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The Best Cinnamon Rolls Ever

Ingredients

  • 1 quart whole milk
  • 1 cup canola oil
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 packages active dry yeast
  • 9 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon (heaping) baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon (scant) baking soda
  • 1 tablespoon (heaping) salt
  • 1 cup melted unsalted butter
  • 2 cups brown sugar
  • 4 tablespoons of cinnamon

Directions

For the dough: 1. In a saucepan over medium heat, warm the milk, oil, and sugar until it gently simmers (don't let it boil). Transfer to a bowl, set aside and cool to warm. Once the milk is cooled slightly (it should feel warm but not hot on the inside of your wrist) sprinkle the yeast on top and let it sit for 1 minute. 2. Add 6-8 cups of the flour, just enough that you get a soft bread dough. Cover with a clean dish towel and set aside to raise until doubled (about an hour). 3. Meanwhile combine the baking powder, baking soda, salt and 1 cup of flour. 4. Once the dough has risen, sprinkle over the flour mixture and stir to combine. (if desired you can leave the dough in the refrigerator for up to three days at this point) To assemble the rolls: 1. Split the dough in half and work in two batches. 2. Generously flour your surface (if you have a large cutting board use that) and then roll the dough into a large rectangle, about a 1/4 inch thick. 3. Once dough is rolled out, pour about half of the melted butter over the surface of the dough. Use your fingers to spread the butter evenly. Cover the butter with ground cinnamon and brown sugar, again spreading with your fingers. 4. Roll the rectangle tightly, pinching the seem together at the end. Cut rolls 1/2 - 1 inch thick depending on taste (we like them on the thicker side). 5. Grease a 9x13 inch pan with melted butter. Leave plenty of room for the rolls to rise, about a dozen fit in a 9x13 pan usually. 6. Repeat with remaining dough. You will need about 2-3 pans depending on how much your dough rises and how tightly you form the rolls. You can use smaller pans if that's what you have, they will take just a little less time to cook. 7. Cover all the pans with a kitchen towel and set aside to rise for at least 30 minutes before baking (we like to let them rise overnight). 8. Preheat the oven to 375°F. Remove the towel and bake rolls for 15 to 18 minutes, until done through but not too brown.

Notes

If you can, we highly recommend making these the night before and letting them rise overnight. Then just pop them in the oven and you'll have warm delicious cinnamon rolls first thing! We love to use these as a way to use up all the cream, half and half, sour cream, and yogurt that accumulate in the fridge with holiday baking. You can sub in any (or all!) of these for the 1 quart of milk - just make sure to heat it very slowly if you're using items other than milk or they may separate. Also, the brown sugar and cinnamon measurements are really flexible, use as much or as little as you like! Serve with "the best cinnamon roll frosting ever" from the Gatheredtable library.

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