Decadent S'mores Cinnamon Rolls Recipe

There's just something about cinnamon rolls that has us like "whoa." And it's not just us, either. Statista figured that 67.46 million Americans consumed cinnamon rolls in 2020 alone. And that's just the American love for these decadent little treats that we're talking about. According to Visit Sweden, the average Swede consumes approximately 316 cinnamon rolls annually (or at least they're part of a full complement of pastry delights that make up that part of the Swedish diet). And, banana bread and sourdough aside, cinnamon buns were up there among the baked goods that were crafted the most often in the U.K. during the COVID-19 pandemic (via Metro).

But now what would you say if you could have a cinnamon roll that tasted like that classic American innovation known as s'mores? Well, you can certainly make them very soon, thanks to recipe developer Jessica Morone of Jess Loves Cooking, who came up with the idea because of her love for Hershey's hot fudge topping. The marshmallow fluff and graham cracker crumbs  logically followed for that "classic s'mores flavor." You'll be sure to love this decadent twist on a classic cinnamon roll recipe.

Gather your ingredients for s'mores cinnamon rolls

To make these cinnamon rolls, you'll need ¾ cup of whole milk, divided, along with ¼ cup of water, 2 ½ cups all-purpose flour, ½ teaspoon salt, 1 packet of instant yeast (the equivalent of 2 ¼ teaspoons if you're not using individual packets), 1 large egg, ½ cup of granulated sugar, divided, and 7 tablespoons of unsalted butter, divided.

For the filling and the topping, you'll also need ½ cup of hot fudge topping (Morone found the inspiration for this recipe in Hershey's hot fudge), 1 tablespoon of ground cinnamon, 3 graham crackers sheets crushed into crumbs (or ¼ cup of ready-made crumbs plus a bit extra for sprinkling on top), ½ cup of marshmallow fluff, and 1 cup of confectioners' sugar. You'll also be using a portion of the above milk, butter, and sugar to make the filling and topping.

In addition, Morone likes to sprinkle mini-marshmallows and chocolate chips on top of the baked and glazed s'mores cinnamon buns, just so it's clear that these are s'mores-flavored. However, those ingredients are optional, so we'll leave that final decision up to you.

Mix up the dough

In a microwave-safe bowl, combine ½ cup milk, ¼ cup water, and 3 tablespoons of butter. Heat for about 1 minute in the microwave, or until the butter is melted and the mixture is warm to the touch but not hot. As Morone explains, warm liquids speed the yeast's activation, but you need to stay aware of the temperatures. If you use liquids that are too hot, it could "kill" the yeast before it can get started. Ultimately, that means your rolls won't rise and you'll have unpleasantly dense cinnamon rolls. 

Separately in a large bowl, whisk together the flour, ¼ cup sugar, salt, and yeast. Then add the butter mixture and your egg and mix until dough forms one cohesive mass. 

Knead the cinnamon roll dough

To knead the dough for your s'mores cinnamon rolls, first, coat your hands with flour. Then place the dough on a floured surface and push it away from you with the palms of your hands, fold it over with your fingers, and then pull it back. Repeat until the dough is smooth. 

Morone says that there is little risk of overworking the dough, unless you decide to use a stand mixer to do the kneading for you. If you do, she advises keeping an eye on it and cutting the power as soon as you see the dough have achieved that smooth texture and is no longer sticking to the sides of the bowl. Otherwise, you might overdevelop the gluten in the flour and create overly tough cinnamon rolls, also a common cinnamon roll mistake.

Once the dough is kneaded, cover the bowl loosely with plastic wrap and let your cinnamon roll dough rest for 10 minutes.

While the dough is resting, make your filling

To make the filling for your s'mores cinnamon rolls, grab a small to a medium-sized bowl. Inside it,  stir together the ground cinnamon, the rest of the granulated sugar, and ¼ cup of the graham cracker crumbs. 

After the dough has rested for the 10 minutes allotted, place it on a lightly floured surface, and roll it out into a 9x13-inch rectangle.

Next, you'll spread the hot fudge onto the dough, leaving a small margin at the edges, then sprinkle with the cinnamon, sugar, and graham cracker crumb mixture. 

Roll up and slice up your s'mores cinnamon rolls, but wait before you bake

Now that the filling is done, carefully roll up the dough into a tight cylinder. Seal the edge by running a tiny amount of warm water on the place where the dough edge meets the rest of the cylinder. 

Cut into 12 equal-sized rolls, then place the rolls into a lightly greased 9x13-inch pan. Leave some space between each roll, as they will expand considerably during the next couple of steps.

Cover the pan tightly with plastic wrap or foil and allow the rolls to rise for one hour in a warm environment, or until they've doubled in size. While you're waiting, remember to preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. This is a pretty vital step, so don't skimp on the rising time. "The rising gives the dough the right texture and flavor and makes the cinnamon rolls light and fluffy," says Morone. "If you don't allow the dough to rise the rolls will end up being too dense and not flavorful."

While the s'mores cinnamon rolls bake, make the topping

Bake the s'mores cinnamon rolls at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 25 to 30 minutes, or until they are lightly browned. While they are baking, take just a few minutes to make your cream cheese topping. In a medium-sized bowl, combine the cream cheese, marshmallow fluff, confectioners' sugar, and the remaining butter and milk. Beat this mixture until it becomes light and fluffy. 

And, yes, you really need to use confectioners' sugar here. "For frostings and icings that's the kind of sugar you want to use because it dissolves quickly and makes the icing smooth," Morone says. "If you were to use granulated sugar it [would] end up with a grainy texture."

As soon as your rolls are out of the oven, you'll want to spread the topping on them to make the rolls extra gooey and decadent as it partially melts into the rolls. Top with the remaining graham cracker crumbs, and if desired, the mini-marshmallows and chocolate chips. Serve while still warm. And, of course, enjoy!

Decadent S'mores Cinnamon Rolls Recipe
5 from 12 ratings
Many of us love cinnamon rolls, but what if we took it even further? You'll be sure to love this decadent s'mores twist on a classic cinnamon roll recipe.
Prep Time
20
minutes
Cook Time
25
minutes
Servings
12
cinnamon rolls
S'Mores Cinnamon Rolls fresh out of the oven
Total time: 45 minutes
Ingredients
  • ¾ cup whole milk, divided
  • ¼ cup water
  • 7 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided
  • 2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup granulated sugar, divided
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 packet instant yeast (2 ¼ teaspoons)
  • 1 large egg
  • ½ cup hot fudge topping
  • 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • 3 graham cracker sheets, crushed into crumbs, divided
  • 4 ounces cream cheese
  • ½ cup marshmallow fluff
  • 1 cup confectioners' sugar
Optional Ingredients
  • Mini-marshmallows
  • Chocolate chips
Directions
  1. In a microwave-safe bowl, combine ½ cup milk, the water, and 3 tablespoons of butter. Heat for about one minute in the microwave, or until the butter is melted and the mixture is warm to the touch.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, ¼ cup sugar, salt, and yeast. Then add the butter mixture and your egg. Mix until dough forms.
  3. Knead the dough until it's smooth.
  4. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and let rest for 10 minutes.
  5. While the dough rests, stir together the ground cinnamon, ½ cup granulated sugar, and ¼ cup graham cracker crumbs in a medium-sized bowl.
  6. After the dough has rested, place it on a lightly floured surface and roll it out into a 9x13-inch rectangle.
  7. Spread the hot fudge onto the dough, leaving a small margin at the edges.
  8. Sprinkle with cinnamon, sugar, and graham cracker crumbs mixture.
  9. Roll up the dough into a tight cylinder and seal the edge.
  10. Cut into 12 equal-sized rolls and place them into a lightly greased 9x13-inch pan, leaving space between each roll.
  11. Cover the pan and allow rolls to rise for one hour in a warm environment or until doubled in size.
  12. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  13. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until lightly browned.
  14. While they bake, combine the cream cheese, marshmallow fluff, confectioners' sugar, and the remaining butter and milk in a bowl. Beat until fluffy.
  15. When rolls come out of the oven, top with the cream cheese topping and remaining graham cracker crumbs. If desired, also top with the mini-marshmallows and chocolate chips.
  16. Serve while still warm.
Nutrition
Calories per Serving 343
Total Fat 12.7 g
Saturated Fat 7.1 g
Trans Fat 0.3 g
Cholesterol 45.4 mg
Total Carbohydrates 52.5 g
Dietary Fiber 1.7 g
Total Sugars 25.8 g
Sodium 207.8 mg
Protein 5.5 g
The information shown is Edamam’s estimate based on available ingredients and preparation. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.
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