About Kelsey

Kelsey Banfield of The Naptime Chef believes you don't have to give up cooking and eating great food just because you have kids. Her first book, The Naptime Chef: Fitting Great Food Into Family Life came out in March, 2012.

Cinnamon-Pecan Rolls with Vanilla Bean Glaze

Editor’s Note: With the arrival of Clara, I’m taking a short maternity blogging break. I’m excited to welcome several guest writers, among them, my friend and fellow mother, Kelsey, The Naptime Chef. Welcome, Kelsey!

For many years I was under the false impression that baking cinnamon rolls at home was extremely difficult. I am not sure why, I just felt certain I could never replicate the ooey, gooey, cinnamon-y goodness I found in the rolls from our local bakery. Then I took a great baking class on working with yeast and discovered a simple method for rolls that made the whole idea of making them far more accessible.

Once I mastered the basic formula (which, thankfully, including kneading with a mixer!) I started playing with the flavors. I got the idea to add cinnamon to the actual dough from the amazing Balthazar cinnamon rolls I used to buy at my favorite Upper West Side coffee shop.

Then, I added a dash of nutmeg to round out the warm spices, chopped pecans for texture, and topped everything with a sticky vanilla bean glaze. The resulting rolls were soft and chewy with just the right amount of nutty crunch.

All photos by The Naptime Chef

For my family of breakfast eaters, these have quickly become our go-to Saturday morning breakfast. I prepare the dough after everyone is safely asleep the night before, letting it rise while we watch a movie, then have them ready to bake the moment everyone wakes up. Once they are out of the oven we barely have the patience to let them cool before it is time to dig-in.


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