Dolly Parton once said, “My weaknesses have always been food and men – in that order.” Well, folks, we’re here to celebrate one of those delightful weaknesses.
The country queen herself has ventured into the world of Pinterest, and she’s serving up something truly magical. Hold onto your apron strings, because Dolly Parton is sharing the recipe for her legendary Dollywood Cinnamon Bread! Yes, that’s the very same mouthwatering treat that was once a well-kept secret, exclusively available to lucky visitors at Dollywood’s amusement park in the heart of Pigeon Forge, Tennessee.
Now, we Southerners understand the allure of down-home delicacies, and that famous cinnamon bread is no exception. It’s the kind of comfort food that instantly transports you to a warm, welcoming kitchen in the heart of the South. And now, thanks to Dolly, you can whip up this slice of Southern heaven right in your own kitchen.
The Allure of Dollywood’s Cinnamon Bread
Dollywood’s cinnamon bread is the talk of the town, baked fresh daily at the Grist Mill.
And let’s talk about the Grist Mill – smack dab in the heart of Craftsman’s Valley – where the magic unfolds. Every bit as popular as Dollywood’s thrilling rides, this pull-apart delicacy has folks lining up, faster than you can say, ‘Yeehaw!’
Built in 1982, the Grist Mill is the first working grist mill Tennessee has seen in over a hundred years! They’re grinding fresh flour, cornmeal, and grits, with all the love and charm of the South. And that mouth-watering cinnamon bread? Drizzle it with icing or dollop some hot apple butter, and you’re in Southern heaven! Though originally an exclusive of the Grist Mill, it made its tasty self over to the Spotlight Bakery too.
Now here’s a sweet tidbit: Dollywood sells a whopping 210,000 loaves of this bread every year! In 2018, they thought, “Why limit the fun?” and introduced it at the DM Pantry inside Dollywood’s DreamMore Resort and Spa. But here’s where the story gets as sweet as a country ballad: When the COVID-19 blues hit and Dollywood took a pause, Dolly, the queen that she is, decided that absolutely nothing could keep her fans from their loved comfort food. She rode to the rescue, revealing the official recipe for Dollywood’s cinnamon bread recipe for everyone to enjoy. Y’all ready to bake?
The Official Dollywood Cinnamon Bread Recipe
If you’ve been yearning for a taste of Dollywood at home, this recipe is your golden ticket. Here’s how you can recreate the world-renowned Dollywood cinnamon bread in your own kitchen.
1/2 cup warm water
3/4 teaspoon active dry yeast
1 tablespoon plus a pinch of white sugar, divided
1 1/2 cups bread flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled
1/4 cup white sugar
1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
2 tablespoons light corn syrup
1 1/4 cups confectioners’ sugar
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
3 to 5 tablespoons milk
First, prepare the dough. Combine warm water, yeast, and a pinch white sugar in a small bowl and whisk. Let it sit until foamy, which usually takes about 5 to 8 minutes.
Meanwhile, in a stand mixer, whisk bread flour, remaining 1 tablespoon white sugar, salt, and melted butter.
Once the yeast mixture is foamy, add it to the stand mixer.
Using the dough hook, knead on medium speed until the dough is smooth and elastic, which usually takes about 8 minutes.
Transfer the dough ball to a lightly greased bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and let it rise in a warm place (about 75 to 80 degrees F, or 25 degrees C) until doubled in size, which usually takes about 1 1/2 hours.
Punch the dough down, then transfer it to a work surface and knead a few times. Cut it in half and gently shape it into two 3×6-inch loaves (be careful not to overwork the dough).
Place the loaves on a parchment-lined baking sheet and cover with plastic wrap. Let them rise in a warm place until puffy, which usually takes about 30 minutes to 1 hour.
In the meantime, prepare the topping. Whisk white sugar, brown sugar, and cinnamon in a small baking dish. Whisk melted butter and corn syrup in a separate small baking dish.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) and line two 9×5-inch loaf pans with parchment paper, leaving an overhang on both sides.
Cut four deep slashes across the top of each loaf (the loaves will deflate).
Dip each loaf in the butter-corn syrup mixture, coating it completely, then coat with the cinnamon-sugar mixture, making sure the mixtures get into all the crevices.
Place the loaves in the prepared loaf pans and drizzle with any remaining butter and cinnamon sugar.
Bake until golden brown, which usually takes 25 to 30 minutes.
Lift the bread out of the loaf pans and let it cool, which usually takes about 15 minutes.
Meanwhile, prepare the glaze. Whisk confectioners’ sugar, salt, melted butter, and 3 tablespoons milk in a bowl until smooth. Whisk in up to 2 more tablespoons milk, if needed to thin out the glaze.
Finally, drizzle the glaze on the warm loaves or serve on the side for dipping.
Y’all ready to put on your baking mitts? With this recipe, you can rustle up some Dollywood magic right in your own kitchen! Get a taste of the cinnamon sensation that’s not only had Dolly Parton singing its praises but has every Dollywood visitor hankerin’ for seconds. Time to whip up some Southern charm on a plate!