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Easy Fluffy Brown Butter Iced Mocha Cinnamon Rolls…the holiday breakfast we’re all looking for. Buttery, soft, and fluffy dough swirled with cinnamon sugar and sweet chocolate. Each roll is frosted generously with a warming brown butter and espresso icing that melts into every nook and cranny. There’s nothing not to love, every bite is melt in your mouth delicious. You just can’t beat a cinnamon roll on Christmas morning.

Brown Butter Iced Mocha Cinnamon Rolls | halfbakedharvest.com

I’m not sure how this is possible, but one week from today is Christmas Eve. Honestly, Christmas has never snuck up on me faster. I still have so much do, and oh my gosh, so many recipes I want to share!

When I looked at the calendar this week and realized I hadn’t yet shared these cinnamon rolls, I kind of panicked. This is the first “Christmas” recipe I had on my list months and months ago. The combination of cinnamon, chocolate, and coffee is one of my 2021 favorites. I’ve been very into the flavor profile and had these saved on my list for Christmas!

And trust me, these rolls are some of the best. It’s the chocolate with the cinnamon and coffee glaze. Everything just melts together and it’s heavenly.

I’ve said this before, but cinnamon rolls are a Christmas tradition. We have them every Christmas morning, and every year I LOVE to share a new recipe.

Brown Butter Iced Mocha Cinnamon Rolls | halfbakedharvest.com

Onto the details

The dough is the simplest to make. Simply mix the yeast with warm milk and a small touch of brown sugar. It’s important to let that mix sit for a few minutes to allow the yeast to “activate”.

Next, add the butter, eggs, flour, and salt. Mix until smooth and let the dough rest until doubled in size. Then it’s time to shape the rolls…love a simple dough.

Brown Butter Iced Mocha Cinnamon Rolls | halfbakedharvest.com

While the dough rests, mix the filling

For the cinni-sugar mix, I love to use brown sugar, sugar, and cinnamon for the best flavor. The brown sugar adds a nice depth and richness. And I go heavy on the cinnamon for sweet cinnamon swirls throughout.

The special additions – espresso powder and chopped chocolate, which is where the mocha flavors start to come in.

Brown Butter Iced Mocha Cinnamon Rolls | halfbakedharvest.com

Assemble and bake

Spread the dough with butter, then sprinkle on the cinnamon sugar, and chocolate. Roll the dough up into a log, slice, and bake.

Brown Butter Iced Mocha Cinnamon Rolls | halfbakedharvest.com

The smells coming from the oven will be magical. Like sweet cinnamon with hints of chocolate and vanilla. ‘Tis perfection and I’m not sure there’s a better smell.

Brown Butter Iced Mocha Cinnamon Rolls | halfbakedharvest.com

Simple. Easy. And just the best! I cannot think of a better Christmas morning breakfast. Very excited to be making these for my family this year. Hoping you all will be too!

See you tomorrow for the very last Christmas Cocktail Saturday of 2021!

Brown Butter Iced Mocha Cinnamon Rolls | halfbakedharvest.com

Looking for other holiday cinnamon roll recipes recipes? Here are a few ideas: 

Apple Cinnamon Rolls with Brown Butter Maple Icing

Easy Fluffy Eggnog Cinnamon Rolls

Chocolate Cinnamon Sugar Pull Apart Wreath

Lastly, if you make these Brown Butter Iced Mocha Cinnamon Rolls, be sure to leave a comment and/or give this recipe a rating! Above all, I love to hear from you guys and always do my best to respond to each and every comment. And of course, if you do make this recipe, don’t forget to tag me on Instagram! Looking through the photos of recipes you all have made is my favorite!

Brown Butter Iced Mocha Cinnamon Rolls

Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 2 hours 30 minutes
Servings: 12
Calories Per Serving: 339 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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Ingredients

Filling

Glaze

Instructions

  • 1. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook, combine the milk, yeast, and brown sugar. Let sit 5-10 minutes, until bubbly on top. Add the butter, eggs, 3 1/2 cups flour, and salt. Using the dough hook, mix until the flour is completely incorporated, about 4-5 minutes. If the dough is still sticky, add the additional 1/2 cup flour, adding more as needed until the dough is smooth to touch.
    2. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let sit at room temperature for 1 hour or until doubled in size.
    3. Meanwhile, mix the filling. In a bowl, combine the brown sugar, sugar, cinnamon, and espresso powder. Butter a 9×13 inch baking dish.
    4. Punch the dough down and roll out onto a lightly floured surface, creating a large rectangle about 12 x 18 inches. Spread the butter evenly over the dough. Sprinkle on the chocolate and cinnamon sugar. Starting with the long edge closest to you, roll the dough into a log, keeping it tight as you go. When you reach the edge, pinch along the edge to seal. Using a sharp knife, cut into 12-15 rolls. Place the rolls into the prepared baking dish. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise 15-20 minutes.
    5. Preheat the oven to 350° F. Bake the rolls for 25 to 30 minutes, or until golden brown.
    6. Meanwhile, make the icing. Add the butter to a pot set over medium heat. Allow the butter to brown lightly until it smells toasted, about 2-3 minutes. Remove from the heat. In a bowl, whisk together the cream cheese and maple syrup. Whisk in the butter, espresso, then add the powdered sugar, vanilla, and a pinch of salt. Spread the icing over the warm rolls. Serve and enjoy!

Notes

To Make Ahead: prepare the rolls through step 4. Do not let the rolls rise at room temp. Cover the rolls and place them in the fridge (up to overnight). When ready to bake, remove the rolls from the fridge 30 minutes prior to baking, then bake as directed. 
To Prepare and Freeze: assemble the rolls through step 4. Then cover the pan and freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw the rolls overnight in the fridge or on the counter for a few hours. Once thawed, bake as directed. 
To Bake and Freeze: bake the rolls as directed and let cool completely. Cover well and freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw and warm, then frost before serving. 
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Brown Butter Iced Mocha Cinnamon Rolls | halfbakedharvest.com

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Comments

  1. Have you ever tried this with a gluten free flour ? Also where do you buy espresso powder? Or is it just instant espresso?

    1. Hey Bonnie,
      This recipe should work with an equal amount of gluten free flour. Here is the link for the espresso powder:
      https://shopstyle.it/l/bptgb
      Please let me know if you have any other questions, I hope you love this recipe! xTieghan

    1. Hey Nikki,
      I would just mix with a wooden spoon and then knead by hand until you have a smooth ball. I hope this helps! Let me know if you give the recipe a try:) xTieghan

  2. Looks so yummy, but my father in law doesn’t like the taste of coffee… can it be made without the espresso and chocolate to be like normal cinnamon rolls? 🙂

    1. Hey Natalie,
      Totally, that will work well for you! Let me know if you give the recipe a try or have any other questions! xx

  3. 5 stars
    Oh yeah, these are deliciously yummy. And fun to make! The icing is so tasty I couldn’t keep my fingers out it!!

    1. Hi Patti,
      Wonderful!! Thank you so much for trying this recipe and sharing your feedback! I am so glad it was enjoyed. Have a great week! 🌺xxT

  4. Made this for Christmas with my mom and everyone went gaga for them! Remaking them this weekend, but I’m out of maple syrup…could I sub honey for the syrup or should I pop out to the store for syrup? Thanks!

    1. Hey Sheila,
      Sure, you could do honey or brown sugar in place of the maple syrup. Please let me know how the recipe turns out! xT

  5. 5 stars
    This was actually one of my first attempts at making anything with dough from scratch. At first I was concerned that I mixed it too much because the dough didn’t rise much, but it all seemed to work out! I made them the night before and then popped them in the oven in the morning and took them over to my friend for a morning birthday surprise (I saw her drooling over the recipe a few days prior). They were a big hit! I kept the wonky ones for myself and they tasted great. The best part was getting the icing all over my hands somehow when I was making it and then I had to lick it all off. The entire recipe was great, but that icing….wow!

    1. Hey Amy,
      Wonderful!! I love to hear that this recipe was enjoyed, thanks so much for making it! Have the best weekend!☀️ xx

      1. Hi Katie,
        Sure, that will be just fine for you to do. Please let me know if you give the recipe a try, I hope you love it! xx

  6. 3 stars
    I was interested in this recipe because it is much lower calorie than my go-to cinnamon roll recipe. However, it didn’t quite work for me. I followed the instructions and baked some of the rolls immediately and saved the others in the freezer. The ones I baked immediately stuck to the (greased) glass dish and were a bit hard and dry rather than fluffy. A few days later I took the ones out of the freezer and thawed them in the fridge for about a day. Then I left them come to room temp and rise again on the counter for an hour before baking. They never rose again and the dough was under-proved and tacky after the bake. I’m not quite sure what went wrong here. The flavors were good but both bakes were off. I wonder if the method of making the rolls and then freezing would be better.

    1. Hi Ashley,
      Thanks for giving the recipe a try, so sorry to hear this. My only guess is the yeast, was it fresh? What kind did you use? Let me know how I can help!! xTieghan

  7. I made these today with my grandma’s special sweetbread dough and used your filling recipe and these might be the best cinnamon roll I’ve ever eaten. And my grandma’s were pretty special. Seriously though. After eating one of these mocha cinnamon rolls I can’t stop dreaming about them. They are so good they should be illegal. Thank goodness they aren’t illegal!

    1. Hi Tamara,
      Happy Friday!! I am so glad to hear this recipe was a winner, thanks for giving it a go:) xTieghan

    1. Hey Karla,
      Totally, just add that right in with the flour:) Please let me know if you give the recipe a try, I hope you love it! xTieghan