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Cinnamon Twist Breakfast Bread (Bread Machine Recipe)

Sneak Preview: This Cinnamon Twist Breakfast Bread is a decadent yeast bread you can mix with a bread machine or a stand mixer. It’s a fancy-schmancy version of cinnamon rolls suitable for a special occasion.

My sister and I plan to open a bed and breakfast if we find ourselves widowed someday.  (Please don’t discuss this idea with my husband.  It makes him nervous.)  We already know this decadent Cinnamon Twist Breakfast Bread will be at the top of the breakfast menu.

sliced twisted cinnamon roll

What makes this cinnamon yeast bread so decadent? Instead of milk, the recipe specifies half-and-half. Instead of the usual one egg, use two. Now we’re talking a treat that’s worth the calories.

This recipe isn’t as quick as a coffee cake made with Bisquick. But mixing and kneading the dough in your bread maker will make the whole process more manageable.

Just like 95% of the yeast bread I make, this recipe is mixed, kneaded, and proofed in a bread machine.

twisted Cinnamon Roll on a platter--uncut

However, using a big electric mixer or mixing by hand is fine if you’re so inclined.  Once the dough rises to double its original size, remove it from the pan, shape, allow it to proof again, and bake.

How to shape the dough for this Cinnamon Twist Bread with Pecans:

  1. Remove dough from bread pan after completion of the dough cycle.
  2. Divide dough into two equal portions.
  3. Combine streusel ingredients and sprinkle over dough that has been rolled into a rectangle.
  4. Starting with the long edge, roll dough into a long, slender cylinder. Try not to stretch it.
storyboard showing how to roll out the dough for Cinnamon Twist Bread

Now it gets a little tricky, but the twist is what makes this sweet bread special. Proceed with confidence.

How to twist the dough for Twisted Cinnamon Breakfast Bread:

  1. Cut the roll you made as seen above in half lengthwise.
  2. Roll each half so you can see all the layers.
  3. Start at one end and entwine layers as shown below.
  4. Join both ends of twisted dough to make a circle, and carefully placed in a greased round pan.
How to cut and twist dough

Don’t be scared off by the shaping instructions.  I’ve made many less-than-perfect twists in the past but they still tasted incredible. The glaze will cover a multitude of sins.   I usually use more icing than pictured here, but I wanted you to see the twist.

image of a leaf
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Frequently asked questions about Cinnamon Twist Bread:

Can I freeze this bread?

Yes, you can freeze the baked twist. Always double wrap. First, cover entirely with plastic wrap, then a plastic bag or a piece of foil. Use within a month.

Can I use active dry yeast instead of instant or bread machine yeast?

Yes. You no longer need to dissolve active dry yeast. Instead, use 1/4 teaspoon more because active dry yeast usually takes longer to rise.

Can I substitute another flour for the unbleached all-purpose flour?

You can sub bleached all-purpose flour. Whole wheat or bread flour is too heavy, in my opinion. This recipe should be rich and melt-in-your-mouth tender. Bread flour makes a sturdier product–not what you are going for with this recipe.

Can I bake this recipe in my bread machine?

No. I wrote this recipe to use the bread machine as a dough mixer and kneader only. When the DOUGH cycle completes, remove the dough, and make the twist by hand. Finally, bake the two twists in your conventional oven.

What can I substitute for half-and-half?

Half-and-half is the ingredient that makes this bread a rockstar. You can make half-and-half by combining equal amounts of whole milk and whipping cream.

Can I use this dough to make cinnamon rolls?

Absolutely. They will be gloriously rich and delicious. You can see the traditional way to roll out cinnamon rolls on this post.

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Did you enjoy this recipe? If so, you can help others and me by leaving a 5-star 🤩 rating in the comment section below. No comment is required.

p.s. If you have any questions or suggestions, you can email me privately: Paula at

Hope to see you again soon!

Cinnamon Twist Breakfast Bread Recipe (Bread Machine)

This bread machine coffee cake is a yeast bread in the same family as cinnamon rolls–directions for mixing and kneading in a bread machine included.
Paula Rhodes
4.67 from 9 votes
Prep Time 45 mins
Cook Time 30 mins
Mixing & Rising Time 2 hrs 15 mins
Total Time 3 hrs 30 mins
Course Sweet Yeast Bread and Coffee Cakes
Servings 16 servings


  • ¾ cup half & half - (warmed for 45 seconds in the microwave)170 gr
  • 3 tablespoons sugar - 39 gr
  • 1 teaspoon salt - 6 fr
  • 2 large eggs - 100 gr
  • ¼ cup unsalted butter - (softened) 57 gr
  • cups all-purpose unbleached flour - (save ½ cup flour back to use if needed) 450 gr
  • teaspoons instant yeast - 7 gr


  • 3 tablespoons butter - (softened) 42 gr
  • ½ cup packed light brown sugar - 107 gr
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon - 5 gr
  • ½ cup pecans - (chopped and toasted) 57 gr


  • 2 cups sifted powdered sugar - 227 gr
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla - 2.5 gr
  • 2 + tablespoons milk or black coffee - 28 gr


  • Place all ingredients for the dough (in the order listed) into the bread machine pan. Set the DOUGH cycle and press start. After 15 minutes, check the dough for consistency. Add the reserved flour 1 tablespoon at a time if the dough is too wet. Add water 1 teaspoon at a time if the dough is too dry. The dough should stick to the sides of the pan and pull away cleanly.
  • When the DOUGH cycle finishes, check to make sure the dough has risen to double its original size. If not, leave the dough in the machine until it doubles. If so, remove dough from the bread machine pan and divide it in half. Cover each portion with plastic wrap and let rest for 10 minutes.
  • Roll the first half into a 9 x 20-inch rectangle. Spread with half the butter. Sprinkle with half of the filling mixture. Starting at the long side, roll up jellyroll style. Pinch seam to seal.
  • Now it gets a little tricky but the twist is what makes this sweet bread special. Proceed with confidence.
  • Slice roll in half lengthwise. Place halves side by side, with cut surfaces facing up. Moisten one end of each portion with wet fingers. Push the ends together to join the two pieces of dough. Twist pieces together; shape into a ring and fit into a greased 8 or 9-inch pan. Moisten ends and press to seal.
  • Repeat the process with the other half of the dough and filling. Cover and let rise in a warm place until almost doubled in size. Preheat oven to 350˚ F.
  • Bake for about 25 minutes, or until golden brown. Let stand 3 minutes and transfer to serving platter with a spatula.
  • Make icing and pour over the top.



Directions for making bread with a stand mixer or by hand:
  • To make this recipe in a heavy-duty stand mixer:  Add ingredients to the bowl in the same order. Turn on LOW to mix until all ingredients are moistened. Then, using a dough hook, turn the speed to 2 or 3. Continue beating/kneading until dough becomes smooth and elastic (about 5-10 minutes). Cover and allow to rise in a warm place. Deflate dough gently and shape as indicated in the recipe.
  • If making by hand: Combine all ingredients into a shaggy ball in a large bowl. Turn dough out onto a floured surface. Knead with your hands until the dough becomes smooth and elastic. Kneading will likely take 10-20 minutes, depending on your experience. Place the dough ball into a greased bowl. Cover and allow to rise until double. Deflate the dough gently and shape as indicated in the recipe.
  • Please note: If you only have active dry yeast, use 1/4 teaspoon more than called for in the recipe. It no longer needs to be dissolved first, but you can if you prefer.


Serving: 1sliceCalories: 295kcalCarbohydrates: 48gProtein: 5gFat: 9gSaturated Fat: 4gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 38mgSodium: 181mgPotassium: 95mgFiber: 2gSugar: 24gVitamin A: 227IUVitamin C: 1mgCalcium: 32mgIron: 2mg
Keyword breadmachine, breakfast, Cinnamon, rolls, sweet, yeast
Cuisine American
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!
Recipe Rating

Judy Vallas

Tuesday 17th of August 2021

I haven’t made it yet but will soon. This is so close to the Sarah Lee Pecan Coffeecake we ate when I was a kid (long ago 😏) that I’m thrilled to see the recipe. Thank you.

Judy Vallas

Tuesday 17th of August 2021

@Judy Vallas, I do not know why my comment is scattered all over the place, but I apologize.

Fran Pallach

Wednesday 21st of July 2021

I have been using this recipe for cinnamon rolls for my son in law for awhile now. It’s his favorite of all I tried. My bread maker is old but it works great. Best and easiest recipe out there.


Wednesday 21st of July 2021

Hi Fran,

That is a fantastic idea. Thanks for sharing. I may be trying it myself this weekend.


Monday 7th of December 2020

What can I substitute for the half & half?


Friday 11th of December 2020

@Paula, I apologize for making you answer my question which had already been addressed in the FAQ; I was hoping I would not have to go to the store. However, after reading your comment, it seems I would be doing your recipe an injustice by leaving the half & half out. Off to the store I go. =)


Monday 7th of December 2020

Hi Gina,

You could use any kind of milk (measure for measure) actually, but half-and-half is one thing that really makes this bread special. It just isn't the same without it.

The best substitute is 1/2 whole milk and 1/2 heavy cream and would be just as good as half-and-half.

Another possibility that I haven't tried is 3 teaspoons of butter melted into 3/4 cup of milk.

Hope this helps.


Friday 22nd of May 2020

These are delicious, and look amazing too. I split the icing ingredients into two and made the two breads (the recipe makes two breads) one with vanilla icing and one with coffee icing. The coffee icing I made with: one cup of icing sugar, 1/4 teaspoon of vanilla essence, one teaspoon of espresso powder (I used Nescafe Gold Espresso Powder because I had it in the kitchen cupboard for a coffee and walnut cake I often make anyway) and one tablespoon of boiling water. It came out brilliantly, and was an amazing contrast to the vanilla iced one. In fact I can't make up my mind which one I love best and will probably always make both when I make this fabulous recipe.


Sunday 24th of May 2020

Just imagining that coffee icing is making me want to go make one right now. Thanks for the details.

Annette Cook

Wednesday 29th of May 2019

The instructions to cut the surfaces of the rolls are missing. How is that done?


Wednesday 29th of May 2019

See step #6. If you are still unsure, take a look at the process pictures in the best. Hope you love them. Practice makes perfect.