Kanelbullar (Swedish Cinnamon Rolls)

Kanelbullar (Swedish Cinnamon Rolls)



  • 1 cup plus 3 tablespoons whole milk
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 3 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • 2 ¼ teaspoons (one package) instant active yeast
  • 2 teaspoons ground cardamom
  • ¾ teaspoons salt


  • 8 tablespoons (1/2 cup) unsalted butter, softened
  • ½ cup light brown sugar packed
  • 2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 egg plus 1 teaspoon water whisked together to be used as an egg wash
  • Pearl sugar for sprinkling on tops of rolls


  • In a small saucepan, heat milk and butter over low heat until temperature reaches 110° F. Remove from heat.
  • In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, blend flour, sugar, yeast, cardamom, and salt on medium speed.
  • On low speed, add the warm milk mixture into the dry ingredients and mix until a dough forms. Stop the machine.
  • Change to the dough hook and knead for 2-4 minutes or until a soft dough forms. Remove dough and knead by hand on a work surface using a drop or two of oil instead of flour to prevent sticking, if necessary.
  • When smooth and elastic, place dough into a medium bowl sprayed with nonstick cooking spray. Flip dough over so greased side is up. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and allow dough to rise for 1-2 hours or until doubled in size.
  • In a medium bowl, stir together filling ingredients until well blended.
  • Place dough onto a lightly floured work surface and, using a rolling pin, roll dough out to a 20 x 13” rectangle.
  • Using an offset spatula, spread filling across the entire surface of dough.
  • Fold the dough into thirds like you are folding a business letter by folding the left (shorter) side into the center and then folding the right (shorter) side over the left.
  • Using a rolling pin, roll over dough so the rectangle gets a bit longer to an approximate 15 x 9” rectangle. It does not have these exact measurements. Just make sure the shape is a rectangle.
  • Using a pizza cutter or knife, trim edges to even out sides. Then cut the dough into approximately 12 one-inch wide strips.
  • To shape, take one strip and gently pull to lengthen it slightly. Do not let dough rip.
  • Grabbing each end of strip, twist several times in opposite directions to make a spiral. Strip will lengthen slightly.
  • Grab one end of strip and wrap dough around two fingers two times going towards the tips of your fingers, like you are bandaging your hand.
  • Gently remove the wrapped strip from your fingers and loop the end of the dough perpendicularly around the dough and tuck the loose end in at the bottom.
  • Place knotted rolls on parchment lined sheet pans about 2 inches apart.
  • Cover the rolls with some plastic wrap sprayed with nonstick cooking spray and allow to rise for approximately 45 minutes.
  • Preheat oven to 375° F. Using a pastry brush, lightly egg wash each roll. Sprinkle each roll with pearl sugar.
  • Bake for 16-18 minutes or until light brown.



Makes approximately 12 rolls