This easy Swirled Cinnamon Sugar Croissant Loaf is kind of like a croissant, kind of like a cinnamon roll, but most importantly…it’s kind of INCREDIBLE! This light, buttery, super soft, and extra flaky croissant loaf is swirled with sweet cinnamon sugar. It makes for the most delicious, extra fancy, and super cozy addition to your autumn weekend. This loaf is great on its own, warm with butter, or equally delicious smeared with homemade apple butter. It’s best enjoyed with my favorite pumpkin latte for the coziest fall treat…any time of the day. Or use this bread to make your favorite french toast – the options are endless. Bonus? Making this pretty loaf is easier than you might think.

overhead photo of Easy Swirled Cinnamon Sugar Croissant Loaf with 2 slices of bread cut and cinnamon sugar in photo

It’s the first Friday of October and I am in full-on autumn baking GO mode. Anyone else?

I know it’s not just me because my Instagram feed is flooded with photos of pumpkin bread, jack-o-lantern cookies, and apple cake. I think it’s safe to say everyone is slowly settling into these cozy autumn days. Am I right?

I sure hope so, because I have the very best recipe to share with you all today. It’s one you’re going to find yourself making over and over again.

Watch Me Make This on Instagram:

Say hello to the croissant loaf…with cinnamon sugar and more butter than you’d think a loaf of bread could ever need. It’s perfection and your weekend NEEDS this bread.

Easy Swirled Cinnamon Sugar Croissant Loaf | halfbakedharvest.com #cinnamon #fall #bread #croissants overhead close up of butter on dough

Here’s the story, this started out as a scone recipe, but the scones turned out a bit crumbly. Somehow my scones then morphed into a croissant loaf. Cinnamon sugar was added, and the loaf turned out so good.

And that’s the story. It’s not that the scones weren’t good, because they were. But when my thoughts turned to a croissant loaf the scones just seemed to fade away.

Let’s be real, if you have the choice between a scone and a croissant, you’re going to choose the croissant. Always the croissant.

I debated adding things like chocolate and pumpkin butter, but in the end, I just wanted cinnamon sugar. Because sometimes you just want the classics. And even though there’s no pumpkin or apple in this recipe, this loaf still screams fall to me. It’s sweet, buttery, has warming cinnamon, and is all-around one of the best fall treats you can make.

photo of Easy folding the dough photo of dough folded into an envelope

Here are the details:

As the title suggests, this loaf is EASY.

BUT, looking at the recipe steps may just scare you off. There are a lot of them. But only because I wanted to provide you guys with good detailed directions on exactly how to make this loaf. There is a lot of butter, layering, and rolling. But unlike traditional croissants, this loaf takes 3-4 hours total, not 3 days. Most of the time is spent rising, and honestly, you can’t mess this loaf up. As long as you have the dough made, and some cinnamon sugar, all will be good.

close up of dough log dough after cutting into rolls

A step-by-step breakdown for you…

1st, make the dough. It’s simple: milk, instant yeast, honey, flour, and salt. Nothing fancy.

2nd, roll the dough out.

3rd, add very thin slices of COLD butter to the center of the dough. This is your “butter packet” (see all my photos for visuals).

4th, roll it out. Again. Freeze 20 minutes.

5th, roll it out. Again. Add cinnamon sugar and roll the dough into a log.

6th, cut the log into rolls and arrange the rolls in a pan.

7th, let the dough rise.

8th, bake. Smell the wonderful, warming, cozy, and delicious smells coming from your oven.

9th, eat and enjoy.

bread before baking bread before baking

The key steps?

Folding the dough and freezing the dough. The multiple folds evenly spread the butter throughout the dough. And the freezing quickly chills the butter and creates all the buttery air packets throughout each loaf.

Do not skip either step.

overhead close up photo of Easy Swirled Cinnamon Sugar Croissant Loaf before cutting

Fall additions you could make…

Along with the cinnamon sugar, you could also add pumpkin butter, apple butter, or even chopped chocolate.

If you do decide to add pumpkin or apple butter, spread it over the dough in place of the butter, then add the cinnamon sugar.

If using chocolate, use finely chopped chocolate and sprinkle over top the cinnamon sugar.

YUM.

side angled close up photo of Easy Swirled Cinnamon Sugar Croissant Loaf

 

I know, this kind of seems like a lot, but I promise you guys, this is easy. You can make this.

And like I side, you can’t mess it up. Because nothing could ever be bad about a buttery loaf of bread with cinnamon sugar. And yes, this recipe uses a total of 4 sticks of butter. It’s a lot, but it sure is good.

And it’s fall, it’s the weekend, and you should enjoy it.

overhead photo of Easy Swirled Cinnamon Sugar Croissant Loaf with multiple slices cut

Best part? This recipe makes 2 loaves. One for this weekend and one for your sweet friends, neighbor, or to freeze and enjoy mid-week.

And with that, I’ll leave you with the recipe. Please make this soon, this weekend would be ideal. And do enjoy with my favorite pumpkin latte for a truly delectable autumn treat any time of the day. ENJOY and see you guys tomorrow for the first “spooky” cocktail Saturday…finally!

side angled photo of Easy Swirled Cinnamon Sugar Croissant Loaf with loaf cut in half to show the inside

If you make this easy swirled cinnamon sugar croissant loaf 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!

Easy Swirled Cinnamon Sugar Croissant Loaf | halfbakedharvest.com #cinnamon #fall #bread #croissants
Print
4.52 from 50 votes
The Recipe

Easy Swirled Cinnamon Sugar Croissant Loaf.

This light, buttery, super soft, and extra flaky croissant loaf is swirled with sweet cinnamon sugar. Making the most delicious, extra fancy, and super cozy addition to your autumn weekend.

Prep Time 1 hour
Cook Time 30 minutes
rising time 2 hours
Total Time 3 hours 30 minutes
Servings 18
Calories 339 kcal

Ingredients

  • 1 3/4 cups warm whole milk
  • 1 tablespoon instant yeast
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 4 1/2 - 5 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for rolling
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 6 tablespoons (1/2 cup) salted butter, at room temperature
  • 2 sticks (1 cup) cold salted butter, sliced into thin pieces
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 egg, beaten, for brushing

Instructions

  1. 1. In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the milk, honey, 4 1/2 cups flour, yeast, and salt. Using the dough hook, mix until the flour is completely incorporated, about 4-5 minutes. Add 4 tablespoons room temp butter and mix until combined, about 2-3 minutes more, adding the additional 1/2 cup flour as needed, until the dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl.

    2. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let sit at room temperature for 45 minutes to 1 hour or until doubled in size.

    3. Punch the dough down and roll out onto a lightly floured surface, creating a large rectangle that’s about 12x18 inches. Layer the thin slices of cold butter down the middle 1/3 the dough, pressing gently to adhere and layering the slices together to create a rectangle of butter. Gently push the butter together with your hands (see above photo).

    4. First fold: Fold 1/3 of the dough over the butter, then fold the other 1/3 over top of the first layer so you have 3 dough layers (like an envelope, see above photo). Roll the dough out again into a large rectangle, fold into thirds. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and transfer to the freezer for 20 minutes..

    5. Second Fold: Remove the dough from the freezer. Roll the dough into a rectangle (about 12x18 inches) and fold into envelope. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and transfer to the freezer for 20 minutes.

    6. Meanwhile, butter two (9x5 inch) bread pans. In a small bowl, combine the sugar and cinnamon.

    7. Remove the dough from the freezer. Roll the dough into a rectangle. Spread the dough with 2 tablespoons softened butter and sprinkle the cinnamon sugar over the butter. Starting with the edge of dough closest to you, roll the dough into a log, keeping it tight as you go. When you reach the edge, pinch along the edges to seal.

    8. Cut the dough log in half. Cut each half into 10-11 rolls. Arrange each roll into the prepared bread pans. You can place them seam side down, or alternate each roll to show more of the filling (see above photo). Cover and let rise 15 minutes.

    9. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Place the bread pans on a rimmed baking sheet and brush each loaf with the beaten egg. Transfer to the oven and bake 35-40 minutes or until dark brown on top. Let cool in the pans for 5 minutes, then flip out onto a cooling rack. Slice and serve warm or at room temperature.

Recipe Notes

To Make Ahead: prepare the bread through step 8. Do not let the bread rise at room temp. Cover the loaves of bread and place in the fridge for up to overnight. When ready to bake, remove the bread from the fridge 30 minutes prior to baking, then bake as directed. 

To Freeze The Dough Before Baking: prepare the bread through step 8. Do not let the bread rise at room temp. Cover the loaves of dough tightly and freeze in the bread pans for up to 3 month. When ready to bake, remove the bread from the freeze and thaw for 2-3 hours on the counter, then bake as directed. 

To Freeze The Bread After Baking: bake the bread as directed and allow to cool completely. Once cool, wrap the bread tightly with plastic wrap, then transfer to a freezer safe container. Freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw on the counter and warm or toast before serving.

Leftovers: the bread is best served warm after baking, but the leftover bread is delicious when lightly toasted or served at room temperature. 

horizontal photo of Easy Swirled Cinnamon Sugar Croissant Loaf