Sometimes I find a recipe that I want to make but can’t fit into my schedule. This recipe for Bourbon Bacon Cinnamon Rolls was one of those recipes. It sounded so decadent, but I never seemed to find the time to give it a try. Well, the time has come, and I’m so excited! Anything with bacon is drool-inducing, and this adds cinnamon, brown sugar, buttermilk, and more. Absolutely drool-worthy! Plus I have never made cinnamon rolls, and I always love a new challenge. The closest I have come was Ube Cake Roll, so I’m pretty sure I will be able to pull this one off. Let’s find out!
Bourbon and bacon in cinnamon rolls? Yes please, makes for a fabulous breakfast or brunch.
My pantry was surprisingly full of ingredients for these Bourbon Bacon Cinnamon Rolls. I had the sugars, spices, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. There was even a bottle of Jim Beam Bourbon in my bar, so I didn’t have to make an extra trip to the liquor store.
The rest of the ingredients were easy to find at my usual grocery store. All I needed was butter, cream cheese, buttermilk, and bacon. I chose thick-cut bacon for this recipe, and I used 6 slices to make 1/3 cup of crumbled bacon.
First off, we needed bacon. I fried up 6 strips of thick-cut bacon while I did the other prep work. I kept the temperature at a medium setting and checked it as I worked so it didn’t burn. It fried up nice and crispy—perfect for crumbling.
This recipe can be made in a cast-iron skillet or a pie plate. I chose the former and used my 10-inch cast-iron skillet. To prepare it, I rubbed it generously with vegetable shortening to prevent sticking then dusted it with all-purpose four. I re-purposed my sugar duster for flour, and it kept the flour from clumping.
Making the Rolls
I have made bread dough before, and the cinnamon roll dough was a similar process. No waiting for it to rise, though, and I wasn’t mad about it. A quick mix and some kneading and it was ready.
Initially, I used my hands to flatten the dough. It was very stretchy, and I had to finish flattening it by lightly rolling it out with a rolling pin. It was ready to be rolled up once I topped it with melted butter, brown sugar, spices, and most of the bacon bits.
I was a little nervous about this part, but it went pretty smoothly. Using my largest cutting board created the perfect workspace since it was 17″ x 12″. The dough needs to be rolled out to 18″ x 12″, so I got it close without measuring.
The only problem I had was a break in the dough, and it happened to end up on the outside of the roll. No worries, though! I pinched off some dough from the end, wet it, and used it to patch the hole.
My serrated bread knife made cutting the rolled-up dough easy without smooching it too much. I got 9 cinnamon rolls out of it, and most of them were the same size. One of the ends was noticeably smaller than the rest. I’m guessing I didn’t spread the toppings enough on that end.
I noticed there was lots of room in the pan once I added all the cinnamon rolls. Did they need to be smooshed down to fill the space? I wasn’t sure, but I ended up not smooshing them because it wasn’t mentioned in the instructions. They did expand to fill the skillet as they baked, so leaving some room was the right thing to do.
Making the Glaze
I had plenty of time to mix up the glaze as the cinnamon rolls baked. The glaze was tasty but very thin, even watery. I envisioned a thick glaze that would sit on top of the pastries instead of soaking in. Hmmm…
The recipe does say to add extra powdered sugar to thicken it if you want, and I did just that. I added 1-2 tablespoons at a time, mixed with my immersion blender (it’s great for small jobs like this), and tested the thickness. In the end, I added 8 tablespoons (1/2 cup) of extra powdered sugar to get the thickness I wanted. I’m not mad about that, either!
I was practically biting my nails once the rolls came out of the oven! They made the house smell like a bakery, and my husband and I must have been drooling. Waiting for them to cool down enough to glaze was torture!
After about 30 minutes, it was time to glaze. I had set things up for photos as they cooled, so I was ready to go! I drizzled them with the glaze, sprinkled on the rest of the bacon, and got to snapping those pics. They were still warm by the time I was done, and let me tell you that first bite was divine!
This recipe lists 20 minutes to prep, 25 minutes to cook, and 45 minutes total. Cooling time* isn’t included there, but it is mentioned in the instructions. However, a specific time isn’t listed so I’m not counting it in my time rating. Here’s how my time was spent:
- 22 minutes to prep
- Includes 15 minutes to fry the bacon
- 25 minutes to bake
- Includes 5 minutes to make the glaze while the rolls baked
- 47 minutes total
*I allowed an extra 30 minutes to cool the rolls. It would have been less if I had used a pie pan, but the cast-iron skillet really held the heat. It kept the rolls nice and warm and would have been great for serving directly out of on the table with the extra glaze on the side.
The slow-down in the prep work was due to the order of ingredients in the ingredients list being different from the order in the instructions. I had to do some hunting for the ingredients and their amounts because of that. Also, the icing instructions mention nutmeg, but their ingredients have cinnamon. I put in both since I couldn’t decide which I liked better 🙂