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Red Velvet Cinnamon Rolls (Overnight Recipe)

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Tis the season for all things red velvet! It’s February and that alone is an excellent excuse to make something red velvet – not that you need an excuse. And these Red Velvet Cinnamon Rolls are the epitome of red velvet deliciousness.

Each red velvet cinnamon roll is pillowy soft and gooey with an incredible chocolatey cinnamon swirl + an irresistible and decadent homemade cream cheese glaze generously drizzled on top. 🤌🏾💋*chef’s kiss*

It speaks love in every bite.

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Even if you’ve never worked with yeast or made cinnamon rolls, this overnight cinnamon roll recipe is doable and the instructions are pretty straightforward.

These babies are an absolute must-make this weekend for v-day breakfast or dessert or BOTH. You choose.

Serve them warm and enjoy!

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Are Cinnamon Rolls Breakfast or Dessert?

Cinnamon rolls are a sweet pastry commonly eaten at breakfast time but should be enjoyed any time of the day. If you’re like me then the time of day usually doesn’t dictate what I eat, so enjoy these rolls whenever you’re kraving them. Go with your OWN RIDDIM (rhythm)!

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Tips For The Best Red Velvet Cinnamon Rolls

  • Check the expiration date on your yeast packet. If you’re unsure if your yeast are alive – proof the yeast prior to adding to your dough.
  • Don’t overheat your milk. It should be between 105-115 degrees F. If it’s hotter it will likely to kill the yeast, which means the cinnamon rolls will not rise. A simple tip is to dip your finger in the milk — it should feel warm similar to warm bath water but not HOT. If you warmed it up too much, simply wait a few minutes until it cools down enough to touch.U
  • Use room temperature butter for the filling: Most recipes call for using melted butter in the filling, but that will cause the filling to leak out before baking. Room temperature butter is best!
  • Rub the brown sugar into the butter: after you spread out the softened butter on the dough, it’s important to rub the brown sugar into the butter and dough so that it’s well combined.
  • Use a room temperature egg: Cold eggs could affect the yeast or mix with the melted butter and cause it to coagulate. As easy way to bring your eggs to room temperature simply place them in a bowl of warm water for a few minutes prior to use.
  • Make sure you flour your work surface and the rolling pin: this is to prevent the cinnamon rolls from sticking the the surface or to the rolling pin.
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Ingredients Rundown

Ingredients To Make Red Velvet Cinnamon Rolls

Whole eggs – gives the cinnamon roll structure and allowing the ingredients to bind together.

Egg yolks – adds rich a flavor and velevty texture to the cinnamon as well as allow ourliquids and fats to bind together.

Granulated sugar – This is food for our yeast. Use a fine grain sugar.

Butter, – use salted or unsalted – the choice is yours. You’ll need 2 sets of butter. One should be melted and cooled to room temperature and the other softened. Adjust the salt content accordingly depending on which butter used.

Red food coloring – this adds that rich red color in the red velvet treats. I used the gel food coloring. You can use the classic food coloring as well. Either on works.

Pure vanilla extract – Use a good quality vanilla extract.

All-purpose flour – provides structure and well as used to flour your surfaces.
Unsweetened cocoa powder – Use the one for baking (usually found in the baking aisle)

Active dry yeast – This is our rising agent. You can also use instant yeast as well. Check the expiration date on the packet before using. If the packet is close to expiring you should proof the yeast to make sure they are still alive. If not, you can add to the dry ingredient without proofing.

Salt – This will round out all the flavors in the cinnamon rolls. Your cinnamon rolls will taste bland without it.

Buttermilk  – I used the cultured buttermilk powder in this recipe. You can use the powder or liquid buttermilk. Buttermilk adds a slight tang to the cinnamon rolls. It also helps tenderize gluten, make the cinnamon rolls pillowly soft and oh so tender. The buttermillk must be warm (to the touch) to activate the yeast. 100°–110°F is the ideal temperature for Active Dry Yeas and 120°–130°F is the ideal temperature for Instant rise. If the yeast is room temperature or cold the yeast will not activate and the cinnamon rolls will be dense and tough. Do not skip this step.

Other ingredients Packed brown sugar (light or dark), grounded cinnamon, room temperature cream cheese, whole milk (or 2% milk)and powdered sugar (same as confectioners sugar).

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Recipe FAQs

Substitutions

Buttermilk Culture Powder vs Buttermilk

Buttermilk cultured powder can be substituted for buttermilk in recipes.  It will produce the same texture, taste, and creaminess in baked goods as buttermilk. I switched to the powered variety a few years back and haven’t looked back since. Most recipes only call for one cup or less and since I don’t drink buttermilk I end up wasting the leftovers, so I opted to save my coins and made the switch from liquid to powder. The choice is yours, either one will work. red velvet cinnamon rolls (overnight)_7089

Active Dry Yeast vs Instant Yeast

Active dry yeast The rule used to be you must dissolve this type of yeast in warm liquid, also what’s known as being “proofed” before it’s added to the rest of the dough ingredients. According to the King Arther Flour website, “You don’t need to dissolve active dry yeast in lukewarm water before using it. (Even though it still says you should dissolve it on the back of the yeast packet if you buy your yeast in packets.)” You can read the full post here. The bottom line is: “dissolve yeast in warm water and some sugar to prove that it’s alive. Sugar is food for the yeast. But, this shouldn’t really be necessary if the yeast isn’t close to its expiration date. But if you have any doubts about your yeast being good, go ahead and proof it before mixing up the other ingredients (and especially before putting liquid in). If it fails then you didn’t waste materials. However, That’s the technique used in this red velvet cinnamon roll recipe.

Instant yeast, also known as quick-rise yeast can be added to the dough without proofing. It comes in smaller granules than active dry yeast, absorbs liquid rapidly, and does not need to be rehydrated or proofed before being mixed into the flour. red velvet cinnamon rolls (overnight)_7046

Can I Make Overnight Cinnamon Rolls with Bread Flour? 

YES!! I love bread flour for producing extra chewy bread, rolls, and cookies, but for these homemade red velvet cinnamon rolls, I went with AP flour that has a lower protein and thus lower gluten content, meaning the finished rolls will be more tender and soft with less chew-factor.

Food Pairings

What Goes Well With Cinnamon Rolls?

Cinnamon rolls are sweet, so they work well when paired with contrasting flavors. Enjoy the cinnamon rolls with your coffee, tea, orange juice, or even a glass of milk. red velvet cinnamon rolls (overnight)_7089

Got Leftovers?

Make sure the leftovers have cooled down to room temperature before storing.

How To Store Leftover Cinnamon Rolls In The Fridge?

The Cinnamon rolls are best enjoyed the day they are baked but will last up to 4 days when wrapped well in foil at room temperature.

Leftovers can be kept for 3-4 days in the refrigerator. After that, the risk of food poisoning increases. If you don’t think you’ll be able to eat leftovers within four days, freeze them immediately.

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How To Store Leftover Cinnamon Rolls In The Freezer?

Alternatively, you can tightly wrap and freeze the rolls for up to 1 month. Store your leftover cinnamon rolls covered in airtight containers or heavy-duty freezer bags, or wrap tightly with heavy-duty aluminum foil or freezer wrap.

How Long Does Cinnamon Rolls Last In The Freezer?

Properly wrapped and stored, it will maintain the best quality for about 1 month. red velvet cinnamon rolls (overnight)_7081

Need To Reheat?

How To Reheat Cinnamon rolls In The Microwave?

Thaw the frozen cinnamon rolls in the refrigerator or at room temperature (if applicable), then reheat individually in the microwave immediately prior to serving for 20-30 seconds. You want them warm, not hot.  The actual time varies depending on your microwave.

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Kraving More?

Check out my other drool-worthy Cinnamon Rolls or our Decadent Desserts. You can also explore  The Recipe Index for even MORE KRAVE-WORTHY EATS.

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Red Velvet Cinnamon Rolls (overnight recipe)

Red Velvet Cinnamon Rolls (overnight recipe)

Each red velvet cinnamon roll is pillowy soft and gooey with an incredible chocolatey cinnamon swirl + a decadent homemade cream cheese glaze.

Recipe by Kerri-Ann Bryan
4 from 4 votes
Course: DessertCuisine: SwedishDifficulty: medium
Cook Mode

*keeps your device screen on

Servings

12

servings
Prep time

30

minutes
Baking time

30

minutes
Calories

436.97

kcal
1st rise

2

hours 

30

minutes
2nd Rise (Overnight)

720

minutes
Total time

15

hours 

30

minutes

Gather Your Ingredients

  • For the Red Velvet Dough
  • 2 large eggs

  • 2 large egg yolks

  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar

  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled to room temperature

  • 2 teaspoons red food coloring

  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

  • 3 3/4 cups all-purpose flour, divided

  • 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder

  • 1 package active dry yeast (1/4 ounce, or 2 1/4 teaspoons)

  • 1 teaspoon salt

  • 3/4 cup buttermilk (warm) ( I used the buttermilk powder)

  • For the Filling
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar (light or dark)

  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar

  • 2 tablespoons cocoa powder

  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

  • 1/8 teaspoon salt

  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter

  • For the Cream Cheese Glaze
  • 1/4 cup cream cheese, softened

  • 2 tablespoons butter (unsalted + melted)

  • 4 tablespoons whole milk (room temperature)

  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract

  • 2 cups powdered sugar (confectioners sugar)

Instructions

  • If You’re Mixing By Hand
  • Lightly spray a large bowl with cooking spray or lightly coat with a neutral oil and set aside.
  • In a separate bowl stir in the eggs, egg yolks, sugar, butter, food dye, vanilla extract, 2 cups flour, cocoa powder, yeast, and salt together with a wooden spoon or whisk for several minutes, until the dough forms a wet, sticky mass.
  • Turn dough onto a floured surface and knead for 8-10 minutes. The dough will be very sticky and cling to the counter, but use as little flour as possible to prevent the dough from becoming tough.
  • Once kneaded, scrape the dough into the lightly oiled bowl, turn once to coat, cover with plastic wrap, and allow the dough to rise for 1 hour or until doubled in size. This may more or less time depending on the humidity and temperature in your home. I used the “bread proof” setting in my oven.
  • If You’re Using A Stand Mixer
  • In the bowl of a stand mixer, whisk together the eggs, egg yolks, sugar, butter, food dye, and vanilla extract.
  • Add 2 cups flour, cocoa powder, yeast, and salt.
  • Place buttermilk in a microwave-safe measuring cup and microwave for 30 to 45 seconds, until it reaches the temperature required for the yeast. (Refer to the package directions for the specific temperature—Fleischmann’s active dry yeast is 100 to 110 degrees F).
  • If the buttermilk curdles when heated, simply whisk it back together. Pour the heated buttermilk into the mixing bowl and stir by hand or with the mixer’s paddle attachment until the ingredients are evenly moistened.
  • Switch to the dough hook, then add the remaining 1 3/4 cups flour.
  • Knead dough on low speed for 6 minutes. The dough should be soft, moist, and tacky, but not excessively sticky. If the dough is too wet, add more flour 1 tablespoon at a time, until the correct texture is reached.
  • Transfer the dough to the oiled bowl, turning once to coat.
  • Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm, draft-free place until doubled in size, 2 to 2 1/2 hours.
  • Let’s Prepare The Filling
  • In a small bowl, combine the brown sugar, granulated sugar, cocoa powder, cinnamon, and salt. Set aside.
  • Melt butter and set aside.
  • Let’s Shape The Cinnamon Rolls
  • Butter a 9×13-inch ceramic or glass baking dish.
  • Turn the risen dough out onto a lightly floured work surface and roll into an 18-inch by 12-inch rectangle, with the longest side closest to you.
  • Brush the dough with melted butter, then sprinkle with the brown sugar-cocoa powder mixture.
  • Starting with the long edge, roll the dough tightly into an 18-inch log.
  • With a sharp, serrated knife, gently saw the log into 12, 1 1/2-inch wide pieces.
  • Now, Let’s Bake!
  • The next day 30 minutes prior to baking, remove rolls from the refrigerator and let them come to room temperature.
  • Place rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 350 degrees F.
  • Bake rolls until they are puffed and darken slightly and the internal temperature reaches 190 degrees F, about 30 minutes.
  • Check the rolls 20 minutes into baking—if they appear to be browning too quickly, cover the pan with aluminum foil, return the rolls to the oven, and continue baking until complete.
  • Remove the pan from the oven, uncover if necessary, and place the pan on a wire rack to cool slightly.
  • How To Make the Glaze
  • In a mixing bowl, beat the cream cheese until smooth and creamy. Add the milk and vanilla extract and whisk until combined. Slowly mix in the sifted powdered sugar until smooth.
  • Drizzle over warm rolls and serve immediately.

Recipe Video

Kerri’s Recipe Tips

  • The buttermilk must be warm (to the touch) to activate the yeast. If it’s room temperature or cold the yeast will not activate and the cinnamon rolls will be dense and tough. Do not skip this step. 
  • The butter should be softened and or melted.
  • The Cinnamon rolls are best enjoyed the day they are baked but will last up to 4 days when wrapped well in foil at room temperature.
  • Calibrate your oven. This will ensure you’re getting an accurate reading on the temperature. Every oven is different so grab the manual for the most accurate way on how to calibrate your specific oven.
  • I ALWAYS recommend reading through the recipe in full a couple of times before starting. That way you know exactly what to expect and you can prep accordingly.
  • Gather all your ingredients before cooking. This way you don’t forget to add an ingredient or two. Believe me, It has happened so many times so I use “mise en place” to save my sanity and the recipe.
  • For your convenience, you can automatically generate a grocery list using the whisk plugin located the the “Ingredient Rundown” section (scroll ↑).

Nutrition Information

Nutrition Facts

12 servings per container

Serving Size1 servings


Calories436.94

  • Amount Per Serving% Daily Value *
  • Total Fat 13.79g 22%
    • Sodium 271.47mg 12%
    • Amount Per Serving% Daily Value *
    • Potassium 159.02mg 5%
    • Total Carbohydrate 71.98g 24%
      • Sugars 39.91g
    • Protein 7.17g 15%
    • Vitamin A 135.35%
    • Vitamin C 0.01%
    • Iron 1.02%
    • Phosphorus 113.27%
    • Zinc 0.73%

    * The % Daily Value tells you how much a nutrient in a serving of food contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.

    Nutritional Disclaimer

    kerriannskravings.com occasionally offers nutritional information for recipes contained on this site. This information is provided as a courtesy and is an estimate only. To obtain the most accurate representation of the nutritional information in any given recipe, you should calculate the nutritional information with the actual ingredients used in your recipe. For more information read our Nutritional Disclaimer.

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