Cinnamon Roll Cookies (slice-and-bake)
Slice-and-bake cookies are fun to make for the holidays! Try these cinnamon roll cookies as your next recipe. Topped with a simple vanilla glaze, these soft cookies have a beautiful cinnamon swirl just like homemade cinnamon rolls!
Sweet, sweet cinnamon rolls in cookie form? Yep, that’s right. These cinnamon roll cookies are rolled with cinnamon sugar and drizzled with icing to make an unbelievably sweet treat. The swirl is so satisfying to make and eat! This glaze will have you licking your fingers after every bite. They’re just one of the best Christmas cookies!
Why this recipe works
To make the perfect cinnamon swirl, you need a recipe where the cookies would not spread and hold their shape. Luckily, a simple sugar cookie dough does just the trick! The cookies are thick and chewy, but also light and soft. In other words, the perfect balance.
This is an easy slice-and-bake cookie recipe too. You can make the dough log ahead of time and freeze until you’re ready to bake!
- Butter: Unsalted butter must be at room temperature. Not only is it easier to mix, but it will create a uniform dough for consistent cookies.
- Egg: This helps bind the ingredients so the dough doesn’t fall apart. Use a room temperature egg for easy blending.
- Vanilla: Use high quality pure vanilla extract for the best flavor. It makes a huge difference in taste.
- Ground cinnamon (not pictured): This is the star ingredient! Make sure it’s fresh and not expired for best results.
- Confectioners’ sugar (not pictured): Also known as powdered sugar or icing sugar, this is necessary for the icing drizzled on top.
Switch up the filling in these cinnamon roll cookies. Instead of cinnamon, use pumpkin pie spice for a festive fall flavor. You can also replace the granulated sugar with brown sugar (same amount).
Consider other flavors for the glaze. I think a maple glaze would taste delicious. You can use the recipe from my maple brown sugar cookies.
A cream cheese glaze is also a natural option! Place 1/2 cup cream cheese in a shallow bowl and heat in the microwave on 50% power level stopping to stir every 10 seconds until warm and thin enough to stir easily. Whisk in 1/4 cup confectioners’ sugar and 1/2 teaspoon vanilla.
How to make cinnamon roll cookies
- Make the cookie dough: Whisk the dry ingredients in one bowl and set aside. In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the butter and sugar. Add the egg and vanilla. Finally, add the dry ingredients and mix just until combined.
- Roll the cookie dough: The next step is to split the dough in half and roll each half out into a 9-inch by 7-inch rectangle that is no less than 1/4-inch thick. You can do this between two pieces of parchment paper or by flouring your work surface and rolling pin.
- Add cinnamon sugar filling: Brush each rectangle with 1 tablespoon melted butter and sprinkle evenly with cinnamon sugar.
- Roll and chill the dough log: Very slowly roll up the dough into two 9-inch logs. Wrap and refrigerate both for at least 2 hours or overnight.
- Cut and bake the cookies: Preheat the oven to 350 F and use a sharp knife to cut the dough into 1/2-inch thick disks. Bake for 10 minutes or until the edges are set.
- Drizzle with icing: While the cookie cool, make the icing. Whisk together confectioners’ sugar, milk and vanilla. Drizzle over the cookies and enjoy!
Weigh your ingredients properly. Use a kitchen scale to measure your flour. If you don’t have a scale, spoon the flour into a measuring cup and level it with a knife (don’t pack it down). Too much flour will make a dry and bland baked good.
Chill the dough for the full 2 hours. This is super important for the cookies to keep their beautiful cinnamon swirl.
You want to ever so slightly under-bake the cookies. The edges will be set, but the centers will be soft. After the cookies have cooled for a couple minutes, transfer them to a wire cooling rack to cool completely.
Make ahead and storage tips
The dough log can be made ahead of time a stored in the refrigerator for up to 48 hours and in the freezer for up to 3 months. Wrap the dough tightly with plastic wrap to prevent it from drying out. If freezing, let the dough defrost in the refrigerator before slicing and baking the cookies.
You can also slice and bake the frozen cookie dough if you have a sharp enough knife and strength to cut it (be careful!) Baking time will be closer to 14 minutes.
Once the cookies are baked, store them in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 5 days. You can also freeze baked cookies (with or without the icing). Place them in an airtight container for up to 1 month in the freezer. Defrost in the refrigerator before bringing to room temperature.
Frequently Asked Questions
I have not tried this, but it should work! Let us know in the comments if you give it a try.
The dough is too warm. If you’re baking in a warm environment, try not to keep the dough at room temperature for too long. Also, make sure the baking sheet isn’t hot when you put the cookies on for a second batch.
It’s likely too dry. Make sure to measure your flour properly by weighing it or spooning it into the measuring cup. To fix cracks in the dough, wet your finger tips with a little milk and bind the dough back together.
Looking for more desserts that call for cinnamon? Try these recipes…
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Cinnamon Roll Cookies
- 2 ¼ cups (280 g) all purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¾ cup (170 g) unsalted butter, room temperature
- ¾ cup (150 g) granulated sugar
- 1 large egg, room temperature
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 2 Tablespoons (15 g) unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled
- ¼ cup (50 g) granulated sugar
- 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
- 1 cup (120 g) confectioners' sugar, sifted
- 2-3 tablespoons milk
- ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder and salt. Set aside.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer (or using a hand mixer), beat butter and 3/4 cup sugar on high until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Beat in egg and vanilla until incorporated. Turn mixer on low and gradually add in flour mixture. Mix until combined.
- Divide the dough into two equal parts. Place the dough between two sheets of parchment paper and roll out into a 9-inch x 7-inch rectangle about 1/4-inch thick. Remove top piece of parchment paper. Spread one tablespoon of melted butter onto each rectangle. Mix 1/4 cup sugar and cinnamon together then sprinkle evenly over each.
- Slowly roll up each rectangle tightly into a 9-inch log, peeling the dough off of the bottom piece of parchment paper. It's okay if the dough cracks slightly, smooth out any cracks with your fingers. Cover the dough log in plastic wrap and chill for 2 hours.
- Preheat oven to 350° F. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.
- Remove dough logs from the refrigerator. Use a sharp knife to cut into 1/2-inch thick slices. Place slices onto baking sheets about 2 inches apart. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes, until lightly golden on the edges and soft in the middle. Cool on the cookie sheet for 5 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
Make the Icing
- In a medium bowl, whisk together confectioners' sugar, milk and vanilla. Start with two tablespoons milk and if the consistency is too thick to drizzle, add another teaspoon or two. Using a spoon, drizzle icing over the cookies and serve.
Inspired by Sally’s Baking Addiction.