The Quickest, Easiest Sticky Buns Ever: meet the sticky biscuit

Sometimes a picture is worth a thousand words.

And sometimes a picture simply isn’t worth a plugged nickel (as we old fogies were wont to say, back in the day).

This is one of those times.

I take all of the blog pictures you see here with my iPhone 5. It does a great job – most of the time.

My phone’s very forgiving of operator error, producing uniformly good photos no matter how many times I drop it (buttery fingers); smear icing across its tiny little lens, or tremble like a leaf while holding the phone in one hand and trying to pour maple syrup – artfully, mind you – over a stack of pancakes with the other.

But one thing the iPhone’s camera won’t tolerate is dim light. Yeah, it’ll take photos in low light, for sure. And they’ll be muddy colored and large-pixeled – impossible to sharpen and lacking tone.

When creating recipes for this blog, I try to time my photos so I shoot when a certain type of sunlight (high clouds) and a certain time of day (late morning) combine to make my kitchen counter the perfect photo “studio.”

But, deadlines being what they are, that doesn’t always happen. Take these sticky biscuit photos, for instance.

Now, these easy easy EASY treats are truly lovely, in real life. Glistening like finely rubbed mahogany, they ooze syrup unctuously. Underneath their sugary, nutty crust, a golden interior shines.

But could I capture any of those wonderful colors on the day I baked these buns?


Not on your life.

Dull as dishwater (yeah, another one of those old-fashioned 20th-century sayings).

So you’re just going to have to take my word for it: these buns are quick and easy to make. They’re buttery and caramel-y and wonderfully tender.

And they LOOK every bit as good as they taste.

The camera never lies. But it definitely fibs!

OK, enough with my photo woes. Let’s make The Quickest, Easiest Sticky Buns Ever, a.k.a. sticky biscuits.


But first, a word from our sponsor: King Arthur Flour. In this particular case, King Arthur Unbleached Self-Rising Flour, a lower-protein (read: soft) flour, with baking powder and salt already mixed in.

Which is why it’s awesome for biscuits. Mimicking top-quality soft Southern flour – but with the addition of both salt and leavening – it’s the key ingredient in my favorite foolproof Never-Fail Biscuits, the basis for these buns.

Preheat the oven to 425°F with a rack in the upper third. Lightly grease a 9″ round cake pan or 8″ x 8″ pan.

First we’ll make the topping, since it actually goes into the bottom of the pan. Melt 3 tablespoons butter, and pour it into the prepared pan, tilting the pan so the butter covers the bottom surface.


Sprinkle the following atop the butter:

1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup Sticky Bun Sugar*
1/2 cup diced pecans, optional

*Or substitute 2 tablespoons brown sugar + 2 tablespoons maple syrup (or the liquid sweetener of your choice) for the Sticky Bun Sugar.


To make the dough, combine 2 cups King Arthur Unbleached Self-Rising Flour and 1 cup heavy or whipping cream. Stir together to make a smooth dough. Turn it out onto a lightly greased work surface.

Gently pat/roll the dough into a 12″ x 8″ rectangle.

To make the filling, stir together the following:

1/2 cup Baker’s Cinnamon Filling*
2 tablespoons water*

*Or substitute 4 tablespoons softened butter, 1/2 cup brown sugar, and 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon for the Baker’s Cinnamon Filling mix and water.


Spread the filling atop the dough, and roll the dough into a log. Position it so the seam is facing down. Slice the log into 12 pieces.


Place the buns in the pan. Bake them for about 15 to 18 minutes, until they’re bubbly and lightly browned on top.

Remove the buns from the oven, and immediately turn them out onto a serving plate. Quickly scrape any leftover syrup from the pan onto the buns.


Serve warm.

Note that these buns are very fragile when hot, and won’t pull apart easily like typical sticky buns. To serve warm, wait a couple of minutes, until the topping’s solidified a bit; then turn the round over so you can see the individual buns…


…and use a knife to cut them apart.

And there you have it: sticky biscuits, a.k.a. The Quickest, Easiest Sticky Buns Ever.

While I highly recommend our self-rising flour, I realize it’s not widely available nationwide (yet!) – and some of you prefer not to shop online. If there’s no self-rising flour in your pantry, check our store locator for a possible source near you. Or try our Quick and Easy Sticky Caramel Bun recipe, which uses our unbleached all-purpose flour.

PJ Hamel

PJ Hamel grew up in New England, graduated from Brown University, and was a Maine journalist before joining King Arthur Flour in 1990. PJ bakes and writes from her home on Cape Cod, where she enjoys beach-walking, her husband, two dogs, and really good food!


  1. Kevin

    Thank you KAF. I’m so glad I found this recipe again! It’s easy and awesome. It’s been my “go to” special breakfast recipe (Christmas, Easter, …) since I first found it because everyone in the family loves it, but I couldn’t find my printed copy when planning for Thanksgiving. I’m relieved to be able to carry-in what is becoming a tradition.

  2. Stella

    This recipe looks great! Can these buns be made in a muffin pan so that they are individual bun as opposed to pull apart buns?

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Certainly! A muffin pan is great for portioning into single serving buns. Be sure to grease the bottom well and get the buns out while they are still warm so the sugar does not set up in the bottom of the pan. Happy baking! Laurie@KAF

  3. Debi

    I’ve looked for your Self-Rising flour in Baltimore but have not been able to find it. Do you have a list of stores/states where it is available now? Thanks.

  4. Dianna

    Love the substitutions, thank you. I don’t normally keep self-rising flour on hand and need a sub for that as well. Love sticky buns and love to make and share them so this recipe will get a workout.

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Dianna, you can make your own self-rising flour by following this recipe. Note that if you use all-purpose flour it will have a higher protein content than our self-rising flour and you may have to add more liquid to the recipe because of this, possibly as much as an extra tablespoon liquid per each cup of all-purpose flour substituted. Barb@KAF

  5. Loretta Bassler

    PJ can even make a recipe fun and exciting to read! I am sitting here enjoying my morning coffee and looking forward to making these wonderful-sounding sticky biscuits the next time I am with my grandkids. Love King Arthur and all your e-mails and publications.

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      And we love all our fellow bakers like you passing on the joy of baking to all those around you! Hope you have a wonderful time making these with your grand kids…what kid wouldn’t love being covered in delicious sticky bun goo? Happy Baking! Jocelyn@KAF

  6. Jane Roberts

    The sticky bun recipe looks delicious. Would KAF bakers have a recipe for tea biscuits with currants? Seems like it might be the same components for the sticky bun dough.


    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Hi Jane- These sticky buns in particular (which are a little different than your normal yeasted ones) would work, but I think you might find a traditional tea biscuit would be more scone-like. I think this recipe would be a great place to start and you could add in as many currants (you can even steep them in tea overnight for a bit more complex flavor if you like): If you have any other questions, please call our Baker’s Hotline at 855-371-2253. Happy Baking! Jocelyn@KAF

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