Strawberry Cinnamon Rolls are a delicious and indulgent pastry that combines strawberries’ sweet and juicy flavor with the warm and comforting aroma of cinnamon and tangy cream cheese frosting -perfect for any occasion.
While I’ve used frozen bread dough for these cinnamon rolls, refrigerated crescent roll dough could also be used like in this Mini Cinnamon Rolls recipe. And, of course, a homemade sweet dinner roll dough would be the most delicious with just a little extra effort. The cream cheese frosting with lemon juice helps to balance the sweetness in these treats, although homemade Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting would be just as delicious!
If you love the warmth of cinnamon in your homemade treats, try my Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls, Churro Toffee, and Cinnamon Toast Crunch Shot. Or for another absolutely delicious breakfast idea, try our strawberry scones.
Why You’ll Love these Strawberry Cinnamon Rolls
- Irresistibly sweet and tangy
- Customizable to suit preferences
- Perfect for breakfast, brunch, or even dessert
- Easy to make with simple ingredients
- Bread dough – Thawed from frozen. Don’t allow the dough to sit at room temperature for long, or it will rise. Use my Granny’s sweet dinner roll dough for a delicious cinnamon roll dough made from scratch.
- Ground cinnamon – You could also add nutmeg.
- Granulated sugar – Added to the cinnamon to make cinnamon sugar.
- Strawberry pie filling – Strawberry freezer jam with fresh strawberries (chopped into small pieces) can be used instead of pie filling. Either will provide that nice rich strawberry flavor and a gooey center.
- Heavy cream – Poured over the assembled roll just before baking and used to make the frosting. You can leave the cream off the rolls if you prefer.
- Cream cheese – Allow to become softened for easy mixing.
- Lemon juice – Preferably juice from a freshly squeezed lemon. Bottle lemon juice can be used in a pinch.
Variations and Substitutions:
- Add chopped nuts, such as pecans or walnuts, when assembling the rolls for a delicious crunch. You can also top the frosted rolls with chopped nuts.
- Instead of using traditional cream cheese icing, you can try a simple sugar glaze or a sugar glaze with strawberry flavoring.
- Add different spices to the dough, such as cardamom or nutmeg, for added depth of flavor.
- Use strawberry jam or preserves instead of strawberry pie filling. You can also make a different fruit cinnamon roll by changing the pie filling to raspberry pie filling, blueberry pie filling, or lemon pie filling. Adjust the spices used in the recipe to suit the type of fruity pie filling selected.
- Spread Nutella over the rolled-out dough and add chocolate chips to the rolled dough and the frosting for chocolate chip rolls.
- Mix cream cheese and sugar to make a creamy swirl and add it to the filling.
- Load the roll dough with Oreo cookies and cocoa powder to make Cookies and Cream Cinnamon Rolls.
- Use the filling recipe from these strawberry rhubarb hand pies to fill the dough.
PREP: If you are using frozen bread dough, thaw overnight in the refrigerator. You can also thaw on the countertop, but monitor carefully to make sure it doesn’t thaw, and then start rising before you’ve started the recipe.
Step 1: Use a rolling pin to roll thawed dough onto a lightly floured cutting board or floured piece of parchment paper to form a 12×18 rectangle.
Step 2: Use a spatula to spread the strawberry pie filling over the dough. In a small bowl, mix together the cinnamon and sugar.
Step 3: Sprinkle the cinnamon/sugar over the top of the pie filling.
Step 4: Roll the dough up tightly into a log.
Step 5: Slice the log into 12 – 1 ½ -inch wide pieces.
Step 6: Place the cinnamon rolls in a lightly greased 9×13 baking dish, leaving equal space between all of the rolls.
Cover with a light towel and place in a warm, draft-free location. Leave to rise for 1 – 1 ½ hours, until puffy.
Step 8: Pour the heavy cream over the strawberry cinnamon rolls. Bake for 20-25 minutes, until the rolls are golden brown and cooked through.
PRO TIP: Pouring the heavy cream over the top of the cinnamon rolls makes for an extra ooey-gooey and moist interior in the cinnamon rolls. Be sure to do this after they have risen and just before popping the pan in the oven.
Step 9: Beat or stir together frosting ingredients.
Step 10: Spread the cream cheese frosting over each warm strawberry cinnamon roll.
GARNISH/SLICE/SERVE: Serve these gooey strawberries and cream cinnamon rolls warm out of the oven! Garnish with a few fresh berries if you’d like. Add a slice of bacon or your favorite protein to the plate for a perfect weekend breakfast.
- Use a bench scraper for a clean cut when cutting through the dough. Remember that the dough may be soft, and the strawberry filling can be messy.
- Pouring heavy cream over the rolls before baking is optional, but it adds moisture and creates a gooey base in the pan.
- The lemon juice in the frosting adds a nice contrast to the sweetness of the strawberries, but it can be omitted if you don’t have a lemon. To make the frosting, thin the sweetened cream cheese with cream or milk to achieve a spreadable consistency. The warm cinnamon rolls will also make the frosting easier to spread, so be careful not to thin it too much.
Cinnamon rolls have a long history and can be traced back to ancient civilizations. The ancient Egyptians, Greeks, and Romans all enjoyed sweet treats made with rolled dough and spices, similar to modern-day cinnamon rolls. The Vikings also had a type of sweet roll called “Skonsur” which is a sweet roll made with cardamom, a spice closely related to cinnamon.
Cinnamon rolls as we know them today, however, originated in Sweden and Norway in the 19th century and were traditionally served on special occasions such as Christmas and Easter. They were known as “Kanelbulle” in Sweden and “Kanelknuter” in Norway. The popularity of cinnamon rolls spread quickly and are now enjoyed all over the world and are a staple in many cultures.
Once cooled, store your cinnamon rolls in an airtight container in the fridge for 3-4 days. You can also freeze these strawberry cinnamon rolls for up to 3 months.
Cinnamon buns are glazed with a sugar glaze, while cinnamon rolls are usually topped with cream cheese frosting.
Cinnamon buns are usually made with yeast dough, while cinnamon rolls can be made with pastry dough.
As the rolls bake, the cream in the bottom of the pan will heat up, and its liquid will move into the rolls, resulting in a moist texture.
Strawberry Cinnamon Rolls
Cinnamon Roll Ingredients
- 1 lb. frozen bread dough thawed
- 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 2 teaspoons granulated sugar
- 1 – 21 oz. can strawberry pie filling
- ½ cup heavy cream
- 1 ½ cups powdered sugar
- ⅛ cup heavy cream
- 4 oz. cream cheese softened
- 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
- Be sure the dough is thawed before starting. Roll or pat out thawed dough onto a lightly floured surface to make a 12×18 rectangle.
- Combine the cinnamon and sugar together in a small bowl.
- Use a spatula to spread the strawberry pie filling over the dough and then sprinkle the cinnamon/sugar over the top of the strawberry filling.
- Roll the dough up tightly into a log. Slice into 12 – 1 and a ½-inch wide pieces.
- Space the cinnamon rolls evenly in the bottom of a lightly greased 9×13 baking dish. Cover with a light towel and place in a warm, draft-free location. Leave to rise for 1 – 1 ½ hours, until puffy.
- Preheat oven to 350°F.
- Pour the heavy cream over the strawberries and cream cinnamon rolls.
- Bake for 20-25 minutes, until the rolls are lightly browned and cooked through.
- Beat or stir together frosting ingredients. Slather the frosting over the warm rolls and serve warm.