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cinnamon rolls

Brioche Browned Butter Cinnamon Rolls

  • Author: Elizabeth Buuck
  • Prep Time: 1 hr
  • Cook Time: 30 min
  • Total Time: 1.5 hrs + Overnight Rest
  • Yield: 8 or 16 Cinnamon Rolls 1x


Rich and buttery brioche dough filled with browned butter and cinnamon sugar, then topped with silky vanilla bean cream cheese frosting.



For the Brioche Dough

  • 175 g Whole Milk
  • 10 g Active Dry Yeast (2 1/2 tsp or 1 packet)
  • Pinch of Sugar
  • 570 g Bread Flour
  • 4 g Salt
  • 55 g Unsalted Butter, diced, at room temperature
  • 4 Lg Eggs, at room temperature

For Browned Butter

  • 4 TBSP Unsalted Butter 
  • ** Double this if making both halves of dough into cinnamon rolls

For Cinnamon Sugar Filling

  • 2 TBSP Cinnamon
  • 1/2 C Brown Sugar
  • **Double this if making both halves of dough into cinnamon rolls.

For the Vanilla Bean Cream Cheese Frosting

  • 4 oz Cream Cheese, at room temperature (1/2 block)
  • 1 TBSP Vanilla Bean Paste (can sub regular vanilla extract)
  • 3 C Powdered Sugar
  • Pinch of Salt
  • 2 TBSP Heavy Cream
  • **Double this if making both halves of dough into cinnamon rolls


For the Brioche Dough

  • Heat the milk to between 110-115 degrees F, then gently stir in the yeast and a pinch of sugar. Set aside to bloom. *If after 10 minutes the yeast hasn’t foamed up, throw it out.
  • While the yeast blooms, whisk together the bread flour, sugar, and salt in the bowl of your stand mixer. Fit the mixer with the dough hook and begin mixing on low. Slowly pour in the bloomed yeast/milk mixture. 
  • Let mix for a minute, then start adding the eggs, one at a time, with the mixer still running on low. Knead for 3-4 minutes until incorporated. Use a rubber spatula to help incorporate any dry flour that has settled at the bottom of the bowl.
  • With the mixer on medium-low, start adding the butter, 1 TBSP at a time. Once it’s all incorporated, knead for 7 minutes. Dough should be shiny and slightly tacky, but should slide off of the dough hook fairly easily. 
  • Very lightly flour a large bowl and transfer the dough by using your hands and sort of tucking the sides down underneath to create a round shape. Cover with plastic wrap and a towel. Let rest on the counter for 15 minutes.
  • Uncover the dough and start folding in the sides. So grab one side of the dough, and fold it up and into the center of the dough, hold it in the center, then rotate the dough and continue to do this all the way around. Flip the dough over so that seam is on the bottom. Recover and rest for 45 minutes on the counter.
  • After 45 minutes, repeat the dough folding, then turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface, seam side down. Use the sides of your hands and pinkies to gently pull the dough towards you, tucking the sides underneath as you roll. This will help to create a round shape and surface tension which helps achieve the best texture in the dough. Place the dough back into the bowl seam side down and recover. Place in the fridge overnight, 8-12 hours.
  • The next morning, turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Cut the dough into two equal halves. Put one half back into the bowl and cover it. (You can use it to make more cinnamon rolls, or use in another recipe. See notes)
  • With the other half, roll into a 12X14″ rectangle about 1/4″ thick. Spread an even layer of the soft  browned butter all over the dough, leaving a 1/4″ border. Sprinkle top with cinnamon sugar mixture.
  • Roll the dough starting with the longer edge. Trim the ends, then cut into 8 1.5″ rolls. Take the trimmed edges and smush them together and bake them with the rest. (Lil extra treat for the chef ;))
  • Place the cinnamon rolls into a parchment lined baking sheet. I usually use my 9X13 metal pan. But any pan they will fit in leaving a little room between each one is fine. Cover the pan with a towel and let rest on the counter for 30 minutes. Preheat the oven to 350.
  • After 30 min rest, bake at 350 for 25-30 minutes, let cool slightly, then slather with Vanilla Bean Cream Cheese Frosting and enjoy warm.

Browned Butter

  • In the evening before you bake (same day you make the dough) brown the butter over medium heat. It will take 3-5 minutes and is done when it is amber in color and smells nutty. Transfer to a glass bowl making sure to get all of the browned bits at the bottom of the pan. Let sit on the counter over night. It will cool to room temperature and be the perfect consistency for spreading on the dough.

For the Vanilla Bean Cream Cheese Frosting

  • In a medium bowl, mix the vanilla bean paste with the cream cheese using a rubber spatula, then add the powdered sugar and mix. This should be easy to do if your cream cheese is room temp. Add a pinch of salt and mix. Add heavy cream 1 tsp at a time until you reach your desired consistency. 




Baking Options –

The method I detailed about will make 8 medium-large cinnamon rolls and you will have a second dough half left over. Here’s some options on what to do with the other half.

  1. You can double the recipe for the browned butter, cinnamon sugar filling, and frosting, and bake up all the dough as cinnamon rolls – which will give you 16. Or prepare the rolls and then freeze them (before baking) for up to 3 months.
  2. Don’t cut the dough in half at all. Roll it into a large 22X24″ rectangle, fill with browned butter and cinnamon sugar (double the recipe for those), cut into 8-10 large, Cinnabon-style rolls, and bake at 350 for 35-40 mintutes.
  3. Bake second half as babka, brioche dinner rolls, or a brioche loaf.

Keywords: brioche cinnamon rolls, browned butter cinnamon rolls, homemade cinnamon rolls