Rainy Day Cinnamon Bun Cake (Kanelsneglskage)


Adapted from Lil’ Luna

It was raining yesterday, and the rain sounds lovely in my apartment, drip-dropping on my roof
(I live on the fourth floor, so some of my walls are made of roof!).

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Rainy Autumn days (even if it is, technically, still Summer? Or at least it was still August on Sunday! September is definitely an Autumn month.. no? I can’t believe September is here already…) always make me crave cinnamon buns. Truth be told, I crave cinnamon buns most of the time; we’re big on cinnamon in Scandinavia. In Denmark, cinnamon buns are called kanelsnegle – ‘cinnamon snails’ – because of their shape (obviously 😉 ), and while I have made them a lot, they take aaaaages, with the rising of the dough, and the rolling out… So I rarely make them these days, even though they really are worth the fuss. Enter: the cinnamon bun cake.

I printed this recipe out to test about a week ago, and a rainy Sunday afternoon seemed the perfect time to make something sweet, rich and cinnamony. Oh and easy!

Although I did have some trouble with the swirling of the cinnamon-sugar-butter gloop – it just wouldn’t swirl for me. So I will have to practice my swirling, because it really does make for a more beautiful-looking cake (I may try adding a tbsp more butter next time, to make the filling a little runnier, or leave out the 2 tbsp flour – I’ll let you know how this goes!). But man, it tastes good just the same – sweet, buttery, cinnamony, just like a cinnamon bun with more of the filling! I’m definitely a fan. If you like cinnamon buns, I’m sure you will be too 🙂

Here’s what you’ll need:

For the batter

  • 375 g ~ 3 cups flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 200 g ~ 1 cup sugar
  • 4 tsp baking powder
  • 360 ml ~ 1 ½ cups milk
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 115 g ~ ½ cup butter, melted

For the filling

  • 170 g ~ ¾ cups butter, softened
  • 200 g ~ 2 cups brown sugar
  • 2 tbsp cinnamon
  • 2 tbsp flour

For the glaze

  • 250 g ~ 2 cups icing sugar
  • 5 tbsp just-boiled water

Preheat your oven to 180° Celsius ~ 350° Farhenheit ~ gas mark 4, and grease a baking pan
(more or less 22×34 cm ~ 9×13 inches).

In a large mixing bowl, mix together your flour, salt, sugar and baking powder.

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In another bowl, briefly whisk together the eggs and milk, and poor this into the flour mixture a little at a time, whisking well after each time, until you’ve incorporated all the eggy milk into the flour and the batter is smooth.

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Poor in your melted butter, and gently whisk until the butter has just been absorbed and you have a shiny, thick batter. Poor into your prepared baking tray.

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Make the filling by mixing the ingredients in a bowl.

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Distribute evenly across the batter, using two teaspoons. With a knife, make cinnamon-butter swirls throughout your cake! (Or, if you’re me, try to do this, and end up with something much less dignified-looking, but delicious all the same).

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Bake for about 30 minutes until the cake begins to brown nicely.


When your cake is out of the oven, prepare the glaze by mixing the icing sugar and just-boiled water until there are no icing sugar lumps (giggle at the words ‘sugar lumps’).

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Drizzle this over your cake while it’s still warm from the oven. Eat some straight away, or wait until it’s cooled down a bit, if you can 🙂 It’s equally good once cooled, and stays super moist because of the filling. I think this would keep well for several days, if kept covered.

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Hope you like it! I’m already planning to make a second (hopefully prettier) batch! I need to practice my swirling.

P.s.: I also tried making this as cupcakes a few days later, and it turned out ok – but I like the ‘cake’ cake version better, this cake wasn’t made to be teeny tiny and fussy… I think for this to work in cupcake form, I would need to get a jumbo muffin tin! Makes for about 36 little cupcakes, baked for approximately 20 minutes. 🙂

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