A Step-by-Step Guide to Storing Cinnamon Rolls

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We sometimes get into the habit of purchasing cinnamon rolls from the local bakery or even in a tin because, let’s face it, baking cinnamon rolls from scratch in time for breakfast takes far too long!

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Cinnamon rolls are yeast-leavened pastries that originated in northern Europe, most likely Sweden, and were brought to the New World with immigrants. In fact, cinnamon rolls are so popular in Sweden that they have their own holiday, kanelbullens dag, or International Cinnamon Roll Day, on October 4th.

Cinnamon rolls, as popular as they are, dry up soon since they are yeast-leavened, and if they are also hand made, they do not include any preservatives to extend shelf life. We understand that cinnamon rolls are never allowed to dry out in some houses, but if you want to create a big batch and keep them fresh, room temperature or refrigerator storage will preserve them for a short time, but cinnamon rolls must be frozen for extended storage.

In this article, I’ll go over all of the numerous methods you may keep cinnamon rolls, as well as how to freshen them up once they’ve been stored. I concentrate my efforts on freezing cinnamon rolls that have been completely cooked and iced, since these cinnamon rolls need the least amount of time and effort to warm in the morning.

How To Store Cinnamon Rolls At Room Temperature

As is typically the case, if you know you’ll be eating cinnamon rolls soon after they’ve been baked, store them in an airtight container or Ziplock bag and shut it up.

Homemade or store-bought cinnamon rolls may be consumed at room temperature for up to two days after baking. After they have dried out, gently reheating them in the oven for 5 to 10 minutes at 350F covered in a wet towel will help to revive them, but be cautious not to allow the frosting melt too much.

How to Store Cinnamon Rolls in The Refrigerator

Whether you store homemade or shop-bought cinnamon rolls in the refrigerator, they will last up to a week; however, the longer they are kept, the drier they will get.

Place in the refrigerator wrapped with aluminum foil. If you keep them in there for more than 24 hours, the filling will become too liquid. Unrisen rolls may also be refrigerated for 24 hours before baking. After the dough has been risen, rolled out, and cut into slices with the cinnamon filling, put the rolls on a baking sheet, cover with plastic wrap, and bake for 20 minutes.

When you’re ready to bake the rolls, remove them from the refrigerator and set them in a warm location to rise a second time until they’ve doubled in size. This second proof will take longer because the dough must come up to room temperature before the yeast can resume full activity. But, depending on your recipe, the rolls may have risen somewhat in the refrigerator before you take them out.

How to Store Cinnamon Rolls in The Freezer

In the next part, I provide a step-by-step guide for freezing baked cinnamon buns and discuss some of the additional ways you may freeze them.

I like to freeze cinnamon rolls and other sorts of sweet pastries already made so that all I have to do is take some out first thing in the morning or even leave them in the fridge overnight and they are ready to serve after a brief defrost (if necessary) and reheat.

This method of freezing is equally appropriate for bakery rolls as well as handmade rolls.

What You Will Need to Follow This Tutorial on Storing Baked Cinnamon Rolls in The Freezer

  • Cinnamon Buns If prepared from scratch, they must be completely chilled before being frosted with a stiffer frosting. I normally use a simple frosting of confectioners sugar, butter, milk, and vanilla instead of cream cheese since it can be as hard or as liquid-y as you need. Later, I’ll go through how to freeze them with icing.
  • Wrap the cinnamon buns in plastic wrap or aluminum foil.
  • a container that is airtight This keeps the cinnamon rolls from squashing in the freezer and, together with the plastic wrap or aluminum foil, helps to prevent freezer burn. You may alternatively use a Ziplock bag or just wrap the rolls in aluminum foil twice.

Step by Step Instructions for Freezing Baked Cinnamon Rolls

Step 1: Separate the cinnamon rolls

It is now easy to separate them, allowing you to remove as few or as many as you like from the freezer. You may freeze the whole batch on the tray, but you will need to defrost it overnight before reheating it up in the morning. It might also be inconvenient if your baking sheet or pan is a favorite!

Step 2: Wrap the rolls: Carefully wrap 

Wrap each roll individually in plastic wrap or aluminum foil. There is less danger of dislodging the icing if you lay the plastic wrap or aluminum foil on top of the roll first and then collect it beneath the roll.

Step 3: Pack into the airtight container or Ziplock bag

After all of the rolls have been wrapped, gently put them in an airtight container or oven and close it. After sealed, it may be placed in the freezer.

These frozen cinnamon rolls can keep for up to two months, but to be at their best, they should be consumed within one month. Depending on the sort of frosting you used, you may need to change the storage duration.

To Thaw Out the Cinnamon Rolls

Step 1: Thaw

Remove as many rolls as you need and place them on the counter. If you like, you can unwrap them. Depending on their size, they will take around an hour to defrost at room temperature.

Step 2: Heat

After the rolls have thawed, set them on a baking sheet and tent with foil so that they are covered. Heat them for no more than 10 minutes at 350F in a preheated oven.

You may defrost them in the oven on a low temperature for 15 to 20 minutes to thaw them out and warm them up, but once they are completely cooked, you risk overcooking them and melting the icing.

Step 3: Enjoy!

This is how I warmed it. A little butter on exposed sections of the roll (not where the frosting is) might sometimes help them remain moist in the microwave. Heat them in the microwave oven; just follow the manufacturer’s time recommendations and keep an eye on them as they may grow stale and hard very fast when thawed. They may also be thawed.

Other Ways to Freeze Cinnamon Rolls

Freezing Them Without Frosting

If you freeze cinnamon rolls without frosting, it is easier to thaw and re-heat them directly in the oven, but because you will need to leave them to cook a little longer before frosting, this is more of a personal preference based on how much time you want to spend preparing them for Sunday breakfast.

If you wish to freeze them without the icing, perform the same procedure as above, but using cinnamon rolls that have been completely cooked and cooled but do not have any frosting.

Freezing Them Unbaked

Since you still need to complete the second rise and bake, this process may be nearly as time consuming as baking them from scratch. Make and cut the rolls to freeze them unbaked. This is frequently done after the first rise, depending on the recipe.

Wrap the uncooked rolls in plastic wrap or aluminum foil, either individually or in a tray, and store them in an airtight container in the freezer.

The unbaked rolls must be removed from the freezer the night before, put on a baking sheet, and refrigerated overnight. Put them someplace warm in the morning so the yeast can activate again and undergo the second rise and double in size before baking and icing. The second rise will take longer than if you baked them fresh since the dough need more time to warm up.

I’ve had mixed results with freezing cinnamon rolls or other unbaked pastries, maybe because I use active dry yeast rather than quick dry yeast, which is frequently more freeze-tolerant. Yet, yeast becomes inactive when exposed to freezing temperatures, and some yeast will die as a result of the experience of being placed in the freezer! When freezing unbaked products, there is always the danger that you will not obtain a complete rise or that it will take longer to rise than normal because not as much yeast is active or is not functioning as effectively as it should.

Adding additional yeast to the mix may help address this, but the danger is that you will wind up with extremely yeast-y cinnamon rolls. It is worth experimenting with your favorite recipe unbaked, since you can keep more unbaked cinnamon rolls in the freezer than baked cinnamon rolls because they are half the size. But, you should use the unbaked dough within a month or two since the longer it sits in the freezer, the more the yeast activity is destroyed.

Freezing Parbaked Cinnamon Rolls

Unlike freezing them uncooked, parbaking before freezing means your frozen cinnamon rolls will be ready in less time. To freeze them parbaked, prepare your cinnamon rolls as usual, but bake them for just 10 to 15 minutes, or until they begin to brown.

Remove them from the oven and set aside to cool completely. Next, either divide them into smaller batches or cover the whole pan in two pieces of plastic wrap and set it in the freezer. These parbaked cinnamon buns will keep in the freezer for about two weeks.

Place them in the refrigerator the night before you want to eat them to defrost. Place in the oven at 350°F until browned in the morning. This should take around 10 to 15 minutes. When they have cooled, frost them and serve.

How to Use Up Stale Cinnamon Rolls

If they’ve been sitting on the counter for too long, or you haven’t been able to freshen them up much in the oven, instead of throwing them away, make a bread pudding or use them in a trifle. You could also make cinnamon roll fritters or French toast with them. Placing them in the waffle iron to create cinnamon waffles may even bring new life to stale buns!


I hope you liked reading about the many methods to store cinnamon rolls and found my step-by-step explanation on how to store cinnamon rolls in the freezer for a hassle-free morning useful.

(Image credit: bvoyles4 via Pixabay.com)

Since I’ve also discussed the alternative methods you can freeze cinnamon rolls, such as uncooked or parbaked, you may choose the best longer-term storage strategy for you. Do you have any other tried-and-true methods for keeping cinnamon rolls? Please share it in the comments section below; I’d love to hear about it. Additionally, if you liked what you read, please share it with your friends!


How do you store and reheat cinnamon rolls?

Cover the cinnamon buns loosely with foil while reheating them in the oven or air fryer. Wrap each cinnamon bun in foil to retain moisture if using a toaster oven. Maintain appropriate storage. To keep leftover cinnamon buns from drying out, keep them in an airtight container.

Do you store cinnamon rolls dough in the fridge or on the counter?

Consider keeping the cinnamon roll dough at room temperature for the first rise for the best results. For the last confirmation, place it in the refrigerator. Make dried yeast or a starter if you have time throughout the day. Following that, knead the dough in the evening and let it rise at room temperature.

Can cinnamon rolls sit out overnight?

Allow cinnamon rolls to cool after removing them from the oven to store them at room temperature. Place them on a platter and cover with aluminum foil after they’ve cooled. These should keep for approximately three days. When the rolls are already cooked, this procedure works well.

How do you store extra uncooked cinnamon rolls?

At the Dough Stage:

The easiest approach to keep your extra cinnamon rolls moist is to freeze them while they are still in the dough stage. Wrap each cinnamon bun individually and store in an airtight container. Remove the frozen cinnamon rolls from the freezer when you’re ready to bake them.

Can you refrigerate cinnamon rolls after rising?

Refrigerate the dough after it has risen and been formed to save time in the morning. Refrigerate the formed dough for up to 24 hours, covered securely.

Should Cinnabons be refrigerated?

Storage and preparation

Refrigerate not. Freeze for up to 30 days. Wrap the box tightly with plastic wrap or move the rolls to an airtight container. Let the frozen rolls to defrost before cooking.

Where do you store cinnamon rolls after baking?

If you intend on reheating your cooked cinnamon rolls quickly, keep them in the baking dish, securely wrapped in plastic wrap, and stored at room temperature. The cinnamon buns may also be taken out of the baking dish and kept in an airtight container or ziplock bag.

Why not refrigerate cinnamon rolls?

Cinnamon buns may be kept in an airtight container at room temperature for two to three days. They may be kept in the fridge for up to seven days. Baking professionals, however, advise against refrigerating cinnamon buns because they will lose their moistness.

How long can you store unbaked cinnamon rolls?

These may be refrigerated for up to 24 hours (the longer they are chilled, the more the filling may liquify and leak out of the rolls; this is normal, so don’t worry). What exactly is this?

How long should you let cinnamon rolls sit?

2 hours (or 35 minutes in a 100°F oven) or until puffy. Refrigerate overnight, carefully wrapped in plastic wrap (up to 18 hours). The next day, take the cinnamon rolls from the refrigerator and let them at room temperature for 1 to 1 12 hours, covered.

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