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cinnamon bun cookies

Cinnamon Bun Cookies

  • Author: Patrice Hurd



3 cups flour (lightly spoon flour into cup and level off)

1-teaspoon baking powder

½ teaspoon salt

½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature

2 tablespoons (1 oz.) cream cheese, at room temperature

1 cup powdered sugar

1 egg

2 tsp. vanilla extract

For filling

6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature

¾ cup dark brown sugar, packed

1 tablespoon ground cinnamon

1/8 teaspoon salt

For Icing

6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature

¼ cup (2 oz.) cream cheese, at room temperature

Pinch of salt

½ teaspoon vanilla extract

¼ teaspoon almond extract

2 cups powdered sugar


To prepare dough: In a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder and salt; reserve. In a bowl of an electric mixer on medium-high speed, beat butter and cream cheese until creamy, about 1 minute. Reduce speed to low, add powdered sugar and mix until light and fluffy. Add egg and vanilla extract, and mix until thoroughly incorporated. Gradually add flour mixture, mixing just until smooth dough is formed. Divide dough into 2 equal pieces and flatten into disks, cover in plastic wrap and chill while preparing filling. To prepare filling: In a bowl of an electric mixer on medium speed, beat butter, brown sugar, cinnamon and salt until smooth. Remove 1 dough disk and place on a piece of waxed paper dusted with powdered sugar*. Roll or press dough to a 9- by 12-inch rectangle dusting with additional powdered sugar to prevent sticking. Dot teaspoon-size pieces of filling over half of dough (using half of filling) and use the back of a spoon to evenly spread filling across top of dough. Beginning with 1 long edge, gently roll up dough, peeling away bottom layer of paper and taking care not to allow cracks in dough to appear.


Place dough seam-side down (and gently stretch from center outward to form a 12-inch long roll, if necessary). Using a sharp knife, cut roll in half. Wrap dough logs in plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 2 hours or overnight. Repeat with remaining dough and filling (dough may be covered well and frozen; thaw in refrigerator before baking).


When ready to bake, preheat oven to 375 degrees and line baking sheets with parchment paper. Unwrap dough logs and, using a sharp knife, trim off uneven ends. Cut dough into 1/2-inch slices and place cookies 2 inches apart on prepared baking sheets. Bake until cookies are just set and edges barely begin to brown, about 8 to 9 minutes. Remove from oven and cool 2 minutes before transferring cookies to a wire rack to cool completely.


To prepare icing: Meanwhile, while cookies are in the oven, combine butter, cream cheese, salt, vanilla extract and almond extract in the bowl of an electric mixer on medium-high speed. Beat until creamy, about 1 minute. Reduce speed to low, add powdered sugar and mix until smooth.

When cookies are still warm, top each cookie with about 1 1/2 teaspoons icing, and gently spread icing across top of cookie (or fill a pastry bag fitted with a small tip and pipe icing over cookies). Cool cookies completely, then refrigerate until icing sets. Store cookies in a tightly covered container in the refrigerator, and serve at room temperature.




Note: I added the powdered sugar dusting technique which made for easier rolling for me. Patrice says you can also just crumble the cookie dough out on wax paper or parchment and press it into shape then smooth over the top with rolling pin. And if you compare her original recipe to today’s version the baking soda has been eliminated.