I have been spending a lot of my *me time* hanging out on Pinterest (me and thousands of others). It is a great distraction tool for me when I’m sitting in the waiting rooms at the kids doctor appointments and helps keep me a bit calmer than I would be if I just sit there and focus on what is happening. It’s not even that all the doctor appointments are so terribly dramatic, it’s more that there are just so many of them, for various reasons, for each kid… and they never seem to end.
Anyway, it’s no wonder that I spend a lot of my time pinning food. (And an inordinate amount of craft projects too for that matter that I want to do!) I recently saw a pin that suggested using store bough refrigerator cinnamon rolls and baking them in the waffle iron.
While I thought the idea was brilliant, I wasn’t really interested in committing a portion of my grocery budget into buying something that I could very quickly and pretty easily make at home from ingredients I always have on hand. I knew they would taste a whole lot better, and barely take a few minutes more than popping open a can. That’s just me though. If you want to just pop open a can of rolls, who am I to tell you not to?
However, if you are like me, have the ingredients and an extra 10 minutes or so, then this is the way to go. The time it takes is barely a blip since your waffle iron will have to heat up anyway and I have to tell you that the taste is far superior to anything you can buy premade. The kids, hubs and I all went nuts over these and I’ve actually made them twice in the past 12 hours now. I originally made them last night as our movie night treat, but my iPhone pictures really didn’t do them justice so I went ahead and made a sweet breakfast treat this morning. They were just as wonderful and easy the second time.
The brown sugar filling (I used a very dark brown sugar from Wholesome Sweeteners that I love) oozes just slightly and caramelizes to create slightly crusty crunchy spots on the rolls – probably my favorite part. These may have just about ruined me for regular waffles or cinnamon rolls. The dough itself bakes up to be tender, fluffy and amazing. I snacked on the waffles with nothing else on them at all (they don’t need it!) but if you want to top them off with a little maple glaze (or just use vanilla) then you’ll be even more of a hero.
You could easily customize these rolls too and fill them with any number of other options like apple butter, nuts, Nutella perhaps? (That’s my next version for sure!) Whatever you do, just be prepared to watch them disappear as quickly as you can pull them off the iron.
As for the quickness of the recipe, without distractions (last night) these only took me about 20 minutes to make and start eating. This morning, while dealing with kids, bottles, diaper changes, distractions and stops and starts for various reasons, we were still eating in about 35 minutes. Not too shabby in my book!
Homemade Quick Cinnamon Roll Waffles with Maple Glaze
Makes approximately 18 3-inch waffles or 10 5-inch waffles
For the dough:
2/3 cup sour cream
1/2 cup milk
1/4 cup sugar
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
9 oz. (2 cups) unbleached all-purpose flour; plus more for rolling
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
For the filling:
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
2/3 cup packed dark brown sugar
1 tablespoon unbleached all-purpose flour
1-1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
pinch of ground cloves
For the glaze:
1 cup confectioners’ sugar
3 tablespoons heavy cream
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon maple extract
Heat the waffle iron to medium low heat if possible, otherwise just keep an eye on your cinnamon rolls once they are cooking to check them for doneness and color (see below). Have plenty of cooking spray on hand to keep the iron well oiled in between each batch.
Make the dough:
In a large bowl, combine the sour cream, milk, sugar, melted butter, and vanilla. Beat with a whisk or hand mixer until smooth. Add the flour, baking powder, salt, and baking soda and beat to combine and make a clumpy dough – don’t over beat, you will bring it together once you dump it onto your work surface. You should have a soft, slightly moist, shaggy dough. If you overwork it at this point, you’ll end up with tough rolls instead of light and fluffy ones.
Scrape the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead it with floured hands 4 or 5 times until smooth, just enough to bring it together. If you have a bench scraper it is great to use that here to help work the dough as it will be slightly sticky. With a rolling pin, roll the dough into approximately a 12×15-inch rectangle.
Make the filling:
In a small bowl, stir together the filling ingredients until they are all moist and almost form a paste. Spread the filling over the dough rectangle evenly, leaving a 1/2-inch border around the edges and pat the filling into the dough surface gently.
Starting at a long edge, roll up the dough jelly-roll style. Pinch the seam to seal, and leave the ends open. At this point I like to use my hands to even out the dough ‘log’ and just make the cylinder as close to the same size all across as possible. You should end up with a log that is about 3 inches in diameter, by about 18 inches long, but it isn’t critical. Just make sure your dough log is as uniform as you can get it. With a sharp knife, cut the roll into approximately 18 1-inch pieces for smallish ‘biscuit’ sized waffles, for bigger waffles, cut the dough into thicker pieces – you’ll have fewer waffles, but they will be bigger.
To make the waffles, generously spray the top and bottom portions of your waffle iron griddle and place a cinnamon roll in each section, or as close together as you want, without them touching. I placed one in the center of each square, but you could fit more at a time if you don’t mind them baking together a bit.
Bake until golden brown and just firm to the touch, about 2 minutes. The filling will ooze just slightly and caramelize on the rolls so you don’t want to walk away. Just keep an eye on them and when the dough portion is nice and golden they are done. Set finished waffles aside on a platter in a warm oven, or serve as you go with the glaze.
Make the glaze:
In a small bowl, mix the confectioners’ sugar, cream, vanilla and maple extract to make a smooth glaze. It should have a thick but pourable consistency. Drizzle the glaze over the rolls and serve warm.
QUICK CLEANUP NOTE: I’m not going to lie, these made a little bit of a sugary mess (not too bad actually) in my waffle iron. To assist in the cleanup effort, I simply turned the iron off and unplugged it while it was still hot and sprinkled about a tablespoon or so of water into the waffle cavities so it could steam and melt the sugar bits. I closed the lid and left it to steam clean the griddle for me, then just come back later and wipe out the excess with a paper towel.