Out-of-the-World Cinnamon Rolls (No yeast!)

Sorry I've been gone for so long. I've just been catching up with a ton of stuff from school and swimming is super fun and exciting, but tiring at the same time. Anyways, these are the cinnamon rolls from that brunch I made a few weeks ago. Here goes.

These cinnamon rolls require NO waiting, NO proofing and NO rising. And they are absolutely fantastic: moist, ooey, gooey, cinnamon-y goodness. The dough is made with part skim ricotta cheese and low fat buttermilk, so are much much healthier than any regular cinnamon rolls recipe. To be honest, they beat Cinnabon any day (and the whole experience is very similar, actually).

I added pecans to half the rolls, because my sister strongly dislikes nuts, but my mom and I LOVE pecans in cinnamon rolls, so why not?

Even though the ingredient list may look long, the recipe is super easy to throw together, and they taste absolutely fantastic with a healthy slather of cream cheese frosting. I mean come on, what's a cinnamon roll without cream cheese frosting?

Cinnamon Rolls (adapted from dontforgetdelicious.com)
Makes around 12 medium-sized rolls
For the Dough
3/4 cup park skim ricotta cheese
1/3 cup low fat buttermilk
1/4 cup unrefined sugar
4 tbsp. unsalted butter
1 tsp. vanilla extract
2 cups AP flour
1 tbsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. baking soda

For the Filling
3 tbsp. unsalted butter
1 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg
1/3 cup chopped pecans

For the Frosting
2 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
1/2 cup powdered sugar
Skim milk, as needed
1 tsp. vanilla extract

Heat the oven to 200°C. Grease the sides and bottom of a 8 or 9″ baking dish with cooking spray.

Combine the ricotta cheese, buttermilk, sugar, melted butter, and vanilla in food processor and process until smooth, about 10 seconds. Add the flour, baking powder, salt, and baking soda and pulse in short bursts just until the dough clumps together (please please please don’t over process). The dough will be soft and moist.

Dump the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead it with floured hands 4 or 5 times until smooth. With a rolling pin, roll the dough into an (approximately!) 12×15-inch rectangle.

Brush the dough with the melted butter, leaving a 1/2-inch border unbuttered around the edges. In a medium bowl, combine brown sugar and spices. Sprinkle the mixture over the buttered area of the dough and press gently into the surface. Pour the pecans onto one half of the area of the dough.

Starting at a long edge, roll up the dough jelly-roll style. Pinch the seam to seal, and leave the ends open.

With a sharp knife or string, cut the roll into equal pieces. Set the pieces, cut side up, in the prepared pan; they should fill the pan and touch slightly, but don’t worry if there are small gaps.

Bake until golden brown and firm to the touch, 20 to 28 minutes. Set the pan on a wire rack to cool for 2 minutes. Run a spatula around the inside edge of the pan to loosen the rolls, and transfer them to a serving plate.

In a small bowl, mix the softened cream cheese, powdered sugar, and vanilla to make a smooth glaze. Add milk if needed to achieve desired consistency. Spread or drizzle onto warm rolls. Let stand 10 minutes (or as long as you can wait!) and savor.

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