Swedish Cinnamon Buns

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The perfect mash-up between our copycat Cinnabun recipe and croissants, these Swedish Cinnamon Buns have a flaky exterior, chewy center and layers upon layers of cinnamon-sugar goodness. Total brunch goals!

A step-by-step tutorial for perfect Swedish Cinnamon Buns, a flaky version of a classic Cinnamon Roll with cinnamon-cardamom flavor

Swedish Cinnamon Buns Recipe

Kanelbullar (Swedish cinnamon rolls) are a time-honored Swedish tradition. Unlike in North America, where coffee breaks happen at work, in Sweden it’s common to invite friends to fika (go out for coffee) to your home or to a cafe throughout the work day. And a pastry like these cinnamon buns is normally served alongside that coffee.

Just like how there are many iterations of what makes the perfect cinnamon bun in North America, there are several different versions of “Swedish Cinnamon Buns” to choose from. There are ones that more closely resemble the texture of North American rolls but have a fun, knotted design (Kanelsnurrer); there are ones that border more on the savory side with cardamom and sesame seeds; and there are these flakey cinnamon buns.

The biggest difference between Swedish cinnamon buns and North American is the flavor. The spices are worked into the dough and there are always a couple of different aromatics used (ie, cinnamon and cardamom), creating a richer, flavorful experience. While occasionally you will see these served with a sprinkle of sugar on top, there is no thick slather of cream cheese frosting.

(If that’s what you’re looking for, you can find that type of cinnamon roll recipe here.)

Secrets to Perfect Flaky Cinnamon Roll

  • Don’t forget the dough or leave it proofing for too long. Dough that has proofed for too long won’t have that chewy interior
  • Knead the dough for the full amount of time required – you want a good, stretchy dough and this will take at least 5 minutes of kneading (use a mixer or have the kids help to give your forearms a break)
  • Use fresh spices – and don’t be light-handed with them
  • Fold the dough a few times to build thin layers into the dough, resulting in thin, flaky layers
  • Roll the dough out very thin and roll tightly – it’s all about the layers with this recipe and a tight roll will ensure that the filling stays in when you cut into buns
  • If the buns seem to be burning at the top, mist them with some water or place a cookie tray on the rack underneath the baking cinnamon buns and fill with 1/2″ of water

Don’t want to make these from scratch? You can substitute a frozen puff pastry sheet for the homemade cinnamon roll dough for a flaky, delicious experience.

Other Delicious Recipes for Your Brunch Menu:

How to make flaky Croissant Cinnamon Buns - a Swedish delicacy

Swedish Cinnamon Bun Ingredients

Cinnamon Filling:

For brushing the cinnamon buns:

  • Egg

Scroll down to the printable recipe card for full measurements.

Tip: You can substitute a frozen puff pastry sheet for the homemade cinnamon roll dough for a flaky, delicious experience.

Kitchen Tools You May Find Helpful

  • Electric mixer <– this is a great hand mixer if you don’t want to make the investment into a stand mixer
  • Measuring cups and spoons
  • Large bowl
  • Rolling pin
  • Cutting board or large clean surface
  • Two 9″ x 16″ casserole dishes <– I like these Pyrex dishes with fitted lids

These Swedish Cinnamon Buns have a flaky exterior, chewy center and layers upon layers of cinnamon-sugar goodness. Total brunch goals!

How to Make Swedish Cinnamon Buns

Warm the milk up slightly, to around 100ºF (microwaving for 20 minutes can achieve this).

Stir the yeast into the milk and let stand until completely dissolved and slightly frothy.

In a large bowl, beat together the butter, sugar, salt and cardamom. Add in the warmed milk-yeast mixture.
Add in the flour and stir until a cohesive ball of dough forms.

Fold the dough out onto a floured surface and knead until dough is smooth and elastic, about 5-8 minutes.

Place the dough back in the bowl and cover with a cloth. Place in a warm spot in your kitchen and allow to risk until doubled, about 1 hour.

To make the filling, combine all of the ingredients in a small bowl. Set aside.

Flour a large, clean surface and turn the risen dough onto the prepared area.

Roll the dough out to 12” by 24” approximately, then fold and re-roll. You can repeat this step a few times to build in extra layers.

Roll the dough out a final time and spread the cinnamon filling on top, avoiding the outer 1” of the dough.

Roll the widest edge of the cinnamon buns to form a log, and then cut into 3” segments.

Butter or grease your baking dishes and place the cinnamon buns about 2” apart.

Cover and allow the buns a final rise of about 30 minutes.

Preheat your oven to 350ºF.

Lightly beat your egg and brush the tops of the buns.

Bake 15-20 minutes, until tops begin to brown.

 

Pin this Croissant Cinnamon Bun recipe:

Perfect flaky cinnamon buns with warming cinnamon-cardamom flavor, these Croissant Cinnamon Buns are a simple take on Swedish Cinnamon Rolls

Grab your free printable for our Swedish Cinnamon Rolls recipe:

Yield: 24 cinnamon rolls

Swedish Cinnamon Buns

Swedish Cinnamon Buns

The perfect mash-up between our copycat Cinnabun recipe and croissants, these Swedish Cinnamon Buns have a flaky exterior, chewy center and layers upon layers of cinnamon-sugar goodness.

Prep Time 25 minutes
Cook Time 18 minutes
Additional Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Total Time 2 hours 13 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 1/3 cup warm milk
  • 2 teaspoons active dry yeast
  • 7 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
  • 5 tablespoons white sugar
  • 1 teaspoons salt
  • 3 teaspoons ground cardamom
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour

Cinnamon Filling:

  • 8 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
  • 7 tablespoons white sugar
  • 3 tablespoon cinnamon
  • 1 Tablespoon cornstarch

For brushing the cinnamon buns:

  • 1 egg

Instructions

  1. Warm the milk up slightly, to around 100ºF (microwaving for 20 minutes can achieve this).
  2. Stir the yeast into the milk and let stand until completely dissolved and slightly frothy.
  3. In a large bowl, beat together the butter, sugar, salt and cardamom. Add in the warmed milk-yeast mixture.Add in the flour and stir until a cohesive ball of dough forms.
  4. Fold the dough out onto a floured surface and knead until dough is smooth and elastic, about 5-8 minutes.
  5. Place the dough back in the bowl and cover with a cloth. Place in a warm spot in your kitchen and allow to risk until doubled, about 1 hour.
  6. To make the filling, combine all of the ingredients in a small bowl. Set aside.
  7. Flour a large, clean surface and turn the risen dough onto the prepared area.
  8. Roll the dough out to 12” by 24” approximately, then fold and re-roll. You can repeat this step a few times to build in extra layers.
  9. Roll the dough out a final time and spread the cinnamon filling on top, avoiding the outer 1” of the dough.
  10. Roll the widest edge of the cinnamon buns to form a log, and then cut into 3” segments.
  11. Butter or grease your baking dishes and place the cinnamon buns about 2” apart.
  12. Cover and allow the buns a final rise of about 30 minutes.
  13. Preheat your oven to 350ºF.
  14. Lightly beat your egg and brush the tops of the buns.
  15. Bake 15-20 minutes, until tops begin to brown.

Notes

You can substitute a frozen puff pastry sheet for the homemade cinnamon roll dough for a flaky, delicious experience.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

24

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 179Total Fat: 8gSaturated Fat: 5gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 3gCholesterol: 28mgSodium: 100mgCarbohydrates: 24gFiber: 1gSugar: 6gProtein: 3g

Sugar, Spice and Glitter uses an auto-generate nutrition calculator. Nutrition information isn’t always accurate unless analyzed in a scientific lab, so these should be considered more of a guideline than medical information.

Pin this Recipe for Later

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These flaky cinnamon buns are the perfect not-too-sweet brunch treat, with warming cardamom and buttery, crispy-chewy layers.

For more delicious brunch ideas, check out our Poached Eggs in Italian-style Tomato Sauce recipe or our Pineapple Prosecco Punch.

Perfect flaky cinnamon buns with warming cinnamon-cardamom flavor, these Croissant Cinnamon Buns are a simple take on Swedish Cinnamon Rolls These Swedish Cinnamon Buns have a flaky exterior, chewy center and layers upon layers of cinnamon-sugar goodness. Total brunch goals!

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