Kanelbullens Dag (Cinnamon Bun Day) is Oct. 4

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Food & Drink

Kanelbullens Dag (Cinnamon Bun Day) is Oct. 4

Photo: Maria Eklind

Cinnamon buns are staples in the homes of Swedes and Swedish-Americans (especially for fika), but on Oct. 4, the sweet, sugary bun gets its own national holiday.

Swedes observe Waffle Day in March and enjoy semlor on Fat Tuesday, but before 1999, there was no such celebration when it came to cinnamon buns.

That year, Sweden’s Hembakningsrådet’s (Home Baking Council) celebrated its 40th anniversary, and the members were looking for a way to highlight the baking tradition in Sweden. Because the anniversary fell during the time of year when baking starts to ramp up, a baked item was chosen for the day’s namesake. From there, Kanelbullens dag was born.

And boy, are we thankful for it.

On Oct. 4, head to bakeries and shops all over Sweden for all the cinnamon buns you can stomach. According to SwedishFood.com, bakeries typically sell three times their normal quantity, which is really saying something because kanelbullar is a popular item on normal days.

For those of us who can’t make the trip overseas for the authentic gooey goodness, the American Swedish Institute will celebrate the day, along with the fifth anniversary of its Nelson Cultural Center.

And here’s a video from Glen & Friend’s Cooking showing you how to make them at home (recipe below).

Glen & Friends: Kannelbullar


  • 2 tsp active dry yeast
  • ¼ cup warm water
  • 1 cup milk
  • 4 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 2 tsp ground cardamom
  • 1 large egg
  • 8 Tbsp butter, room temperature


  • 200g almond paste
  • 1 Tbsp vanilla sugar
  • 4 Tbsp cinnamon
  • 11 Tbsp butter, room temperature

Egg wash

  • 1 egg
  • 4 Tbsp water
  • Pearl sugar, to sprinkle on


  • ½ cup of water
  • 1 cup granulated sugar


  1. Dissolve the yeast in the warm water, 110ºF.
  2. Heat the milk to 110ºF.
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the dry ingredients: flour, sugar, salt, cardamom.
  4. Mix the dissolved yeast into the milk along with the egg. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry, and run the mixer with the dough hook attachment just until a ragged dough forms. Allow this dough to rest for 20 minutes.
  5. On low speed, run the dough hook for 2-3 minutes more until the it ‘comes together’.
  6. When the dough comes together, increase the speed a little, and add the butter, a little at a time. Run the dough hook to knead for about 10 minutes, until it feels elastic, glossy and fine on the surface. Once kneaded, cover in the mixing bowl and leave to rest for 20 minutes.
  7. Meanwhile mix together the almond paste, vanilla sugar, butter and cinnamon.
  8. Roll out the dough to about 16″x24″. Spread the cinnamon filling on the dough and fold it in half.
  9. Cut the dough into 16 strips, and tie in knots (watch the video). Place the knots on two baking sheets lined with parchment. (Note: If you don’t want to make knots, then roll the dough into a log, and slice into 16 buns.)
  10. Cover with a tea towel and allow to rise until double in size, about 1½ – 2 hours. Preheat oven to 400ºF.
  11. Mix the egg and water to make an egg wash, and brush each bun with it. Sprinkle each with pearl sugar. Bake for 10 -15 minutes, or until the internal temp is 200ºF. (Note: If baking both pans at the same time, rotate and switch them between racks halfway.)
  12. Meanwhile make the syrup: mix water and sugar in a pan and cook until dissolved. As the buns come out of the oven, brush them with the syrup while both are still hot.

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