Delicious German Franzbrötchen

Move Over Cinnamon Roll – German Franzbrötchen Are Here!

Looking for a different take on the classic cinnamon roll recipe? German Franzbrötchen is definitely for you!

This light and doughy sweet roll is loaded with cinnamon and sugar – while the attractive design looks great on any dessert plate!

Best of all, this Franzbrötchen recipe is made from simple ingredients and is actually really easy to follow. This means you can make them at home for yourself, the family, or dinner guests!

german franzbrotchen on white marble top
Delicious German Franzbrötchen waiting to be consumed!

The Franzbrötchen was originally from the city of Hamburg in northern Germany.

These days, you can find Franzbrötchen – or Franzbrotchen, as they are sometimes written in English – in bakeries in different parts of the country.

To be honest, they are similar to a traditional cinnamon roll. However, Franzbrötchen have a completely different and unique shape. You form the unique shape during the baking process and it’s easy to do!

four german Franzbrötchen on a white counter with sugar around
German Franzbrötchen look great on any dessert tray.

How to Make German Franzbrötchen – Step by Step

If you want to make German Franzbrötchen at home, you can follow our recipe card below. They are relatively easy to make.

We’ve also included a number of recipe process photos to help you see what exactly you should be doing at what step!

butter in white bowl melted with milk
Heat up the butter and the milk…

Start by heating the butter and the milk in a pot on the stove or in the microwave.

If you use the microwave, make sure to take out the bowl every 10-20 seoncs and give the mixture a good stir. Otherwise the butter will take a lot longer to melt.

melted butter in white bowl with spoon
The milk and butter are melted…

Once the butter is fully melted, place the mixture into a large bowl.

If the mixture is very warm or hot, let it cool for a few minutes before continuing with the next step.

yeast in baking bowl with butter german Franzbrötchen
Add in the yeast and the sugar.

Now it’s time to add the yeast and the sugar into the lukewarm mixture.

yeast whisked into baking bowl with metal whisk
Whisk the yeast into the mixture.

Whisk the yeast and the sugar into the mixture until the yeast has dissolved.

vanilla added into mixing bowl with whisk
Add the vanilla extract, egg, and salt.

Now add the vanilla extract, egg, and salt and whisk everything together.

german Franzbrötchen baking mixture in metallic bowl
All whisked together…

After everything is whisked together, set your whisk aside and switch to your electric mixer with spiral dough hooks. Slowly add in the flour in small increments.

dough in metallic bowl
The dough ball needs to rise for 30-60 minutes.

Mix for around 5 minutes until the dough forms a ball and doesn’t stick to the side of the bowl anymore. It should be slightly sticky but not overly wet.

Cover the bowl with a dishtowel or lid and let the dough rise for 30-60 minutes in a warm spot without a draft. The warmer the spot, the less time the dough needs to rise.

cinnamon sugar butter paste in bowl for german Franzbrötchen
Mix cinnamon, butter, and sugar together.

In the meantime, prepare the filling by mixing cinnamon, sugar and butter together with the normal dough hooks of your electric mixer.

Make sure to use soft butter as this will make it easier to spread the filling out onto the dough later.

risen german Franzbrötchen dough in metal bowl
The dough should have noticeably increased in size.

When you check on your dough ball, it should have noticeably increased in size. If it hasn’t, let it rest for a little bit longer.

Sprinkle some flour onto a smooth surface and thinly roll out the dough into a rectangle using a rolling pin. For 10 Franzbrötchen the long edge should be approximately 18 inches long.

flattened dough rectangle with cinnamon and sugar
Spread the filling on top of the dough.

Now evenly spread the cinnamon-sugar-butter filling on top of the dough using a spoon or spatula. Make sure to be gentle so you don’t accidentally rip the dough.

rolled german Franzbrötchen dough on counter
Roll the dough into a long sausage.

Now start rolling the dough from one of the long edges until it forms a tight sausage. Cut off the uneven ends.

german Franzbrötchen dough cut into pieces on counter
Cut the dough into trapezoids.

The cut the dough into trapezoids with the short edge approximately 1 inch wide.

You don’t have to measure everything perfectly, but try to make the pieces somewhat even so that the Franzbrötchen will be done cooking at the same time.

german Franzbrötchen dough standing on parchment paper
Place the wide end on the bottom.

Now place the dough pieces onto your baking sheet lined with parchment paper. The wide edge should face down.

german Franzbrötchen being squished on baking tray
Use a handle of a wooden spoon the squish the middle of the Franzbrötchen.

Use the handle of a wooden spoon and press down in the middle of the dough.

You might have to repeat the step a couple of times to get the dough to stay in place. This will give the Franzbrötchen their unique shape.

Let the buns rest for another 20 minutes. In the meantime prepare the egg wash by whisking one small egg in a small bowl with a fork until it is uniform in color. Also preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

german Franzbrötchen covered in egg wash
Brush the Franzbrötchen with the egg wash.

After the 20 minutes are up, gently brush the buns with the egg wash. Make sure that it is just a thin coat – you don’t want there to be too much egg.

Bake the buns in the oven for approximately 15 minutes until they are nicely brown.

german franzbrotchen cinnamon roll on white counter
Look at those perfect swirls!

Remove the Franzbrötchen from the oven and place them on a cooling rack.

Franzbrötchen taste best when they are fresh. However, you can store them for around two days in a container with a lid. Feel free to put them in the microwave for a few seconds when eating them the following day.

Enjoy our Franzbrötchen recipe!

german franzbrotchen cinnamon roll on white counter

German Franzbrötchen

Yield: 10
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Additional Time: 50 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 25 minutes

A German take on a classic cinnamon bun, the Franzbrötchen is a delicious baked good from the northern city of Hamburg. Golden on the outside yet sugary and soft on the inside, this treat is a cinnamon lover's dream! Perfect to serve as a dessert or to indulge in yourself!

Ingredients

The Dough

  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 2 teaspoons dry yeast
  • 2 tablespoons white sugar
  • 1 medium-sized egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • A pinch of salt
  • 2 cups white flour

The Filling

  • 1/3 cup butter, soft
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup white sugar

The Egg Wash

  • 1 small egg

Instructions

  1. Heat the milk and the butter in a pot on the stove or in the microwave until the butter has melted. The mixture should be slightly warm but not hot or boiling! If the mixture is too hot, let it cool for a few minutes before continuing - otherwise, you might hurt the yeast in the next step. Transfer this mixture into a large bowl and whisk the yeast and the sugar into the milk until the yeast has dissolved.
  2. Add the egg, vanilla extract, and salt into the mixture and whisk it together. Slowly add in the flour in small increments and mix for around 5 minutes with the spiral dough hooks of your mixer until the dough forms a ball and doesn't stick to the side of the bowl anymore. The dough should be slightly sticky but not wet. If it's too moist, add a tiny bit more flour.
  3. With the dough inside, cover the bowl with a dishtowel and let it sit in a warm spot without a draft until the dough has increased in size (approximately 30-60 minutes).
  4. In the meantime, prepare the filling by mixing butter, cinnamon, and sugar together in a medium-sized bowl with the normal beaters of your electric mixer. It's important that the butter is soft.
  5. After the dough has risen, add some flour onto a smooth surface and thinly roll out the dough into a rectangle. If you want to make 10 Franzbrötchen, the long side should be approx. 18 inches long. Evenly spread the cinnamon sugar filling on top of the dough using a spatula or a spoon. Be gentle and patient when doing this step so that you don't accidentally rip the dough.
  6. Once the rectangle is covered in filling, start rolling the dough from one of the long edges until it forms a tight sausage. Cut off the uneven ends, then cut the dough into trapezoid pieces approx. 1 inch wide on the short edge. Carefully place the dough onto a baking sheet with the long trapezoid side at the bottom. Use the handle of a wooden spoon and press down in the middle of the dough. This will give the Franzbrötchen their unique shape. Let the dough rest for another 20 minutes.
  7. In the meantime, preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and also prepare the egg wash by whisking one egg in a small bowl with a fork until it is uniform in color.
  8. Once the 20 minutes are up, brush the Franzbrötchen with the egg wash and bake them in the oven for approximately 15 minutes. Since every oven is different, your cook time might vary slightly. The Franzbrötchen should be nicely brown.
  9. Remove them from the oven and place them on a cooling rack until they have cooled sufficiently. Enjoy!

Notes

  • If you heat the butter and the milk in the microwave, make sure to take out the bowl every 10-20 seconds and give the mixture a good stir.
  • Make sure that you don't whisk the yeast into very warm or hot milk. This might harm the yeast and as a result, your dough might not rise at all.
  • Also check that your yeast hasn't expired yet since using expired yeast might also prevent the dough from rising.
  • Franzbrötchen taste best fresh, but you can store them in a container with a lid for a couple of days. Feel free to heat them up for a few seconds in the microwave before consuming them.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 10 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 259Total Fat: 12gSaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 4gCholesterol: 60mgSodium: 117mgCarbohydrates: 34gFiber: 2gSugar: 13gProtein: 5g

This nutritional information has been estimated by an online nutrition calculator. It should only be seen as a rough calculation and not a replacement for professional dietary advice. The exact values can vary depending on the specific ingredients used.

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