its rhythm.
But once you know how yeast works and get some practice, you can pop the dough into the fridge until the next day, or freeze the unbaked rolls in the pans and give them their last rise after they’ve come back to room temperature (do it in stages, first transfer the pan to the fridge and when it’s thawed transfer it to the counter so it comes to room temperature and starts its final rise).
There are shortcuts, you just have to know how the dough works.
The recipe hails from the fabulous Mel, which I’m sure you all know. She has this roll recipe in The Best Recipe section, a place I go blindfolded because her blog is all about great and tested recipes.
It didn’t disappoint, but I already knew that.
I’ve been using this recipe for years now, and it’s hard to use another one. This one works sooo well! Why mess with something that is great, right?.
So, these orange cinnamon rolls are a staple in my kitchen, and they should make their way into yours.
The dough is straightforward, easy to work with, and they have the tenderness and traditional flavor you’re hoping for. The addition of orange zest and juice in the glaze makes for a fabulous combination. Because you do know that orange and cinnamon are amazing together. And for me, they are associated with fall baking. For some reason, oranges remind me of a fireplace, chilly days and lazy weekend baking.
No matter what you think of, these orange cinnamon rolls will win a place in your heart, and kitchen hopefully. Give them a try. They’re so worth it!.
Orange Cinnamon Rolls
Yield 12 rolls
I use both cake and all-purpose flour for texture, but all-purpose flour works well.
For the dough:
- 3/4 cup (190ml) buttermilk (or milk + 1 Tablespoon lemon juice, it will curdle)
- 6 Tbs (90g) unsalted butter, melted and lukewarm
- 3 eggs, room tº
- 2 1/4 cups (310g) cake flour
- 2 1/4 cups (310g) all-purpose flour
- 1/4 cup (50g) sugar
- 2 1/4 teaspoons instant yeast
- 1 1/4 teaspoons salt
For the filling:
- 1 cup (225g) unsalted butter, room tº
- 1 cup (200g) light brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- Zest o 2 oranges
For the glaze:
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 2-3 Tbs orange juice
- If you’re using milk and lemon juice, mix in a medium bowl and let curdle about 5 minutes.
- Add both flours, sugar, and yeast to the bowl of a mixer.
- Add milk, eggs, butter, and salt.
- Mix on medium speed for about 10 minutes. A dough will form but it will not separate completely from the bowl, it will be barely sticky.
- If it’s too sticky add a few Tbs flour, one at a time, but not too many.
- Transfer this dough to an oiled bowl, turn over, cover the bowl with plastic wrap or a clean towel and let rise in a draft-free area until doubled in volume, about 2 hours.
- Gently turn the dough onto a clean counter and pat into a rectangle, about 16x12-inches, the long side parallel to the counter.
- Have the filling ingredients ready.
- Pat mounds of butter all over the dough. Gently spread it to cover the entire surface.
- Mix the sugar, cinnamon, and zest. Add it on top of the butter.
- Lift the longest edge closer to you, from one end to the other, and keep rolling, trying to tighten it as you do.
- Cut in half, then each piece in half again, and each of those fourths in three rolls.
- Place in a greased 9x13-inch pan, cover with a clean towel and let rise for 1 hour or a bit more until puffed.
- Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350ºF / 180ºC.
- Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until golden and puffed, and baked through.
- Prepare glaze by mixing sugar and juice until smooth.
- Drizzle over warm rolls before eating.
- Can be wrapped in plastic and foil and frozen up to a month. Let thaw at room temperature. Reheat a few minutes before eating.