No-Knead Sticky Pecan Caramel Cinnamon Rolls

Sticky Pecan Caramel Cinnamon Rolls

Do you know what I call smart? Taking something from “works awesome” (No-Knead Bread) to the level of “KICK-ASS.” Which is exactly what authors of the book  Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day, Jeff Hertzberg and Zoe Francois have done.

Oh yeah, and I hold them both directly responsible for the extra 3lbs I’ve just gained testing their recipes.

Keep reading for the recipe and a free cookbook drawing!

So, they’ve taken the basic No Knead Bread recipe and added 2 big concepts to it:

1) Make enough dough to store in the refrigerator for 2 weeks. Pinch off what you need and bake. Return the rest to refrig. This allows you to bake a loaf of artisan bread in as little as 20 minutes rest + 25 minute bake any day of the week. Perfect for spontaneous cooks like myself. Want dinner rolls for just 2 tonight? Pinch off a smaller chunk of dough. Plus, the “aging” of the dough produces the most amazing flavor, something that was lacking in the original No Knead bread.

2) Create over 100 different bread/pastry recipes, all no-knead. Um. Let me see if I can whet your appetite (I love the ones in red)

PEASANT LOAVES: Baguette, Batard, Pain d’Epi, Ciabatta, Crusty White Sandwich Loaf, Olive Bread, Caraway Swirl Rye, Limpa (Scandinavian bread wit honey and orange zest), Portuguese Corn Bread, English Granary Style, Oatmeal-Pumpkin, Raisin Walnut Oatmeal, Vermont Cheddar Bread, Caramelized Onion & Herb Dinner Rolls, Spinach Feta, Sun-Dried Tomato & Parmesan, Granola Bread, Roasted Garlic Potato Bread, Eastern European Potato Rye, Bagels, Bialys, Soft Pretzels, Montreal Bagels

FLATBREADS/PIZZAS: Pizza, Spinach & Cheese Calzone, Philadelphia Stromboli with Sausage, Prosciutto & Olive Oil Flatbread, Pissaladiere, Focaccia with Onion & Rosemary, Olive Fougasse, Fougasse Stuffed with Roasted Red Pepper, Sweet Provencal Flatbread with Anise Seeds, Pine-Nut Studded Polenta Flatbread, Arabic Za’atar Flatbread, Pita, Amenian Lavash, Moroccan Anise and Barley Flatbread, Naan, Scandinavian Rye Crisp bread

ENRICHED: Challah, Turban Shaped Challah with Raisins, Onion Pletzel, Sticky Pecan Caramel Rolls, Brioche, Brioche a Tete, Almond Brioche “Bostock”, Brioche Filled with Chocolate Ganache, Beignets, Chocolate or Jam Filled Beignets, Panettone, Soft-Style American White, Buttermilk Bread, Cinnamon Raisin Bread, Chocolate Bread, Swiss Muesli Breakfast Bread, Sunflower Seed Breakfast Loaf, Chocolate Prune, Chocolate Raisin Babka, Apple & Pear Coffee Cake, Sunny Side up Apricot Pastry, Blueberry Lemon Curd Ring, Braided Raspberry Almond Cream Pastry, Cinnamon Twists

Wipe that drool off the keyboard!

The first recipe I tried was to satisfy my sweet tooth. I love the No-Knead Bread from Lahey, but after an entire year of spoiling myself with crusty, homemade round loaves, I yearned for a sweet bread. This Sticky Pecan Caramel Cinnamon Roll truly is a no-knead, no-brainer!  Read the recipe first, then the free cookbook contest!

No-Knead Sticky Pecan Caramel Cinnamon Rolls

This is what orgasm on a plate looks like.

Master Dough

from Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day

The book contains several master dough recipes, and this is an enriched, sweet dough, perfect for a loaf of Challah (the braided dough) and the Sticky Rolls. You start by mixing the master dough first, Let that rest overnight in the refrigerator, then the next day, pinch off a cantaloupe sized hunk-o-dough to make your Sticky Pecan Caramel Cinnamon Rolls! Return the rest to the refrigerator to use for another day.

1 3/4 cups lukewarm water
1 1/2 tbl instant yeast
1 1/2 tbl kosher salt (or 1 1/2 tsp table salt)
4 lg eggs, slightly beaten
1/2 cup honey
1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted
7 cups unbleached all-purpose flour

In a large bowl, mix together the eggs, water, honey, melted butter, yeast and salt. Stir well with a wooden spoon. Add in the flour. STIR, BABY STIR!!! Stir until you don’t see any more dry bits of flour (about a minute). Cover (not airtight) and stick it in the refrigerator overnight, or up to 4 days. The longer you let it fart around in the refrigerator (literally!), the better tasting the dough will be.

pssst….if you want, you can let it rise for 2 hours on the counter, pinch off the dough that you need to make your rolls. However, I’ve found that with only a 2-hour rise, the bread isn’t very flavorful. Still good, but definitely  not as good as if you had let it sit 1-4 days in the refrigerator.

NOTE: When you let the dough hang out in the refrigerator, it’s not going to “rise” like a normal dough


Sticky Pecan Caramel Cinnamon Rolls

Servings: Prep Time: Cook Time:
Screen Shot 2014-02-26 at 3.54.55 PM

adapted from Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day

The photos I have on this post was the book's recipe followed exactly. However, the recipe below is modified it a bit, increasing the amount of caramel and amount of filling, as I like my rolls to be oozing, dripping of the sweet cinnamon butter and sugar. Due to popular demand, I'm cutting back on the butter!  The recipe is as-is from the book!

Think of Cinnabon, that chain store found in every American mall, except EVEN BETTER.


The Dough
A cantaloupe sized chunk of the Master Dough (about 1.5 lbs)
The Gooey Sticky Caramel Topping
6 tbl unsalted butter, softened
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup brown sugar
30 pecan halves
The Heavenly Sweet Cinnamon Butter Filling
4 tbl unsalted butter, softened

1/4 cup sugar
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
1/2 cup chopped and toasted pecans
pinch of freshly ground black pepper


9" square or round cake pan

The first thing you need to do is take that master dough out of the refrigerator, grab a small cantalope sized chunk of dough. Return the rest of it to the refrigerator to use another time (psst...get the book for all the other recipes using this dough!). Generously flour your hands and the dough. Shape the dough into a ball by stretching the surface of the dough and tucking it to the bottom all around, rotating hte ball a quarter-turn as you go. This creates a taut, smooth surface. Let the dough rest, covered with a towel to take the chill off while you prepare rest of ingredients.

While the dough is unchilling, mix the topping and the filling.

FOR THE TOPPING: Cream together the butter, salt and sugar. Spread this topping evenly on the bottom of the cake pan. Scatter with pecan halves (I used chopped pecans in my photos).

FOR THE FILLING: Cream together all ingredients except the pecans. Set aside.

Dust your counter with flour and roll out the dough with a rolling pin to 1/8" thick rectangle. Try to get it 13" x 17"  I had trouble with the rectangle shape, so I we just rolled it into a large oval. Spread the sweet butter filling evenly on the surface. Scatter chopped pecans all over. Here is Andrew, the bad-ass baker boy at work. (hey, if your kid wants to eat sweets, make him cook or bake it himself - that's my rule!)

Roll it up, starting with the long side.

Flour your serrated knife and cut roll into 9 even pieces (square pan) or 8 pieces (round pan).

Set it in the pan on top of the caramel, cover with towel and rest for 1 hour

Preheat your oven to 350F. The book says to bake for 40 minutes, or until golden brown and well set in the center. But take a peek at the rolls around the 35 minute mark.

While still hot, run a knife round the edge of pan and invert immediately onto a plate. If you wait until it cools, the caramel will harden and it will be difficult to turn out.

YUM. Soft, pillowy dough. Sweet cinnamon and nutmeg butter dribbling down your chin. Sticky, gooey caramel. Crunchy pecans.

Wanna bite?


The Free Cookbook!

Ok, so now that I’ve seduced you all into sweet, sticky, submission, do as I say and enter the contest!

Jeff and Zoe have generously offered 4 free cookbooks to give away. Which is AWESOME, considering the book is sold out in many stores and they are in their 3rd printing. (try Amazon: Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day)

All you have to do is comment below and tell me which bread/pastry you would love to make from this book! The list of recipes is above. There are so many choices.

Random drawing takes place Friday, January 18th at 7pm. I’ll take submissions until then.

Good luck!


More No Knead!

The Original No Knead Bread

No Knead Pizza Dough: Pear & Gorgonzola Flatbread with Baby Arugula and Shaved Parmesan

No-Knead Nutella and Roasted Hazelnut Challah

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Comments 417

  1. Danielle

    And now I’ve made these, too. Very tasty, though I’m actually feeling a bit squicked by the bubbling over of liquid butter. I would make the dough and rolls again, but I personally would use less butter next time. Personal taste is all. I love having the dough in my fridge to just grab and play with, though!

  2. Mindy

    I made these yesterday…I agree, less butter next time, but very good, sweet but not hurting my teeth sweet. I’m waiting for my copy of the book so I know what to do with the rest of the yummy dough! (My husband was amused and curious by the caption…I’ll let him keep wondering…)

  3. Kitt

    I agree, the amount of butter was a little disconcerting to see bubbling away in my clear glass dish. The rolls were swimming in it. I was sure I was going to end up with a bowl of mush in a bath of butter. I did end up baking these more like 45 minutes, and miraculously they came out gorgeous.

    The cow-orkers did not complain about too much butter.

  4. SteamyKitchen

    Hey guys, I’m going to modify the recipe above to cut a little of the butter out. I might be in the minority on the bathing in butter issue!

    xo, jaden

    also, here’s a note from the author, Zoe with an answer to Michael’s question:

    Hi Michael,

    I’m so pleased you are trying the bread and sticky buns from Steamy Kitchen!!!! I think your idea to add some flour to the mix is very interesting! I’ve never tried it for this recipe but it is an age old trick when making puff pastry. You add a little flour to the butter when rolling it into the dough. In that recipe it is used to make the butter more pliable but it may just do the trick to keep it in place for the sticky buns??? Obviously you want to leave the flour out of the mixture that you put in the pan so that it will caramelize nicely and not be clouded by flour.

    Please stay in touch and let me know how they turn out! I’m going to try it as well.

    Great idea! Thanks, Zo

  5. Carolyn

    I have made both the cinnamon rolls and the nutella challah and am hooked. I NEED the book so I can make more!

  6. SteamyKitchen

    hmmm…where did Michael’s question go?

    Anyways, he asked if there was a way to make the butter mixture thicker, so that it didn’t all melt out of the roll.

  7. Chris

    I just made them (and the nutella bread earlier) and they are delicious, thanks so much for the recipe! but I agree that anyone who makes this should be warned: that is a LOT of butter. I’ll use less next time for certain.

  8. jm

    Challah, please.

    I find that the first day’s dough (using the recipe that was in the NY Times) ends up the biggest/tallest. Once I chill the dough, it never rises that high. Tastes good, though.

  9. Jeff Hertzberg


    This is Jeff Hertzberg, one of the co-authors of AB5. If you’re finding you’d like a little more lift in the stuff that’s chilled in the fridge, you may want to rest it longer than an hour once you form the rolls. Try 1 hour and 20 minutes for starters, and consider going up to about 1 hour and 45 minutes.

    And after five days, freeze this enriched dough into portions, it doesn’t keep well after that. But basically, Zoe’s pastries are pretty forgiving, and you can get away with quite a lot.

    Jeff Hertzberg

  10. Belle

    ok, everything looks great. Due to a combination of post-polio syndrom and fibromyalgia I cannot knead bread. My children have a gap in their taste education as to good breads, part of which I attribute to the over-large, over doughy bagel phenomenom. I distinctly remember my 80 year old grandmother kneading the equivalent of 8 challah loaves and no one can tell me that they weren’t “the best”. Barring nostagia, I am getting right to the challah recipe but the others look so good also! We are under a weather watch for 8-10 inches – there may a lot of bread getting started around here!

  11. Debbie g

    ONG everything looks so yummy!! I have made the NKB and just loved it. I have been making bread in our household for 35 years and now H won’t let me ever give it up. I love to try different recipies so that cookbook is on my list of things that I must get. Thanks for all the great recipes!!

  12. Randy P.

    Jaden — Zoe .. it’s apparent you both have great — buns. I want to make the
    Brioche — as it was my late sister-in-law’s favorite. Then — I want to learn how to
    make the Brioche Stickey Buns. Why — I’d be the hit of Louisiana. Thanks — randy

  13. Rosemary L

    Yum. Yum. I can’t even recall how I stumbled on this blog today but boy, am I glad I did! I’ve been on a cracker-making kick lately and have been meaning to move onto breads- I’ve been craving some yummy homemade carbs. Thanks for sharing such great recipes and what looks like a great book!

  14. laura

    Artisan bread in 5 has become one of my most used cookbooks. Today I used up the last of my batch of the regular master dough to make a baguette. I have a batch of
    deli-rye and sweet provencal flatbread with anise seeds doing their first rise. I just took a batch of homemade granola out of the oven so I can make the granola bread.
    I have made numerous batches of brioche. A week ago I made a brioche with homemade almond paste. My husband was suprised at how cake like the dough came out. I have not yet tried the challah, that is on my agenda for today.
    What I like is that I can make up a few different batches on my day off like today, then
    shape them and bake them after work.

  15. Zoe Francois

    Hi Laura,

    I’m so thrilled that you are enjoying the book and baking so much bread!

    Your comment here made my day!!!

    Thanks, Zoe Francois (co-author Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day)

  16. carotte

    It was the first time I ever attempted baking some rolls and those were delicious, and were a huge it at my family sunday lunch. I’ll be sure to make these again, and maybe pickup a copy of the book too.

  17. Ruth

    I was drooling on my keyboard and made these rolls. They were so awesome (pic on my blog) that I bought the book. Thanks for sharing the info.

  18. June Dillon

    Can’t wait to try the pecan cinnimon rolls, heck, can’t wait to try all the recipes. baking relieves stress for me. I will be looking forward to the free cookbooks. Thanks for such delicious treats. June

  19. June

    Hi Jaden, I am jut reading this post which really start with Deb from Taste and Tell. I saw the book in my recomendations from Amazon and decided to buy it. I can’t wait to get it so that I can make all the delish breads you all are talking about. Thanks again for your lovely site.

  20. Phil DeCicco

    Hey, thanks for the recipe to make cinnamon rolls. I live in Costa Rica and friends of ours have a bakery with the best cinnamon rolls I have ever had, and I have been wanting to learn how to make some myself. I will try this and see how it works! I also will try the standard recipe for french bread, as I have been baking a lot of that lately-but it is a bit time consuming . . . I have been learning a bit from Barry Harmon’s site on artisan bread baking, and am curious to see how this method works.

  21. Evalin


    It is a great bread recipe. The best is I don’t need to knead the dough. I modify the recipe instead water I put milk. I used the recipe for Cheese Bread, the taste just like store brought. I will use this recipe again. I am glad to find you and get a great recipe. Thank you so much!!!!!!!!! Nice picture!!!!!

  22. teri

    I’m hooked! realllllllly want brioche so I can make french toast! Pizza dough is something we make once a week so I’d love to try thiers. I just checked the book out at the library 2 weeks ago and it’s on my limited 2 buy list. Make a bakers dream come true good fairy!!!!

  23. Melissa Flipski

    Wow! I had heard about this book on NPR (Diane Rehm?) some time ago but was skeptical. I’m tired of everyone telling me that something only takes 5 minutes to do. Do you know that 1 million blocks of 5 minutes do not exist in my day?! HOWEVER, I was doing some research on the net b/c I wanted to make caramel, cinnamon sticky buns for a Christmas brunch. I found this and made it. I am CONVINCED! I love the sticky buns (and the whole family was scarfing them up like no tomorrow, even the Martha Stewart types)! Thank you for showing me the way. This book (and method of storing the dough in the fridge) is a must!!

  24. Sally Heitzman

    I have a very large oven. First, I have to determine how many dutch ovens I can fit in it. Second, I must borrow 3 more Dutch Ovens. Then I have to pull out all of my large bowls. Until then I am going to do the Nutella and Roasted Hazelnut Challah.

  25. raquel

    i saw your sticky buns and immediately went to to purchase the book. then i checked my pantry, got all the ingredients and made the master challah dough. this morning i accompanied my husband to the doctor for his ekg, stress tests and the whole time we were at the waiting room, we were talking about which one i should make first from the dough as soon as we get home. the nurses probably thought we were deranged ..or that my husband was really starved (hey, they said no food for 12 hours prior). anyways…i got home afet 4 hours and took a big chunk of dough from the refrigerator and made sticky buns. although these were not sticky since i opted not to make the caramel. i had pannetone paper mold that looked like somebody sat on them and not wanting to waste it (they’re darn expensive) i used it to bake the sticky buns. they are still sitting on the counter, waiting the 1 hour rise but i will post on my site as soon as they are ready. NEXT…the challah bread. i better start toasting those hazelnuts.

  26. Anthea Ponsetti

    I work at a preschool as a private Chef and I cook with the children everyday. This year we started breads together and I cannot believe the positive response I have gotten from my students. They absolutely hands on love the process of baking bread! I was so happy to come accross this easy no-knead recipe and I can’t wait to go back to work on Monday and share with them my new dicovery. I think we will have a ball working and creating breads out that one recipe. Thank you for this!!!! I think that when I do start the first one I would like to have them try are the chocolate and/or jam filled beignets. They sound so homey and delicious and I want them to see what a REAL doughnut should taste and look like!!! Thank you so much once again!

  27. Cheryl Spradlin

    I got this craving for Sticky Buns and I LOVE Cinnabon it looks just like what I have been craving. I work all the time I need something quick. Hubby says I need to gain some weight so Bread is the answer ha! ha! I can’t wait to try the recipe. Cheryl

  28. Eileen Hampton

    I’d like to try making the spinach and cheese calzone. No kneading and having dough in the refrigerator ready to use – what more could a busy mom ask for?

  29. Lesley

    Baguettes would be the first of many recipes I would bake, only because its first on the list and I am going to make them all.
    These master recipes allow a wide variety of taste, without mess, in minimum time, little cost and maximum convenience. I cant think how you could make it any easier for me, other than coming over to wash up when I finish baking.

  30. Steve Bluhm

    Can anyone tell me if homemade applesause could be used in place of about 1/3 of the butter in making the cinnamon rolls with or without pecans or raisins or walnuts or filberts?

    Can anyone tell me if boiling the raisins ahead of time would increase the dough volume substantially, like 50%?

  31. Mike Russell

    I have copied off the pizza/flatbread, basic bread and sticky buns. I’m an amateur gourmet cook; but, have held off on the baking part because of time – and maybe cause I’m chicken! However, your methods look interesting, and I’ve ALWAYS wanted to make pizza dough and sticky buns! The other ones that immediately catches my eye are the roasted garlic potato bread and raisin cinnamon bread. Here’s hopin’ I win!

  32. Gary

    The dough recipe is really great and very versatile! I love the cinnamon rolls and add just one ingredient to the filling…good quality dutch process chocolate powder (about 1 heaping Tablespoon full) for a flavor boost.

    Gary Actor,
    Sasebo, Japan

  33. Danielle

    Excellent post! Much appreciated. The mind reels at all the possibilities.

    I had a friend from Sweden who shared with me some amazing Scandinavian food. Ive been hooked ever since. I have to say Id most like to try the Limpa.

    Thanks, Danielle

  34. Jacquie

    I just found your yummy website, can’t wait to start baking(first I need to buy some flour!) We (Mom and me)will try the No Knead Bread first, sounds and looks(your photos are fantastic and make us drool) delicious! Hope ours come out as good as yours. Thanks for great photos and instructions.

  35. Victoria

    I made these today, and they were delicious. For some reason, my caramel topping didn’t come out all dark and gooey like yours did – it sort of soaked into the rolls, but it still tasted good.

    Just curious, how much butter did you use (before you changed the text back to the original recipe amounts)?

  36. Missy

    Jaden, you got me hooked on the no-knead sensation with this recipe! I just want to thank you, but I too have gained some weight as a result. 😉 I love, love, love these sticky buns and make them all the time (hence the extra weight) with rave reviews from even my Japanese mother who is quite persnickity about her sweet rolls. And I could never make homemade breads before! I have even experimeted with this dough and made an orange sticky bun with orange rind, sugar, honey and butter. Sooooo fantastic. I got the book (my new favorite cookbook) and have also made the nutella bread but made small knotted rolls instead of a whole loaf! Unbelievably delicious. So, thank you! But not for the extra pounds!
    p.s. you have beautiful website!

  37. Gwen

    Hey, just made these and they are wonderful! I’d just tried the Artisan bread, and my youngest dd flipped! I’m so happy! Now to have her try these when she gets home! LOL! Thank you!!

  38. Tan-Na

    I used the master dough to make pork floss buns, cheese sticks, and chocolate “croissants.” The dough was surprisingly easy to manage. I’ll add a water roux next time to keep the bread soft (although a few zaps in the microwave could do it, but still–for those naughty-bite moments). Thanks 🙂

  39. leng

    hi there! gosh you made me so droll with your recipes haaay…i love easy and tasty food heheh! but of course i also love standing for a long time in the kitchen and making a masterpiece 🙂 i will try to make this cinnamon rolls of yours. im actually intimated in making breads because i tried already a couple of times and it failed but im willing to try it again since you make it sound so easy and hassle-free! cant wait to make my own dinner rolls! oh thanks so much!

    more power! and thumbs up for your cookbook! will order soon! cheers!

  40. Ross

    I’m going to have to vote for the Brioche Filled with Chocolate Ganache. I’ll let you know how it turns out after Thaksgiving!

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