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A finished maple cinnamon bun ready to eat.

Maple Cinnamon Rolls

Triple Maple Cinnamon Rolls

Maple syrup, maple sugar, and maple cream round out my Triple Maple Cinnamon Rolls for a culinary grand slam. I usually make this recipe with half of the dough from my Basic Roll recipe I posted for Thanksgiving. I love splitting the recipe because it allows me to be extremely efficient, rolls for dinner, and cinnamon buns for dessert. If you just want a standard batch of cinnamon rolls, I would suggest making half the dough recipe. If you decide to make the entire batch of basic roll dough, then just double the filling recipe below. You can also make the whole batch and serve dinner rolls tonight and cinnamon buns for breakfast tomorrow.

Finding the Perfect Cinnamon Roll Recipe

You’ll find tons of maple cinnamon bun recipes out there that use artificial flavorings or have a little syrup added to the powdered sugar for their glaze. I’ve tried my fair share of these, and was never able to find the perfect maple combination. To be perfectly honest though, my family didn't complain about the stacks of cinnamon rolls around as I worked out this recipe.

I really wanted to perfect this recipe and make the perfect brunch treat. This recipe is the result of years of tweaking and reworking that I've dubbed, Triple Maple Cinnamon Rolls. Triple because it combines three different maple products from our family's farm in northern Vermont.

Making the Dough

As I said at the top, it all starts with my Basic Roll Dough with Maple Syrup recipe. The maple syrup used in the dough creates carbon dioxide gas so the dough can rise. After you decide whether to make a full batch or a half batch, follow my roll recipe to step 7. We’ll pick up forming the cinnamon buns here in this recipe.

Cinnamon Roll Filling

I use butter and real maple brown sugar creating that extra layer of maple goodness. Maple pairs with many flavors, with cinnamon being one of the foremost flavor pairings. The creamy filling melts into the dough through cooking, while the maple and cinnamon attaches itself to the walls of the pinwheels, making every bite a completely scrumptious experience.

Carefully melt the butter, I cut it in half and melt in the microwave using 20 second intervals to avoid the solids separating. It should still have a few chunks. Add the cinnamon and maple sugar then stir. Chop some nuts if you like, they add to the texture and flavor.

Spread the filling on the rectangular rolled out dough, getting as close to the edge as possible.

Rolling out the Dough

Note:  If you decided to make a full batch of the basic roll dough into cinnamon rolls, then cut it into half and work with one half at a time. It will be a lot easier rolling out the dough.

Stretch out the dough to start forming a rectangle. Then use a rolling pin to roll the dough into a fairly thin, ¼” thick, rectangle. You will also be eliminating any air pockets with the rolling, so be sure to pick up and flip the dough a few times during this process, while flouring your work surface as needed. After 2 or 3 flips, commit to your rectangle. I like having the long end closest to me. You can see that my rectangle isn't that perfect.

Rolled out dough for my cinnamon buns.

A long time ago, I got over the fact that every pinwheel wasn’t exactly the right size, every slice of bread wasn’t identical, and every piece of pie was not perfect visually. The truth is, what my family cares about is does this roll, bun, or pie taste great. There are videos and blogs where rulers are used to measure, but I’m here to tell you just roll and slice it. I'll show you how to make the imperfect, delectable.

Rolling the Dough Together

Start rolling your dough away from you. Once you get thing started it rolls much easier. After you’ve formed your log, gently pull it toward you to make it easier to cut.

Rolled up cinnamon buns in a log shape before they are cut into pinwheels.

I use a clean, serrated knife to make the cuts. When I say clean, I mean I wipe it a couple times while cutting the pinwheels. I feel it helps for a cleaner edge and a sharper cut.

Nestle the pinwheels in a baking dish. I use a variety of dishes and always have to find a small dish that will fit the few extra I always have. Leave a little space in between for the next rise. Cover with a towel and let them rise around 30 to 40 minutes in a warm place.

Cinnamon buns that are ready to rise.

I once read a blog detailing how to make beautiful looking rolls, requiring careful measurements. So much so that the baker cut the ends off of her logs and threw them away. She’d probably clutch her heart in distress, if she knew that I unroll one imperfect end piece and roll it around the other imperfect end to use up every bit. You can see one of my misshapen rolls in the image above, where I rolled the two ends together.

After about 40 minutes or so rising, they should have filled in the baking dish quite nicely. You can see that imperfect roll is starting to fit in.

Cinnamon rolls ready to go into the oven to bake.

After baking the rolls, here's a look at them and that imperfect roll again. All puffed up, sweet, soft and full of maple deliciousness.

Baked cinnamon rolls.

Maple Frosting

Probably the most important layer of a cinnamon bun is the glaze. This is an easy layer because you simply just need to buy a container of our real Vermont maple cream. We produce it right at the sugarhouse in small batches, available in two different syrup grades, both of which are delicious. Maple cream is made with only maple syrup and it has the consistency of creamy peanut butter. I would suggest that you top off your rolls with maple cream as you serve them, as maple cream is best stored in the refrigerator. Also, if you're like us, we like to warm up our cinnamon buns, so its best to spread the maple cream after.

A triple maple cinnamon bun plated with a cup of coffee. 

How to Eat a Cinnamon Roll

I add this section to my blog because of something I recently observed in my house. There are lots of ways to eat a cinnamon roll. did you know that? I’m sure most people use a fork and plate while sitting at the table. Which is exactly how I started out, but then I realized that I really enjoyed unrolling the pinwheel and eating it in sections. Within a few minutes, two of my sons came in from the sugarwoods and commented how great it smelled in the kitchen. One of them eat three rolls standing in the washroom, he ate the first two like a donut, and unwound the pinwheel on the third one! The other grabbed a roll and headed out the door taking big bites as he moved.

Regardless of how you or your family devour these delicious treats, they are sure to be a favorite staple.

Triple Maple Cinnamon Rolls Recipe

Ingredients:

Half of my Basic Roll Dough with Maple Syrup recipe

For the Filling:

  • ½ cup gently melted butter
  • 1 cup maple sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon cinnamon
  • Chopped nuts are optional

For the Glaze:

Directions:

  1. Prepare the Basic Roll Dough to Step 7
  2. Roll out the dough to a ¼” rectangle.
  3. Prepare the filling by mixing the butter, sugar and cinnamon. Spread the mixture onto the dough rectangle, getting as close to the edges as possible.
  4. Roll up your dough like a log.
  5. Cut 1” thick slices with a serrated knife and nestle the buns in a lightly greased baking dish leaving room to rise.
  6. Let rise 30 to 40 minutes.
  7. Bake 375 degrees for 20 minutes.
  8. Cool and glaze with maple cream as you serve, and enjoy!

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