If you love the taste of cinnamon buns but don’t have the time to make the traditional yeast variety, this quick dough for Cranberry Biscuit Cinnamon Buns is not only equally delicious, it can be made in a fraction of the time.
Much quicker to put together, you can make them in the morning to have for breakfast or brunch – and there’s no rising time required. Reminiscent of not only biscuits but of flaky pie pastry, the original recipe is from a previous milk calendar. It said to bake them together in a round cake pan, and while that would be very tasty I wanted more caramelization or ‘crispy bits’ as some fondly refer to them.
I chose to bake them individually, using a 12 cup muffin pan, and adding the cranberries was simply a burst of genius, in my opinion. Since I always buy extra at Thanksgiving, I have stash in the freezer – and not just for cranberry sauce or compote.
This recipe is one I’ll certainly go back to, altering the ingredients for the delicious swirl. Like all things you make yourself, you can customize them to your liking. The first time I made these I followed the recipe to the letter. They were so remarkably easy to put together, I couldn’t wait to make them again – and this version with festive cranberries was born!
Years ago I baked in a café in Vancouver that made a similar cinnamon bun recipe, and it was one of the most popular baked items sold. Making these brought back some fond memories, and also had me wondering what my former boss would think of this version!
- 1/3 cup unsalted butter, very soft
- 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
- 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 3/4 cup, approx. fresh/frozen cranberries
- 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour (or sub in some oat and/or whole wheat flour)
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 2 tablespoons baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/3 cup cold butter, cubed
- 1 cup milk
- 3/4 cup icing sugar, sifted
- 2 teaspoons approx. water (may need a few drops more/less)
- Preheat oven to 425º and spray a 12-cup muffin pan.
- In bowl, mash together butter, brown sugar & cinnamon until blended, set aside.
- In large bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Using pastry blender or 2 knives, cut in butter until mixture is crumbly. Pour in milk; stir with a fork until soft dough forms.
- Turn out onto lightly floured surface and knead lightly until smooth. Keeping surface floured, roll out to 16 x 10-inch rectangle; spread with filling and sprinkle with cranberries, pressing them down lightly in the brown sugar filling, and leaving a 1-inch border along 1 long edge.
- Starting at opposite edge, roll up jelly roll style; pinch seam to seal. Cut into 12 slices. Place cut side down in prepared muffin pan. Bake for 15 - 20 minutes or until rolls are browned in the center; remove from oven and let cool in the pan.
- Drizzle with as much/little glaze as you like, and serve.
- *well wrapped, leftovers will freeze well.