Do you want to make homemade cinnamon rolls but don’t always want to have a ton of cinnamon rolls in your house? For those of you who live alone or maybe just with your boyfriend, girlfriend, husband or wife – making a recipe like homemade cinnamon rolls where you have 8 or 12 cinnamon rolls is just too many to eat in a normal fashion in just a couple days.
So, here you have my Small Batch Honey Butter Cinnamon Rolls recipe. This small batch homemade cinnamon roll recipe only makes 4 cinnamon rolls. That’s the perfect amount for two people to eat within 2 days (which is the best time frame to eat homemade cinnamon rolls, in my opinion). I love cinnamon rolls, but they are also best when eaten when they are fresh. And so when I make my usual Homemade Cinnamon Rolls, the recipe makes 8 and I usually give away a few to friends as Delaney and I won’t eat all 8 in a just a couple days.
So, I made this version of homemade cinnamon rolls that only makes 4 cinnamon rolls. I also made them with honey butter which adds a nice flavor profile, one that’s a bit more sophisticated than my classic Homemade Cinnamon Rolls. If you like this recipe and you want to make more, you can always double or triple it too!
Ingredients for Small Batch Honey Butter Cinnamon Rolls
Organic Dry Active Yeast
Dry active yeast is basically the same as instant yeast. I prefer to buy organic, which you can usually find in the grocery store baking aisle by Red Star.
When activating yeast, you need to have warm water. This is warm and not hot. It should be about 105°F to 110°F. If it’s hotter than this, it can kill the yeast, then your dough won’t rise. I turn my sink on to hot water, and just grab it immediately from there, so it hasn’t gotten fully hot yet. If you have hot water for tea you should not use this! If you’re unsure, then you can also heat water with a thermometer as well.
Organic Cane Sugar
I use organic cane sugar in the dough for these homemade cinnamon rolls. You can find organic cane sugar at every grocery store these days, so no excuses not to get the good stuff. It is a darker color than the traditional granulated sugar, although you can use either one. But organic cane sugar is not as processed, therefore leaving it with a darker color and better flavor!
Organic Light Brown Sugar
I use organic light brown sugar in the filling for these homemade cinnamon rolls. I like the combination of the light brown sugar with the honey for flavor, as it creates a little lighter cinnamon roll. If you only have dark brown sugar, you can use that in its place, but the flavor will be richer.
Organic All Purpose Flour
I use organic all purpose flour in this dough. You can easily find organic all purpose flour in every grocery store the days. Even if you buy the O Organics version at Vons (I love that one and buy it all the time!) you are buying a better flour option.
Organic Salted Butter
I use organic salted butter in this recipe, but you can also use unsalted butter if that’s all you have. The small amount of salt won’t make a difference in this recipe as it’s such a small batch.
I use organic raw local honey. You can use any kind of honey you like, even ones like Orange Blossom Honey or different flavors, and those subtle flavors will shine through in these homemade cinnamon rolls. That’s something I really love about honey is you can switch up a recipe just by changing the honey you use, so if you have a recipe you like, you can easily make it again and again with different honey.
I use organic whole milk always! In any recipe, always always use whole milk as milk provides fat and flavor. Never use skim milk, but if you only have 2% you can use in a pinch. But, I would recommend to use to whole milk.
Can You Store Cinnamon Rolls?
Although homemade cinnamon rolls are best when eaten the same day, you can store cinnamon rolls. The best way to store homemade cinnamon rolls is in a cake dome. This keeps the dough from drying out. And then you can eat them at room temperature, or you can pop them in the microwave for a few seconds to warm them up as much as you’d like. If you don’t have a cake dome, then a tupperware would be the best option.
Can You Make Cinnamon Rolls Ahead of Time?
Yes! You can make homemade cinnamon rolls ahead of time. You can make the dough, let it rise, roll it out, fill it, cut it, and place it in the baking dish. When you get to this step, then just cover the baking dish with plastic wrap. Foil will not do here! Foil is not airtight, and you want plastic wrap because it’s airtight so the dough won’t dry out. Place the wrapped baking dish in the fridge overnight. The following morning, preheat the oven and take out the dish at the same time. That way the rolls can come to room temperature before they go into the oven.
Why use organic ingredients in this recipe? You all know I’m a huge organic advocate, and I bet you may be thinking sometimes, Why would I even bother to use organic ingredients in something that is so sweet and indulgent? But, that is the exact reason why ou should use organic ingredients! Sweet things need to have flavor in order to be good, otherwise they are just sweet and they don’t taste like much else. Organic ingredients are more pure than conventional ones, therefore they actually have more flavor than the non organic options. Say it with me, organic means more flavor! And not just more flavor but a more true and pure flavor. And organic ingredients are much healthier for you to eat in general as they do not contain GMOs or anything artificial. Plus, you are being environmentally friendly when you choose organic ingredients!
So, I highly recommend that you buy the best organic ingredients for this recipe! You can also shop my Amazon Storefront for all my favorite organic ingredients here. Tip – hover over each ingredient to see the name. And if you want to learn more about organic foods and the difference, read my post here on Food Labels and What They Mean.
Smal Batch Honey Butter Cinnamon Rolls
Makes 4 cinnamon rolls
1 1/2 teaspoons (5 grams) organic active dry yeast
1/2 teaspoon organic cane sugar
2 tablespoons warm water
2 tablespoons (28 grams) organic salted butter
1/2 cup organic milk
1 teaspoon organic raw honey
223 grams (1 3/4 cups) organic all purpose flour
28 grams (2 tablespoons) organic cane sugar
1/2 teaspoons fine sea salt
57 grams (1/4 cup) organic packed light brown sugar
1 teaspoon organic cinnamon
2 tablespoons organic salted butter, softened
2 teaspoons organic raw honey
106 grams (3/4 cup) organic powdered sugar, sifted
1 tablespoon organic milk
To make the dough: In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook, add the yeast, 1/2 teaspoon cane sugar, and warm water. Stir to combine and let sit for 5 minutes, until bubbly.
In a small pot over medium heat, add the butter, milk, and honey. Stir until completely melted, remove from heat.
Add the flour, remaining 2 tablespoons cane sugar, and sea salt to the mixing bowl in that order. Add the milk mixture and knead on speed 2 to 4 for 5 minutes.
Place the dough in a greased bowl, and cover the bowl with a kitchen towel and let rise for 2 to 3 hours, until doubled in size.
Preheat the oven to 350°F and grease a small baking dish.
To make the filling: In a small bowl, add the brown sugar and cinnamon and mix to combine completely. Then add the butter and honey into a small bowl and stir together.
On a floured surface, roll out the dough to a rectangle that is about 12 x 16 inches. Using a spatula spread the butter and honey mixture all over the rolled out dough.
Sprinkle the brown sugar and cinnamon mixture to completely cover the butter.
Starting at the longer side, fold the dough over and start to roll the dough until it is completely rolled into a log. Trim off each of the ends, then cut the dough log into 4 cinnamon rolls. Place in a greased baking dish.
Bake for 40 minutes or until golden brown. Let rest for 10 minutes.
To make the glaze: In a mixing bowl, add the powdered sugar and milk and whisk until you have a smooth glaze. Slather the glaze over the tops of the warm cinnamon rolls.
Store in an airtight container for up to 3 days.
High Altitude — Bake at 350°F for 35 minutes or until golden brown.