How to Salvage a Cinnamon Bun Gone Wrong!

August 13, 2009


Sometimes on a rainy, dreary day, all you want to do is bake.  Okay, maybe that’s just me.  I had a yoga class today, and all I could think of was cinnamon buns.  Clearly, I’m not that great at yoga.  You’re supposed to clear your mind and not plan, think, or worry for an hour.  I try, really, but the thought of cinnamon buns was just so appealing!

I saw the recipe for these from maplencornbread.  It was so enticing because the dough has no yeast (which equals fast) and there isn’t too much butter.  Plus, if you look at the original post you’ll notice how beautiful that cinnamon bun looks.  Really, it’s perfect!  I did not have the same experience.  Not even remotely.

First of all, I only made half of the batch.  (I experimented with the other half, trying to make pumpkin cinnamon rolls.  They were decent, but need some tweaking before sharing.)  Anyways, halving the recipe really shouldn’t have made the dough transform into a sticky mess!  Everything went well, until I read that I was supposed to roll the dough.  At that point it looked more like a muffin batter than a dough.  I bravely decided to forge ahead regardless.  I dumped 1/4 cup of flour onto the counter, plopped the dough on top, and then covered it in another 1/4 cup of flour to made it handleable.  I patted it out and spread the filling on top.  And then I tried to roll it.

Attempting to roll up the rolls was not successful in the slightest.  The dough tore and wouldn’t hold a shape because it was so sticky and soft.  I ended up forming a giant ball of floury dough with some cinnamon filling dispersed throughout.  But I couldn’t give up!  I pulled off pieces of the dough, rolled them into balls, and threw them into the baking pan.

cinnamon closeup

When they came out of the oven they were nothing close to the picturesque cinnamon bun I had aspired to.  I had to cut them like bar cookies.  But all the mess was completely worth it! These were still delicious.  My brother ate them, which always means it’s worth keeping the recipe around.  If you’re in for an adventure, try it for yourself!

Not Really Cinnamon Buns

Adapted from maplencornbread.

3 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp sea salt
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 large egg at room temperature
1 cup milk
1 tsp vanilla
3 tbsp pure maple syrup
2 tbsp unsalted butter, room temp

1 cup dark brown sugar
2 tsp ground cinnamon
2 tbsp unsalted butter, melted

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Grease a nonstick 9×9 inch square or round baking pan with nonstick spray.

In a large bowl sift together the dry ingredients. Whisk together the milk, egg, vanilla extract, maple syrup and butter. Fold into the flour mixture until moistened.

In a small bowl mix together the cinnamon filling ingredients until crumbly.

Turn dough onto a very well floured counter (I would use about 1/4 cup). Pat into a square (not too large) and cover with the cinnamon filling.  Attempt to roll, and then smoosh into a ball.  Tear off golfball sized pieces, roll, and place in baking dish.  Your hands will have to stay pretty well-floured throughout this.

Bake for 25 minutes or until golden.  This makes a 9×9 pan full, and you can cut them into however many pieces you like, although they’ll pull apart into the balls you rolled them into.

I didn’t ice them this time, but if I make them again, I definitely will.  While these on their own cheered up my rainy day, these + icing could negate a whole thunderstorm!


1 tbsp pure maple syrup
2 tbsp unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled.
1 cup powdered sugar

Mix all ingredients together and drizzle over pan while still warm.


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