Who does not like a delicious Cinnamon Bun?

Sweden and Finland went that far in being obsessed with them that they have a Cinnamon Bun Day (Kanelbullens dag / Korvapuustipäivä) in the calendar when they celebrate this pastry on 4 October each year. Even though it is an annual theme day created for marketing purposes in 1999 by Kaeth Gardestedt, I always been obsessed with countries who dedicted a day for a type of food -regardless of the motif behind it-. As these thematic food celebration days are quite popular in the Nordic countries, it became one of the reasons why I always wanted to live there - this became a reality by the time spent in Sweden then became permanent by moving to Finland.

You can find it in many forms and by many names in different countries: , and it is part of the cuisine of other countries outside the Nordics too, like Austria, Germany and North America.

Different names for the cinnamon bun in different countries:

  • Sweden - kanelbulle
  • Denmark - kanelsnegl
  • Norway - kanelsnurr, kanelbolle, skillingsbolle
  • Finland - korvapuusti
  • Iceland - kanilsnúður
  • Estonia - kaneelirull
  • Austria & Germany - Zimtschnecke
  • Hungary - fahéjas csiga

Try this recipe and get your home filled with the wonderful scent of freshly baked Cinnamon buns that you can enjoy for breakfast and at your coffee breaks during the day!



  • 600 g flour
  • 200 ml milk - warm (not hot)
  • 200 ml water - warm (not hot)
  • 100g butter - softened
  • 50 g sugar
  • 1 ½ tsp salt
  • 2 tsp dry yeast


  • 150 g soft brown sugar
  • 100 g butter - softened
  • 2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • ½ ground cardamom (optional)


  • 1 egg - beaten for egg wash
  • Pearl sugar (optional)

Sugar syrup (optional)

  • 80 g soft brown sugar
  • 80 g water


Pre-heat the oven to 210 °C (no fan)


  1. Pour the warm milk, warm water and the sugar to a mixing bowl.
  2. Add the yeast and wait about 5 minutes until it activates. It is ready when you see a foamy and bubbly yeast floating on the top of the liquids.
  3. Add the salt, softened butter and flour and use a hand mixer with dough hooks to combine the ingredients. Keep mixing until you get a dough with a smooth texture that easily comes off the wall of the bowl.
  4. Rest the dough for 30 minutes on your countertop covered by the mixing bowl. It will double in size (if your kitchen is cold, this can take longer).


  1. Mix the brown sugar and the spice(s).

Sugar syrup (optional)

  1. Combine the water and sugar in a pot.
  2. Simmer it while stirring until the liquid reduces a bit and it gets a thicker consistency.

Shaping & baking

  1. Split the dough in half.
  2. Roll the first portion of the dough into a maximum ½ cm thick rectangular.
  3. Calculate 3 thirds of the dough along with the long edge, if it helps, mark the 2 dividing lines by gently pressing the surface.
  4. Smear half of the softened butter onto ⅔ of the dough surface and sprinkle half of the the cinnamon-brown sugar filling on top (leave the remaining ⅓ clear).
  5. Envelope folding: fold the clear dough third to the middle (until it touches the other marking line), then fold the other third on top. This way you will get a rectangular shaped, filled dough, with 3 layers.
  6. Cut the dough into about 3 cm wide equal stripes.
  7. Cut each stipe into half in a way, that you leave a few millimetres on top still jointed.
  8. Grab one of the stripes, keep the jointed part on top, hold the end of the 2 split sides and twist them a couple of times. Hold both end of the twist and roll it up into a snail while tucking the lose end underneath.
  9. Repeat this with the other half of the dough too.
  10. Place the rolls onto a lined baking tray and let them rest for 30 minutes (or until double in side).
  11. Before baking, give them an egg-wash and sprinkle them with pearl sugar (optional).
  12. Bake the rolls for about 15-20 minutes (depends on the size) or until they are medium/dark golden brown.
  13. If you want to use the sugar syrup that will give that sticky coating to your buns, wait a few minutes after baking then brush the sugar syrup over the buns while they are still warm.


You can shape the dough the classic way by top the single layer dough with he butter and fillings then rolling it up and slicing it into swirls. For the Finnish korvapuusti shape: stand the dough swirls on their sides and press them down in the middle so the swirls become slightly horizontal and visible from top.


You can prepare the dough and keep it proofing in the fridge overnight - it is not only practical but it improves the flavours too!

Kanelbulle - Korvapuusti - Cinnamon Bun - Photo by © Reka Csulak Three Pod Studio

Kanelbulle - Korvapuusti - Cinnamon Bun - Photo by © Reka Csulak Three Pod Studio

Imagine the combination of your favourite bakes... I made your wishes come true by combining a Cinnamon bun + a Semla bun into one delicious treat = the Cinnamon Bun Semla! You're welcome! :)

Cinnamon Bun Semla - Photo by © Reka Csulak (Click on the image for the Semla recipe)

Did YOU try this recipe?


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