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Cinnamon Squares

  • Author: Meagan


Now known in our house as ‘breakfast baklava’!!  I’m always drawn to ‘family recipes’ and this was a gift from Joanna Gaines in her book, ‘Magnolia Table’.  They are a labor of love, but one that results in pure bliss – my only (rather significant?) change to the recipe was to cut the original 2 cups of sugar in the dough down to a half cup – I’ve understandably left the filling alone – enjoy!



For the Dough;

1/4 c. warm water AND 2 packets (14 g total) active dry yeast

1/2 c. sugar

1 1/4 c. milk, warmed AND 1/2 c. butter, melted (but not hot!)

2 eggs, beaten AND 1 t. kosher salt

~6 c. flour

For the Filling;

2 c. pecan pieces AND 2 c. brown sugar AND 1 c. cold butter, cubed AND 1 T. cinnamon

For the Egg Wash;

1 egg AND 1 T. cream


In a large (warm) bowl, stir together the warm water, yeast and 1 tablespoon of sugar taken from the measured half cup.  Leave this to sit for a few minutes until it starts to bubble – the foaming will be obvious.  Add the remaining sugar, milk, melted butter, eggs and salt and mix with a wooden spoon until combined. Add in the flour – (I started with 3 cups, stirred well, then continued with half cup increments).  I used the full 6 cups but used my hands to work in the final 2, half cup additions.  Once the dough has come together, rub some softened butter on the top of the dough and the sides of the bowl, loosely cover it and set it in a warm place to rest for 1 hour.  It will rise, but probably not as much as any of your regular bread.

While the dough is resting, add the 4 filling ingredients to your food processor and pulse until a paste forms – mine was a little more on the sandy side, but my butter was super chilled.

Preheat the oven to 350, line a large baking sheet with parchment and clear a large counter space.  If you have an extra set of hands handy to hold onto parchment, then I’d recommend laying some down – when you turn out the dough it’s going to be covered in both flour and butter and the parchment really helps in the clean up!

Turn the dough out onto your well floured counter (or parchment on the counter) and roll it out into a large rectangle, approximately 16 x 24 inches (mine was larger).  Squish, spoon or press on about 2/3’s of the filling over the entire surface, then carefully take the short end of the dough rectangle and fold it over so that it exactly lays on top of the other half.  None of this will be perfect, it doesn’t matter.  Roll out your new layered rectangle into a larger rectangle (approximately 14 x 16 inches), press the rest of the filling onto one half, fold it over from a short end and roll it out one more time.  It’s easiest to bake if this final (somewhat even looking) rectangle is of a similar or slightly smaller size than your baking pan.  I used my largest pan, but I really gave the dough a good roll each time.

Cut the final layered dough rectangle into 24 (or so) equal(ish) pieces using a sharp knife, a pizza cutter or a metal dough scraper (what I used).  Lift each slice onto your prepared baking sheet and arrange them so that they’re touching.  Whisk together the egg and cream in a small bowl with a fork and brush all of the cinnamon squares with the wash.  Bake for 25 to 30 minutes until the squares are puffy, golden brown, and oozing goodness.  Serve as you wish, but warm is a must!



From Meagan's Kitchen


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