tilted cinnamon roll in baking pan with spatula
Breads and Rolls,  Breakfast

Funfetti Cinnamon Rolls – No Knead

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These funfetti cinnamon rolls are gooey, fluffy, and topped with cream cheese frosting. They’re the perfect celebration cinnamon rolls! This is also a no knead recipe so you literally throw the ingredients onto a bowl and that’s it. They turn out pillowy soft and buttery every time.

You may be wondering how I got these buns to be this gooey? You need the right ratio of filling to dough and most importantly – the heavy cream that is poured on top of the rolls before baking. The cream helps to steam the buns keeping them soft while baking. It also combines with the cinnamon sugar mixture to form a caramel-like sauce at the bottom. 

The cream cheese frosting is perfectly fluffy and tangy with even more sprinkles. If you like your icing to be a little more runny and get melted into the rolls, then frost the rolls while they’re still warm like I did. If you like stiffer, fluffier frosting then frost the funfetti cinnamon rolls once they cool down completely or are barely warm. 

Cut open funfetti cinnamon roll on plate

The deal with the dough

I’m completely obsessed with my no knead enriched dough recipe that I use for literally anything ranging from strawberry rolls to chocolate babka. I find it tastes even better the less it’s mixed together!

Once you mix it together it might seem pretty wet and sticky which is perfect. The dough comes together after rising. If it’s too liquidy (like a batter) then add just enough flour to make it cohesive. 

If you weighed the flour then you shouldn’t have too much of a problem with the dough consistency! I’ve tested this dough lots of times with different flours and it always turned out perfect. 

I’ve tried mixing in the sprinkles with the flour before rising but instead of funfetti colours I got a cool marble effect. The sprinkles melted away as the dough rose. It looked really cool but it just wasn’t what I was going for. Instead, I tried folding the sprinkles into the dough before rolling it out and it worked perfectly. 

side peak at funfetti cinnamon roll with frosting

Key Ingredients

Full ingredients and recipe are in the recipe card below. Read through this section for all the ingredient substitutions and baking tips!

Active dry yeast: You could use instant dry yeast but I prefer the flavour of active dry yeast. You only need 1 packet or 7 grams.

All purpose flour: Weigh the flour to get the most accurate results. If you don’t have a scale, measure properly by stirring the bag and spooning gently into a measuring cup. Scrape the excess off the top with the flat edge off a knife without packing it into the cup.

Butter: You want all the butter going into the dough, filling, and frosting to be softened. Use a good quality real butter for best results!

Sprinkles: I recommend using jimmies (little rods) and confetti (flat pastel shapes and circles) for inside the cheesecake. Nonpariel sprinkles (little balls) are too small and might make the inside look a little brown because of all the colours bleeding in such close proximity. You could always use naturally coloured sprinkles as well but usually those tend to bleed even more.

Brown sugar: Use packed old fashioned brown sugar for a super gooey and flavourful filling. 

Ground cinnamon: Use freshly ground cinnamon for the best cinnamon flavour! 

Heavy cream: Heavy cream goes into the cinnamon rolls right before baking to get the most gooey and fluffy rolls. The rolls steam in the cream and make the most gooey filling! Cream also goes into the cream cheese frosting to get it extra light and fluffy. Use 35% cream or higher. I use whipping cream.

Powdered sugar: Use a fine powdered (or icing) sugar for the frosting. Sift it to get an extra smooth and fluffy frosting. 

Cream cheese: Use a full fat cream cheese for an extra smooth and rich frosting. Low fat cream cheese will make the frosting very watery.

Dough

Combine warm water (not hot!), 1 tsp sugar, and yeast in a small bowl. Stir until yeast dissolves. Let it sit for about 5 minutes so that a foam starts to form on top. If a foam doesn’t form in 10 minutes, discard and try again with another packet of yeast.

In a large bowl combine flour, sugar, salt, and stir. Make a well in the middle and add the butter, eggs, vanilla, milk, and yeast mixture.

Mix until a cohesive dough forms. Cover the bowl with a dish cloth and place in a warm place (see notes) to rise until doubled, about 45 minutes. Butter a 9”x12” baking pan while it rises.

Punch down the dough and transfer onto a floured surface. Roll out a little, sprinkle the sprinkles on top, and fold the dough into thirds and then in half to form a rectangle and distribute the sprinkles. Roll the dough into a large rectangle, about 18” by 24”.

Spread the cinnamon filling on top of the dough, leaving a 1” border on all the edges.

Roll into a log, starting at the long edge. Mark the roll into 12 equal pieces.

Using a piece of string or unflavoured floss, wrap the string around the log and pull to cut. Scoop up the roll with your hands and place on the prepared baking pan. Scoop up any filling that escapes back on top of the roll. Repeat with the rest of the pieces.

Let rise until doubled in size in a warm place, about 30 minutes.

Preheat oven to 180°C (350°F). Bake for 25-30 minutes or until the rolls are golden brown on top. Let cool inside the pan – make the frosting while it cools.

Cream poured onto risen and unbaked cinnamon rolls

Filling

I like to make the filling as the dough rises to save on time. 

Combine all of the ingredients in a medium bowl and mix well to combine. Have the butter very soft, almost melted to blend easier. Set aside to use later.

Frosting

Beat the butter, sugar, and salt in a stand mixer or with electric hand beaters until light and fluffy.

Add chunks of cream cheese into the butter in a few additions, beating very well in between. It should be fluffy. Add vanilla and cream, and beat until fluffy.

Spread on top of the funfetti cinnamon rolls while they are still warm so that the frosting melts into the rolls a little bit. Serve warm!

freshly baked funfetti cinnamon rolls with cream cheese frosting in a bowl

FAQ

How do I get fluffy rolls?

The most important step to getting buttery, light, and fluffy cinnamon rolls is making sure the flour is properly measured. I use a scale to weigh the flour for the most accurate results. A cheap kitchen scale works wonders.If you don’t have a scale on hand, you can measure the flour properly using dry measuring cups. Mix up your flour with a spoon, spoon it into your measuring cup, and level off the top with the flat edge of a knife without packing in the flour. It isn’t as accurate as using a scale but is the next best option!

My favourite tip however, is to handle the dough as little as possible. The less effort I put into the roll dough, the fluffier they turn out – every time!

The heavy cream poured onto the rolls before baking really make a huge difference! They turn the filling into a beautiful gooey mess and steam the dough into puffs of clouds.

Is my dough supposed to be this sticky?

The dough is going to be very sticky and a little bit wet as soon as you mix all of the ingredients together. It will look more like a dough after it rests and rises as the flour absorbs more liquid.If it looks too sticky and runny (like a pancake batter and not like a dough), then add a little more flour to make it resemble a dough.

What are the best sprinkles to use inside cinnamon rolls?

I recommend using jimmies (little rods) and confetti (flat pastel shapes and circles) for inside the cheesecake. Nonpariel sprinkles (little balls) are too small and might make the inside look a little brown because of all the colours bleeding in such close proximity. You could always use naturally coloured sprinkles as well but usually those tend to bleed even more.

How are these funfetti cinnamon rolls so gooey?

The heavy cream poured over the rolls before baking helps to steam the buns keeping them soft while baking. It also combines with the cinnamon sugar mixture to form a caramel-like sauce at the bottom. 

Why did my cinnamon rolls shrink in the oven and have gaps in the swirls?

That could happen because the dough was over-proofed. Only let the dough rise until it is doubled in volume – not more! Sometimes I even let it rise less to make sure I get tighter rolls. Also be careful not to overbake which could dry out the funfetti cinnamon rolls, making them shrink. 

cut open cinnamon roll on plate with spoon

Check out my other no knead recipes


Happy baking! xx

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tilted cinnamon roll in baking pan with spatula

Funfetti Cinnamon Rolls – No Knead

Mary
These funfetti cinnamon rolls are gooey, fluffy, and topped with cream cheese frosting. They're the perfect celebration cinnamon rolls! This is also a no knead recipe so you literally throw the ingredients onto a bowl and that's it. They turn out pillowy soft and buttery every time!
Course Baking, Breakfast, Brunch, Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 12 Rolls

Equipment

  • 9"x12" baking pan

Ingredients
  

Dough

  • ½ cup water warm to the touch (not hot)
  • 1 tsp granulated sugar
  • 1 packet active dry yeast 7g
  • 5 cups all purpose flour 600g
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • tsp sea salt
  • ¾ cup butter softened
  • 2 large eggs room temperature
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • ¾ cup milk warm to the touch (not hot)
  • ¼ cup sprinkles
  • ½ cup heavy cream

Filling

  • ½ cup butter softened
  • 1 cup brown sugar packed
  • 2 tbsp ground cinnamon
  • tsp sea salt

Frosting

  • ½ cup butter softened
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 4 ½ oz cream cheese softened for 10 minutes
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 3 tbsp heavy cream

Instructions
 

Dough

  • Combine warm water, 1 tsp sugar, and yeast in a small bowl. Stir until yeast dissolves. Let it sit for about 5 minutes so that a foam starts to form on top. If a foam doesn’t form in 10 minutes, discard and try again with another packet of yeast.
    ½ cup water, 1 tsp granulated sugar, 1 packet active dry yeast
  • In a large bowl combine flour, sugar, salt, and stir. Make a well in the middle and add the butter, eggs, vanilla, milk, and yeast mixture.
    5 cups all purpose flour, ¼ cup granulated sugar, ⅛ tsp sea salt, ¾ cup butter, 2 large eggs, 1 tsp pure vanilla extract, ¾ cup milk
  • Mix until a cohesive dough forms. Cover the bowl with a dish cloth and place in a warm place (see notes) to rise until doubled, about 45 minutes. Butter a 9”x12” baking pan while it rises and prepare the cinnamon filling.
  • Punch down the dough and transfer onto a floured surface. Roll out a little, sprinkle the sprinkles on top, and fold the dough into thirds and then in half to form a rectangle and distribute the sprinkles. Roll the dough into a large rectangle, about 18” by 24”.
    ¼ cup sprinkles
  • Spread the cinnamon filling on top of the dough, leaving a 1” border on all the edges.
  • Roll into a log, starting at the long edge. Mark the roll into 12 equal pieces.
  • Using a piece of string or unflavoured floss, wrap the string around the log and pull to cut. Arrange each roll into the baking pan.
  • Let rise until doubled in size in a warm place, about 30 minutes.
  • Preheat oven to 180°C (350°F). Pour the heavy cream evenly over the rolls. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until the rolls are golden brown on top. Let cool inside the pan – make the frosting while it cools.
    ½ cup heavy cream

Filling

  • I like to make the filling as the dough rises to save on time. Combine all of the ingredients in a medium bowl and mix well to combine. Have the butter very soft, almost melted to blend easier. Set aside to use later.
    ½ cup butter, 1 cup brown sugar, 2 tbsp ground cinnamon, ⅛ tsp sea salt

Frosting

  • Beat the butter, sugar, and salt in a stand mixer or with electric hand beaters until light and fluffy.
    ½ cup butter, 1 cup powdered sugar, ⅛ tsp sea salt
  • Add chunks of cream cheese into the butter in a few additions, beating very well in between. It should be fluffy.
    4 ½ oz cream cheese
  • Add vanilla and cream, and beat until fluffy.
    1 tsp pure vanilla extract, 3 tbsp heavy cream
  • Spread on top of the rolls while they are still warm so that the frosting melts into the rolls a little bit. Serve warm!

Notes

Store the wrapped rolls in the fridge for up to 4 days or in the freezer for up to 3 months. Heat up before eating so that they become soft and gooey again.
Best way to let dough rise: I let my dough rise in an oven preheating to 180°C (350°F) for 3 minutes, then turned off. If it isn’t warm enough, the dough will not rise because of how much butter and sugar it has. You do not want the oven to be hot (over 55°C) or it will bake the yeast.
Keyword cinnamon rolls, funfetti cinnamon rolls, gooey cinnamon rolls, gooey rolls, no knead cinnamon rolls, no knead rolls

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