Cinnamon whirls

Cinnamon whirls
  • Serves icon Serves 8
  • Time icon Takes 35 minutes to make, 8 minutes to bake, plus proving

These fragrant Scandinavian cinnamon whirls, with the sweet smell and warm taste of cinnamon, are very tempting and moreish.


  • 500ml milk
  • 150g butter, cut into pieces, plus extra for greasing
  • 800g strong plain flour, plus extra for dusting
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 7g sachet fast-action dried yeast
  • 100g golden caster sugar
  • 1 egg
  • Handful of sugar cubes, lightly crushed

For the filling

  • 75g butter
  • 2 tbsp ground cinnamon
  • 75g golden caster sugar


  1. Measure the milk into a glass or plastic jug and add the butter. Microwave on high for 2 minutes until warm. (Alternatively, put the milk and butter into a saucepan and put over a medium heat until the butter is melted and the mixture is warm.) Set aside.
  2. Put the flour into a large bowl and add the salt, yeast and caster sugar. Pour the warm milk and butter into the flour mixture. Start mixing with a wooden spoon, then use your hands to mix the dough until it gradually forms a ball and leaves the sides of the bowl clean.
  3. Lightly dust a clean work surface with flour and tip the dough out onto it. Stretch and pull the dough for 10 minutes until it is smooth and elastic. Cover the dough with a greased piece of cling film and set aside.
  4. Make the filling. Weigh out 25g butter, put it in a small plastic or glass dish and microwave on high for 30 seconds to melt. (Or melt in a pan over a medium heat.) Put the rest of the butter in a bowl with the cinnamon, caster sugar and melted butter, and mix with a wooden spoon until smooth.
  5. Take a large sheet of baking paper and put it onto a clean work surface. Sprinkle with flour, then take a rolling pin and lightly sprinkle it with flour. Uncover the dough and roll out on the baking paper to a large rectangle (about 30cm x 40cm).
  6. Using a palette knife or flat-bladed knife, spread the cinnamon butter all over the dough, right up to the edges. Lift up the paper along the longest edge of the dough: as you lift, the dough should roll over. Keep lifting the paper until the cinnamon swirl is completely rolled, like a big Swiss roll.
  7. Cut the cinnamon swirl into 2cm thick slices – you should make 18 slices. Ease a knife under each piece, then lie on its side in a muffin case so you can see the swirled effect. Transfer to lined, deep-hole muffin trays. (If you don’t have any muffin cases, put the cinnamon swirls directly into a non-stick, deep muffin tray.)
  8. Crack the egg into a bowl and mix with a fork. Brush over the cinnamon buns, then sprinkle with the crushed sugar cubes. Cover the whirls with a greased piece of cling film and leave to prove in a warm place for about 20 minutes.
  9. Preheat the oven to 220°C/fan200°C/gas 7. Discard the cling film and bake the cinnamon swirls for 8 minutes, or until risen and golden brown. Allow to cool for at least 20 minutes before eating.


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