Bacon Cinnamon Rolls. Uh huh.
I’ve wanted to do this for, well… EVER.
Put bacon in gooey cinnamon rolls and call it breakfast food. I mean… why not?
It’s Friday and I’m presenting you with a giant pile of bacon cinnamon rolls. It’s a present. Me to you. The best Friday present ever, possibly.
And you know what?
It wasn’t until I was ACTUALLY MAKING THE ROLLS that I realized, um, hello, I could use BACON GREASE instead of butter. Bacon grease!! Granted – I didn’t use it in the entire recipe, but it’s certainly in the filling annnnnd maybe in the glaze.
So, like, you really need to love bacon to love these.
And if you do, then we can obviously be the best of pals.
These cinnamon rolls are adapted from the whole wheat cinnamon rolls from my cookbook. I love a good homemade cinnamon roll but let’s me tell you a secret: I also don’t really mind the ones that come from a can. Most likely because they taste like my childhood – my mom would make those cinnamon rolls or even better – the orange rolls! – from the can on special Saturday mornings and sometimes even on Christmas day when we were rushing to open presents and go visit family. They taste all nostalgia-y and stuff.
These bacon ones may turn me into a bit of a cinnamon roll snob. I will say this – there isn’t much worse than a stale cinnamon rolls in my eyes. Kind of like a stale donut? Ew. Nothing worse. Remember the entire research segment of the movie The Five Year Engagement where they serve people stale donuts but say “if you can wait for five minutes, there will be fresh ones!” ????? I’d like to think that I would totally wait for the fresh ones. However, I have very little patience.
The point is – you can make this dough the night before but don’t bake these babies until right before serving. Hot and gooey cinnamon rolls are incomparable.
Sooooo. We’re gonna do this. Yes?
Bacon Cinnamon Rolls
1/2 cup whole milk
1/2 cup water
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
3 teaspoons active dry yeast
1 tablespoon honey
3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for your workspace
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
3/4 cup loosely packed brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 cup reserved bacon grease
8 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled
melted butter, for brushing
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/4 cup heavy cream
2 1/2 tablespoons milk
1 tablespoon reserved bacon grease, warmed
Heat the milk and water in a small saucepan until just warm. Place it in the bowl of your electric mixer and add the melted butter, the yeast and honey, stirring to combine. Let sit for 15 minutes until the yeast is foamy. Add in 2 1/2 cups of the flour, the egg, vanilla, salt and cinnamon, then turn your mixer onto low speed with paddle attachment. Once everything is combined, add in another 1/2 cup of flour and mix. Switch to the dough hook and knead the dough for 6 to 8 minutes, gradually adding in the remaining half cup of flour.
Add the dough to a well oiled bowl (you can totally use bacon grease!!) and cover. Let rise in a warm place for 1 1/2 to 2 hours.
Once the dough has risen, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Punch down the down and place it on a floured surface. Roll the dough out into a large rectangle, at least 12 inches long and 6 inches wide. Brush the dough with the reserved bacon grease. In a small bowl, combine the brown sugar and cinnamon, then sprinkle it all over top of the dough. Add the crumbled bacon evenly over top. Starting at the bottom, tightly roll the dough up into one long roll. Use a sharp knife to cut the roll into 1-inch pieces. Place the rolls in a baking dish and cover, allowing them to rise for 30 minutes.
After 30 minutes, brush the rolls with melted butter. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes until golden and set on top. Immediately remove from the oven and pour the glaze over top. Serve!
Whisk all ingredients together until smooth and creamy. Mixture may look lumpy at first but just continue to stir and it will come together - even for 2 to 3 minutes. If too liquidy, add sugar 1 tablespoon at a time. If too thick, add milk or water 1 teaspoon at a time.
annnnnnd I’m done.