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Frozen cinnamon rolls won't rise

I made a batch of potato-dough cinnamon rolls a few weeks ago. I kept four out, let them do their second rise and baked them and they were gorgeous, fluffy and soft and perfect. The rest of the rolls were frozen as soon as they were rolled, with the intention of thawing them, letting them do a second rise and then baking them. None of the frozen ones will rise. I have tried two times, and I shared some with two friends, all with the same results.

Any ideas? It's the first time I tried freezing yeast dough. The recipe I used stated that this was acceptable. The recipe is so wonderful, I am happy to make them fresh when I want them, but I'd love to know if I did something wrong. Thanks.

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  1. How long have you left them to rise?

    It might take quite a long time for them to get up to a temperature where the yeast feels like doing it's thing.

    1. I agree about giving it more time. I don't know what the weather is like where you are, but if it's getting colder, try putting them in the oven w/ the light on; or preheat the oven to 200, turn off and then place the rolls in it.

      1 Reply
      1. re: chowser

        And make sure the surface of the rolls is moist enough to expand while they are rising. I've accidentally let the dough dry out too much and they haven't risen. Yeast doughs can be tricky, though. Good luck!

      2. ooo- share the recipe? I've never heard of potato-dough cinnamon rolls, but they sound great. I agree with other posters that the non-rise may just be time.

        3 Replies
        1. re: THewat

          http://allrecipes.com/recipe/classic-...

          I made a few changes:

          I used leftover mashed potatoes that were a little lumpy, and didn't have any cooking water saved, so I put 1 cup + about 2 TBSP potatoes, the butter, sugar and salt, plus 3/4 cup more hot water (to make up the 'potato water') all in the blender to smooth it out.

          The amount of liquid listed meant I wound up using about 50% more flour than the recipe called for, to get a soft, slightly sticky dough. It kneaded beautifully and the first batch of rolls rose easily.

          I have had some issues before with using butter in the filling, it seems like it kind of melts the sugar and cinnamon out of the rolls, so I just brushed the rolled-out dough with a little milk and then sprinkled the cinnamon/sugar on (I also used brown sugar).

          The third batch I have been playing with this afternoon just came out of the oven, same pathetic results! Oh well, we'll chalk this up to experience and try again!

          1. re: tacosandbeer

            I'm thinking that dry surface dough isn't the problem since you had them covered with plastic wrap while they were rising. Bummer they didn't rise! Disappointing after all that effort and love.

            1. re: tacosandbeer

              Thanks for posting. I make the "Rustic Potato Loaves" out of Baking with Julia, and love them. Potato dough just FEELS so nice. I'm sorry your third frozen batch didn't rise - the flops can be so discouraging.

          2. I'd let the frozen dough rise on the counter for at least 4 hours.

            1. Thanks for all the suggestions. First attempt was a thaw at room temp, then overnight in the fridge, then about an hour at room temp before going in to the oven. Second attempt, thaw in the fridge overnight, then about 3 hours at room temp. As we speak, I am trying pan #3, which I thawed at room temp, left overnight in the fridge, then left in a warmed oven (covered) for about 4 hours. #3 is showing some signs of life, but not at all like the fresh batch.

              Bear, I think you might be on to something, I noticed that they seemed a lot drier once baked. Is there a way to 'moisten' the surface? I am thawing and proofing covered with Saran wrap. Thinking back, I did freeze them on a sheet pan, uncovered, before I bagged them up. Maybe they dried out in the freezer?

              THewat, as soon as I am on the laptop I will post a link alng with the minor changes I made to the recipe. I think that they are about as close to Cinnabons as I've managed.

              3 Replies
              1. re: tacosandbeer

                What if you go directly from freezer to room temp? Is that crazy?

                1. re: tacosandbeer

                  I'm thinking the outer surface has dried as well.

                  Maybe next time, brush some oil/butter on Saran Wrap, then wrap each roll then freeze.

                  Last time I froze cinnamon rolls the same thing happened to me. That's what I'm going to try to alleviate drying.

                  When they've defrosted a bit maybe brush with milk to moisten again, while they rise.

                  1. re: tacosandbeer

                    Next time you freeze, you can let it start rising first at room temp for half an hour or so and then freeze, covered. It gives the yeast a jump start. I think you just need more time at room temp or warmed oven, less time in the fridge. The fridge will also slow the yeast considerably.