Mardi Gras: King Cake Style Cinnamon Roll Ring

King Cake Style Cinnamon Roll Ring from the Lunchbox Season

MARDI GRAS! It’s Fat Tuesday, and, to celebrate, we’ll be having breakfast for dinner….not just any breakfast…but, possibly the sweetest and tastiest breakfast-for-dinner imaginable…Cinnamon Rolls!  Since we wanted to continue with our King Cake making tradition, we decided to form our rolls into a Cinnamon Roll Ring that we could top off in King Cake Style. Of course, the recipe’s bound to be great year round.


[King Cake Style] Cinnamon Roll Ring

An amazing cinnamon roll in a ring you can eat all the time or bling up for Mardi Gras with sugars and a hidden treat.
Author: Roseanne Carrara, The Lunchbox Season



  • 1/2 c milk
  • 1/2 c unsalted butter
  • 1/2 c warm water
  • 2 1/4 tsp [1 envelope] INSTANT yeast
  • 1/3 c sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 4 c all purpose flour


  • 3/4 c dark brown sugar
  • 3 tbs your best cinnamon
  • [we've also added dashes of cardamom ginger, or orange zest occasionally]
  • 1/2-2/3 c finely chopped nuts OPTIONAL
  • pinch salt


  • 1-2 tbs melted butter on hand for the preparation


  • 125 g [4 oz 1/2 package] light cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1/2 c unsalted butter room temperature
  • 1 tbs whipping cream
  • 1 tbs corn syrup or honey
  • 1 c sifted icing sugar
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla organic lemon, or rum extract

King Cake Styling

  • 2-3 tbs coloured icing sugars
  • gold-wrapped chocolate coins



  • Melt the butter and the milk in a small saucepan or in the microwave and cool slightly.
  • In the bowl of a mixer, with a paddle attachment, mix water, yeast, sugar, and eggs at low speed until combined.
  • Add the salt, 1 c flour, and half of the melted butter/milk combo until just comined.
  • Add 1 c flour and the rest of the melted buter/milk combo until just combined.
  • Switch to the dough hook.
  • Slowly incorporate 2 cups flour and knead on low speed for a minute or two until the dough is smooth and forms into a ball.
  • Place the ball of dough into a large buttered bowl and cover with plastic wrap.
  • Leave in a dark warm spot for 90 minutes or until doubled.

Filling Preparation

  • While the dough is rising, whisk together the filling ingredients until well combined.

Ring Preparation

  • Pat risen dough down gently and turn onto a lightly floured surface.
  • Use a rolling pin to create a large rectangle, about 12 inches tall by 16 inches long/wide.
  • Use a pastry brush to cover the surface (except about .25 in around the edges) with a bit of melted butter.
  • Sprinkle the filling out over the dough, leaving about a .5 in border on all of the edges.
  • Roll the dough to form a 16 in long cylinder.
  • Moisten the top with a bit of water to seal.
  • On a parchment-lined baking tray, form the cylinder into a large ring.
  • Join the edges of the ring with a bit more water, or just use this as your first "slice."
  • Using a sharp knife, in .5- to 1-inch measures, make slices down through the ring, leaving the lower .5 inch of the cylinder in tact.
  • [See images below]
  • Make sure that you create an even number of sliced pieces.
  • Gently twist and stagger the connected slices to the left and right in a flower burst pattern.
  • You can use your knife to free any bits of the bottom that you need to maneuver to and fro.
  • Cover shaped ring with plastic wrap and place in a dark, warm spot for 90 minutes until doubled once again.

Icing Preparation

  • In a mixer, blend butter and cream cheese until silky smooth
  • Incorporate cream, syrup, and extract.
  • Slowly incorporate icing sugar by the heaping tablespoon until smooth.
  • [You may choose to add more icing sugar than called for in the recipe, but keep it thick!]
  • Cover and Refrigerate.

Baking & Decorating

  • Heat oven to 350.
  • Bake the ring for 25-30 minutes.
  • Remove the ring on the parchment to a wire rack.
  • Cool for 15 minutes.
  • Spread thick icing over top of ring as desired.
  • It may melt a bit and become slightly runny. This is okay!
  • Shake coloured sugars in a spoon in 2-3 in wide bands around the ring.
  • Before serving, tuck a chocolate covered coin below each person's slice of ring.



Risen Baked Iced & Decorated


If you liked this post, you’re sure to love our King Cake 2 Ways and our Carrot “King Cake”:
king cake collage  Carrot King Cake


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