Sourdough Cinnamon Rolls

by Feb 6, 2017


We are lucky in Bozeman.  Two awesome sourdough bakeries (Stella!  Wild Crumb!)–I happily support their craft.  But there are some things money can’t buy, and a cast iron pan full of freshly baked cinnamon rolls, is one.  This is the reason I maintain a sourdough starter of my very own.


Thanks to my friend, Tom, for sharing the recipe, another great one from sourdough expert, Ruth Allman.  This dough rises while you sleep, then in the morning, you roll it out, spread on the butter+sugar+cinnamon, cut into slices, and snug them into a pan for baking (awesome if it’s cast iron, more awesome if it’s Grandma’s–the one in my photo belonged to my husband’s Grandma’s Grandma…that means 1800’s!)


The magic?  Sourdough starter made with a potato, here’s my post for that.  The easiest sourdough starter I’ve encountered (thanks Tom!)  Adapted from Ruth Allman’s original, published in the Newsminer.


Sourdough Cinnamon Rolls

Yield: 8 - 10 rolls


  • 1 cup buttermilk or milk
  • 1/2 cup cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieceas
  • 1/2 cup sourdough starter
  • 1 tablespoon sugar or honey
  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (I use Wheat Montana)
  • After the ferment: 1 teaspoon baking powder, 3/4 teaspoon salt, 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • For filling:
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar or sucanat
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon


  1. Mix to combine the milk, butter pieces, sourdough starter, and sugar--butter will remain in pieces. Add the flour, mix to combine, then turn out into a buttered ceramic bowl. Cover with a clean kitchen towel or piece of plastic wrap, set in a warm place, and let rise 7 - 12 hours. Dough will double in bulk.
  2. After the rise, mix the filling ingredients in a small bowl then set aside: melted butter, sugar, and cinnamon. (Note: As it cools, the mixture will become less liquid and more spreadable, which is easier to handle. You can always start with softened butter instead of melted, or simply spread the butter on the dough rectangle (next step) and sprinkle with the sugar and cinnamon. Options!)
  3. Preheat oven to 350° F. Turn dough out onto a floured surface. Sprinkle with the baking powder, salt, and baking soda and knead for a minute until you have a smooth dough. Shape into an approximate rectangle, then using a rolling pin, get it to approx. 12"x8".
  4. Spread the filling on the dough rectangle and rollup from the long side to preserve a 12" long roll. Pinch to seal. Cut into 1 1/2" thick slices (you'll have 8 - 10) and place in a 12" baking pan. Bake at 350 for 20 - 30 minutes. Rolls will begin to brown + internal temp will reach 200°. Enjoy!

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