Kanelbullar (Swedish Cinnamon Buns)

While in Gothenburg last year I think I had a Kanelbullar every day. When it’s cold and windy outside sinking your teeth into one of these alongside a hot cup of coffee is just perfect. Slightly sticky, full of cinnamon and normally covered with nibbed sugar you can smell them before you see them in the cafés of Sweden. After trying a few different recipes I have come up with my own Kanelbullar recipe; the ideal balance of bread, wholesomeness and sweetness.

Kanelbullar, Swedish Cinnamon Buns
You will need (for 12 Kanelbullar):

  • 40g butter
  • 225ml milk
  • 7g sachet fast action yeast
  • 30g caster sugar
  • Pinch salt
  • 250g wholemeal flour
  • 250g strong white bread flour

For the filling

  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 1 tbsp caster sugar
  • 2 tsp ground cinnamon


  • 1 egg, beaten, for glazing
  • 12 paper cupcake cases

Coffee and KanelbullarHeat the butter and milk together until the butter has melted and the milk is warm.

While the milk is heating mix together the flours, yeast, sugar and salt in a large bowl or mixing bowl.

Pour the warm milk into the flour bowl and mix well until it has formed a smooth dough.

Cover the bowl and prove for 30 minutes.

Knead the dough for five minutes or so then divide into two equal sized pieces. Roll each piece into a rectangle.

Mix the ingredients for the filling together until smooth then spread the mixture evenly over both rectangles.

Roll each rectangle up along the long edge so you have two logs. Cut each log into six pieces so you end up with 12 buns. Put each bun into a case then cover and prove for another 30 minutes.

Preheat an oven to 220C. Brush each bun with beaten egg then bake for 8-10 minutes or until golden brown and make a hollow sound when you tap the bottom.

Torn open Kanelbullar
I have to say that spreading the buttery, sugary cinnamon mix over the dough is one of the most satisfying things ever. The smell as they bake is just fantastic; a combination of bread, cake and cinnamon. They are best eaten while still warm from the oven, or warmed up again for breakfast with some hot tea or coffee, or in the afternoon with a good book and a mug of hot chocolate. Anytime, it seems, is ideal for enjoying these. A little bit of fika in your own home.


  1. says

    Oh man, I love, love, live cinnamon rolls. I’ve never had a kanelbullar, but they look similar to an oversized cinnamon roll…which means I need these in my life. Looks delicious!!

  2. says

    A friend used to make me something similar – would love to know if this is the same recipe! I will give them a try some weekend soon!

  3. says

    i LOVE this sort of pastry. can cinnamon buns be called pastries? regardless, this recipe looks wonderful and worth every moment of effort.

  4. says

    I’ve been wanting to make these for ages!! I really must get onto it when autumn finally arrives. They look so good Caroline 🙂

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