If you're short on time and short on green, this is the perfect way to satisfy the collective sweet tooth of a large family or a lot of dinner guests and look like Martha Stewart in the process; albeit a really ugly, butch, brunette version of her, but you get the idea. This isn't my best cinnamon bun recipe, meaning I do know how to make cinnamon buns from scratch, but I've yanked this particular trick out of my sleeve on occasion when I'm in need of a quick, cheap fix.
You shouldn't be too proud to take shortcuts, they can be your lifeline when you're in "headless chicken" mode. Trust me, I've been there countless times.
Thick Vanilla Frosting
1 cup butter (or other shortening)
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
4 cups powdered sugar (sifted)
4 tablespoons milk
Beat together butter and vanilla for 30 seconds medium speed with an electric mixer. Add 2 cups of powdered sugar a bit at a time while beating. Then add 2 tablespoons milk. Slowly add in the rest of the powdered sugar and the rest of the milk until you get the right thickness for your frosting.
Okay, so now that we've covered the ingredients, we'll get onto how to create the cheapest cinnamon buns of all time. Still with me? Good.
Okay, maybe not THIS golden brown, (I forgot about them, whoops) and they drooped on me which sucks. I've been making them this way for a while and the only method I've discovered that will keep them from drooping is to pack them really close together in a deep dish... but then they don't get done evenly so it's a trade-off. *Sigh*
Fail. At least they tasted good.
Whatever. Here's the recipe for ease of reference.
Shortcut Sin Buns
2 tubes of bargain brand homestyle or buttermilk biscuits
1 tub of vanilla frosting, any brand (You can even make it yourself)
Give or take about 1 Cup of Dark Brown Sugar
1/2 to 2/3 Cup of Cinnamon
How to make it:
Preheat the oven to 400 F or whatever the tubes say to bake the biscuits at.
Lay down a sheet of wax paper over your work surface, or you'll have a lot of cleanup afterwards. Trust me on this.
In a separate bowl, mix the brown sugar and cinnamon; make sure it's blended well.
Take two biscuits and roll them out into a long, thin strip. Lay the strip down onto the wax paper and flatten it. Use a spoon to fill the strip with the cinnamon-sugar mix, spreading it evenly.
Carefully roll the strip up into a bun-like thing.
When you have them all rolled, use whatever cinnamon-sugar mix you have leftover to sprinkle over the top of the buns.
Arrange them in a greased baking dish and bake until golden-brown. They may come apart, even if you think you pinched them closed really tight. It happens to the best of us.
While they're still warm, spread the icing over them generously.
Eat, drink lots of milk with them and enjoy.