Filed Under: Bread | Dessert

Cinnamon Bun Bites

Recipe By Tessa Arias
  |  
June 17th, 2013

You are going to love these fun and mouthwatering cinnamon bun bites!

Yield: 8 to 10 servings

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook: 55 minutes

Tessa's Recipe Rundown...

Taste: Is there anything better than the aroma and taste of cinnamon sugary goodness?
Texture: The bites are slightly firm on the outside and fluffy inside. The best part is that each piece is just doused in butter, cinnamon, and sugar.
Ease: Definitely an all-day baking project but completely doable.
Appearance: I love how fun the presentation of these cinnamon bun bites is.
Pros: This recipe makes your house smell like Ikea and tastes even better.
Cons: Paula Deen amounts of butter here.
Would I make this again? Yes, but probably not for a long time.

Cinnamon Bun Bites from Handle the Heat

Who doesn’t love a good, fluffy, sweet, and aromatic cinnamon roll? How about cinnamon bun bites where every single bite is covered in that ooey gooey sweet cinnamon-sugar butter concoction that makes everything smell and taste like heaven. That’s what I’m talking about. Plus, bite-sized pieces limit portion control (at least a little – promise!) so you don’t end up going into a diabetic coma like when you eat at Cinnabon at the mall. You are going to love these fun and mouthwatering cinnamon bun bites!

While on the topic of sweet cinnamon scents, I couldn’t help but think about Ikea. We have A LOT of Ikea furniture in our house. It’s been a great resource to have while furnishing our first house as a young couple since furniture can be outrageously expensive. Of course it comes with the headache of attempting to assemble pieces yourself and everything in your home will be made from weird particleboard and other strange veneered substances but hey, it’s not that bad. I mean, it will feel bad while you’re midway through trying to assemble a huge dresser. You may experience side effects which include uncontrollable rage and even depression but they will dissipate once you relish in the joy of having (sort-of) built something on your own.

I’ll never forget when Jared and I bought a piece of furniture from Ikea for our first apartment. We had to borrow a truck to haul the humungous box back to our place where we then had to lug it up the stairs. This was of course after dealing with the inside of Ikea itself, which gets incresingly worse after you first enter and are set into a shopping trance by that sweet cinnamon aroma. After all that we opened the packaging and found the “directions” and the hardware package in a clear plastic wrapping. Jared, who can sometimes be a stereotypical impatient man, decided to use his bare hands to tear through the plastic instead of waiting for me to find the scissors. Oh, he tore through it alright. He ripped the plastic so violently that all the crucial little hardware pieces went flying everywhere with the majority of them falling right down the kitchen sink. I can’t even tell you how long it took to fish all those tiny pieces out of the sink. There were flashlights and tweezers involved. But hey, at least now we have a kitchen table.

Cinnamon Bun Bites from Handle the Heat
This dough is beautifully soft and easy to work with. It does require a long amount of kneading, accomplished by your stand mixer hopefully. This is because this cinnamon bun bite recipe is a rich yeast dough, meaning it has fat, sugar, and eggs added that can prohibit gluten development, thus requiring more kneading to develop that gluten.

Cinnamon Bun Bites from Handle the Heat
All puffy and pretty after an hour and a half in a warm spot in my kitchen.

Cinnamon Bun Bites from Handle the Heat
Forming all those little balls does take some patience but there’s really nothing you can do wrong here (unlike rolling actual cinnamon rolls). Plus each bite gets dunked in melted butter and completely coated in cinnamon sugar for the ultimate mouth feel and taste.

Cinnamon Bun Bites from Handle the Heat
After letting the bites sit, covered, for an hour to increase by half they are ready to bake and will smell MARVELOUS in your house.

How to make
Cinnamon Bun Bites

Yield: 8 to 10 servings
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 55 minutes
Inactive Time 3 hours
Total Time: 4 hours 15 minutes
You are going to love these fun and mouthwatering cinnamon bun bites!

Ingredients

For the bites:

  • 1/2 cup warm water
  • 1 envelope instant yeast
  • 4 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more if needed
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 1/4 cups sugar, divided
  • 2 teaspoons coarse salt
  • 1 stick unsalted butter, at room temperature, plus 1/2 stick, melted, and more for dish
  • 2 tablespoons ground cinnamon

For the glaze:

  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 2 tablespoons whole milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions

For the buns:

  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer combine the water, yeast, and 1/2 cup flour until a thick paste forms. Stir in the eggs, 1/4 cup of the sugar, and salt and stir until combined. Fit the machine with the dough hook and add the remaining 4 cups of flour. Knead on medium speed until smooth, 4 to 5 minutes.
  2. Add the 1 stick of room temperature butter and knead until the butter is incorporated and the dough is smooth and elastic, about 10 minutes. If the dough is extremely sticky add a little more flour. Turn the dough out onto a clean work surface and knead by hand until very smooth, about 3 minutes. Transfer the dough to a clean bowl, cover, and let rise until doubled, about 1 1/2 to 2 hours. Punch the dough down and press out air bubbles.
  3. Lightly butter a 9-inch pie plate (or similar sized baking dish). In a small bowl combine the remaining 1 cup of sugar and the cinnamon.
  4. Roll the dough into 1-inch balls. Dip each ball in the melted butter, then roll in the cinnamon sugar and place on the prepared pie plate. Stack balls to form a dome shape. Cover lightly with plastic wrap and let balls rise by half, about 1 hour.
  5. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Unwrap the balls and place the pie tin on a baking sheet. Bake until golden and firm, 50 to 55 minutes.
  6. Meanwhile, make the glaze. Whisk together the sugar, salt, butter, milk, and vanilla until a smooth paste forms.
  7. Let bites cool for 15 minutes before drizzling with the glaze. Serve warm.

Recipe Notes

Course: Breakfast
Cuisine: American

About Tessa...

I share trusted baking recipes your friends will LOVE alongside insights into the science of sweets. I'm a professionally trained chef, cookbook author, and cookie queen. I love to write about all things sweet, carb-y, and homemade. I live in Phoenix, Arizona (hence the blog name!)

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  1. #
    Tieghan — June 17, 2013 at 5:34 am

    These things look addicting!! Must make them!

  2. #
    Amy @ Elephant Eats — June 17, 2013 at 5:55 am

    Hahaha, that story is so funny…glad it had a happy ending tho! This looks so yummy. Perfect for a lazy sunday breakfast 🙂

  3. #
    Diane @ Vintage Zest — June 17, 2013 at 11:50 am

    Oh no no no… These look so delish, and cinnamon buns are a HUGE weakness of mine. Should I just send you my personal training bill directly? I’m going to need more sessions if you keep posting recipes like this!

  4. #
    Erin @ The Spiffy Cookie — June 17, 2013 at 12:36 pm

    I can only imagine how dangerously popable these are

  5. #
    Kiran @ KiranTarun.com — June 17, 2013 at 3:57 pm

    I could eat a dozen of this deliciousness in one seating — which is bad, but oh so good 😉

  6. #
    Mimi @ Culinary Couture — June 17, 2013 at 9:11 pm

    I feel like the perfect caption for these would be “Once you pop, you just can’t stop!” They look ADDICTING! And worth every single calorie!

  7. #
    Karen - Cinnamon Freud — June 17, 2013 at 9:46 pm

    Love this- it is kind of like monkey bread & cinnamon bun hybrid. Definitely will be trying this!

  8. #
    Tricia — March 6, 2016 at 1:08 pm

    Hi Tessa! I just made them, and these were amazing!! Thank you so much for the wonderful and BRILLIANT recipe 🙂

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