spiced rum cinnamon rolls

Spiced Rum Cinnamon Rolls

A hefty dose of cardamom, orange zest, and Distiller’s Workshop Spiced Rum put a festive twist on this classic morning treat! Yields 9 extra delicious cinnamon rolls that are just as good fresh as they are later or the next day. Thank you Liz Clements for this fantastic cinny roll recipe!


The Dough

  • 113g milk (for the roux)
  • 25g bread flower (for the roux)
  • 150g whole milk (cold)
  • 300g bread flour
  • 6g salt
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 25g sugar
  • 2 tsp instant yeast
  • 57g soft butter
  • All of the milk roux (see above)


The Filling

  • 95g very soft butter
  • 140g brown sugar (light or dark)
  • 1 ½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 Tbsp ground cardamom
  • Pinch of salt
  • Zest of ½ and orange
  • 1 ½ tsp all-purpose flour


The Glaze



For the Dough

To make the roux, whisk together the 113g milk and 25g bread flour and cook, constantly stirring, on medium-high heat until it forms a thick, pudding-like consistency. Transfer all of the roux into the bowl of a stand mixer and add the 150g of cold whole milk. Mix the roux and cold milk to cool down the roux. Check to make sure the mixture isn’t hot. It should be room temp, or slightly warmer, but not hot. Combine the remaining ingredients in the mixer (bread flour, salt, sugar, yeast, soft butter) and mix with the dough hook on low until the dough is smooth, silky, and springs back to the touch. To test the dough for gluten development, you can do the window pane test. Form into a ball and transfer to a lightly greased bowl, cover with plastic wrap or a damp towel and let double in size (approximately 45min-1 ½ hr). Once the dough has doubled in size you’re ready to assemble! If you’d like to make the dough the day before and just assemble and bake the day of, let the dough proof at room temp for ~20-30 minutes, then let it finish rising overnight in the fridge.


For the Filling

In a bowl, mix together all of the ingredients until smooth and spreadable.You can make this right before you assemble, or mix it ahead of time and keep it in a covered container at room temperature overnight if needed.



To Assemble the Rolls

Grease and line with parchment a 8×8 inch square pan, or 9” round pan. Lightly flour your work surface and roll the dough into a 13×13 inch square, squaring off the sides as you roll it out. Spread the filling evenly over the dough, leaving a ½ inch edge with no filling across the top. Brush or dab a small amount of water on the exposed edge of dough at the top, this will help seal the dough to itself when rolled up. Starting at the bottom (closest to you) roll the dough into a tight spiral. Cut the roll into 9 equal pieces (you can use a serrated knife or unflavored dental floss for best results). Arrange the pieces of dough in the prepared pan, making sure to evenly space them. Cover and let double in size, preferably in a warm place. This can take 45 min to 1 ½ hrs depending on the ambient temperature of your kitchen.

Baking and Finishing

Preheat the oven to 350 F when the rolls look like they are getting close. Bake for 30-40 minutes until golden brown, or an instant-read thermometer registers an internal temp of 200F. Remove from the oven and let cool on a wire rack. Prepare the glaze by whisking together all of the ingredients until smooth.When the rolls are still warm, but not hot, drizzle the glaze over the top and spread it evenly over each roll and enjoy!


Notes on the Glaze

This recipe uses a thinner glaze that soaks into the rolls vs a thick frosting. If frosting is a must for you, make it your own and use your favorite cream cheese frosting recipe, and add a glug of Spiced Rum to make it extra delicious.


Notes on Prepping Ahead

My personal opinion on assembling the rolls the night before is that it takes too dang long to proof the next day.  I prefer chilling the dough overnight, then rolling, assembling, and proofing the next day. Rolling the dough day of warms it up a bit, bringing the overall temperature of the dough up, vs a thick roll that has been chilled all of the way through. You can also make the filling and the glaze the day before, just make sure the filling stays at room temperature and the glaze is stored in the fridge.


Notes on the Roux

The roux in this recipe is based from a method developed in Japan and was popularized across Asia in the early 2000’s. It’s the same method that makes Japanese milk bread so fluffy and soft.  Why it works: cooking a portion of the flour and liquid pre-gelatinizes the starches in the flour, and as a result, they absorb more liquid. This results in a pillowy soft bread that stays soft, even after a couple of days. Because of this, these rolls are fantastic warmed up for a snack later in the day, or even for breakfast the next day.

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