Rory's Guaranteed Rise Sourdough Cinnamon Rolls


This is my go-to recipe for cinnamon rolls, sticky buns, etc. The sourdough starter we use has been passed down for generations in my husband's family. It gives the rolls the characteristic sourdough punch that contrasts well with the sweet filling and frosting.

Prep Time:
45 mins
Cook Time:
35 mins
Additional Time:
2 hrs 10 mins
Total Time:
3 hrs 30 mins
8 servings



  • 4 cups all-purpose flour

  • 1 cup fed sourdough starter

  • ¾ cup lukewarm milk

  • ¾ cup white sugar

  • 1 teaspoon instant yeast

  • ½ cup butter, melted and cooled

  • 1 egg, at room temperature

  • ½ teaspoon salt


  • ½ cup butter, melted and cooled

  • 1 cup brown sugar, or more to taste

  • 3 tablespoons ground cinnamon


  • ½ pound confectioners' sugar

  • 1 (4 ounce) package softened cream cheese

  • ¼ cup softened butter

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract


  1. Mix 1 cup flour, starter, milk, white sugar, and yeast together in the bowl of a stand mixer. Let stand until spongy and bubbling, about 5 minutes. Add 1/2 cup butter, egg, and salt; stir to combine. Add remaining flour 1 cup at at time until a soft, slightly sticky dough forms.

  2. Transfer dough to a floured work surface; knead until dough comes together, 3 to 5 minutes. Place in a greased bowl. Cover with plastic wrap; allow to rest until doubled in size, about 1 hour.

  3. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Grease a 9x13-inch baking pan.

  4. Punch dough down; transfer back to the floured surface. Roll into a square 1/4-inch to 1/3-inch thick. Spread 1/2 cup butter on top; sprinkle brown sugar and cinnamon on top. Roll dough up tightly; pinch seam together.

  5. Trim the edges and cut the log into 8 equal pieces using a sharp knife. Place rolls in the prepared baking pan. Cover with plastic wrap; let rise until not quite doubled in size, about 45 minutes.

  6. Bake in the preheated oven until golden brown, about 35 minutes. Remove from oven; cool for 20 minutes.

  7. Mix confectioners' sugar, cream cheese, 1/4 cup butter, and vanilla extract together until frosting is smooth and fluffy. Top each cooled roll with an equal amount of frosting.

Cook's Note:

This recipe was developed at high altitude, (6,000 ft) so adjustments to flour, cooking time, rise time, etc... may be necessary.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

894 Calories
36g Fat
134g Carbs
12g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 8
Calories 894
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 36g 46%
Saturated Fat 22g 110%
Cholesterol 117mg 39%
Sodium 427mg 19%
Total Carbohydrate 134g 49%
Dietary Fiber 4g 14%
Total Sugars 75g
Protein 12g
Vitamin C 0mg 1%
Calcium 124mg 10%
Iron 5mg 25%
Potassium 260mg 6%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

** Nutrient information is not available for all ingredients. Amount is based on available nutrient data.

(-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a medically restrictive diet, please consult your doctor or registered dietitian before preparing this recipe for personal consumption.

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