HCP Dishes!

Sticky Buns in Jars

Posted by Emily

Thursday December 27, 2012

With Christmas behind us now, I’m all for moving on to discussing New Year’s Eve cocktails, warm stick-to-your-ribs dishes to get us through bitter cold January, and even some early Valentine’s Day treats. But I have to take a step back to Christmas morning and share a recipe that was perfect for my family’s holiday brunch, but that would also suit the breakfast table of [give or take] any other day of the year as well: Pull-Apart Cinnamon Breads from Shaina‘s Desserts in Jars.

cinnamon rolls in jars

I admittedly snagged the idea to make these for Christmas from another author of ours– Jessica Fisher (you may know her from Life as MOM, Good Cheap Eats, or her brand new Not Your Mother’s Make-Ahead and Freeze Cookbook). Her plan to make them the night before and bake in the morning meant more time for lounging with my family by the tree, instead of rushing back and forth to the kitchen like we all have other years.

christmas monkey bread

And decorating them couldn’t have been easier with the handful of ribbons we had left over from the present unwrapping that had occurred just minutes before… :-)

So while Christmas may be over, these sticky buns will make your mouth water all year long. Check out In the Kitchen with KP and Eat, Live, Run‘s renditions of them too, and let us know if you make any yourself!

Recipe: Pull-Apart Cinnamon Breads

Summary: This breakfast-style dessert could adorn any brunch buffet table. Tiny balls of cardamom-spiced dough are covered in caramelized cinnamon sugar, ready to make you weak in the knees.


  • • 12 tablespoons (1½ sticks) unsalted butter, melted
  • • 1 cup warm whole milk, at 110ºF
  • • ¹⁄³ cup warm water, at 110ºF
  • • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • • 1 package (2¼ teaspoons) instant dry yeast
  • • 3 cups all-purpose flour plus ½ cup for rolling the dough
  • • 2 teaspoons salt
  • • ½ teaspoon ground cardamom
  • • 1 cup packed light brown sugar
  • • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • • ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg


  1. 1. Grease the bottoms and sides of eight 8-ounce jars with 2 tablespoons of the melted butter. In a stand mixer with the paddle attachment at low speed, mix together the milk, water, granulated sugar, and yeast. Let stand for 5 minutes. Meanwhile, stir together the 3 cups of flour with the salt and cardamom in a separate bowl.
  2. 2. Using the dough hook attachment at low speed, slowly add the flour mixture to the yeast mixture. Once all of the flour is in, mix on medium speed for 7 to 8 minutes, until the dough starts to pull into a ball.
  3. 3. Sprinkle ¼ cup of flour on a clean, dry work surface and place the dough in the center. Sprinkle an additional 2 to 3 tablespoons of flour over the top of the dough. Knead to form a ball. Place the dough in a greased bowl and cover with a dry cloth. Store in a warm place until the dough has doubled in size, about 1 hour.
  4. 4. Punch down the dough. Turn it out onto a floured work surface and roll it into a rectangle. Using kitchen shears or a pizza slicer, cut the dough into 1-inch squares.
  5. 5. Mix together the brown sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg in a medium-size bowl. Dip the dough squares into the remaining melted butter and then roll them gently in the brown sugar mixture. Fill the buttered jars with the dough squares until half full. Set in a warm place to rise for 50 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350ºF.
  6. 6. Place the jars 2 inches apart on a large baking sheet. Bake the breads for 20 to 25 minutes or until the dough is cooked through. Allow to cool for 5 to 10 minutes. Serve warm.

MAKES 8 individual cinnamon breads

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