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{This post is sponsored by Land O’Lakes.}

Hey, hi! Happy first FRIDAY of November!

Apple Cinnamon Rolls with Cream Cheese Chai Frosting | @hbharvest

I actually cannot believe it’s the first Friday of November, I only wait for this time to come around ALL YEAR long, so to say that I am a tad bit excited would an understatement. I mean, for one we have these cinnamon rolls to talk about, and two, it’s officially time to start talking holiday food!

Umm, yess! And I could not think of a better way to end the first Friday of November than with fluffy, gooey and buttery apple cinnamon rolls! Say hello to Saturday brunch everyone!

Cinnamon rolls hold a special place in my kitchen, and by that, I really just mean that I love them to pieces. Growing up, my mom would occasionally buy the cinnamon rolls that come from the can around the holidays, and my brothers and I LOVED them. We looked forward to these cinnamon roll breakfasts every single year. I mean, what kid does not love a good cinna-roll, you know?

Well, at some point down the road I decided to try my hand at making my own cinnamon rolls. Maybe as an attempt to avoid the inevitable food coma that always followed our face stuffing frenzy. I mean, homemade is always better, and you guys, these apple cinnamon rolls are no exception. From that day on, I never looked at another canned cinnamon roll again. Anyone else have a similar experience?

Apple Cinnamon Rolls with Cream Cheese Chai Frosting | @hbharvest

Apple Cinnamon Rolls with Cream Cheese Chai Frosting | @hbharvest

Apple Cinnamon Rolls with Cream Cheese Chai Frosting | @hbharvest

Ok, where to start.

I always use the same base dough for my cinnamon rolls. It’s a base of butter, eggs and milk. Super simple, but really doughy and perfect. Next comes the caramelized apple filling… so amazing. The the rolls are topped off with the most delicious cream cheese chia spiced frosting. Whoa!

A little more on the filling here, because it really is amazing. Brown sugar caramelized apples, spread over a generous layer of salted butter and cinnamon sugar. The secret here is Land O’Lakes European Style Super Premium Salted Butter. This butter is the perfect ingredient to add just a touch of holiday specialness to these cinnamon rolls. The sweet European style cream with a hint of salt goes a long way, and is really what sets these rolls apart.

Okok and well, the frosting helps too!!

Oh my gosh, this frosting is to die for, so delish! I mean, chai spiced cream cheese frosting…with more salted butter…you know, for good measure! Yeah, it really is just as good as it sounds. Actually, it’s better!! Think about your favorite chai tea, but with whipped cream cheese, a little sugar, a little butter and a ton of vanilla. You just cannot go wrong with a combo like that.

Put this all together and you end up with the most perfect (and most delicious) cinnamon roll. Like FOR REAL, I wish I could truly express just how much I love these rolls. Even my picky brothers, who are cinnamon roll purists, enjoyed these apple stuffed cinnamon rolls, and you know what… they said the frosting was the best they’d ever had.

Apple Cinnamon Rolls with Cream Cheese Chai Frosting | @hbharvest

Apple Cinnamon Rolls with Cream Cheese Chai Frosting | @hbharvest

Um, cool!

The point in all my rambling here, is that these are truly one of my favorite breakfast or brunch rolls. They’re perfect for any upcoming holiday gatherings you may be hosting or attending. Plus, cinnamon rolls are great because they can be made in advance and then baked just before eating. Avoiding morning chaos… score!

I already have plans to serve these Thanksgiving morning, but I will for sure be making a double batch, as I know these will be downed within seconds…they are just THAT good!

I mean, that frosting alone…still dreaming about it.

Oh and also, is chai the spice maybe just the best thing ever? I am thinking so… more chia to come this November!

Apple Cinnamon Rolls with Cream Cheese Chai Frosting | @hbharvest

Apple Cinnamon Rolls with Cream Cheese Chai Frosting | @hbharvest

Apple Cinnamon Rolls with Cream Cheese Chai Frosting | @hbharvest

Apple Cinnamon Rolls with Cream Cheese Chai Frosting | @hbharvest

Apple Cinnamon Rolls with Cream Cheese Chai Frosting.

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Resting time 30 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Servings: 12 Rolls
Calories Per Serving: 438 kcal

Nutritional information is only an estimate. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed.

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  • 2 1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast
  • 1/4 cup warm water
  • 3 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 stick (8 tablespoons) Land O Lakes® European Style Salted Butter melted
  • 1/2 cup whole warm milk
  • 1 egg
  • 3-3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 stick (8 tablespoons) Land O Lakes® European Butter at room temperature
  • 4 Honeycrisp apples chopped
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon cinnamon

Chai Frosting


  • To make the dough. Place the yeast and 1 tablespoon brown sugar into a stand mixer with the dough hook attached. Add the warm water and gently stir. Let sit until yeast has doubled and is puffed and foamy on top, about 10 minutes. To the bowl add the melted butter, warm milk and egg, stir to combine. Add in the flour and salt. Knead the dough with the dough hook until the dough is smooth and forms a ball, about 5 minutes. Remove the dough from the bowl and oil the bowl or use cooking spray. Place the dough back into the bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Let the dough rise in a warm area for about 1 hour or until doubled in size.
  • Meanwhile, make the filling. Heat a large skillet over medium heat and add 1 tablespoon butter. Add the apples and 2 tablespoons brown sugar. Cook, stirring often until the apples are caramelized, about 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and let cool.
  • Add the sugar and cinnamon to a bowl and mix well.
  • Generously grease a 9×13 inch baking dish with butter.
  • Lightly dust a surface with flour. Roll the dough into a rectangle (about 9×24 inches). Spread the 5 tablespoons of butter evenly over the dough. Sprinkle the cinnamon sugar evenly over the butter and lightly push the cinnamon sugar into the butter. Evenly sprinkle the apples over the dough. Starting with the long edge closest to you, carefully roll the dough into a log, keeping it fairly tight as you go. When you reach the edge, pinch along the edge to seal. Place dental floss or a thin piece of string (do it, it works so well!) under the roll where you want to cut. Mine are usually about 3/4 to 1 inch thick, but vary. Take the ends of the floss in each hand and wrap them around the roll. Keeping the ends of the floss in each hand (don’t let go) tighten the floss so it starts to cut through the roll. Again, don’t change hands. Tighten until the floss comes out and the individual roll is separated. You can make eight larger rolls OR 10-12 smaller rolls. Place rolls in the prepared pan. Cover with a damp cloth or plastic wrap and allow to rise in a warm place until doubled in size, about 30 minutes. Preheat oven to 350. Just before baking, brush the remaining 2 tablespoons butter on top of the rolls. Bake the rolls for 25 minutes or until golden brown.
  • Meanwhile, make the frosting. In a medium bowl, beat together the cream cheese, butter and vanilla until fluffy. Add the powdered sugar, cinnamon, all-spice, ginger, and cardamon and beat until combined. Spread the frosting on warm rolls. EAT!
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Apple Cinnamon Rolls with Cream Cheese Chai Frosting | @hbharvest

FYI: A rolled up doughy glimpse into heaven right there.

{This post is sponsored by Land O’Lakes. Thank you for supporting the brands that keep Half Baked Harvest cooking!!}

Apple Cinnamon Rolls with Cream Cheese Chai Frosting | @hbharvest

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  1. Do you think these could be made with boiled cider instead of milk in the dough to make them even more apple-y? Or is it not thin enough? (Sorry, this is a repeat question from another post, but I think I replied there instead of making my own comment.) Thanks!!

    1. Hi Kelli,
      I have never tried that with this recipe so I honestly don’t know how it would turn out! Please let me know if you give it a try! xTieghan

    1. Hey Lauren,
      You can absolutely make up until baking, store covered in the fridge, and then bake the following morning. I hope you love the recipe, please let me know if you have any other questions! xTieghan

  2. 5 stars
    I absolutely love this recipe I have made it a couple of times now. I alway get amazing feed back for the rolls and especially the frosting. I have noticed that I do have to add a little more liquid to recipe to get the dough the right consistency.

    1. Hey there,
      Thanks so much for giving the recipe a try, I am thrilled it was a hit! Happy New Year! xTieghan

  3. 5 stars
    These were delicious – we also added rum-soaked raisins to apple mixture. Very decadent, highly recommend! Do you think that the iced cinnamon rolls would also freeze well?

    1. Hey Jamie,
      Thanks so much for giving the recipe a try, I am so glad it was enjoyed! Yes, those would freeze well. Happy New Year! xTieghan

  4. 5 stars
    I made these for my daughter’s 18th birthday. We had a few of her friends for a CoVid outside birthday around the fire pit. Along with coffee and some Christmas carols they were a hit! I followed the recipe exactly making them the night before and cooking the next morning and they were absolutely perfect. We will make again and I even had a few of her fiends ask if I could give the recipe to their mom!

  5. 5 stars
    Taste amazing! Love the apples to break up the dough. I was a little confused by the instructions because the instructions say to roll out 9×24 and then roll along the long side and then it says that it makes 12 1” rolls. The numbers don’t add up but I just made mine 2” thick and cooked then 5 minutes longer!

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