Recipe: The Best Cinnamon Buns (Kanelbullar)

Posted by Bronte Aurell | Food & Recipes, Scandi Life

Cinnamon Bun Week

Photo credit – Pete Cassidy (fro our book ScandiKitchen Fika & Hygge)

Next week is the most wonderful week of the year – cinnamon bun week! That’s right, from October 2nd through October 8th we’re celebrating the humble cinnamon bun.

We want YOU to bake with us. Yes, like GBBO, but only buns. Using your own recipe or one you are trying out, get baking! Get the kids involved or bake on your own, whatever way you decide to make buns, make them with love and determination.

Once you are done, take a picture and send it to us iloveherring@scandikitchen.co.uk (just one pic, please) OR you can tag us on Twitter (@scanditwitchen) on Instagram (@scandikitchen) – using the hash tag #showusyourbuns. ee will find your buns and we’ll retweet or post to insta for the best ones – so the world can see your beautiful creations. Best thing? You can win a copy of our new book Nørth and a big box of Scandinavian goodies (we’re talking chocolate, liquorice and more).

Need inspiration? Here’s a recipe:

The recipe below is taken from our cookbook The ScandiKitchen by Bronte Aurell – published by Ryland, Peters and Small available at all good bookshops (and of course – signed – at our place).

Note: Fresh yeast can be hard to find in shops here – we stock fresh yeast in our web shop; we also have a cinnamon bun product bundle containing the essential ingredients you need to make your own buns. On to the buns.

Cinnamon Bun Recipe – BASIC DOUGH

  • 13 g/2 ½ teaspoons dried/active dry yeast or 25 g/1 oz. fresh yeast *(see below)
  • 250 ml/1 cup whole milk, heated to 36–37°C (97–99°F)
  • 80 g/ ¾ stick butter, melted and cooled slightly
  • 40 g/3 tablespoons caster/granulated sugar
  • 400–500 g/3–3 2/3cups white strong/bread flour
  • 2 teaspoons ground cardamom
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 egg, beaten


  • 80g butter
  • 1 teaspoon plain flour
  • 1-2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ground cardamom
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla sugar
  • 80g caster sugar (or half and half caster / soft brown sugar)
  • Egg, for brushing.Cream all the ingredients for filling together until smooth.

Here’s how to do it:

If using fresh yeast, add the warm milk to a mixing bowl and add the yeast; stir until dissolved, then pour into the bowl of the food mixer.

(If using active dry yeast (granules), pour the warm milk into a bowl, sprinkle in the yeast and whisk together. Cover with clingfilm and leave in a warm place for about 15 minutes to become bubbly. Pour into the bowl of a food mixer fitted with a dough hook).

Start the machine and add the cooled, melted butter. Allow to combine with the yeast for 1 minute or so, then add the sugar. Allow to combine for 1 minute.

In a separate bowl, weigh out 400 g/3 cups of the flour, add the cardamom and salt and mix together. Start adding the flour and spices into the milk mixture, bit by bit. Add half the beaten egg. Keep kneading for 5 minutes. You may need to add more flour – you want the mixture to end up a bit sticky, but not so much that it sticks to your finger if you poke it. It is better not to add too much flour as this will result in dry buns. You can always add more later.

Once mixed, leave the dough in a bowl and cover with a dish towel or clingfilm. Allow to rise for around 30 minutes or until it has doubled in size. Dust a table top with flour and turn out the dough. Using your hands, knead the dough and work in more flour if needed. Using a rolling pin, roll out the dough to a 40 x 50 cm/16 x 20 in. rectangle.

Spread the filling across the dough in an event, thin layer.

To twist or roll?

To make traditional swirls, simply roll the dough lengthways into a long roll and cut into 15-16 pieces, place on a lined baking tray, and leave – covered – to rise for another 20 minutes.

Twists: Follow this simply video to make your cinnamon bun twists:

When you have done your twists, leave on a lined baking tray for 20 minutes to rise again.

Heat the oven to 200 degrees Celcius (fan). Brush the buns lightly with beaten egg, then bake for 6-9 minutes or until golden and done. Watch it, they can burn easily and different ovens vary in temperature.

While they are baking, make a simple sugar syrup: In a saucepan, heat 50ml water with 100g sugar until bubbling and completely melted. You can also use golden syrup and just melt it a big in a saucepan.

When the buns come out of the oven, immediately brush lightly with the syrup, then add pearl sugar (nibbed sugar) on top of the buns and cover with a damp tea towel. the tea towel stops the buns from going dry. If you cannot get hold of nib sugar (pearl sugar), you can use chopped hazelnuts etc instead as an alternative.


Please note that all orders placed after 12th of December have missed the pre-Christmas deadline and will therefore not be shipped until January.
Our café & shop in central London is open until 23rd of December and will continue to get stock daily. Happy holidays! Dismiss

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