No-Yeast Cinnamon Rolls with Brown Butter-Cream Cheese Frosting

Active Time: 30 MinsTotal Time1 Hour
Yield: SERVES: 12 (Serving Size: 1 Roll)

Most classic cinnamon roll recipes require yeast, which means these recipes also require you to let the dough rest and rise a couple of times before they make it into the oven… so the cinnamon rolls you start in the morning won’t actually be ready until later that day. But hold tight, no need to reach for the canned rolls—there’s another way. We developed these yeast-free cinnamon rolls specifically to deliver big on homemade flavor, while allowing you to wake, bake, and enjoy the gooey goodness all within an hour. Here, we swap the yeast for baking powder for instant lifting power and incorporate plain (not Greek) yogurt to enrich the dough with a little bit of tang to make up for the lack of yeasty flavor. They come together in a snap and you don’t even have to break out a mixer, as everything is combined by hand. Filled with buttery, gooey cinnamon-sugar ribbons and topped with a decadent, lick-the-bowl-worthy brown butter-cream cheese glaze, these buns are worth every bite. 



  • 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup plain, whole-milk yogurt
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 7 tablespoons unsalted butter, very soft
  • 1large egg


  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, very soft (1 stick)
  • 3/4 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 3/4 cup chopped pecans, toasted

Brown Butter-Cream Cheese Frosting

  • 3 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar, sifted
  • 3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

How to Make It

Step 1

Preheat oven to 350° F.

Step 2

To prepare the dough, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl; set aside. In a separate mixing bowl, whisk together the yogurt, milk, butter, and egg until thoroughly combined. (It’s okay if small butter lumps remain.) Stir the yogurt  mixture into the flour mixture using a rubber spatula to form the dough. Gather the dough and knead a few times in the bowl to bring all of the dough together in a single mass.

Step 3

Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Roll the dough into a 12-x16-inch rectangle. To fill, spread ½ cup very soft butter over the dough, leaving a 1-inch border around the edges. Mix together the light brown sugar, ¼ cup granulated sugar, cinnamon and ¼ teaspoon salt in a bowl; sprinkle evenly over the butter. Sprinkle chopped pecans evenly over the sugar mixture. 

Step 4

Starting at one long side of the dough, tightly roll the dough into a log. Cut the log into 12 equal rolls (each will be just shy of 1 ½ inches thick). Place the rolls cut side down into a greased 9-x13-inch  pan.

Step 5

Bake at 350° F for 25 to 30 minutes or until golden brown. Cool for 5 minutes before frosting. 

Step 6

To prepare the frosting, place the cream cheese in a mixing bowl. Melt the 3 tablespoons butter in a skillet or saucepan over medium-low heat; cook, stirring often, until the milk solids turn golden-brown and the butter smells nutty, about 10-12 minutes. Pour the butter, scraping all the browned bits from the pan, over the cream cheese and whisk until smooth and combined. Mix in the powdered sugar, vanilla extract, and ¼ teaspoon salt. Spread evenly over rolls. 

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