These Strawberry Cinnamon Rolls combine sweet brioche bread with a tangy yet tasty strawberry rhubarb jam. Topped with a luscious strawberry cream cheese frosting, these rolls are perfect for a breakfast or afternoon treat.
I am loving the act of making bread at the moment, and the enriched dough has fallen strongly into the ‘adore making, worth the effort’ category. Seeing that dough rise, punching it down, rolling, filling, and shaping, waiting for that second rise...yes, it takes time.
But damn, it's worth it. It's becoming one of those adored rituals that looks incredibly time-consuming, but in fact, the hands-on part is actually quite short!
Other recipes that I love making using this dough are classic Cinnamon Rolls, fun Strawberry Donut Scrolls, and nostalgic Blackberry-Glazed Donut Rings. It goes to show just how versatile brioche dough is in all its buttery goodness.
❓ What is Enriched Dough?
Enriched dough involves more ingredients than a standard flour, water, salt, and yeast dough. It includes my favourite baking ingredients, butter, eggs, and sugar! The addition of these ingredients produces a soft and ‘pillowy’ dough. It's basically like eating a cloud!!
Once baked, the dough structure produces a super tender crumb that pulls apart easily. To achieve this lightness, you first need the right balance of flour to fat but also two separate proofing times to allow the dough to rise.
Now, you may think ...what, I need TWO occasions to let this rise.? Yep. You do. But this dough, I tell you, is so worth it! I've created a stand-alone How To Make Enriched Dough post, deep-diving into the ins and outs of making this magical dough. The post is packed full of process images and tips so that you, too, can master it.
🌟 Why You'll Love This Recipe
- Uses seasonal fruit. Strawberries are one of my favourite seasonal fruit to hit the market stall. Let's celebrate it!
- The perfect amount of spice. The addition of a touch of cinnamon to the jam adds such an intoxicating extra level of flavour. Of course, you can leave it out, but you'd be missing something special!
- Brioche dough uses basic ingredients. You'll most likely have all the ingredients in your pantry or fridge. If you don't have rhubarb, then make another type of jam or use all strawberries.
- It can be made overnight. Imagine waking up to homemade Strawberry Cinnamon Rolls for breakfast. Dreamy right?! I give you instructions to do just that.
🧾 Ingredients Needed
This is one of those recipes where you’ll have all the ingredients needed in your pantry and fridge (fingers crossed anyway!) The list isn’t exhaustive and they are all pretty basic.
What may require that extra shopping trip, is the rhubarb. But I urge you to go that extra mile as seriously, it's SO worth it. The combination of tangy flavour it adds to the sweetness of the strawberries is THAT good! Here’s what you’ll need to make these dreamy Strawberry Cinnamon Rolls.
Enriched Brioche Dough
Active dry yeast. There are two types of yeast out there, dry yeast/instant rise yeast or active dry yeast. This recipe calls for active dry yeast, so you must follow the steps to activate it by soaking it as per the instructions. If you don't, you'll have little yeast balls in the dough, and your rolls won't rise. Also worth mentioning is that if the yeast doesn't bubble, then it means that it's expired.
Whole milk and sugar. The milk needs to be warm when the sugar and active dry yeast are added to it. Once left for 10-15 minutes, the yeast will start to foam, and you'll know that it's activated.
Flour, salt and more sugar. Use plain (all-purpose) flour in this recipe. The yeast provides the lift so that we don't need a leavening agent like baking powder found in self-raising flour.
The sugar and salt both add sweetness and seasoning to the dough. If you don't use it, it will taste bland. I salt all my baked goods. It makes such a difference!
Eggs. The brioche-enriched dough wouldn't be rich without the eggs and butter. Ensure the eggs are at room temperature (place for ten mins in warm water will do the trick),
Butter should be unsalted so that you can control the amount of salt in the recipe. As there's lots of lovely butter in this recipe, buy the best quality that you can.
Vanilla bean paste adds flavour and sweetness, and I use the paste as I find the flavour more intense and love seeing the flecks in the dough, but vanilla extract is totally fine to use too. FYI, this dough when baked in a loaf, makes the BEST Brioche French Toast!
Strawberry Jam and Cream Cheese Frosting
Strawberries. You can use fresh or frozen strawberries. Whatever is more convenient and available.
Rhubarb. A seasonal favourite of mine, I go for the forced rhubarb that has the beautiful vibrant pinky-red hue that maintains its colour when baked. The tanginess sits beautifully with the strawberries. Ultimately, you can leave it out if you like.
Corn Flour (corn starch). I use this to help thicken the jam slightly. If the jam is too runny when it comes to spreading it out on the dough, rolling the dough up and cutting it, it will be an almighty sticky mess!
Cream Cheese Frosting
Powdered Icing Sugar, cream cheese, butter and vanilla extract - just a handful of ingredients to make this tangy, tasty frosting. You’ll love it!
- Orange Sweet Rolls. Into the dough, when you are kneading it, add the zest of two oranges. Into the strawberry jam, add ¼ cup orange juice, and also into the frosting, add orange zest. This simple addition of orange works so utterly perfectly with the strawberry.
- Blackberry Breakfast Rolls. Instead of strawberry jam, you can make these rolls filled with an Easy Homemade Blackberry Jam. What a way to start your day!
👩🏻🍳 How to Make
*Be sure to see the recipe card below for the full ingredients list & instructions!**
I recommend casting your eye over my post for brioche bread as we use the same dough to make these Brioche Cinnamon Rolls With Cream Cheese Icing. That post goes into more detail about making the dough which may prove useful to you.
Note: If making the rolls to be eaten the same day, in the afternoon, then I suggest starting to make the dough at noon. If making the rolls to be enjoyed the next day at breakfast, then start to make the dough late afternoon/early evening.
Make the Dough
STEP 1: Activate yeast and mix in dry then wet ingredients (minus the butter). Add the yeast to half the milk and 1 tablespoon of sugar. Leave for 15 minutes until bubbly (Image 1). Add flour, sugar, and salt to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough attachment and mix.
Add yeast mixture, eggs, and milk and mix together until a dough forms. If there are dry crumbly bits at the base of the bowl, add an extra tablespoon or two of milk to bring it all together (Image 2).
STEP 2. Add the butter. Whilst beating on medium speed, add the butter, one tablespoon adds a time (Image 3). Beat until well incorporated before adding the next tablespoon.
Once fully added, beat for 10-15 minutes until the dough forms a tornado around the dough hook attachment and pulls away from the side of the bowl (Image 4). It should be smooth, shiny, and elastic and pass the window pane test.
TIP: Windows Pane Test
To check that the dough has been kneaded for long enough and the gluten has developed properly, you can perform the window pane test.
Stretch a small ball of dough between your index thumb on both hands and stretch it until you can see the light through the dough. If it tears, knead for another 2 to 5 minutes and try again.
STEP 3: Place in a bowl and set for the first rise. Knead the dough a couple of times on a lightly oiled surface and form into a ball. It should be shiny, elastic, and strong. Place in an oiled bowl (Image 5), cover with plastic wrap, and set in a warm place for 1.5 hours or until doubled in size (Image 6).
The amount of time will depend on ambient temperature. You can create a warm place by turning the lights on only (not heat) in the oven.
TIP: Cold proof
After this first rise, I recommend chilling the dough at this point as it's much easier to shape the chilled dough rather than warm dough. Punch down the dough, then wrap it well in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour or freeze for 30 minutes.
(Alternatively, let the dough do the first rise in the fridge overnight. The next morning, roll it out and shape as per instructions.)
Make the Strawberry Jam
Whilst the brioche dough is on its first rise, make the jam.
STEP 4. Make the strawberry jam. Add the strawberries, chopped rhubarb, and sugar, into a small saucepan and bring to a simmer. Cook, stirring continuously for ten minutes. The fruit will break down and the strawberries soften (Image 7). You may need to use a fork to break up any larger pieces of fruit gently.
STEP 5. Add cornflour then chill. In a small bowl, mix one teaspoon of water to the cornflour to create a slurry (Image 8). Add the slurry and cinnamon to the saucepan and stir with the jam simmering for five minutes or so until it visibly thickens (Image 9).
Chill the jam. Remove from the heat and pour the strawberry cinnamon jam into a shallow bowl to cool completely and refrigerate to cool (Image 10). A large flat surface allows the jam to cool more quickly. To speed up the process further, you can place the bowl in the freezer. Just don't forget about it!
Fill and Shape the Rolls
STEP 6: Punch down the dough. Once risen, punch down the dough and form it into a rectangle.
NOTE: Jam is super slippery to roll up, so we're doing it slightly differently from how I would shape cinnamon rolls. If you prefer the more standard method then check out my post for some visuals
STEP 7. Prepare the pan and roll out the dough. Line a rectangular baking dish with greaseproof paper so that you can lift the rolls out once baked. On a lightly floured surface, roll the dough into a rectangle. It should measure approximately 30cm wide x 45 cm long (12in wide x 18in long).
STEP 8. Cover dough in strawberry jam. Trim the top and bottom edges so that they are straight. Spread the strawberry jam evenly onto the surface using an offset spatula. Leave a small gap all around the edge so it doesn't squeeze out of the sides of your strawberry cinnamon rolls (Image 11).
STEP 9. Slice and roll. Using a sharp knife, slice the dough horizontally into 12 strips (Image 12). For accuracy, use a ruler and mark the edges to get even-width strips.
From one side, roll each strip up to the other side (Images 13 & 14). The jam makes it slippery so use your fingers to kind of lift the dough over the jam so as not to squeeze it all out. Place in the prepared pan with the scroll facing up. Repeat with the remaining strips.
If they have become a bit misshapen from rolling, then now is the time to use your fingers to make them round again. Ensure there is a little space around all the rolls
NOTE: If going for overnight rolls- then cover the pan well and refrigerate the pan overnight at this point.
STEP 10. The second rise then bake. Cover the pan with plastic wrap and let the rolls rise in a warm place for 45 mins- 1 hour. The dough visually has to expand by at least half its original volume (Images 15 & 16).
Note: For overnight rolls- the next morning, remove the pan from the fridge and continue with the method by doing the second rise at room temperature.
Whilst the dough is on its second rise, this is the time to preheat your oven to 180°C (350°F). Once risen, remove the plastic wrap.
Bake for 25-30 minutes until golden brown (Image 17) Halfway through, tent in aluminium foil if the rolls are browning too quickly.
Make the Strawberry Cream Cheese Frosting
STEP 11. Make the frosting. In a bowl, using electric hand-held beaters (or a stand mixer fitted with the beater attachment), cream the cream cheese, butter, and vanilla extract for about 5 minutes until pale and fluffy (Images 18 & 19).
Mix in the powdered icing sugar, until smooth. Add in 2-3 tablespoons of remaining strawberry jam and mix until it is smooth and of a spreadable consistency (Images 20 & 21).
When the brioche cinnamon rolls are finished baking, let them cool for about 10 minutes. Spoon the frosting over the brioche rolls, and spread (Images 23 & 24).
Serve strawberry cinnamon rolls warm. You could dust lightly with ground cinnamon for an extra spice hit. The dough will be at its ultimate soft and fluffiest. They are unbelievable when eaten like this!
💭 Recipe Pro Tips
- Make sure the yeast bubbles in the warm milk. If it doesn't it means the dough won't rise later on.
- Refrigerate the dough after the first rise: When it comes to rolling out the dough, covering it with jam, and shaping - this is so much easier to do with the chilled dough. Trust me!
- Strawberry Jam must be chilled. Make sure that the jam has chilled sufficiently otherwise, you'll have a red-hot mess on your hands!
- Cutting neat scrolls. Either use a sharp-bladed knife to cut the dough
- Don't roll up the scrolls too tightly. If you do, you'll find the centres will pop up and out during baking. As the dough expands it has nowhere to go but up if it's too tight!
📋 Recipe FAQs
The dough may not have sufficiently risen during the second proof, and the pan you are baking them in may not be large enough. If there isn’t enough space around the rolls for them to expand, they will grow up rather than out in the oven.
Absolutely! Overnight Rolls are the best! Once you've cut your scrolls and placed them in your baking pan, ready for their second rise...this is your chance to refrigerate them. Wrap the baking pan tightly in plastic wrap and pop it in the fridge overnight.
The next morning, take the dish out of the fridge and let it stand at room temperature for 45 minutes to 1 hour, and then bake as per the recipe instructions. Nothing like waking up to warm, freshly baked scrolls for breakfast!
If there is too little flour, then the dough will be sticky and won’t have enough structure to rise, resulting in dense, soggy rolls.
If there is too much flour in the dough, then it will turn out dry and crumbly once baked.
Your best bet is to weigh your ingredients using digital scales for an accurate and reliable way to create this and every recipe!
❄️ Storage and Freezer Instructions
To store: Homemade Strawberry Cinnamon Rolls are definitely best eaten fresh and warm straight out of the oven. If you do need to store them, then place the rolls in an airtight container and store them at room temperature for 2-3 days or in the fridge for up to 5 days. Microwave for 10-20 seconds to freshen them up as they will dry out the longer you keep them.
To freeze: These tasty strawberry rolls can be frozen. Place in a freezer-safe container and freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw completely before serving or reheating.
🥞 More Breakfast Recipes
If you tried this Strawberry Cinnamon Rolls Recipe or any other recipe on my website, please please leave a 🌟 star rating and let me know how you go in the 📝 comments below. I love hearing from you!
Strawberry Cinnamon Rolls Recipe
- 200 g strawberries, washed, hulled and chopped small
- 100 g forced rhubarb, trimmed and sliced into 1 cm (½ inch) pieces
- 65 g granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon cornflour (corn starch)
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon, (optional)
Enriched Brioche dough
- 10 g active dry yeast
- 240 ml whole milk, luke-warm
- 65 g caster sugar (superfine)
- 545 g plain flour (all-purpose)
- 1½ teaspoon fine salt
- 2 large eggs, room temperature
- 2 teaspoon vanilla extract, or vanilla bean paste
- 140 g unsalted butter, room temperature, cut into cubes
- vegetable oil (or canola oil), for greasing
Strawberry Cream Cheese Frosting
- 150 g powdered icing sugar (confectioners sugar)
- 80 g cream cheese
- 30 g unsalted butter
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 45 g strawberry jam
Strawberry Rhubarb Jam
- Make the jam. Add the strawberries chopped rhubarb, and sugar into a small saucepan and bring to a simmer. Cook, stirring continuously for ten minutes. The fruit will break down. You may need to use a fork to break up any larger pieces of rhubarb gently.
- Add corn flour then chill the jam. In a small bowl, mix one teaspoon of water with the cornflour to create a slurry. Add the slurry and cinnamon to the saucepan and stir with the jam simmering for five minutes or so until it visibly thickens.Remove from the heat and pour into a large shallow bowl to cool completely and refrigerate to thicken.
- Make the dough. Add the yeast, milk, and 1 tablespoon of sugar into a small bowl and mix well. Set to one side for 15 minutes until foamy. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook, add the flour, remaining sugar, and salt. Quickly mix them together. Add the foaming yeast mixture, eggs, and vanilla bean paste and mix on low for 5 minutes until the dough comes together.
- Add butter and knead. Then add the butter gradually, whilst the mixer is running on medium and once incorporated, turn the mixer up and knead for ten minutes. The dough should be pulling away from the sides of the bowl but have formed a ‘tornado’ around the dough hook.
- First rise and refrigeration. Tip the dough onto a greased worktop and pull the corners into the centre. Turn over so that the seams are underneath and place the dough ball in a greased bowl and cover with cling film and let rise in a warm place for 1 ½ hours.
- Deflate the dough and refrigerate. Once doubled in size, gently punch down the dough, form it into a rectangle, and wrap it in cling plastic to cool. Refrigerate for 1 hour or freeze for 30 minutes (my preferred option).
- Prepare the pan and roll out the dough. Line a 23 x 30cm (9 x 13-inch) baking pan with parchment paper. Once cold, on a lightly floured surface, roll the dough into a rectangle approximately 30cm wide x 45 cm long (12in wide x 18in long).
- Cover the dough in strawberry jam. Spread the strawberry filling evenly onto the surface using an offset spatula. Leave a small gap all around the edge.
- Slice and Roll. Using a sharp knife, slice the dough horizontally into 12 strips. For accuracy, use a ruler and mark the edges to get even-width strips.From one side, roll each strip up. Place in the prepared pan with the scroll facing up. Repeat with the remaining strips. Leave space all around each scroll.
- Second rise, then bake. Cover with plastic wrap and let the dough rise for 45 mins to 1 hour until risen and puffy. Preheat oven to 180°C (350°F). Bake for 35-40 minutes until golden brown. Remove from oven and leave on a wire rack to cool slightly.
Cream Cheese Frosting
- Make the frosting. In a bowl, using electric hand-held beaters (or a stand mixer fitted with the beater attachment), cream the cream cheese, butter, and vanilla extract for about 5 minutes until pale and fluffy. Mix in the powdered icing sugar, until smooth. Add in 2-3 tablespoons of remaining strawberry jam and mix until it is smooth and of a spreadable consistency.Decorate and serve. Spoon generously onto warm scrolls and serve immediately.
All recipes are developed and tested in Metric grams. I strongly recommend that you bake using digital scales for a more accurate result. I have provided a conversion to US customary in the recipe but please note that I haven’t tested using this method.