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Estonian Kringle – A Twist on the Cinnamon Rolls

The  warm aroma of  cinnamon  rolls  baking  in the  oven, such a  fun  way to wake the kids up in the  mornings 🙂 . No one  gets lost  finding  their way to the kitchen, no drama , no hiding  under blankets, just warm  hugs  and a  few  kisses…  Well a  mother  can  sure   dream,  and  sometimes  it  all comes  true  with  a  beautiful  cinnamon  rosette  called –  Estonian Kringle .
Estonian Kringle - Cinnamon Rosette bread

Estonian  Kringle, I like to say, is a  fancier  cousin of  the  Cinnamon roll.  It is  a  delicious  braided loaf,  filled   with  buttery cinnamon sugar.   The  crust  is  sweet and  crunchy   and  the  layers of  bread  buttery soft . This  intricate  looking braid  is  much simpler  than   it looks  and  creates a  stunning  look.

The  shaping  technique  is  also known as Russian  Rose, and Russian braid.  Make a large  loaf or individual rosettes,  and  start  the   day  with  a smile  ..

Kringle  is   essentially  a   cousin of cinnamon  roll but   this  technique  can be used   with  various  other fillings  as  well,  chocolate   and   finely ground  nuts  are   other popular  fillings.  To make  these   for  breakfast  one  does  not   have  to   wake  up at  the  crack of  the   dawn.  Make it  the  dough the previous  night  shape  it  and let   slowly rise  in the  fridge. In the  morning  take the dough out , preheat the  oven  and  just  pop it  in.  Sit  back relax   and  enjoy   your  morning cup of  joe.
Estonian Kringle
The  dough  for   Kringle  is  enriched but  not  heavily.   If  you bake it   without  the  fillings  the   loaf  will  taste  lightly sweet  and   milky.  It  will be  soft and  delicious, but  still  holds  its  shape.

Follow  the  recipe to make  the  dough.  I make it as  an  egg  free  dough, but  you can  add an  egg  to it  to make  it  more  soft.  Reduce  the  liquids  by about 1/4 C , if  doing  so.  Knead   the  dough  well. The  dough  becomes  very soft  and  pliable  as  you  kneed.   If  too  sticky  add  a  few  tablespoons of flour, but  keep in mind  that  we  need  the  dough to be  soft  and  not  too firm. A   too  tight  dough will be  hard  to roll out   while a  very soft  dough  will be  sticky making  the  layers  merge   together.  Cover  and  let  it  rise in a  warm  place  for  about  1  hour,  till  doubled in volume.

Shaping Estonian Kringle

Once  the   dough is  proofed  here is  how  to  shape  it. Prepare   the  filling  and  have  it  ready.  Here I have  used   cinnamon   sugar. When  using  other  fillings make  sure  everything is  chopped  small and  can be  spread  easily.  I keep the  butter  and  the   other  fillings  separate.  I  feel  that   by doing  so the  layers  are  more  distinct. It  also restricts  the  spices  from  directly   touching   the  yeast, by a  bit,   which  is  helpful especially  when doing  a   long   second  rising.  Cinnamon and  some  of  the  other  woody spices tend   to  retard the  growth or  kill the yeast.

Cut  the   dough into  portions  depending  on the size of the  loaves  you are  making. Roll  the  portions  out  into a   rectangle about  1/2 cm  thick .  Do not   worry   about  getting  perfect  shapes  here.   Spread  the   softened butter  over the   rolled out  dough   and  sprinkle  a  portion of  the  filling  over  it, leaving  an 1/2 cm  edge  on the   sides .  If  using  a  filling  with   nuts  and  fruits or  any other  chunkier  filling   leave a  slightly larger  boarder .  Roll   into a log, starting at  the  one of  the long  sides, encasing  all the  filling.

Using a  sharp  knife  slice  the  log  along the middle lengthwise  leaving  one  end  attached.  About 1/2 to  1  inch of  uncut portion  should  suffice. Place one  of  the   sides over the other so that  the  cut  sides  are  facing up (picture above).  Repeat  this   till the   2  pieces  are   twisted  together , making   sure  that  as  they pass over   each other  the  cut  sides  always  face  up.  Once  you  reach the end , turn  the  twisted  rope  to form  a   circle  and  tuck the   ends  together  to form a  wreath (see pic).

Here  I have  made  small  buns , but one  can   as  easily make a  large  one. Ones  the   bread is  formed ,  brush the  remaining  butter on top , sprinkle  any remaining  fillings and  set  aside   for  about  30 minutes  until almost  doubled in  volume.

Planning a  morning bake  The  easiest  way for a  morning  bake  is  to make a  large  wreath  in an  8 or 9 inch cake  pan  the  previous  night .   Lightly  coat  the   top  with oil  and   cover   with a  plastic  wrap or  any  other airtight  cover  and  let  it  rise overnight in the   fridge . Save  the  remaining  filling  and  sprinkle on top  just  before  baking .

Pre-heat  the   oven to 400°F (200°F)  and  bake  for   about 10  minutes . Reduce the  heat  to  350°F  (175°F ) and   bake  for  an  additional  15 to  25  minutes .  The  final  baking  times  will  vary depending  on  the  size  of  the   loaves ,  fillings , ovens  etc .  Check on the  loaf  15  minutes into the  second  stage of  baking .

Serve  warm . For  an  extra  sweet  treat  drizzle  cream cheese icing  on top  or  dust  with powdered sugar.


Here is the  recipe  for  this  beautiful   braided  bread   – Estonian  Kringle.

Estonian Kringle - Cinnamon Rosette bread

Estonian Kringle

By Syama
A delightful cousin of Cinnamon Roll, the Estonian Kringle is a beautiful buttery cinnamon filled loaf. The recipe makes a lightly sweet bread with a crunchy top. For a sweeter version increase the sugar in the filling or drizzle icing .
No ratings yet
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 2 hours 30 minutes
Course Breakfast, Dessert
Cuisine European


  • 3 C Bread Flour / AP Flour (360g) Unbleached
  • 2/3 C Milk (150 g )
  • 1 1/4 Tsp Fine Sea Salt (7 g)
  • 2 Tbsp Melted Butter
  • 1/4 C Water (60g)
  • 1 Tbsp Sugar
  • 2 Tsp Yeast


  • 4 Tbsp Butter
  • 4 Tbsp Sugar
  • 1 Tsp Cinnamon
  • 1/4 C Finely Chopped Walnuts optional


  • Sprinkle the yeast on 1/4 C lukewarm water (110°F) mixed with 1 tbsp sugar . Set aside for 5 to 10 minutes until it is frothy .
  • Mix the flour and salt in a large bowl . Make a well in the center and pour in the activated yeast .
  • Add butter and enough milk and knead gently to bring everything together into a shaggy dough. Knead for about 10 minutes for a soft and pliable dough. If needed add a few more spoons of milk or flour. Cover and let it rise in a warm place for about 1 hour, till doubled in volume.
  • Soften the butter for the filling and set aside. In another bowl mix the cinnamon , sugar and chopped nuts . Set aside.
  • Punch down the dough and divide into desired portions. Roll each portion out into a long rectangle about 1/2 cm thick . Spread the softened butter over the rolled out dough and sprinkle a portion of the filling over it, leaving an 1/2 cm edge on the sides . Roll into a log , encasing all the filling . Slit the log lengthwise leaving about an inch on one end uncut. Twist the pieces over each other keeping the cut side up to form a coiled rope. .Turn the rope into a circle and tuck the ends in. Brush any remaining butter on top , and sprinkle the remaining filling on top. Set aside for about 30 minutes until almost doubled in volume.
  • Pre-heat the oven to 400°F(200°F) and bake for about 10 minutes . Reduce the heat to 350°F (175°F) and bake for an additional 15 to 25 minutes . Check on the loaf 15 minutes into the second stage of baking .
  • Cool on the rack . Cool completely before icing .


  • US Measuring cups used, Weight measurements are more accurate than volume.
  • 1 C AP Flour weighs around 110 to 120 g. , when using volume measurements pay close attention to how the dough feels and adjust liquid ingredients a little.

Important: Nutrition Values are estimates. Actuals vary based on ingredients and serving size.

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Estonian Kringle


You might want to  try this  Challah
Challah Bread


Or  click here to   see my collection of  delicious  bread  recipes


Originally published Aug, 2016. edited and updated with pictures.

Recipe Rating


Tuesday 26th of May 2020

how many kringles you have in this recipe


Wednesday 27th of May 2020

I usually make 2 with this. If serving it a centerpiece on the menu make one large. For individual portions divide into 4 or 5. - Syama