Cinnamon Roll Cake

I once had a roommate who was allergic to cinnamon. Can you believe it? A life without cinnamon. When she told the rest of us we were aghast. 

No snickerdoodles? 

No pumpkin pie? 

No monkey bread?

No cinnamon rolls????

She said that since she knew she couldn't have these treats, they just weren't a temptation. That's when I learned that some people are much, much stronger than I am. Just the heavenly scent of Cinnabon makes that corner of the mall one of my favorites. I buy Costco-sized containers of cinnamon and put it in everything I can, even savory recipes. If a dessert has cinnamon in it, there's a pretty good chance that I will love it.

Like this cake recipe. I don't know if I ever had a doubt in my mind that the two of us would be good friends, and I was right. Plenty of cinnamon goodness, with the slight tang of cream cheese, all rolled together with fluffy cake. It is faster and easier to make than real cinnamon rolls, and still delivers a great cinnamon taste. I love how it looks drizzled with glaze and sliced into pieces. It would be the perfect pick-me-up or thank you for the cinnamon lover in your life. 

Especially if that cinnamon lover is you.

Cinnamon Roll Cake


For the filling
1 package (8 oz) cream cheese
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 T cinnamon
1 large egg

For the cake
3 large eggs
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/3 cup water
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract

For the glaze
1 cup powdered sugar
4-5 tsp milk
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract


Making the cinnamon filling
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line a 15x10 jelly-roll pan with parchment paper and spray lightly with non-stick spray. 

2. In a medium bowl, using an electric mixer set on medium speed, beat cream cheese, sugar and cinnamon until smooth. Beat in egg. Pour filling into pan; spread evenly. (This is easiest to do with the back of a teaspoon.) Refrigerate.

Making the cake
1. Meanwhile, in a large bowl, using an electric mixer set on high speed, beat eggs until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Gradually add sugar and continue beating until thickened, about 2 minutes longer.

2. In a medium bowl, combine flour and baking soda.

3. On low speed, gradually blend flour mixture into egg mixture, beating just until combined. Add water and vanilla; beat until combined.

4. Pour batter over cinnamon filling; spread evenly to cover. 

5. Bake until cake springs back when pressed in center, about 20 minutes.

6. Invert cake onto the back of a baking sheet and carefully peel away parchment paper. Cut cake into 5 lengthwise strips. (A pizza cutter works well for this.)

7. Roll up one strip jelly-roll fashion. (You must do this while the cake is warm) Place cut side down on a serving platter. With filling facing in, wrap remaining strips around the first strip to form one large spiral. Let cool.

Making the glaze
1. In a medium mixing bowl, combine powdered sugar, milk and vanilla; stir until mixture forms a thick glaze. Drizzle over top of cake. Let stand until glaze sets. Cut into wedges and serve. (This cake is best served within a day of making it.)

Recipe Source: Creative Cook's Kitchen, Cakes and Pies

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