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A close up view of a chai cinnamon bun, glazed with a light tan, tea flavoured frosting.
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5 from 4 votes

Chai Cinnamon Buns Recipe

Everyone's had traditional cinnamon buns, but have you tried a chai version? A fun, flavourful deviation from tradition!
Prep Time30 mins
Cook Time35 mins
Rising Time1 hr 45 mins
Total Time2 hrs 50 mins
Course: Bread, Breakfast, Dessert, Snack
Cuisine: American
Servings: 12 Buns
Calories: 381kcal
Author: Marie Porter


9 x 13 cake pan



  • 1 ½ cups warm , strong brewed tea– NOT hot!
  • 4 teaspoon Active Dry Yeast
  • 3 tablespoon Granulated Sugar
  • 3 ½ cups All Purpose Flour
  • 1 teaspoon Salt
  • 6 tablespoon Melted Butter cooled
  • ¾ cup Granulated Sugar
  • 2 tablespoon Unsweetened Instant Black Tea Powder
  • 2 teaspoon Cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoon Cardamom
  • 1 teaspoon Ground Cloves
  • 1 teaspoon Ground Nutmeg



  • Stir yeast and sugar into warm tea, allow to stand for 10 minutes – it should get very bubbly.
  • In a large mixing bowl, combine flour and salt. Pour in yeast mixture, stir well to combine.
  • Dump dough out onto a floured surface, knead until soft and elastic, 5-10 minutes.
    (OR: mix it in a stand mixer with a dough hook for 5 minutes or so - That's how I do it!)
  • Once dough is fully kneaded, place in a greased bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and allow to rise for one hour, or until doubled in size.
  • Once dough has doubled in size, roll dough out on a floured surface. Aim to make it a large rectangle, say 15 x 20″ or so.
  • Use a pastry brush to spread melted butter all over the dough – you might not use it all, that’s ok.
  • Mix together the sugar, and spices, sprinkle most of it evenly over the melted butter, reserving a tablespoon or two for later.
  • Starting with one of the longer edges, tightly roll the dough up.
  • Generously grease or spray a 9x 13″ baking pan. Pour any remaining butter in the bottom, spreading evenly before sprinkling with remaining sugar mixture.
  • Using a very sharp knife, slice the roll into 12 even rounds.
  • Carefully place each roll into the pan, spacing them evenly.
  • Cover pan with plastic wrap, allow to rise one more time – about 45 minutes. While waiting for the buns to rise, heat oven to 350F.
  • (This is what they looked like after the final rise!)
  • Once final rise is over, pop the pan in the oven and bake for 30-35 minutes, or until golden brown and perfect.
  • Allow to cool for a few minutes while you make the glaze:
  • Mix together softened butter, tea, vanilla extract, hot water, and salt, until smooth.
    Add about ½ cup of powdered sugar, whisking until smooth.
    Add remaining powdered sugar, about ¼ cup at a time, until you have a thick, paste. If it's not smooth, microwave for 15 seconds and stir well.
  • Drizzle or spread over hot Chai Cinnamon buns, allowing it to melt and ooze a little.
    If glaze has thickened, microwave for 15 seconds and stir again, immediately before drizzling.
    Chai Cinnamon Rolls


Calories: 381kcal | Carbohydrates: 73g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 8g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Cholesterol: 20mg | Sodium: 266mg | Potassium: 99mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 42g | Vitamin A: 253IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 25mg | Iron: 2mg