Easy Overnight Cinnamon Rolls are a set and forget it approach to cinnamon rolls. Make the dough and set it in the fridge overnight. Wake up to goodness the next day!
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook combine the flour, salt, yeast and sugar.
Heat the Water, milk, butter and apple sauce to 110 degrees. I do this in the microwave. Use a thermometer to test the water temp. You want it to feel like a warm bath. Get it too hot and you'll kill the yeast. I don't recommend going over 115 degrees.
Slowly pour the water mixture into the flour mixture with the dough hook running at medium speed. Allow things to just combine. The dough is ready when it pulls away gently from the sides of the bowl and begins to form a ball.
When the ball is formed, pull the dough out and knead it by hand on a lightly floured surface for 3-4 minutes. Use some of your reserved flour as you knead it. You want a nice and smooth, but non-sticky dough. Form it into a ball and place into a greased bowl for 10 minutes. This will allow the dough to rest.
While the dough is resting, mix up the filling. Mix together the softened butter, brown sugar and cinnamon. This will be a thick spreadable mixture. Set it aside.
Roll your dough out into a 14x8 inch rectangle. Spread the butter sugar mixture onto the dough. From the long end roll it up evenly into a roll shape.
Using a very sharp knife, cut the roll into 8 even pieces.
Grease a 9 inch cake pan and place the rolls into the pan. Cover with plastic wrap and allow them to rise in the fridge overnight. The morning you want to bake them, put your oven on it's lowest setting. For me that is 150 degrees. Pull the plastic wrap off and replace it with a kitchen towel and place the rolls in the low heat oven for 1 hour.
Once the rolls have risen for the hour and come to temp, remove them while you preheat the oven to 375 and bake them for 25-28 minutes. Make sure you watch them as things might get too brown. If you don't want them too brown, you can cover them with foil after the first 10 minutes.
If you want to make the rolls the same day- cover them with a kitchen towel and allow them to rise in a warm draft free area for 90 minutes. I have good luck with turning my oven on and setting it for 200 degrees. I then shut the oven off and put the covered rolls in. They will rise perfectly.
Mix the water, powdered sugar, and vanilla together. Drizzle over the hot rolls.
Cinnamon Rolls will keep in the fridge or at room temperature for up to 5 days. You can freeze the prepared cinnamon rolls (without the glaze), thaw and reheat in the oven or microwave. Nutrition facts calculated using My Fitness Pal. Different brands will vary nutrition info.
The calories and fat in this recipe were cut by replacing half the butter of the dough with unsweetened applesauce and using unsweetened dairy free milk. This recipe is also egg free.
Vegans can swap in vegan baking sticks. Earth balance would be recommended.
I have not made this recipe with gluten free flours so I cannot speak to using them.
Proper Measuring is key. To measure flour, scoop it into the cup and level it off. Do not pack flour. Pay attention to the temperature of your water. Dead yeast is often the reason rolls won't rise. Make sure your yeast is not expired.
Adapted from Life is But a Dish Cinnamon Rolls