These sticky buns are light and fluffy yeast rolls filled with cinnamon sugar and topped with a caramel pecan glaze. A decadent breakfast or brunch option that will earn you rave reviews from family and friends!

When I’m looking to impress, I whip up a festive brunch menu featuring bacon and egg casserole, baked donuts and amazingly delicious sticky buns. These sweet rolls are as good as anything you’d get at a bakery!

Sticky Buns Recipe | Sweet Rolls | Cinnamon Rolls #breakfast #brunch #cinnamon #pecans #dinneratthezoo #bread Sticky Buns Recipe | Sweet Rolls | Cinnamon Rolls #breakfast #brunch #cinnamon #pecans #dinneratthezoo #bread

Sticky buns topped with caramel and pecans.

Whenever I happen upon a bakery, I have to order a sticky bun if I spy one in the display case. This homemade version of the popular breakfast treat is a foolproof way to enjoy all that cinnamon-sugar goodness in the comfort of your own home.

How do you make sticky buns?

Sticky buns have three parts; dough, filling and topping. You will want to start by making the dough to give it time to rise. The dough contains butter, milk, sugar and eggs to give it a light and fluffy texture that makes for the perfect rolls.

For the filling, mix together cinnamon, granulated sugar, brown sugar and butter in a bowl. After you roll out the dough into a rectangle, cover it with that sweet filling. Roll the dough into a log and cut circles out of the log with a sharp knife.

To make that sticky, nutty topping that everyone loves, just melt some butter in a pan and add brown sugar, cream, honey and salt. Bring the topping to a boil, then simmer it for a couple of minutes. Pour most of that topping in the bottom of your baking pan, sprinkle in some pecans and place the rolls on top. After the rolls have risen a little more, bake them until golden. Once they are out of the oven, flip them over. Drizzle your extra topping over the rolls and you have the gooiest, most delicious sticky buns of all time!

Caramel and pecans in the bottom of a baking dish.

Tips for sweet rolls

  • You can make the dough the night before and store it in the fridge.
  • The yeast dough will rise quicker on a warm day, and slower on a cool day. The rise times in this recipe are approximate. Make sure to keep an eye on the dough to watch for it to double depending on the temperature of your kitchen.
  • You can bake one batch of rolls in a 9″ x 13″ pan, or bake two smaller batches in 9″ round pans.
  • To knead the dough, it is easiest to use a stand mixer fitted with a hook attachment. You can also knead the dough by hand if you prefer.

Cinnamon swirl buns in a baking dish.

Sticky Bun Variations

This is a classic recipe, however, you can easily customize it to your tastes.

  • Try adding other spices to the filling such as ginger, nutmeg, allspice or ground cloves.
  • You can add 1/2 cup of raisins with the pecans in the topping. You can also add raisins to the filling.
  • Feel free to add orange or lemon zest to the topping for a brighter citrus flavor.
  • Not a fan of pecans? You can use other nuts such as chopped walnuts or sliced almonds.

Baked sweet rolls filled with cinnamon sugar.

How do you store sticky buns?

You can store sticky buns in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days. If you refrigerate the buns, they will stay fresh for a week. You can keep these rolls in the freezer for up to 3 months. I recommend heating your rolls in the microwave for about 20 seconds before serving.

A plate of sticky buns topped with chopped nuts.

This recipe is simply amazing. The dough is light and fluffy, the filling is sweet and luscious and the topping has just the right amount of gooey caramel. Give this recipe a try and you can proudly serve these buns to your friends and family.

More breakfast favorites

5 from 17 votes

Sticky Buns

AuthorSara Welch
Sticky buns topped with caramel and pecans.
These sticky buns are light and fluffy yeast rolls filled with cinnamon sugar and topped with a caramel pecan glaze. A decadent breakfast or brunch option that will earn you rave reviews from family and friends!
Prep Time30 minutes
Cook Time30 minutes
Rising Time2 hours 30 minutes
Total Time3 hours 30 minutes
Course Breakfast
Cuisine American
Serves 12


For the dough

  • 1 packet active dry yeast 1/4 ounce
  • 3/4 cup warm water approximately 100 degrees F
  • 3/4 cup warm milk approximately 100 degrees F
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup butter melted
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 5-5 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • cooking spray

For the filling

  • 1/2 cup butter softened
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cup dark brown sugar
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon

For the topping

  • 2 cups pecans coarsely chopped
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 3/4 cup dark brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt


For the dough

  • Place the water in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Add the packet of yeast and let the yeast dissolve in the water for 1 minute.
  • Add the milk, sugar, butter, salt, eggs and 5 cups of flour to the bowl. Beat for 2-3 minutes or until a smooth dough forms.
  • If the dough is sticky, add more flour, 2 tablespoons at a time, until the desired consistency is reached.
  • Switch to the dough hook, and knead the dough for 3-4 minutes or until smooth and elastic.
  • Place the dough in a large bowl coated with cooking spray. Cover the dough with plastic wrap and let it sit for one hour, or until doubled in size.

For the filling

  • Place the butter, brown sugar, granulated sugar and cinnamon in a medium bowl. Stir until well combined.
  • Place the dough on a lightly floured surface. Roll the dough into a 18"x12" rectangle. Spread the filling mixture evenly all over the dough.
  • Starting with the long end of the dough, roll it up tightly, jelly roll style. Pinch the seams to seal the end of the roll.
  • Cut the roll into 12 equal slices.

For the topping

  • Melt the butter in a small pan over medium heat. Add the brown sugar, heavy cream, honey and salt, then bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low, and simmer for 2-3 minutes until glaze is smooth and shiny.
  • Pour 2/3 of the topping mixture into the bottom of a 9"x13" pan that's been coated in cooking spray. Reserve the rest of the topping for later use.
  • Sprinkle the pecans over the sugar mixture, then place the rolls on top.
  • Cover and let the rolls rise until they've doubled, this should take about one hour.
  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Bake the rolls for 30-35 minutes until golden brown.
  • Let the rolls sit for 5 minutes, then invert the pan onto a serving tray. Warm the reserved topping and drizzle it over the top, then serve.


The dough can be prepared the night before. Cover and refrigerate the dough, then let it sit at room temperature for 1-2 hours or until doubled in size before proceeding with the rest of the recipe.


Calories: 615kcal | Carbohydrates: 88g | Protein: 9g | Fat: 31g | Saturated Fat: 17g | Cholesterol: 98mg | Sodium: 534mg | Potassium: 196mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 42g | Vitamin A: 858IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 67mg | Iron: 3mg

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Recipe Rating


  1. 5 stars
    I have always been too intimidated to make homemade sticky buns but your recipe (and beautiful photos!) have inspired me to give this a try!

  2. 5 stars
    Oh my gosh these are incredible!! We ate the whole pan over the weekend and I can’t wait to make another batch. 😀

  3. 5 stars
    These are my hubby’s favorite! So delicious and easy to make! We absolutely love this recipe and I’m excited to make these again!

  4. 5 stars
    Sticky buns are the ultimate breakfast indulgence! They’re such a treat, and these are better than store bought!

  5. I just made these and they are beautiful! I didn’t have enough pecans so I added some walnuts. I put lemon zest in the final topping. They were fun to make and will be delicious with a cup of coffee.

  6. 5 stars
    These buns are fabulous! I made mine with walnuts instead of pecans. Followed the directions exactly except probably used 2/3 of the filling. The dough came put tender and moist. The topping is to die for. In fact, I’ll be using the topping over vanilla ice cream topped on a chocolate brownie. Yum yum.

  7. 5 stars
    I love sticky buns from the bakery, but I’m super excited to make them for myself! Can’t wait to make them for Saturday morning!

  8. 5 stars
    This was such a sweet and savory recipe! This has easily become a new family favorite recipe in our home! Looking forward to making it again this weekend!