Believe me when I say Dollywood cinnamon bread is the best-tasting cinnamon bread in the entire world. This is no exaggeration.
Coated with cinnamon sugar on the outside, it’s wonderfully sweet, crunchy, and ooey-gooey.
The bread itself is ridiculously soft, moist, and buttery. It’s fluffy and so soft, it almost melts in your mouth.
Plus, you can really taste the goodness of cinnamon, sugar, and butter in every bite.
It’s no surprise it’s the most coveted theme park food known to man.
Fortunately, there’s no longer a need to fall in line to get a loaf of this irresistible bread. Just head to the kitchen, and let’s get started.
Dollywood Cinnamon Bread
When it comes to theme park food, Dollywood goes above and beyond. This isn’t just a personal opinion!
Dollywood has actually received the award for best theme park food from Amusement Today for at least four years.
In the world of theme parks, this is a BIG DEAL.
Dollywood has a wide array of food offerings, varying from pizza to barbecue to cookies.
But among them, only one reigns supreme: the cinnamon bread.
Many say it’s up there with Universal’s Harry Potter Butterbeer and Disney’s Dole Whip, but I think it’s on a league of its own.
Fortunately, the recipe for this irresistible bread is available for us to try!
Along with all my tips and tricks, you’ll be able to make your own, sinful cinnamon bread successfully at home.
Where is Cinnamon Bread at Dollywood?
You can find this masterpiece of a loaf over at the Grist Mill.
You can’t miss it, as it is the park’s best-smelling area. It’s also always packed with people eagerly waiting for their order.
The bakery also offers bread and cookies and jellies and jams, but everyone goes there for the cinnamon bread.
In fact, they serve a whopping 350 loaves of cinnamon bread every hour. That has to be a world record.
Apart from the sweet scent and the ridiculously delicious taste, people also get to watch bakers make the glorious bread right in front of them.
At Grist Mill, you really get the full experience.
Fun fact: Grist Mill is the first fully operative grist mill in Tennessee in over a century. Bakers actually grind the flour used for the bread on-site!
How to Make Dollywood Cinnamon Bread
Because this recipe uses pre-made dough, there’s no need to worry about rolling or kneading. Thus, this bread recipe couldn’t be easier. Here’s how:
1. Prepare the pans.
Start by greasing the loaf pans. There’s nothing worse than perfectly baked bread that you can’t take out of the pan!
The recipe makes two (8 by 4 by 2-inch) loaves. Grease the pans heavily with butter or vegetable cooking spray.
Alternatively, you can also line the pans with parchment paper. Have at least an inch of overhang on the sides for easier lifting.
2. Make the cinnamon sugar.
Next, prepare the cinnamon-sugar mixture.
Simply stir together cinnamon and sugar in a large bowl. You’ll roll the loaves in this mixture in a bit, so be sure the bowl is large enough to fit them.
3. Prepare the dough.
Now it’s time to prepare the dough.
You’ll need to find frozen bread dough in a loaf shape. So not the little dinner rolls.
And you’ll need one pound for two loaves.
To get the dough ready for the oven:
- Slice the dough in half, lengthwise, to get two rectangular loaves. That means you’ll have two skinny loaf-shaped pieces of dough and not two short pieces (like you would if you cut it in half across the middle).
- To clarify, if the piece of dough you have is 8 inches long and 4 inches wide, then after cutting, you’ll have two pieces that are both 8 inches long and 2 inches wide.
- Cut four slits into the top of each piece, creating pockets that don’t go all the way through. To do this, run a sharp knife across the dough from the top, and cut almost all the way down.
- I suggest marking the four cuts on the top first, so you know they’re even.
- Then, make the cuts with a sharp knife, so it doesn’t defalte.
- It should look like a Hasselback potato – with the cuts stopping about an inch from the bottom.
4. Cover the dough in sugar.
Brush the loaves generously with melted butter.
And when I say generous, I mean go crazy. Over at Dollywood, bakers actually dunk the dough in butter!
Be sure all the crevices are coated, too. So gently pull those cuts apart to get butter everywhere.
This will make the bread super moist, and will also help the cinnamon sugar to stick better.
Once it’s all buttery, roll the dough in cinnamon sugar.
You’ll want to pack all the nooks and crannies with this sweet and crunchy topping, so it’s time to get your hands dirty.
5. Rest and bake the dough.
Place the loaves in the greased or lined pans and let them rest for 30 minutes. This will give them enough time to double in size.
Be sure not to wait for over 30 minutes, otherwise, the loaves will overproof, which will result in flat bread.
Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 300 degrees Fahrenheit.
If you have any cinnamon sugar mixture left, sprinkle it all over the loaves. Then bake the bread for 18 minutes, turn the pans around, and bake for another 17.
You can baste them with even more butter at the halfway point, but it’s not a requirement. (It will make the bread extra moist, though!)
You’ll know they’re done when the pans produce a hollow sound when you tap on them.
If you have an instant-read thermometer, check the bread’s internal temperature. They’re done when they reach 195 to 200 degrees Fahrenheit.
6. Make the glaze.
While the bread is baking, make the glaze.
Simply whisk together sifted powdered sugar and water (or lemon juice) until smooth and lump-free.
Let the loaves cool in the pan for 15 minutes, before drizzling them with glaze.
Lift them out of the pans using the overhang and transfer them onto a wire rack to cool further. Or, enjoy them right away.
Tips for the Best Bread
- Do not over-proof the dough. You might think that letting it sit for longer than 30 minutes will yield a fluffier bread, but nope. Over-proofed dough will only collapse because its gluten structure has been weakened.
- Don’t underproof the dough, either. If you bake it too soon, chances are, the dough hasn’t produced enough carbon dioxide to expand yet.
- Most cinnamon bread or roll recipes will call for an oven temperature of 350 degrees Fahrenheit, but for this one, stick to just 300.
The loaves will be coated with a ton of sugar, and baking them at a high temperature will burn the sugar.
- Turn the loaves around halfway through baking. Even if your oven is fairly new, don’t skip this step. This ensures that the bread will bake evenly.
Since you’re already taking them out, anyway, go ahead and baste the loaves with more butter. Coat them with extra cinnamon and sugar, too!
This will make your bread extra moist and give it an even crunchier crust. It’ll be richer and more buttery, too. Yum!
- If the tops start to brown too soon, cover the pans loosely with aluminum foil.
- The bread will look perfectly cooked at around 25 minutes, so you might be tempted to take it out. But don’t be fooled – the top may look perfect, but it’s not yet fully baked inside.
- The best way to test for bread doneness is through an instant-read thermometer. It should have an internal temperature of between 195 to 200 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Have leftover bread? Turn it into French toast or blueberry French toast casserole the following morning!
More Bread Recipes You’ll Love
- Cinnabon Cinnamon Rolls
- Paula Deen’s Cinnamon Rolls
- Condensed Milk Bread
- Hawaiian Banana Bread
- Honey Beer Bread
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