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Roles de canela

  • Author: Maura Wall Hernandez
  • Prep Time: 25 minutes active, 4 hours inactive
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 4 hours, 40 minutes
  • Yield: 9 rolls 1x
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: Mexican


Roles de canela are Mexico’s answer to the cinnamon roll and are one of the most common types of pan dulce seen in a panadería.



For the bread:

  • 200 grams bread flour
  • 36 grams granulated sugar
  • 5 grams fast-rise instant yeast
  • 100 grams whole milk
  • 1 large egg, room temperature
  • 40 grams unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 3 grams kosher salt

For the filling:

  • 113 grams (8 tablespoons) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/3 cup dark brown sugar, packed
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 pinch kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup raw pecans, chopped

For the glaze:

  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons whole milk


For greasing the container where you’ll proof the dough:

  • Cooking spray

For flouring your work surface:

  • All-purpose flour, as needed


  1. Add bread flour, sugar, and fast-rise instant yeast in the bowl of a stand mixer. Using the dough hook attachment, turn mixer to speed 2 to combine dry ingredients.
  2. Add warm milk, 1 large egg, and butter to the bowl and increase speed to 4 for 5 minutes.
  3. Add pure vanilla extract and kosher salt to the bowl and continue to mix on speed 4 for about another 10 minutes, until dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl and mostly gathers around the hook. You may need to stop the mixer partway through to scrape down the sides with a spatula so no dough is wasted.
  4. Prepare a large glass bowl or a 6-quart food container with lid for proofing the dough by spraying the inside with cooking spray so the dough won’t stick to the sides.
  5. Turn the dough out from the stand mixer bowl into the bowl or container to proof and cover. Allow dough to rise undisturbed for about 2 hours, or until doubled in size.
  6. Once dough has doubled in size, turn out onto a floured surface (use all-purpose flour for this part, just enough so the dough doesn’t stick to your work surface). Gently roll out to 9×13 with a floured rolling pin. It’s OK if your dough isn’t a perfect rectangle.
  7. In a stand mixer, make the filling with the paddle attachment. Cream the butter and sugar first, then add ground cinnamon, pure vanilla extract and kosher salt. Mix on speed 4 until well combined.
  8. Using a spoon or offset spatula, spread the filling mixture on your rolled out dough, leaving about 1/2 inch around the edges.
  9. Sprinkle the chopped pecans evenly over the filling and gently roll starting with the long side inward. Tuck the dough seam underneath the roll.
  10. Using a bench scraper or very sharp knife, divide the dough into 9 equal pieces. Arrange them in a 9×9 parchment paper-lined pan and cover with a kitchen towel for the second rise, until doubled in size. This should take about an hour and a half to two hours.
  11. Bake in a pre-heated 350 degree F oven for about 15 minutes, until the tops and sides are sufficiently browned but not burned. 
  12. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for 10 minutes before drizzling the icing. Allow icing to set for 10 minutes and serve immediately.


TO MAKE THE DOUGH AHEAD OF TIME: Make the dough the night before and allow it to rise overnight in the refrigerator. Keep the bowl or container covered so the dough does not lose moisture. The cold temperature of the refrigerator will slow the growth of the yeast, but overnight will be plenty of time for the dough to double in size. It’s OK if it rises a bit more. If it hasn’t risen enough, allow it to rise for about 30 minutes on your countertop undisturbed.

Keywords: roles de canela, cinnamon rolls, pan dulce