How To Make a Cinnamon Roll Wreath

How To Make a Cinnamon Roll Wreath

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Emma Christensen
Dec 17, 2015
(Image credit: Melissa Ryan)

Never let it be said that I passed up a chance to go all out. Give me a few overnight guests, a lazy weekend morning, and a request for cinnamon rolls, and I will present this cinnamon roll wreath, complete with extra frosting on the side.

How can this glorious specimen of breakfast delight be yours? Glad you asked.

(Image credit: Melissa Ryan)

Start with Cinnamon Rolls

You can use any cinnamon roll recipe that you like here — or even recipes for sticky buns, sweet buns, or any other kind of filled breakfast roll. Any recipe that will give you a log of dough roughly 15 inches long once rolled up will work quite nicely. I used our Kitchn recipe for Spicy, Sticky Cinnamon Rolls.

No need to be precise here; it's more about the technique of making the wreath than the actual recipe. (Heads up if you use our recipe: This recipe makes a rather long 25-inch log, which I cut in half to make two separate wreaths.)

→ Get the Recipe: Spicy, Sticky Cinnamon Rolls

(Image credit: Melissa Ryan)

Shaping the Wreath

I tried making the wreath two ways: coiling and then cutting, and then again cutting first and then coiling. I was much happier with the second wreath — it's easier to make thinner rolls and get more space between each roll. Not only is this prettier, but it means more rolls for the grabbing.

The basic idea is to lay the log of prepared dough on the parchment-lined baking sheet and then cut it into fairly thin, 1-inch-thick rolls — but don't cut all the way through. Leave the rolls connected by a little bit of dough at the bottom. Then start laying the rolls flat on the baking sheet, overlapping each one over the next, and coiling the log into a circular wreath as you go. Tuck the last roll under the first, and you're done.

Put a ramekin or other round, oven-safe dish in the middle of the wreath. This helps the wreath keep its shape as the rolls rise and bake. Remove the ramekin before serving, or flip it right-side up and fill it with frosting for dipping!

(Image credit: Melissa Ryan)

Make-Ahead Cinnamon Roll Wreaths

As much as I love giving my houseguests an impressive morning feast, I also love my sleep. I am a big fan of making and shaping the wreath the night before and putting the whole sheet pan in the fridge overnight. Let the rolls warm as the oven preheats and then bake as usual — you may need to add on an extra minute or two to the baking time to account for the chilled dough.

You can also par-bake the wreath and then freeze it for a few weeks — this is handy if you end up making two wreaths and want to save the second one for later.

How To Make a Cinnamon Roll Wreath

Makes 1 wreath

What You Need

Ingredients
1 recipe cinnamon rolls or other sweet rolls, such as a half-batch of our Spicy Sticky Cinnamon Rolls
1 batch glaze or icing, such as Quick Sugar Icing

Equipment
Paring knife
Baking sheet
Parchment paper or baking mat
Ramekin or other small heat-proof bowl

Instructions

  1. Prepare the cinnamon rolls: Make your recipe for cinnamon rolls up to the step where you roll up the dough, but before you cut the cinnamon rolls. The rolled dough should be roughly 15 inches long; roll or stretch the log if needed. Transfer the log of dough to a parchment-lined baking sheet.
  2. Slice the log into rolls, stopping just short of slicing all the way through: Slice the rolls roughly 1-inch thick — thinner than you might normally cut the rolls. Stop short of cutting all the way through the roll, so the rolls are still joined at the bottoms.
  3. Shape the wreath: Starting at the top, turn the first cinnamon roll on its side. Turn the next one so that it overlaps the first roll slightly. Continue turning each roll, overlapping them, and gradually moving them into a wreath shape. When you get to the last one, join the circle by tucking the last cinnamon roll under the first. Having someone help with this step is very handy. Also, don't worry if some of the filling spills out or the rolls start to look messy; it will still bake beautifully. (Also, that's what icing is for!)
  4. Place a ramekin in the middle of the circle. The ramekin will help the wreath hold its shape while rising and baking.
  5. Let the rolls rise, then bake the cinnamon rolls. Remove the ramekin after baking.
  6. Drizzle the rolls with glaze or icing. Prepare the glaze and use a fork or a whisk to drizzle the cinnamon rolls all over.
  7. Eat right away!

Recipe Notes

  • Make-ahead cinnamon roll wreaths: Make the dough and shape the wreath the night before baking. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight. Remove the rolls from the fridge while the oven heats, then bake as usual. They might need an extra minute or two of baking time.
  • Freezer cinnamon roll wreaths: You can also make the wreath ahead and freeze it until you're ready to bake. Full instructions for this are here: How To Freeze Cinnamon Rolls and Bake Them Later.
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