cast iron cinnamon rolls with maple bourbon frosting
Dessert, Breakfast

Cast Iron Cinnamon Rolls with Maple Bourbon Frosting Recipe

Hey everyone, it’s Sierra here! Today I have a recipe for cast iron cinnamon rolls frosted with a mouthwatering maple and bourbon frosting.

There are few things in the world that taste as delicious as a warm cinnamon roll fresh out of the oven. Kevin and I had some Cinnabons a few months ago on a road trip, and I haven’t been able to get them out of my head. To me, a perfect cinnamon roll has a crispy crust around the outside, a light, fluffy interior, a rich, decadent frosting, and of course, it must be filled with amazing cinnamon flavor.

cast iron cinnamon rolls with maple bourbon frosting

Why Cast Iron Cinnamon Rolls?

Kevin loves cast iron pans and convinced me to try using one for making these cinnamon rolls. I was pretty surprised that the cinnamon rolls they produced turned out so well!

Through making these cinnamon rolls, I actually learned a lot about why a cast iron skillet is a perfect pan for baking cinnamon rolls. Because they are so good at retaining heat, the cinnamon rolls cook evenly, even the one in the center. Aluminum, which most baking sheets and pans are made of, doesn’t retain heat as well as cast iron, so when the temperature in the oven fluctuates, the temperature of the pan will as well. Another benefit of the heat retention is that you will get an even, crispy exterior on all of the cinnamon rolls (except the middle one). In our opinion, that is the best part of the cinnamon roll!

If you don’t have a cast iron skillet, don’t worry! You can make the same recipe using a 9-inch cake pan or pie dish. If you want to learn more about cast iron skillets, check out Kevin’s article about why everyone should own one.

cast iron cinnamon rolls with maple bourbon frosting

Maple Bourbon Frosting

We’ve been a bit obsessed with bourbon-flavored desserts recently here at The Mini Chef. We’ve made bourbon candied pecans and bourbon bread pudding, and now here is our third installment of bourbon-flavored desserts. The reason we’ve been using bourbon so much is that it is a warm flavor that is perfect for the colder months of the year. It has hints of vanilla, caramel, and oak, which pairs perfectly with other popular cold-weather flavors like cinnamon and nutmeg.

For this frosting, I adapted a traditional cream cheese frosting and added the popular pairing of bourbon and maple syrup. The slight tanginess from the cream cheese along with the sweet and warm of maple syrup and bourbon really sets this cinnamon roll frosting apart.

cast iron cinnamon rolls with maple bourbon frosting

Tips for the Perfect Cinnamon Roll

Excited to make these delicious cast iron cinnamon rolls? Here are a few tips that will help you nail it on the first try!

  • Don’t add too much flour to the dough. Just add enough so that the dough stops sticking to the bowl. If you add too much flour, the dough will become too dry and you’ll end up with dry cinnamon rolls.
  • Proof the dough in the oven with the pilot light if it’s cold. If it’s cold where you live, then you may want to proof your dough in the oven with the pilot light on (that’s what I did). It works just as well, and you don’t need to turn up your heat!
  • When rolling and filling the dough, try to make everything as even as possible. Roll the dough out into a rectangle instead of an oval if possible, and spread the filling evenly across the surface. This will help you get rolls that are the same size, instead of tapering off towards the ends.
  • Don’t overcrowd the pan. We fit 8 cinnamon rolls in our 10-inch cast iron skillet. If you try to fit more, your cinnamon rolls might protrude in weird directions because there’s not enough space for the dough to expand.

Let’s get started on these maple bourbon frosted cast iron cinnamon rolls!

cast iron cinnamon rolls with maple bourbon frosting

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Cast Iron Cinnamon Rolls with Maple Bourbon Frosting

5 from 1 vote
Recipe by Sierra Park Course: Dessert, BreakfastCuisine: AmericanDifficulty: Intermediate


Prep time


Cooking time



These cast iron cinnamon rolls have a crunchy exterior, but a light and fluffy interior filled with cinnamon. They’re topped with a decadent maple syrup and bourbon cream cheese frosting that will have you fighting for seconds. These cinnamon rolls are so delicious that you’ll never need to buy Cinnabons ever again!


  • Dough
  • 1 cup milk

  • 2 1/2 teaspoon active dry yeast

  • 2 teaspoon sugar

  • 1 egg (at room temperature)

  • 4 tablespoons butter (melted)

  • 1/4 cup sugar

  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

  • 2 1/2 cup all-purpose flour (plus about 5-7 tablespoons more depending on how wet your dough is)

  • Brown Sugar Cinnamon Filling
  • 6 tablespoon butter (at room temperature and fully softened)

  • 12 tablespooon brown sugar

  • 2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

  • Brown Butter
  • 3 tablespoon butter

  • Maple Bourbon Frosting
  • 1/2 cup cream cheese (113g; at room temperature)

  • 5 tablespoon butter, at room temperature (70g)

  • powdered sugar (150g)

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

  • 1 tablespoon bourbon

  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup

  • Equipment
  • Mixing bowls

  • Stand mixer (highly recommended, otherwise you can knead by hand)

  • Silicone spatula

  • Cast iron skillet


  • Making the Dough
  • In a small bowl, microwave the milk for 30-45 seconds, or until warm to touch. Add yeast and 2 teaspoons of sugar, and mix until combined. Let it sit for 5-10 minutes, until the mixture starts to bubble. In the meantime, prepare the ingredients needed for the doughcast iron cinnamon rolls yeast and milk
  • Add the egg and melted butter into the bowl of a stand mixer. Pour in the yeast mixture and using the dough hook, mix together for 1 minute before adding the rest of the dry ingredientscast iron cinnamon rolls milk yeast eggs and butter
  • Add the sugar, salt, and 2 1/2 cups of flour. Mix everything on the lowest stand mixer setting for 1-2 minutes. If the dough is sticking to the side of the bowl, add more flour tablespoon by tablespoon, until the dough comes off easily from the side of the bowl and becomes a ball. As you add each tablespoon of flour, keep the stand mixer running. I usually end up adding 5-7 tablespoons more. In the end, you should have kneaded for about 10 minutes or until the dough looks soft, with the last minute on medium speed. Make sure to scrape the side of the bowl with a silicone spatula from time to time to get everything offcast iron cinnamon rolls add dry ingredientscast iron cinnamon rolls dough in progresscast iron cinnamon rolls dough pulling away from bowl
  • Grease a large bowl and transfer the dough to it. Cover with a cloth, kitchen towel, or cling wrap, and let it rise in a warm place for an hour, or until doubled in size. In winter, you can let it proof in the oven with the oven light on. Make sure you read the next few steps to prep the filling before the proofing step is overcast iron cinnamon rolls dough
  • Brown Sugar Cinnamon Filling
  • 20 minutes before the dough is done rising, combine 6 tablespoons of softened butter, brown sugar, and cinnamon in a medium bowl. Mix everything together with a silicone spatula. If the butter is not fully softened (it should be very soft to touch), you can put it in the bowl first and microwave for 10 sec (you don’t want it to melt though). Set asidecast iron cinnamon rolls filling
  • Brown Butter
  • 10 minutes before the dough is done rising, prepare a small bowl then add 3 tablespoons of butter to a small pot over medium heat. Stir with a silicone spatula to melt the butter, and then stir occasionally until the butter starts to darken in color. This will happen fast so pay attention! When the butter seems to have changed color and you see dark spots forming, stir constantly to make sure the butter doesn’t burn. When the spots look dark and the butter smells nutty, turn off the heat and pour the brown butter into the small bowlcast iron cinnamon rolls brown butter
  • Filling, Rolling, and Baking the Cinnamon Rolls
  • After an hour of rising, or when the dough has doubled in size, take the dough out from the bowl and place it on a floured workspace. Using a rolling pin, roll out the dough into a 14in by 10in rectanglecast irocast iron cinnamon rolls proofed doughn cinnamon rolls proofed doughcast iron cinnamon rolls rolled out dough
  • Brush the surface with the brown butter. Use about half or 2/3 of the brown butter as we’ll use the remainder later. Spread the cinnamon filling evenly on top, making sure that all edges are brushed with brown butter and the fillingcast iron cinnamon rolls dough butteredcast iron cinnamon rolls dough with filling
  • Start rolling up the dough from the long side. Cut it into halves if the ends aren’t as thick as the middle. This way, you can produce even-sized cinnamon rolls. Grease the cast iron pan with butter or cooking spray. Cut the roll into 1 1/4 inch thick pieces and pack them together in the pan (you will probably have a bit of leftover dough)cast iron cinnamon rolls rolled upcast iron cinnamon rolls in pan
  • Cover the pan with a cloth or cling wrap, and let it proof for 30 minutes (in the oven with the light on, if needed)cast iron cinnamon rolls proofed in pan
  • Preheat the oven to 375°F and while preheating, brush the tops of the cinnamon rolls with the remaining browned butter. Bake for 20 minutes, then reduce heat to 350°F and bake for 5 more minutes. While the cinnamon rolls are baking, make the frostingcast iron cinnamon rolls brushed with butter
  • Maple Bourbon Frosting
  • Add cream cheese and butter to a stand mixer bowl with the flat beater attached, or you can use a hand mixer. Mix for 1 minute or until barely combined
  • Add the powdered sugar and start mixing at low speed until everything is combined. Then bring it up to medium-high speed and add vanilla, maple syrup, and bourbon. Keep mixing until it looks silky and a little runnycast iron cinnamon rolls frosting
  • Assemble
  • Let the cinnamon rolls cool for at least 20 minutes (cast iron will retain its heat for a long time). Spread the frosting on the warm cinnamon rolls. Enjoy!


  • Store at room temperature for 2-3 days, or in the fridge for up to a week.

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These cast iron cinnamon rolls have a crunchy exterior, but a light and fluffy interior filled with cinnamon. They're topped with a decadent maple syrup and bourbon cream cheese frosting that will have you fighting for seconds. These cinnamon rolls are so delicious that you'll never need to buy Cinnabons ever again!

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