These Cinnamon Roll Christmas Tree Pancakes are perfect for a kid-friendly breakfast on Christmas morning. Kids can even decorate their own pancakes with icing, chocolate syrup, or chocolate chips. Drizzled with a cream cheese icing, this festive breakfast is the perfect marriage between pancakes and cinnamon rolls.
Aren’t these pancakes just adorable?
I used a Christmas tree cookie cutter, but you may use any Christmas-themed cookie cutter. For example, you can make pancake snowmen, snowflakes, or candy canes. Then, just decorate them with chocolate, berries, syrup, or icing.
The cinnamon mixture needs to be kept slightly warm to make it easy to drizzle over the pancake batter. However, if it’s too warm, the mixture will just spread out over the batter instead of creating nice swirls.
If it cools too much, it will become solid. If this happens, just hold the squeeze bottle under warm running water and it should turn back to a liquid.
The pancake batter can be cooked in the cookie cutter or the cookie cutter may be used to punch out the Christmas tree shapes. The second option will leave you with some pancake waste, but it is definitely much quicker since you can cook several pancakes at the same time if you only have one cookie cutter.
I’ve listed both versions in the recipe so you can pick the option that works best for you!
For the Cream Cheese Topping:
- 4 oz cream cheese, softened
- 3 tbsp milk
- 3 tbsp unsalted butter, softened
- 2 cups confectioners sugar
For the Cinnamon Swirl:
- 3 tbsp unsalted butter, melted
- 3 tbsp light brown sugar
- ½ tsp cinnamon
- ¼ tsp ground nutmeg
For the Pancakes:
- ¾ cup milk
- 2 tbsp white vinegar
- 2 tbsp sugar
- 1 cup flour
- 1 tsp baking powder
- ½ tsp baking soda
- ½ tsp salt
- 1 large egg
- 2 tbsp butter, unsalted
- chocolate syrup for drizzling (optional)
- Prepare the cream cheese topping by whipping together the softened cream cheese, milk, and butter using a stand mixer on low speed. Slowly add the confectioners sugar and mix until smooth. Set aside.
- Prepare the cinnamon mixture by mixing together the butter, brown sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg in a small bowl. Transfer to a squeeze bottle and set aside.
- In a medium bowl, combine the milk and white vinegar. Set aside and allow the mixture to sit for 5 minutes.
- In a small bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
- Add the egg and butter to the milk and stir until just combined. Add the flour mixture to the wet ingredients and stir until the lumps have dissolved.
- Heat a griddle or large skillet over medium heat. Spray the griddle and cookie cutter with cooking spray. Place the cookie cutter onto the griddle and add a few spoonfuls of batter (the amount of batter depends on the size of the cookie cutter). Drizzle the cinnamon mixture over the batter. Cook until bubbles appear on the surface, then remove the cookie cutter and flip the pancake with a spatula. Cook until lightly browned and the pancake is cooked through. Repeat with remaining batter. Drizzle the cream cheese topping or chocolate syrup over the pancakes and serve.