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December 03, 2020 3 min read

Dutch oven cinnamon rolls are one of the best campfire desserts you can whip up in the backwoods. Spend the day hiking, then you can return to your campsite, set up a roaring fire, and get those camping cinnamon rolls baking!

You can prepare the dough for these rolls at home, store it safely in a cooler, then start campfire baking in the evening. If you’ve got any leftovers, these cinnamon rolls make for a fantastic breakfast too!


Dutch oven cinnamon rolls FAQ

How do I bake on an open campfire?

Before baking our cinnamon rolls, we first need to prepare our campfire. You actually have two options. You can set up a full campfire with firewood and let the wood burn down into embers, or you can heat up a large pile of charcoal (similar to lighting a barbecue). Here’s how to prepare your campfire for baking:

  1. Select an appropriate spot for your campfire. Many camping sites have designated fire pits. If not, look for an area of scorched ground that’s already been used for a fire. If needed, surround your fire area with bricks or rocks to contain the fire when it gets going. 
  2. If you have firewood, pile it up in the center of the pit and use small pieces of kindling to light it. Keep adding progressively larger pieces of wood to the flames. Allow the flames to die down, then pile up your embers in the middle. If you’re using charcoal, simply light the coals using firelighters and let them heat up. 
  3. When you have hot coals (from either method), pile some of them up to form an even layer on the ground (use tongs or a fire poker). Place your camping Dutch oven on this first layer of coals, then add another layer to the top of the Dutch oven. Pile any leftover coals around the edges. 
  4. While your cinnamon rolls are baking, you can add more embers to the fire to keep it going. If you think it’s too hot, take some away. 
  5. When you’re done cooking, remember to put your fire out.

How long do you cook cinnamon rolls in the campfire? 

The exact length of time it takes to cook cinnamon rolls depends on how you’ve constructed your fire and how hot the embers are. Cinnamon rolls could be ready in as little as 30 minutes; however, try to spread your coals evenly and cook for up to 45 minutes to ensure the rolls are cooked through to the center.

Is there a difference between cinnamon rolls and cinnamon buns? 

Cinnamon rolls and cinnamon buns (also known as sticky buns) are similar, yet there are several key differences. To cook pie iron cinnamon rolls, you need to first put your sticky glaze into the Dutch oven. You then place your dough on top of the glaze. The result is a sticky outer coating immediately after cooking.

To cook cinnamon rolls, you add the dough straight into the Dutch oven. You don’t add the glazing until the dough has been cooked!

How long can I store cinnamon roll dough in the freezer? 

You can keep your cinnamon roll dough in the freezer for up to 1 month once you’ve prepared it. Ordinarily, you’ll need to keep it in the freezer for a minimum of 6 hours (preferably overnight, though) before you take it camping. Freezing keeps the dough fresh while you’re in transit to your campsite!

Making desserts while camping? Why not! Try out our dutch oven peach cobbler or chocolate upside down cake recipe on your next camping trip!

Enjoyed this recipe? Then check out more dutch oven camping recipes!

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