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3 Ingredient Cinnamon Rolls are so easy to make! Yes, you really only need 3 ingredients to make some frozen cinnamon rolls taste amazing like they were made from scratch. Simple to prepare the night before and they’re ready to bake up in the morning. Frozen cinnamon rolls, vanilla pudding, and butter is all it takes!

For more delicious recipes involving cinnamon rolls, be sure and try my Peaches n’ Cream Cinnamon Roll Casserole, these Cinnamon Roll Muffins that require no yeast, or my very favorite Easy Caramel Pecan Cinnamon Rolls

Vertical picture of a white pan with frosted cinnamon rolls inside of it.

Easy Cinnamon Rolls with 3 Ingredients

Cinnamon rolls are always a favorite treat around my house! Who can resist that warm, cinnamon spiced bread covered in sweet vanilla cream cheese frosting?! This recipe takes simple frozen cinnamon rolls and elevates them into an easy, 3 ingredient cinnamon roll that tastes homemade from a bakery.

It’s an overnight recipe with only a few minutes prep time needed the night before. Making “homemade” cinnamon rolls has never been so easy!

Side shot of a pan of cinnamon rolls with a vanilla glaze on top.

A wooden spatula picking up a cinnamon roll from a pan of them.

Ingredients You Need & How to Make Easy Cinnamon Rolls

Just like the recipe title says you really do only need 3 ingredients for this easy cinnamon roll recipe. Making them is just as easy as the ingredients!

  • Frozen Cinnamon Rolls – I usually only see these made by the Rhodes brand (I prefer that brand anyways when it comes to frozen bread items). If you get another brand just make sure that there are 12 cinnamon rolls in the bag, which is what you’ll need to make this recipe. 
  • Cook & Serve Vanilla Pudding – This is different than regular instant pudding. The box should specifically say ‘cook & serve’ on the front of it, like what is shown below in the picture. 
  • Butter – You can use salted or unsalted butter in this recipe. I use salted butter for all my baking and cooking. 

Just like the minimal ingredients needed to make this recipe, actually making these easy 3 ingredient cinnamon rolls is just as easy!

Step 1 : Lay the frozen cinnamon rolls into a 9×13 baking dish that has been sprayed with cooking spray. You will have 4 rows with 3 cinnamon rolls in each, like the picture below. 

Step 2 : Sprinkle the dry cook n’ serve pudding mix over the cinnamon rolls. Do not prepare this before! Simply sprinkle the dry powder from the box. 

Step 3 : Drizzle the melted butter over top the pudding mix and cover the pan with tin foil. Refrigerate overnight.

Step 4 : Take baking dish out of the fridge and let it sit out at room temperature for 1 hour before baking. Preheat the oven during this time and then bake the cinnamon rolls for 20-25 minutes or until done. Frost with the cream cheese icing that came in the bag or you can make your own. 

A photo of ingredients needed with each one showing what it is. Another photo in the collage showing step 1 of the recipe.

Showing how to make this cinnamon roll recipe with two pictures of the steps needed. Baked cinnamon rolls inside a white baking dish.

Tips For Success

Here are a few of my helpful tips that will hopefully make this recipe a success in your own kitchen.

  • Cook & Serve Pudding : This is the most important one! All the boxes look alike but double check to make sure you are using the instant pudding that says ‘cook & serve’ right on the front of the box. No need to prepare this according to package instructions before using. Simply sprinkle the dry pudding mix, straight from the box, over the cinnamon rolls in the pan. 
  • Plan Ahead : This recipe is an overnight recipe, meaning that you need to prepare them the day before (prep work is really only a few minutes) and let them refrigerate overnight. This recipe will not work if you try to rush it and prepare it the day of. 
  • Cooking Spray : Make sure that you spray the baking dish well with cooking spray to help prevent sticking, especially on the sides as the cinnamon rolls rise and bake. 
  • Leftovers : Cinnamon rolls are best the day they’re made but they will stay good for 2-3 days, in an air-tight container, at room temperature. We always warm them up in the microwave before eating. 

Close up picture of cinnamon rolls with icing inside a white baking dish.

Variation & Substitution Ideas

There really are not many ways to make this recipe different or switch it up. There are a couple thing you can try that I think would work perfectly.

  • Make Homemade Cinnamon Roll Frosting : Feel free to make your own homemade cream cheese cinnamon roll icing, or try this classic vanilla icing if you want one without cream cheese.  Making homemade will always taste better than the packet that comes with the frozen cinnamon rolls. I’ve done it both ways and they still get eaten no matter what is smothered on top of them!
  • Use Frozen Orange Rolls : I have seen frozen orange rolls by the Rhodes brand in the freezer section next to these cinnamon rolls. I think using those would be a delicious replacement if you wanted to try something different with this recipe.

One cinnamon roll on a plate with a fork inside of it.

Stack of cinnamon rolls on a white plate with icing drizzling down the side.

More Breakfast Recipes You’ll Love

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3 Ingredient Cinnamon Rolls

Course bread, Breakfast
Cuisine American


  • 1 bag (36.5 oz) frozen cinnamon rolls (package should have 12)
  • 1 box (3 oz) vanilla cook & serve pudding
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) salted butter melted


  • Spray a 9x13 baking dish with cooking spray.
  • Lay the frozen cinnamon rolls into the pan. Three rows with 4 cinnamon rolls in each row.
  • Sprinkle the cook & serve pudding over the frozen cinnamon rolls.
    * DO NOT prepare the pudding mix first. Just sprinkle the dry powder mix.
  • Drizzle the melted butter over the pudding mix/cinnamon rolls.
  • Cover with tin foil, spray the underside that touches the pan with cooking spray, and place in the fridge overnight.
  • In the morning pull out the cinnamon rolls and let rise in a warm place until doubled in size (about 1 hour). They should rise to the top of the baking dish.
  • Heat oven to 350 degrees and cook for 20 minutes.
    Time may vary so start checking the rolls after 20 minutes. The tops will be a golden brown. Ice the cinnamon rolls, with included icing in the bag, while warm.


My kitchen is really cold in the mornings so I set the pan of cinnamon rolls on top of a heating pad on the low setting. 
I put the icing bags (from the frozen cinnamon roll bag) into the fridge overnight so that they could thaw. In the morning I squeezed them into a Ziploc bag and cut a corner off the bag. This makes the nice icing lines. If that's what you prefer.


Calories: 360kcal | Carbohydrates: 44g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 20g | Saturated Fat: 10g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 2g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 21mg | Sodium: 658mg | Potassium: 4mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 22g | Vitamin A: 246IU | Calcium: 3mg | Iron: 1mg

Did You Make This Recipe?

I'd love to see it! You can share it with me on @togetherasfamilyblog and follow on Pinterest @together-as-family-blog-recipes or Facebook @togetherasfamilyblog for more!

Horizontal photo of cinnamon rolls inside a white pan.

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Recipe Rating


  1. Fun question:
    What if I accidentally bought instant pudding? Would that be terrible? Worst case here is I make them tomorrow without the pudding but I was wondering what might happen if I do use the instant pudding.

    1. Together As Family says:

      Good question. I have never used anything other than the cook n’ serve that the recipe calls for. I know they have different preparation methods. I say stick with the recipe but then again, you could experiment!

  2. Claudette says:

    Is it ok to freeze the rolls after making them to be used a week later.? I am having a big party and the cinnamon rolls would make it perfect , but I will have egg casseroles to bake that day too, so freezing the rolls would be a great way to save cooking time.?.

    1. Together As Family says:

      I honestly don’t know if these will freeze well. It’s worth a try but I’ve never done it so I don’t want to say for sure.

    2. Did you try it? If so…did you just thaw and serve?

  3. I prepared as the directions instructed but instead of thawing in the refrigerator I thawed overnight in the oven. I removed and the rolls had doubled in size…heated oven, bake as directed, iced and enjoyed…much easier this way and they were delicious!

  4. Heather M Atwood says:

    5 stars
    I love your recipes but, I have to say that I get hung up on the grammar and spelling mistakes.

    1. Together As Family says:

      Thank you! This was one of the first recipes I ever posted (like 5 years ago I think). Back when this blog was just for fun and I was posting for myself and family members. Since then, I have been trying to go through all the old posts as now there are millions of visitors to my site each month… Thanks for letting me know.

  5. 5 stars
    I just successfully used instant pudding (cheesecake flavored) and they were delicious. It was my first attempt and that was what I had in the pantry. Since I haven’t made them with the cook n serve, I don’t know what they were supposed to come out like, but I call them a yummy win with instant.

  6. I didnt know Rhodes had cinnamon rolls so I will look. I’ve made similar recipe with Rhodes regular frozen rolls and used butterscotch cook pudding. Also I melted butter and put brown sugar and cinnamon in it then poured over rolls. So if I used these rolls, it would be better. Just changing pudding would be good. Tried it accidentally with instant and didnt like it.

  7. Kris Marean says:

    5 stars
    I have used a very similar recipe for years and have added a small amount of brown sugar in the bottom of the pan along with some cut cubed butter along with the brown sugar. Placing the cinnamon rolls cut in half place on top of the sugar and butter and as your recipe states sprinkling the cook n serve vanilla pudding on top with a little more cubed butter. I’ve placed a towel over mine n placed in a microwave the night before. Same baking instructions. These are always a hit at brunches and camping trips. My father n law requested them for a dinner once also. Thank you for introducing this it’s awesome!! Oh and I have accidentally used instant pudding before but you’re right it really does need to be cook & serve. Stay safe all! Kris M.

  8. 5 stars
    I made these for the first time and they are awesome! Tasty, moist and delicious. They are a hit with my family.

    1. Has anyone tried these with the Rhodes newer Anytime cinnamon rolls? My daughter bought them by mistake but I’d live to try them with it if it works.

      1. Together as Family says:

        I’ve never used them myself but I think they should work fine. Hopefully it turns out good for you!

  9. Karen Eickmann says:

    I messed up. I forgot to look at the recipe one more time. I put the butter scotch on in the morning and the warm butter. Then put in oven. Hope they make it.

  10. Mary Carr says:

    I made the cinnamon rolls and they were absolutely delicious. Only thing I did different was like one of your recipe users suggested, I thawed mine in the oven overnight also…..thank you for the recipe, great one…..

    1. Lucy Pulsipher says:

      So glad it worked out for you!

  11. Mary Carr says:

    5 stars
    I made the cinnamon rolls, they were absolutely delicious. Only thing I did different was like on of your recipe users suggested, I thawed mine in the oven overnight. Thanks for sharing the recipe with us, great one…..

    1. Lucy Pulsipher says:

      Thanks for sharing how the recipe turned out for you! Glad you liked it!

  12. Do you bake these with foil on or off in oven?

    1. Together as Family says:

      I bake them without tin foil on. But if the tops brown too quickly before the rolls are baked through then I will cover with tin foil until they are done baking.

  13. Can you use the Pillsbury refrigerated rolls instead of Rhodes???

    1. Together as Family says:

      I’ve never tried that but I think it would work!

  14. Christy Dowell says:

    Ever try using sugar free cook & serve pudding mix? I realize there’s no point with all of the sugar anyway, but it’s all I have. Just wondering if it works.

    1. Together as Family says:

      I’ve never done it but I see no reading why it wouldn’t work. Let me know how it turns out!