• Cooking Time: 25
  • Servings: 8
  • Preparation Time:


Yet another Cook's Illustrated recipe. A 9" round cake pan is recommended for this. The recipe is multi-staged, but not too complicated. They came out great the first time I ever made them.


  • 1 tbsp unsalted butter, melted for greasing the pan
  • 3/4 c packed ( 5 1/4 oz) dark brown sugar
  • 1/4 c (1 3/4 oz) granulated sugar
  • 2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 tsp ground cloves
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp unsalted butter, melted
  • 2 1/2 c (12 1/2 oz) unbleached all-purpose flour, plus additional flour for work surface
  • 2 tbsp granulated sugar
  • 1 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 1/4 c buttermilk
  • 6 tbsp (3/4 stick) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
  • 2 tbsp cream cheese, softened
  • 2 tbsp buttermilk
  • 1 c (4 oz) confectioners sugar


  • Adjust an oven rack to the upper-middle position and heat the oven to 425 degrees.
  • Pour 1 tbsp of the melted butter into a 9-inch nonstick cake pan; brush to coat the pan.
  • Spray a wire cooling rack with nonstick cooking spray; set aside.
  • FOR THE CINNAMON-SUGAR FILLING: Combine the sugars, spices and salt in a small bowl.
  • Add 1 tbsp of the melted butter and stir with a fork until the mixture resembles wet sand; set the filling mixture aside.
  • FOR THE BISCUIT DOUGH: Whisk the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a large bowl.
  • Whisk the buttermilk and 2 tbsp of melted butter in a measuring cup or small bowl.
  • Add the liquid to the dry ingredients and stir with a wooden spoon until the liquid is absorbed (the dough will look very shaggy), about 30 seconds.
  • Transfer the dough to a lightly floured work surface and knead until just smooth and no longer shaggy.
  • Pat the dough with your hands into a 12x9-inch rectangle.
  • Brush the dough with 2 tbsp of melted butter. Sprinkle evenly with the filling, leaving a 1/2" border of plain dough around the edges.
  • Press the filling firmly into the dough.
  • Using a bench scraper, loosen the dough from the work surface.
  • Starting at the long side, roll the dough, pressing lightly, to form a tight log.
  • Pinch the seam to seal.
  • Roll the log seam-side down and cut it evenly into 8 pieces.
  • With you hand, slightly flatten each piece of dough to seal the open edges and keep the filling in place.
  • Place 1 roll in the center of the prepared nonstick pan, then place the remaining 7 rolls around the perimeter of the pan.
  • Brush with the remaining 2 tbsp melted butter.
  • Bake until the edges of the buns are golden brown, 23 to 25 minutes.
  • Use an offset metal spatula to loosen the buns from the pan.
  • Cool on rack about 5 minutes before icing.
  • While the buns are cooling, line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper (for easy cleanup); set the rack with the buns over the baking sheet.
  • Whisk the cream cheese and buttermilk in a large nonreactive bowl until thick and smooth (the mixture will look like cottage cheese at first). Sift the confectioners sugar over the mixture; whisk until a smooth glaze forms, about 30 seconds.
  • Spoon the glaze evenly over the buns; serve immediately.

Author Credit: Cook's Illustrated

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