Swedish cinnamon buns (kanelbullar) | bitterbaker.com

Swedish cinnamon rolls (kanelbullar)

(Update: This recipe has been featured on the Seattle Globalist!)

When I first started writing this I was going to tell you that these are authentic Swedish cinnamon rolls. That’s not entirely true. Real (Swedish) cinnamon rolls have pearl sugar on top. These don’t.

Swedish cinnamon buns (kanelbullar) | bitterbaker.com
Either roll them up like normal cinnamon rolls, or make these cute twirly tops.

Other than that they’re pretty close to the real deal. But they’re kind of different from the American cinnamon sticky buns. Some of my friends recall them as those “muffin things you made before“. But even so, they’re soft and buttery like “normal“ cinnamon rolls. Dare I say that they go even better with a cup of coffee? I think I do, but that’s just my opinion.

Swedish cinnamon buns (kanelbullar) | bitterbaker.com
You have to try them with a glass of milk at least once in your life.

You think I’m biased? You’re probably right. So you should just see for yourself.

Your house will smell like heaven when you’re done. Just saying.

Swedish cinnamon buns (kanelbullar) | bitterbaker.com

Swedish cinnamon rolls (kanelbullar)
Total time: 2-2,5 hours. Makes about 44 cinnamon rolls.


  • 0,5 l milk (17.6 oz, not fluid! or slightly more than 2 cups)
  • 2 tsp active dry yeast
  • 1,5 stick butter (170 g)
  • a pinch of salt
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 1 tsp ground cardamom
  • 1 egg
  • 800-850 g (28.2-30 oz) all-purpose flour, take as much as you need – you don’t want a sticky dough.


  • 1,5 stick (170 g) of butter, room temperature
  • 1.5–2 tbsp ground cinnamon
  • ¾ cup sugar

1 egg
sliced almonds

Swedish cinnamon buns (kanelbullar) | bitterbaker.com
I dare you to only eat one.. 😉

Heat up the milk to about 110-115 °F. Dissolve the active dry yeast in the milk and let it sit for a few minutes. Melt the butter and mix in with the milk. Add a pinch of salt, sugar, cardamom, egg and flour. Mix to a dough. Cover the bowl with a kitchen towel and let rise until double the size, about 1 hour. Mix the ingredients for the filling in a bowl and set aside in room temperature.

Roll out half of the dough (unless you have a really large working bench; then you can roll out the whole thing) to a large, thin rectangle. Spread half of the filling over the rectangle (or all of it if you rolled out all of the dough), then either roll up the dough to a cylinder and cut the dough in half an inch thick slices, or make these twirly tops. Place the cinnamon rolls in muffin forms and put them on an oven tray. Now roll out the second half of the dough and do the same thing.

Let the rolls rise for another 30 minutes (up to 1 hour is okay) while you preheat the oven to 460°F. Brush the rolls with egg and sprinkle some sliced almonds on top. Bake for about 10-14 minutes until they are golden brown.

Let cool on a rack with a kitchen towel on top. Now treat yourself to a Swedish fika (coffee break) with a cup of coffee or a cold glass of milk 🙂

Swedish cinnamon buns (kanelbullar) | bitterbaker.com
My husband said he felt really Swedish (he’s not from Sweden) when eating cinnamon rolls and drinking coffee on a break from studying. Let me know how it makes you feel!

This post has been submitted to YeastSpotting.

Share this post with your friends!

    You might also like:

    24 thoughts on “Swedish cinnamon rolls (kanelbullar)

    1. Megan


      these look great! really want to try them out but could you tell me how much 1.5 ‘stick’ of butter is? in grams?

      Thank you 🙂

      1. Yvonne Rogell Post author

        Hi Megan! It’s 170 g 🙂 Sorry, I try to always put it in grams, but sometimes I forget, thanks for reminding me! I’m so happy you’re making these!! Have fun 🙂

    2. joybee83

      Yum. sounds great, cardamom adds a great flavor to everything. My husband will love this. Maybe I’ll just add cardamom to my usual cinnamon bun recipe.

    3. Korena

      I love kanelbullar – I think it’s the cardamom in the dough, there’s something so special about them. Your recipe looks great! I’m Pinning it for the next time I get a kanelbullar craving 🙂

      1. Yvonne Rogell Post author

        Thanks Korena!! They’re one of my favorite treats, too 🙂 I love using cardamom for everything, in savory foods as well. It’s probably one of my favorite spices 🙂 Oo, let me know if you try them, can’t wait to hear what you think about them!

    4. Kate | Food Babbles

      These rolls are so lovely! When you read “cinnamon rolls” you have a certain image in your mind and when I opened this post it was so much better than what I expected!! Bookmarked. Definitely need to make these!

    5. laurasmess

      I adore Swedish cinnamon rolls, particularly when they have that coarse pearl sugar on the top! Yum! My aunt in Malmo makes them all the time. Now I’m feeling nostalgic 🙂 Beautiful recipe Yvonne! xx

      1. Yvonne Rogell Post author

        Ooo, you have an aunt in Malmö? That’s so cool, my grandparents live down south so I usually change trains in Malmö 🙂 I miss the pearl sugar + I tried getting some at IKEA, but they don’t have it. I’m gonna have to have my parents export some to me. Maybe I can send some your way too! 😉


    Leave a Reply to Katarina Cancel reply

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *