I've had this recipe pinned forever and had yet to make it. It was an intriguing concept: cinnamon rolls in sugar cookie form? The basic principles are the same: you make a sugar cookie dough (actually, it's more like a sour cream cookie in that it's more cakey than chewy), roll it out, smooth a cinnamon brown sugar "filling" over the dough, roll into a log and cut into rounds.
When I first made this, the dough was really soft. I mean, really soft. It took some doing and a bit of flour to coax it into a log and wrap it in parchment paper to chill in the refrigerator. Then, even after it was chilled, when I cut it, I could barely see the filling and it certainly didn't look like there was any kind of spiral action going on. Fortunately, however, once it baked, the spiral filling did make itself seen. Mine didn't have the neatest cinnamon-roll appearance but since you frost it with cream cheese frosting, that doesn't matter too much. I liked the taste of these cookies. They're a bit cake-y, while I prefer my cookies chewy, but they were pretty good and really are reminiscent of cinnamon rolls without the bother of yeasted dough and rising times.
Although the recipe says to place the cookies in the refrigerator after you frost them and before you serve them, that's more to preserve the frosting. Refrigerating cookies tends to dry them out. If you're not serving these right away, I recommend leaving the cookies at room temperature and making the frosting and frosting them right before serving. I would also recommend baking these the same day you serve them for optimal freshness. You can always make the dough through the step of rolling the cookie dough with filling into a log, wrap in waxed paper and place in a freezer bag. Freeze until the day you're serving them. Let the log thaw (very) slightly before cutting and baking. I baked a half recipe of these cookies in two batches, on two separate days for different occasions, and the cookies slice better and bake to better appearance after the dough is frozen at least overnight.
Cinnamon roll sugar cookies
From Chef in Training
2 cups sugar
1 cup butter, softened
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup sour cream
6 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
Cinnamon roll center
8-12 tablespoons softened butter
1 1/2 cups packed light brown sugar, divided into 1/4 cups
1 1/2 tablespoons cinnamon, divided
8 ounces cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup powdered sugar
2-4 tablespoons milk, to thin icing
1. In an electric or stand mixer, cream the sugar and butter. Add eggs, vanilla, and sour cream until well combined. Slowly add in the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt until well combined.
2. In 2 batches, place in plastic wrap in a disc shape and chill for at least 2 hours for best results.
3. Once chilled, cut each disc into thirds and roll into a 1/8-inch thick oval, about 12x5 inches. Spread each rolled piece of dough with 1-2 tablespoons softened butter, 1/4 cup packed brown sugar, and 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon. Start rolling from the long end closest to you, rolling into a log shape. Using a sharp knife, cut 1/2 inch pieces of dough, then place them onto a silpat or parchment-lined baking sheet. Bake at 350 degrees F. for 9-11 minutes. Remove, and let cool for 5 minutes before removing from baking sheet.
4. To prepare frosting, beat the cream cheese until softened and smooth, slowly add powdered sugar and milk until desired consistency. Frost cookies then place in refrigerator until ready to serve. Alternatively, instead of refrigerating, you can bake a batch the day you're going to serve them and frost at the last minute.
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