Cinnamon Pinwheels

As much as I enjoy cinnamon rolls, sometimes I don’t want to take the time to make them. These slice-and-bake cinnamon pinwheels are far less intensive to make, but they will make your taste buds equally as happy.

pinwheel cookies with icing on a rustic brown cutting board and parchment paper

What are Cinnamon Pinwheel Cookies?

This recipe for cinnamon pinwheels is a slice-and-bake cookie recipe with a delicious roll-out sugar cookie dough, cinnamon roll filling, and an icing drizzle.

The cinnamon roll filling is just the right amount of filling for these cookies.

You can add a little more butter to the filling to make it more “gooey” like a real cinnamon roll if desired too.

But that being said when I was developing this recipe, I noticed that too much butter in the filling caused the cookies to spread a little more.

Two tablespoons is a good amount to create a slightly gooey filling without causing the cookies to spread. If you want them to be a little gooier, use three tablespoons of butter.

cinnamon pinwheel cookies on brown parchment paper

2 Tips to Prevent Cinnamon Pinwheels from Spreading

Isn’t it such a disappointment when cookies spread even though you expect them to hold their shape? Follow these tips to ensure beautiful cinnamon pinwheels.

1. Weigh your ingredients.

I do not write my recipes with cups (anymore) because of the inconsistent results people get from measuring differently.

It’s especially important to weigh your eggs. Too much egg (as people in my baking program will tell you) can lead to a stickier and more difficult dough to work with. The dough can spread too much if the egg is too big.

Investing in an inexpensive scale automatically gives you the upper hand in the kitchen because you are measuring ingredients consistently and reliably.

2. Chill the dough before baking. Chilling helps the dough to set up and is much easier to slice.

Chill the dough for a minimum of 2 hours so that the interior of the dough log chills completely.

The butter in the dough has time to solidify again, making it easier for the cinnamon pinwheels to hold their shape when they go in the hot oven.

Iced Cinnamon pinwheels with a bite taken from one cookie on brown parchment and a wood cutting board

How to Frost These Cookies

While some recipes call for cream cheese frosting or buttercream, I chose a much simpler icing. To let the cookie and cinnamon filling flavors come through, a simple powdered sugar icing is the best icing for these cinnamon pinwheel cookies.

The icing consists of powdered sugar and milk. Make the icing the consistency of honey or just a little thicker so that it’s easy to spread or drizzle on the cookies.

Storing and Keeping The Cookies

Once you make the cinnamon pinwheel cookie dough log, you can wrap it and store it in the fridge for up to one week.

You can slice and bake all of the cinnamon pinwheels at once or slice and bake a few. The rest of the dough can be put back in the fridge as long as you use it within one week.

After being rolled into a log, the dough can also be frozen for up to 2 months. Wrap it well and store it in an airtight freezer bag so it doesn’t dry out or get freezer-burned.

To use the frozen dough, place it back in the fridge to thaw for a few hours.

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Cinnamon Pinwheels

iced cinnamon roll cookie broken in half to show layers of cinnamon sugar and cookie

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  • Author: Camille
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Chill Time: 120 minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 2 hours 40 minutes
  • Yield: 40 1x
  • Category: cookies
  • Method: Creaming

Ingredients

Units Scale

The Cookie Dough

  • 170 g unsalted butter, cool but slightly soft (58-60 F)
  • 75 g granulated sugar
  • 75 g powdered sugar
  • 1 large egg, cold (50 grams)
  • 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 280 g all-purpose flour

Cinnamon Roll Filling

  • 120 g light brown sugar
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 28 g unsalted butter, softened

Icing

  • 120 g powdered sugar
  • 24 Tbs whole milk (or 2%)

Instructions

To Make the Cinnamon Pinwheels

  1. Add egg and mix on low, then add vanilla and mix on low speed until blended in.

  2. Add flour and salt; mix on low/medium-low speed until all of the ingredients are fully incorporated. Do NOT over-mix the dough. If there are any ingredients stuck to the paddle, scrape them off and mix for a few seconds until just mixed.

  3. Lightly flour a pastry mat or work surface, and place the dough on top. Shape the dough into a rectangle before rolling.

  4. Roll dough out to 6 x 18 inches (it will be ¼ inch thick).

  5. Mix the cinnamon, brown sugar, and soft butter with your fingers until evenly combined.

  6. Sprinkle the sugar mixture on top of the dough and spread evenly, leaving a 1/8-inch border on the dough. Roll the dough into a log so it’s still 20 inches long.

  7. Chill for 2 hours or longer.

  8. Preheat oven to 350 F; remove dough from the fridge, and slice the cookies into ¼ inch slices.

  9. Place the cookies 2 inches apart on a parchment-lined baking sheet, and bake for 8 – 11 minutes, but do not brown the cookies. They will still be light in color when they are finished.

  10. Let the slice and bake cookies cool on a wire rack before icing.

To Make the Icing

  1. Whisk powdered sugar and milk together until it’s similar to the consistency of thick honey. Drizzle over the cooled cookies and enjoy.

  2. Store cookies in an airtight container for up to one week.

Notes

This is a Baker Street Society original recipe

iced cinnamon roll cookie broken in half to show layers of cinnamon sugar and cookie

4 Comments

  1. This is such an incredibly good cookie. Buttery, sweetly cinnamony and tender! I’m a beginning baker taking classes from Camille and learning so much! My butter was too soft for this recipe so the rolling of the dough and cinnamon filling was difficult. But Camille taught me what temp butter should be for baking, so now I know for next time!






  2. I’m sorry, Camille. I’m not understanding Step 6. “Roll dough out to 6 x 18 inches (it will be ¼ inch thick). In a small bowl, mix the brown sugar, cinnamon, and soft butter. Make sure it’s 6 inches wide, and then roll the length until the dough is 1/4 inch thick.” Don’t you just spread the softened butter mixture onto the rolled out dough?

    • Hi Jane,

      No, you don’t spread out the butter, you need to mix it with the sugar and cinnamon, and then spread it on. I clarified in the directions as I can see how that step wasn’t clear Hope this helps!

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