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May 25, 2011

By popular demand: Swedish Cinnamon buns recipe (Kanelbullar)

Okay, so this is old news:  cinnamon buns are the best thing in the world, like, ever, since the sliced bread.  Or possibly before sliced bread, even. 

There have been many tweets going backwards and forwards these last months about this recipe for cinnamon buns.  So, here it is it again. 

There have been comments that the recipe makes quite a large yield of buns.  We do not see this as a problem: just eat more or invite some friends over.  Or freeze them. 

Swedish Cinnamon Buns
Makes around 40 buns

For best result, don’t be stingy with the filling and don’t try to use low fat anything: whole milk, good quality butter... We also prefer using fresh yeast, but if you can’t get hold of any, you can use dried (see footnote). If you are new to cinnamon buns, don’t worry: there is a lot of cinnamon in these – and ground cardamom. You can hold back a bit if you are not sure you’ll like it as strong as we do – but remember:  they’re called Cinnamon Buns for a reason.

The dough
50 g fresh yeast
1000 g plain bread flour

85 g caster sugar
1 egg
150 g unsalted butter
500 ml whole milk
½ tsp salt
1 tsp ground cardamom (optional).

150g butter (nice and soft)
4-5 tsp ground cinnamon
85 g sugar (we like to use brown sugar)

1 egg for brushing
Around 100 g of pearl sugar for decoration (speciality shops, like our online shop - click here . If you can’t get it, omit)

This is how you do it
Melt the butter and add the liquid (milk) – check the temperature (should be between 37-46 degree Celsius for optimal yeast).  Add the yeast and stir.

Once the yeast has dissolved, add the egg, sugar, salt, cardamom and most of the flour (hold a bit back for kneading). Work the dough until it stops sticking and has a shiny surface – probably around 10 minutes by hand. Keep kneading, it makes for a better bun.

Please the dough in a nice warm place for around 30 minutes or until doubled in size. Place the dough on a floured surface and work through the rest of the flour.

Cut the dough in half and roll out each piece in a rectangular shape, around 30 cm long and 12-15 wide. Butter the whole piece liberally and dust over with the cinnamon and sugar. Roll each piece lengthways so that you end up with a long sausage looking roll. Cut 2 cm big bites and place them carefully on baking trays (take care to keep them separated as they will rise). For ease, you can add large muffin cases if you wish, but this is not essential. Let the buns rest for another 30 minutes until doubled in size.  You should get between 34-40 buns out of this batch.

Brush gently with egg and pour over a bit of pearl sugar on each bun and then bake in the over on 220 degrees (fan oven) for about 8-10 minutes (turn the heat down a bit half way if you feel they are getting too brown). Let them cool down under a clean tea towel – this will stop them going dry immediately.

Footnote: Fresh yeast is available at Scandi Kitchen, in some health food stores and some super markets. You can also befriend a real baker if you can find one.  Alternative, replace fresh yeast with 2 x 7g sachets of the instant dry yeast – and add this to the flour/dry ingredients and NOT to the wet mix.


Recipe (c) 2010 by Bronte Aurell.




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Thank you so much for posting this recipe. I have been looking for the perfect recipe for kanelbullar and this is it!


I wonder if you could tell me where the recipe is from? I use an identical recipe except for the omission of the egg in the dough, and I wonder if my recipe is the result of a copier's error from the same source.


I was wondering if you might be able to tell me where you got this recipe from, I have seen very similar ones and my mother has almost the same exact one given to her through the generations! It would be amazing if you could help me out here.

From Annika.

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