The sweet taste of cinnamon buns wrapped up in sugary cinnamon cookies. All the flavor for half the fuss!

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Cinnamon Bun Cookies! The sweet taste of cinnamon buns wrapped up in sugary cinnamon cookies. All the flavor for half the fuss! |

About Cinnamon Bun Cookies

For the past few weeks I’ve been working myself up to make real deal holyfield cinnamon buns.

And you know the type I mean – the super soft, ultra moist, pull-apart Cinnabun knock-offs that are slathered in an extra helping of icing because you were smart enough to be first in line when the oven timer went off.

The only problem?

Like all good things in life, those super rich cinnamon buns require some premeditation to prepare.

From what I read, you need to make the dough the night before so that it can chill in the fridge overnight.

Then only when morning comes can you finish your journey to pastry goodness.

This is where my grand scheme fails me, because while I’m bright eyed and bushy tailed in the morning (yes, I’m one of “those” people) I’m more like an extra from The Walking Dead once the sun goes down.

Because no matter how much I really, truly want to wake up just a few minutes away from the delicious breakfast of my dreams, that all seems so very far away when it’s feeling more like get-in-bed-and-read-my-kindle o’clock instead of lets-prepare-more-food-because-clearly-I-haven’t-done-enough-of-that-already-today thirty.

So when faced with yet another Sunday going by with no homemade cinnamon buns, I did what I always do:

I improvised and found a shortcut. I took the recipe for Soft and Chewy Sugar Cookies, adapted it to be a little more soft than chewy, and added some cinnamon swirl and frosting for good measure.

Voilà! I now have cinnamon buns, the super easy way.

Cinnamon Bun Cookies! The sweet taste of cinnamon buns wrapped up in sugary cinnamon cookies. All the flavor for half the fuss! |

And the end result?

These are some of the best sugary cinnamon cookies I’ve ever tasted.

And they look so much like little cinnamon buns, I think I might have tricked my mind into thinking they were the real deal – the ravenous cravings for cinnamon buns have quieted(for now), though I haven’t given up on the dream yet.

One day very soon I will make full-fledged cinnamon buns from scratch and it will be glorious.

But until then, these cookies will tide me over just fine.

Cinnamon Bun Cookies! The sweet taste of cinnamon buns wrapped up in sugary cinnamon cookies. All the flavor for half the fuss! |

Notes and tips for these cinnamon bun cookies

  • If you’re doing a lot of baking, I highly recommend having some silicone baking mats on hand. Baking cookies takes enough time without having to cut or measure parchment paper. Or if you prefer using parchment paper, you can try using pre-cut parchment paper sheets instead.
  • Plus, some quality baking sheets are a must for a cookie baking extravaganza!
  • For this recipe, I highly recommend using a stand mixer or a hand mixer. This recipe would be difficult to make by hand with a whisk.

More fun cookie recipes

Cinnamon Bun Cookies! The sweet taste of cinnamon buns wrapped up in sugary cinnamon cookies. All the flavor for half the fuss! |

Recipe Details

Cinnamon Bun Cookies! The sweet taste of cinnamon buns wrapped up in sugary cinnamon cookies. All the flavor for half the fuss! |
5 from 2 votes

Cinnamon Bun Cookies

25 mins prep + 9 mins cook
226 kcal
Yields: 24 cookies
The sweet taste of cinnamon buns wrapped up in sugary cinnamon cookies. All the flavor for half the fuss!


Sugar Cookies
Cinnamon Sugar Swirl
  • 1 cup brown sugar, plus more for sprinkling on top baked cookies
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 4 tablespoon salted butter, softened
Cream Cheese Frosting


For the Sugar Cookies
  • In a large bowl, whisk together all-purpose flour, baking powder, granulated sugar, and salt. Set aside.
  • Using a stand mixer (or hand mixer + large bowl), add softened butter and beat on medium high until fluffy.
  • Drop speed to low and beat in eggs and vanilla extract.
  • Keeping mixer speed on low, slowly add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients. Mix until dough is firm but not too sticky.
For the Cinnamon Sugar Swirl
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • In a small bowl, mix together brown sugar and cinnamon. Set aside.
  • On a floured surface, place a manageable piece of cookie dough (such as 1/2 or 1/4 of total dough) and flatten the dough into a rectangle shape roughly 1/4 inch thick. Tip: use your hands to square off the sides and top so it's an even rectangle - this will make rolling the dough easier in the next steps.
  • Using a knife (or your fingers!) gently spread softened butter on the top of the cookie dough. Tip: use very small pieces of butter at first to avoid clumping. Butter will gradually become easier to spread as you work.
  • Add a generous amount of cinnamon sugar mix on top of the butter, then press it into the dough. The cinnamon sugar mix should turn a little dark from the butter.
  • Tightly roll the cookie dough into a log. You can either roll it lengthwise or widthwise. I rolled mine lengthwise. When dough is rolled, gently pull & press the end in place. This will make cutting the dough easier.
  • Using a sharp knife or pizza roller, cut dough in 1/4 to 1/2 sized cookies.
  • Place cookies on the baking sheet, swirl side down, roughly 2 inches apart. Make sure cookies are narrow and wrapped tight - they will spread out as they bake.
  • Bake cookies for 9-11 minutes or until very edges of cookies are golden and centers are still a little soft.
  • Let cookies cool on baking sheet for 2 minutes, then transfer to wire cooling rack to cool completely.
For the Cream Cheese Frosting
  • Using a stand mixer (or a hand mixer + small bowl), add softened cream cheese, dash of milk, and vanilla extract. Beat on low until combined.
  • Keeping speed on low, slowly add powdered sugar. Add more milk or powdered sugar 1 teaspoon at a time to get desired consistency.
  • Place frosting in a pastry bag (or a Ziploc bag with the corner cut out) and decorate cookies as desired. Sprinkle remaining brown sugar on top.
  • Store cookies in a cool place inside an air tight container for up to 5 days.


Serving: 1cookie | Calories: 226kcal | Carbohydrates: 31g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 10g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 40mg | Sodium: 145mg | Potassium: 55mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 20g | Vitamin A: 331IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 24mg | Iron: 1mg

I do my best to provide nutrition information, but please keep in mind that I'm not a certified nutritionist. Any nutritional information discussed or disclosed in this post should only be seen as my best amateur estimates of the correct values.

Author: Chrisy

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Recipe Rating


    • Hiya Chavan

    These look delicious

    • Jeannette

    In my mind, it’s acceptable to have 6 of these in one sitting, while I’d feel like a pig eating more than 2 of the cinnamon rolls themselves at a time…*even when no one was looking!!*

    Except in the cookie ingredients list, you wrote “1/4 cup powdered sugar”, but it is never mentioned again. Later, in the ingredients for the cream cheese frosting, 1 cup is added. I am very confused.

    Thank you for this great idea.

    • Alex

    BIG fan of this recipe – made it three times now and even when I screwed it up the first time and they looked pretty bad, they always come out delicious!

    One point of clarification though – the ingredient list calls for “1/4 powdered sugar” for the sugar cookies but the recipe doesn’t do anything with it. The only powdered sugar mentioned is in the icing. I’ve been taking it to be a 1/4 cup of sugar and adding it in with all the other dried ingredients, but I figured I’d ask for clarification – what are we supposed to be doing with this sugar?

    • Jenna Johnson

    Cinnamon roll dough is such a pain! These cookies look so much easier to make and now I want a cinnamon roll.

    • Dorothy at Shockingly Delicious

    How cute are THESE!

    • Caroline @ Shrinking Single

    These look amazing. I made cinnamon rolls for the first time this year and they were delicious but so much effort. These look like the perfect alternative to satisfy my cravings.

    • They definitely fit the bill 😀

    • Alexandria

    Your blog always makes me hungry, and has helped develop a never ending sweet tooth! These look so yummy, I’m woking on being a morning person so I can wake up and make Edward breakfast. I’ll defiantly try to make these this weekend! I’m excited to see how they turn out!

    • 😀 I hope you both like them! I taste tested them on the neighbors this afternoon – they were a hit!

    • Ilona @ Ilona’s Passion

    Cool cookies. Love the idea of swirled cookies. Very delicious:)

    • Thank you Ilona! These cookies were pretty fun to make, too.

    • Lindsey @ Lou Lou Biscuit

    What a great idea! These look like the real deal…so much so my mouth is watering. I neeeeed one!

    • Thank you Lindsey! I wish I could send some your way 🙂

    • Olivia @ livforcake

    PS – you don’t have to make the rolls the night before, you just need to let the dough proof enough, usually about an hour and you’ll be good to go! 🙂

    • I think you just blew my mind with this! I’ll have to give it a try this week 😀

    • Olivia @ livforcake

    Oh man, these would be so perfect with my morning coffee right now!