These Pull Apart Cinnamon Rolls are guaranteed to become your new favorite 5 ingredient breakfast recipe! They’re so easy to make and incredibly sweet and delicious. Starting with canned Pillsbury cinnamon rolls makes this recipe easy enough to make anytime. But they’re also impressive enough to serve for a holiday brunch!

pull apart cinnamon rolls drizzled with cream cheese icing on plate

There are recipes I love, then there are recipes I really love, and this is one of those recipes that I really love! The idea came from the popularity of these Cheesy Pull Apart Rolls around the holidays last year. And this Salted Caramel Monkey Bread recipe that I make every year on Christmas morning.

I decided to take the idea of the pull apart rolls and make them into individual monkey bread muffins. The result lead to one of my new favorite breakfast recipes!

I tested this recipe several times with different additions. I tried adding small cubes of cream cheese, chocolate chips, caramel bits and just leaving them plain. My taste-testers voted, and the response was unanimous, they’re all delicious, but the ones with the caramel bits are the best!

The pairing of sweet cinnamon rolls with gooey bits of caramel baked into the rolls, topped with a generous drizzle of cream cheese icing, oh my gosh, you just have to try these rolls for yourself! I guarantee that you won’t be able to eat just one! There is a delicious combination or textures in each roll, from crunchy bits on top, to soft and gooey pieces inside.

In addition to the scrumptious flavor and tasty texture, these rolls are so easy to make! With just 5 ingredients, 3 of which you probably already have on hand, you can prep these rolls in just 10 minutes for a sweet treat, or easy breakfast recipe anytime!

ingredients for pull apart cinnamon rolls on white wood board

Ingredients

For the ingredient quantities, scroll to the recipe card at the bottom of this post.

  • Cinnamon rolls – you’ll need two 12.4 ounce cans of Pillsbury Cinnamon Rolls. You want the traditional rolls that come with 8 in a can, not the Grands rolls that are much bigger. They’re made differently and will be more difficult to cut into small cubes to pull apart. I recommend the cinnamon rolls that come with the cream cheese icing. But I’ve also made these rolls now with the cinnamon rolls with “original icing” and they’re also delicious!
  • Unsalted butter
  • Granulated sugar
  • Ground cinnamon
  • Caramel bits – I found these at Walmart in the baking section, near the chocolate chips and other baking chips. If you can’t find them at a local store, you can simply buy whole caramels and dice them up into small pieces. Alternatively, you can leave out the caramel bits, or if you want to use another addition to these cinnamon rolls, refer to the additions and substitutions section below for other ideas.

Instructions

I’ve included step by step photos below to make this recipe super easy to follow at home. For the full detailed recipe instructions, scroll to the recipe card at the bottom of this post.

  1. Cut each cinnamon roll into 9 pieces.
  2. Pull the pieces apart on a cutting board.
  3. Melt butter in a large bowl, then add the pieces of cinnamon rolls, along with the cinnamon, sugar and caramel bits.
  4. Gently stir all of the ingredients together, using your hands or a spatula, until each piece of cinnamon roll is coated in the cinnamon, sugar and butter.
  1. Spray a muffin tin with cooking spray, then divide the cinnamon roll pieces between each of the compartments in the muffin pan. You’ll want approximately 6 pieces in each hole of the muffin tin. 
  2. Bake in a preheated 400°F oven for 12 minutes, or until golden brown.
  3. Remove the rolls from the oven and wait 5 minutes. Use a butter knife, if needed, around the edges to remove the pull apart cinnamon rolls from the muffin tin. Place them on a large serving platter or plate. Heat the cream cheese icing that comes with the cinnamon rolls (in the container they came in, but without the metal lid) for 20 seconds. Remove the icing from the microwave and use a spoon to drizzle it over the cinnamon rolls.
cream cheese icing drizzled from spoon onto pull apart cinnamon rolls on a plate

Recipe tips

  • Always place the muffin tin on a rimmed baking sheet before placing the rolls in the oven. This way, if any of the caramel bits ooze out of the muffin tin, they land on the baking sheet and not in the bottom of your oven!
  • This recipe can easily be doubled for a large gathering, like Christmas or Thanksgiving. Simply click the 2X button in the recipe card below and the ingredient amounts will automatically update for the new serving size.
  • Make sure to pull apart the pieces of cinnamon rolls before tossing them with the butter, cinnamon and sugar, so that each side gets coated in the flavorful ingredients.
  • You can store leftover pull apart cinnamon rolls in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. Because the rolls are topped with cream cheese icing, they should not be stored at room temperature. To reheat leftover cinnamon rolls, place them in an air fryer at 400°F for 3 minutes, or in the microwave for 30-60 seconds.
pull apart cinnamon rolls on plate

Additions and substitutions

While I love these cinnamon rolls with the addition of caramel bits, if you’d like to switch things up, you can try tossing the rolls with any of these delicious additions!

Alternatively, you can leave out the caramel bits for a more traditional cinnamon roll.

  • Chocolate chips – replace the caramel bits with 1/2 cup chocolate chips.
  • Diced apples – peel a good baking apple, like a Gala or Granny Smith, then dice it into 1/4 inch pieces and toss 1/2 cup of apple pieces with the cinnamon rolls before baking.
  • Cream cheese – remove a 4 ounce block of cream cheese from it’s packaging and place it on a cutting board. Place the cream cheese in the freezer for 30-60 minutes. This will help it firm up so it’s easier to cut into 1/4 inch cubes. Once the cream cheese is diced into small pieces, toss it in with the cinnamon rolls, butter, cinnamon and sugar.
  • Butterscotch – instead of caramel bits, use butterscotch morsels, for a similar flavor with a brown sugar twist.

What to serve them with

These cinnamon roll monkey bread muffins are delicious on their own for breakfast. But if you’d like to make a brunch feast, try serving them with bacon and eggs!

pull apart cinnamon rolls on plate drizzled with cream cheese icing

More easy recipes

Using canned crescent roll dough, or biscuit dough, makes these other recipes just as easy to make as these Pull Apart Cinnamon Rolls! Be sure to bookmark and try them all!

pull apart cinnamon rolls on plate topped with cream cheese icing
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Pull Apart Cinnamon Rolls

These Pull Apart Cinnamon Rolls are guaranteed to become your new favorite 5 ingredient breakfast recipe! They're so easy to make and incredibly sweet and delicious. Starting with canned Pillsbury cinnamon rolls makes this recipe easy enough to make anytime. But they're also impressive enough to serve for a holiday brunch!

Ingredients

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 400°F.
  • Cut each cinnamon roll into 9 pieces, and pull the pieces apart.
  • Melt the butter in a large bowl and add the pieces of cinnamon roll to the bowl.
  • Add the sugar, cinnamon and caramel bits, and toss until the cinnamon roll dough is evenly coated in the butter, cinnamon and sugar.
  • Spray a muffin tin with cooking spray.
  • Add 6 pieces of the coated cinnamon rolls to each compartment in the muffin tin.
  • Place the muffin tin on a rimmed baking sheet in case any caramel drips over the muffin tin while the rolls are baking.
  • Place the rolls in the oven to bake for 12 minutes.
  • Remove from the oven and transfer the cinnamon rolls to a large plate or serving tray.
  • Heat the cream cheese frosting in the microwave for 20 seconds (in the container they came in, but without the metal lid).
  • Use a spoon to drizzle the cream cheese frosting over the pull apart cinnamon rolls.

Notes

    • This recipe can easily be doubled for a large gathering, like Christmas or Thanksgiving. Simply click the 2X button above and the ingredient amounts will automatically update for the new serving size.
    • Make sure to pull apart the pieces of cinnamon rolls before tossing them with the butter, cinnamon and sugar, so that each side gets coated in the flavorful ingredients.
    • You can store pull apart cinnamon roll leftovers  in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. To reheat leftover cinnamon rolls, place them in an air fryer at 400°F for 3 minutes, or in the microwave for 30-60 seconds.
    • You can leave out the caramel bits, if you’d like, or replace them with 1/2 cup chocolate chips, small diced apples or butterscotch morsels.
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Nutrition Facts

Calories 309kcal (15%)Carbohydrates 44g (15%)Protein 3g (6%)Fat 14g (22%)Saturated Fat 9g (45%)Polyunsaturated Fat 1gMonounsaturated Fat 2gCholesterol 21mg (7%)Sodium 492mg (21%)Potassium 24mg (1%)Fiber 0.1gSugar 24g (27%)Vitamin A 241mg (5%)Vitamin C 0.05mgCalcium 18mg (2%)Iron 1mg (6%)
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