Christmas Rolls


There's a secret to these classic cinnamon rolls -- a mashed potato! It keeps the rolls extra tender and moist.

Christmas Rolls
Photo: Andy Lyons
Hands On Time:
45 mins
Total Time:
2 hrs 35 mins
12 rolls


  • 4 cup all-purpose flour

  • 1 package active dry yeast

  • 1 cup milk

  • 1 cup mashed, cooked potato

  • cup butter, cut up

  • cup granulated sugar

  • 1 teaspoon salt

  • 2 eggs

  • 1 cup packed brown sugar

  • 2 tablespoon freshly ground cinnamon

  • 2 tablespoon finely chopped crystallized ginger

  • ½ teaspoon fresh cracked black pepper

  • ½ cup butter, softened

  • 1 recipe Cinnamon Roll Icing

Cinnamon Roll Icing

  • 3 cup powdered sugar

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

  • 4 tablespoon milk


  1. In a large bowl combine 1 1/2 cups of the flour and the yeast; set aside. In a medium saucepan heat and stir milk, mashed potato, the 1/3 cup butter, the granulated sugar, and salt just until warm (120°F to 130°F) and butter almost melts; add to flour mixture along with the eggs. Beat with an electric mixer on low to medium speed for 30 seconds, scraping sides of bowl constantly. Beat on high speed for 3 minutes. Using a wooden spoon, stir in as much of the remaining flour as you can.

  2. Turn out dough onto a lightly floured surface. Knead in enough of the remaining flour to make a moderately soft dough that is smooth and elastic (3 to 5 minutes total kneading time). Shape dough into a ball. Place in a lightly greased bowl; turn once to grease surface of dough. Cover; let rise in a warm place until double in size (45 to 60 minutes).

  3. Punch down dough. Turn out dough onto a lightly floured surface. Cover and let rest for 10 minutes. Meanwhile, lightly grease a 13x9-inch baking dish or pan; set aside. For filling, in a small bowl stir together brown sugar, cinnamon, ginger, and pepper; set aside.

  4. Roll dough into an 18x12-inch rectangle. Spread the 1/2 cup butter over dough rectangle. Sprinkle filling over butter-spread dough rectangle, leaving 1 inch unfilled along one of the long sides. Roll up filled rectangle into a spiral, starting from the long side with the filling. Pinch dough to seal seams.

  5. Cut dough spiral into 12 equal pieces. Arrange pieces, cut sides down, in the prepared baking dish. Cover with a clean kitchen towel and let stand in a warm place until nearly double in size (about 30 minutes).

  6. Preheat oven to 350°F. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes or until golden brown and done in center (200°F). Cool in dish on a wire rack for 10 minutes. Remove from dish, if desired. Drizzle or spread with Cinnamon Roll Icing. Serve warm.

Cinnamon Roll Icing

  1. In a medium bowl stir together the powdered sugar, vanilla, and enough milk to reach a thick drizzling consistency.

Pomegranate-Dried Fruit Rolls:

Prepare Cinnamon Rolls as directed, except omit cinnamon, ginger, and black pepper, and reduce brown sugar to 1/2 cup. For filling, in a small saucepan bring 1 cup dark rum just to a simmer. Remove from heat and add 1/2 cup chopped dried tart red cherries and 1/2 cup chopped dried cranberries. Let stand, covered, 20 minutes; drain. Stir together the drained fruit, the brown sugar, 1/2 cup pomegranate seeds, and 2 teaspoons orange zest. For icing, substitute orange juice for milk and add 1 teaspoon orange zest.Nutrition analysis per serving: 541 calories, 7 g protein, 92 g carbohydrate, 15 g total fat (9 g sat. fat), 67 mg cholesterol, 2 g fiber, 54 g total sugar, 14% Vitamin A, 10% Vitamin C, 323 mg sodium, 5% calcium, 13% iron

Salted Lemon Rolls:

Prepare Cinnamon Rolls as directed, except omit cinnamon, ginger, black pepper, brown sugar, and the Cinnamon Roll Icing. For filling, in a small bowl stir together 2/3 cup granulated sugar and 2 teaspoons finely shredded lemon peel. Sprinkle the sugar mixture over buttered cinnamon roll dough and sprinkle 2/3 cup finely chopped preserved lemon evenly over sugar mixture. For icing, in a medium mixing bowl beat 4 ounces softened cream cheese, 2 tablespoons softened butter, and 1 teaspoon vanilla with an electric mixer on medium speed until light and fluffy. Gradually beat in 2 1/4 cups powdered sugar. Beat in 2 tablespoons honey. Spread over warm cinnamon rolls. Sprinkle with 1 teaspoon coarse sea salt. Nutrition analysis per serving: 516 calories, 7 g protein, 80 g carbohydrate, 20 g total fat (12 g sat. fat), 82 mg cholesterol, 2 g fiber, 44 g total sugar, 13% Vitamin A, 18% Vitamin C, 613 mg sodium, 6% calcium, 13% iron

Cherry-Cranberry Rolls:

Prepare Cinnamon Rolls as directed, except omit brown sugar, cinnamon, ginger, and pepper. After spreading dough with butter, spread with 1/3 cup cherry preserves and sprinkle with 1 1/2 cups fresh or frozen cranberries. Nutrition analysis per serving: 473 calories, 7 g protein, 79 g carbohydrate, 15 g total fat (9 g sat. fat), 67 mg cholesterol, 2 g fiber, 41 g total sugar, 10% Vitamin A, 6% Vitamin C, 325 mg sodium, 5% calcium, 12% iron

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

522 Calories
15g Fat
92g Carbs
7g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 12
Calories 522
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 15g 19%
Saturated Fat 9g 45%
Cholesterol 67mg 22%
Sodium 327mg 14%
Total Carbohydrate 92g 33%
Total Sugars 54g
Protein 7g
Vitamin C 1.2mg 6%
Calcium 76mg 6%
Iron 2.6mg 15%
Potassium 202mg 4%
Fatty acids, total trans 1g
Folate, total 97.9mcg
Vitamin B-12 0.2mcg
Vitamin B-6 0.1mg

*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.

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