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[King Cake Style] Cinnamon Roll Ring

Author: Roseanne Carrara, from my former website, The Lunchbox Season



  • 1/2 c milk
  • 1/2 c unsalted butter
  • 1/2 c warm water
  • 2 1/4 tsp [1 envelope] INSTANT yeast
  • 1/3 c sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 4 c all purpose flour


  • 3/4 c dark brown sugar
  • 3 tbs your best cinnamon [we’ve also added dashes of cardamom ginger, or orange zest occasionally]
  • optional: 1/2 to 3/4 c finely chopped nuts
  • pinch salt
  • 1-2 tbs melted butter [for the preparation]


  • 125 g [4 oz .5 package] light cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1/2 c unsalted butter room temperature
  • 1 tbs whipping cream [coffee cream works too]
  • 1 tbs corn syrup or honey
  • 1 c sifted icing sugar
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla organic lemon, or rum extract

King Cake Styling [Optional]

  • 2-3 tbs coloured icing sugars [in purple gold and green]
  • gold-wrapped chocolate coins 
  • king cake baby



  • Melt the butter and the milk in a small saucepan or in the microwave and cool slightly.
  • In the bowl of a mixer, with a paddle attachment, mix water, yeast, sugar, and eggs at low speed until combined.
  • Add the salt, 1 c flour, and half of the melted butter/milk combo until just comined.
  • Add 1 c flour and the rest of the melted buter/milk combo until just combined.
  • Switch to the dough hook.
  • Slowly incorporate 2 cups flour and knead on low speed for a minute or two until the dough is smooth and forms into a ball.
  • Place the ball of dough into a large buttered bowl and cover with plastic wrap.
  • Leave in a dark warm spot for 90 minutes or until doubled.

Filling Preparation

  • While the dough is rising, whisk together the filling ingredients until well combined.

Ring Preparation

  • Pat risen dough down gently and turn onto a lightly floured surface.
  • Use a rolling pin to create a large rectangle, about 12 inches tall by 16 inches long/wide.
  • Use a pastry brush to cover the surface (except about .25 in around the edges) with a bit of melted butter.
  • Sprinkle the filling out over the dough, leaving about a .5 in border on all of the edges.
  • Roll the dough to form a 16 in long cylinder.
  • Moisten the top with a bit of water to seal.
  • On a parchment-lined baking tray, form the cylinder into a large ring.
  • Join the edges of the ring with a bit more water, or just use this as your first “slice.”
  • Using a sharp knife, in 1/2- to 1-inch measures, make slices down through the ring, leaving the lower 1/2-inch of the cylinder in tact. [See images below]. Make sure that you create an even number of sliced pieces.
  • Gently twist and stagger the connected slices to the left and right in a flower burst pattern. [You can use your knife to free any bits of the bottom that you need to maneuver to and fro.]
  • Cover shaped ring with plastic wrap and place in a dark, warm spot for 90 minutes until doubled once again.

Icing Preparation

  • In a mixer, blend butter and cream cheese until silky smooth
  • Incorporate cream, syrup, and extract.
  • Slowly incorporate icing sugar by the heaping tablespoon until smooth.
  • [You may choose to add more icing sugar than called for in the recipe, but keep it thick!]
  • Cover and Refrigerate.

Baking & Decorating

  • Heat oven to 350.
  • Bake the ring for 25-30 minutes.
  • Remove the ring on the parchment to a wire rack.
  • Cool for at least 30 minutes.
  • Spread thick icing over top of warm ring as desired. It may melt a bit and become slightly runny. This is okay. You can also reserve additional icing for when the ring is cooler if desired.
  • KING CAKE OPTION: Shake coloured sugars in a spoon in 2-3 in wide bands around the ring.
  • KING CAKE OPTION: Before serving, tuck a chocolate covered coin below each person’s slice of ring.