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featured sticky buns

Sticky Buns (Caramel Pecan) Recipe

Course: Bread, Breakfast
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 2 hours
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Rise + Chill Time: 11 hours
Total Time: 13 hours 35 minutes
Servings: 16 buns
Calories: 757kcal
Sticky Buns are a sweet and delicious breakfast that the whole family will enjoy! This caramel pecan sticky bun recipe is a classic, and it's sure to bring everyone together around the breakfast table. They are perfect for Christmas morning, or as a special weekend treat!
Print Recipe


For the Dough

  • 1 tablespoon active dry yeast 9 grams
  • cups water 284 grams, warm (110°F-115°F) and divided
  • 4½-5 cups all-purpose flour 540-600 grams, divided
  • 3 large eggs 150 grams, room temperature and lightly beaten
  • ½ cup vegetable shortening 92 grams, melted (½ stick)
  • ½ cup granulated sugar 100 grams
  • 5 teaspoons kosher salt 15 grams

For the Cinnamon Sugar Filling

  • cups unsalted butter 339 grams, melted (3 sticks)
  • 1 cup granulated sugar 200 grams
  • 1 cup dark brown sugar 213 grams
  • 3 tablespoons ground cinnamon 27 grams
  • 2 tablespoons apple pie spice 18 grams

For the Pecan Topping

  • 12 tablespoons unsalted butter 170 grams, melted (1½ sticks)
  • ¾ cup dark brown sugar 160 grams
  • ¾ cup granulated sugar 150 grams
  • ½ cup dark corn syrup 156 grams
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt 3 grams
  • ¼ cup water 57 grams
  • 2 cups chopped pecans 228 grams, toasted


  • Lightly whisk the yeast and ¼ cup warm water in a liquid measuring cup. Let stand for 5 minutes.
    1 tablespoon active dry yeast, 1¼ cups water
  • In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the yeast mixture, remaining 1 cup warm water, 2 cups of flour, eggs, melted shortening, sugar, and salt together. Beat for 2 minutes, or until the mixture starts to form a soft dough.
    4½-5 cups all-purpose flour, 3 large eggs, ½ cup vegetable shortening, ½ cup granulated sugar, 5 teaspoons kosher salt
  • Slowly add enough of the remaining flour (usually about 2½-3 cups more) and mix just until it is incorporated.
  • Spray (or butter) the inside of a glass bowl with nonstick spray, then place the dough inside, flipping to coat the ball. Cover the bowl, place it in a proofing oven or warm place, and allow the dough to rise (it should double in size) for about 1-1½ hours.
  • After the dough has risen, punch it down, cover, and refrigerate it for at least 8 hours or overnight.
  • When ready to make the rolls, remove the dough from the refrigerator, punch it down again, and divide it in half. Cover the dough loosely with plastic wrap to keep it from drying out.
  • Spray two 9-inch baking pans or cake pans with nonstick spray.
  • Make the pecan topping while the dough rests on the countertop. In a small medium bowl, whisk the melted butter, granulated sugar, brown sugar, corn syrup, salt, and water together until the mixture is smooth.
    12 tablespoons unsalted butter, ¾ cup dark brown sugar, ¾ cup granulated sugar, ½ cup dark corn syrup, 1 teaspoon kosher salt, ¼ cup water
  • Pour an equal amount of the pecan topping into the prepared pans (about 348 grams per pan). Sprinkle half of the chopped pecans onto the pecan topping (1 cup in each pan).
    2 cups chopped pecans
  • Make the cinnamon sugar filling before rolling out the dough. Melt 1½ cups (3 sticks) of butter in a microwave safe bowl. Set aside. In a medium bowl, whisk the sugars, cinnamon, and pie spice together. Set aside.
    1½ cups unsalted butter, 1 cup granulated sugar, 1 cup dark brown sugar, 3 tablespoons ground cinnamon, 2 tablespoons apple pie spice
  • Place half of the dough on a lightly floured work surface and knead it about 5 times to smooth it out. Roll the dough into a large rectangle, ⅓-inch thick, allowing it to rest periodically until it stops pulling back. Slightly stretch the corners to make an even rectangle about 18x15-inches in size. If the size of the rectangle is smaller, that’s okay - it’s more important the dough is ⅓ inch thick and in a rectangular shape.
  • Brush 12 tablespoons of melted butter evenly over the dough. Sprinkle with half of the cinnamon-sugar filling, leaving a ½ inch border around the dough without cinnamon sugar.
  • Beginning at the long edge nearest you, roll the dough (not too tightly) into a cylinder. Pinch the long seam to seal it and position the cylinder so the pinched seam is down. Trim off about ½ inch of dough on each end of the dough cylinder.
  • Use waxed dental floss to cut the dough into rolls, about 1½ inches thick. To slice with floss, hold a 10-inch length of floss taut and slide it underneath the dough cylinder. Pull up the floss and cross the ends of it over each other and gently pull until the dough is cut through. Repeat. (If you don’t have floss, use a serrated knife and gently saw the dough into rolls.)
  • Transfer the rolls, cut-side down, to the prepared pan with ½ inch between each roll.
  • Cover the rolls with plastic wrap and let rise until rolls are puffy, about doubled in size, and touching each other, 45-90 minutes.
  • Preheat oven to 350°F. Cover a large, rimmed baking sheet with foil and place it on the lowest rack in the oven to catch any drippings.
  • Once the rolls have risen, remove the plastic wrap and place the rolls in the oven. Bake for 30-35 minutes, or until the internal temperature registers 200°F on an instant-read thermometer. If the buns are browning too quickly, loosely cover with sprayed foil.
  • Remove from the oven and let the rolls cool for 5 minutes.
    sticky buns in a round cake pan after baking
  • Very carefully invert the rolls onto a large serving plate (a plate larger than the baking pans). Be very careful when inverting the rolls - the glaze (at the bottom of each pan) is extremely hot and gooey at this point.
    hands inverting sticky buns from the baking pan onto a white serving tray
  • Allow the rolls to cool for about 5-8 minutes before serving.
    tongs grabbing a sticky bun off of a white serving tray



  • Use two, round 9-inch baking pans for best results.
  • Be sure to spray the pans generously with nonstick spray to prevent sticking!
  • You can make these in a square baking pan if needed. The round pans just create the best results, in my experience.
  • Be sure to use active dry yeast here, not instant. The water needs to be between 110-115°F to properly activate the yeast.
  • Use apple pie spice for best results, or use a mix of cinnamon, allspice, and nutmeg.
  • When rolling out the dough to prepare for the cinnamon filling, you want it to be ⅓-inch thick. The overall size of the rectangle is not as important as the thickness.
  • Waxed dental floss is the best method to slice through the dough neatly and cleanly. Otherwise, use a serrated knife to cut.
  • If the sticky buns are browning too fast in the oven, loosely cover them with foil that has been sprayed with non-stick spray.
Storage: Store sticky buns in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days, in the refrigerator for up to 1 week, or in the freezer for up to 2 months.


Serving: 1bun | Calories: 757kcal | Carbohydrates: 91g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 43g | Saturated Fat: 19g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 6g | Monounsaturated Fat: 15g | Trans Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 103mg | Sodium: 915mg | Potassium: 165mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 60g | Vitamin A: 859IU | Vitamin C: 0.4mg | Calcium: 71mg | Iron: 3mg