Cinnamon sugar may not seem like something for which you need to defer to a recipe. And yet the secret to ensuring this simple childhood sweet is something superlative and not just something ho hum lies in the perfect proportion of cinnamon to sugar. You’ll find exactly that in this recipe.–Renee Schettler Rossi

A glass spice jar filled with cinnamon sugar, lying on its side with some cinnamon sugar poured out.

How To Make Cinnamon Sugar

5 / 6 votes
How to make cinnamon sugar gives you the exact perfect proportion of spice to sweet to create instant magic. Use it generously as a topping on buttered toast, pretzels, sugar cookies, popcorn, flour tortillas…
David Leite
Servings24 servings | 1/2 cup
Calories18 kcal
Prep Time5 minutes
Total Time5 minutes


  • Spice jar, preferably with a sprinkle lid


  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons ground cinnamon, (or a little more or less to taste)


  • Measure the sugar and cinnamon into a bowl.
  • Use a spoon or mini whisk to mix it together.
  • That's it. Use the cinnamon sugar immediately or store it in a spice jar and, if you're the forgetful type, make and slap a label on the jar reminding you of its contents.


How To Use Cinnamon Sugar

Now that you have a stash of cinnamon sugar at the ready, how do you use it beyond sprinkling it on buttered toast (or simply shaking a little onto your palm and licking it off)? The options are ridiculously plentiful. Take a look at our recipe testers’ comments, which can be found beneath the recipe, or glance at the inspirations below. and you’ll be exposed to literally dozens of creative approaches to bringing a little more sweetness into everyday life…
  • Lavished on buttered toast
  • Stirred into oatmeal or breakfast quinoa
  • Dumped onto sliced apples, grapefruit halves, papaya wedges, just about any fruit
  • Dusted on graham crackers
  • Tossed with popcorn
  • Stirred into rice pudding
  • Heaped on flour tortillas spread with butter and then folded
  • Spread on crêpes
  • Heaped on roasted butternut or acorn squash
  • Showered on applesauce
  • Sprinkled on homemade soft pretzels
  • Tossed with freshly roasted almonds, walnuts, or pumpkin seeds
  • Passed on the side for waffles or pancakes
  • Stirred into butter
  • Rolled onto blobs of cookie dough before baking
  • Sautéed with apple slices in butter to top a Dutch baby pancake or waffles or ice cream
  • Sprinkled on homemade Greek yogurt or fresh whole milk ‘ricotta’
  • And more. So, so much more!
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Serving: 1 teaspoonCalories: 18 kcalCarbohydrates: 5 gProtein: 0.03 gFat: 0.02 gSaturated Fat: 0.003 gMonounsaturated Fat: 0.002 gSodium: 0.1 mgFiber: 0.4 gSugar: 4 g

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Tried this recipe?Mention @leitesculinaria or tag #leitesculinaria!
Recipe © 2015 Deanna F. Cook. Photo © 2015 Julie Bidwell. All rights reserved.

Recipe Testers’ Reviews

Anyone can toss cinnamon and sugar together and have cinnamon sugar. But it’s certainly nice to have an idea in the back of your head as to the best ratio of cinnamon to sugar—and this is it. Perfectly balanced sweetness allows the cinnamon to play the star role here.

I loved it mixed into softened butter, spread on toasted bread, and then placed under the broiler for a minute for great cinnamon toast. I also stirred it into oatmeal, unsweetened cereal, applesauce, and Greek yogurt. I sprinkled it over popcorn, grapefruit, even graham crackers spread with peanut butter. I tossed it with green apple slices. All with delicious results. If it were fall, I would use it to rim glasses and then pour in pumpkin beer, which is definitely a favorite of mine in the cooler months.

As the recipe suggests, it’s a good idea to keep some on hand. This way, when the opportunity presents itself, you can turn your snacks and treats into something a bit more special.

Super simple and great to have on hand. I found that 2 tablespoons cinnamon to 1/2 cup sugar made for a fairly strong cinnamon taste, which I love. Some may prefer it a little milder, so I’d suggest starting with somewhat less cinnamon and add more to taste.

You can also simply put the ingredients in a jar and shake. I put it in my tea and coffee and I use it in cakes and other sweets.

The easiest thing ever. Takes about 2 minutes to make.

We always have a glass of cinnamon sugar in the cupboard. Use it to sprinkle on milchreis (German rice porridge) or crêpes. Also good on fried flour tortillas wedges with some honey.

Once you’ve made this yourself, you’ll find 1,001 uses for it in your kitchen or gift it to someone who will appreciate this simple homemade treat!

So, let’s see, you can top oatmeal, yogurt, another hot cereal, and broiled grapefruit or another sort of grilled fruit, especially stone fruits. You could use it to finish a sundae or anything topped with whipped cream. Muffins or muffin tops would be lovely with cinnamon sugar. So would toast, toasted English muffins, scones, biscuits, bagels, or bagels with cream cheese. Stirred into cream cheese. Sprinkled over fresh berries of any sort. Atop a pretzel. On roasted nuts or pumpkin seeds. On granola. On cottage cheese. Atop popcorn. Atop applesauce. On applesauce-topped blintzes or apple-filled crepes. In or atop apple compote. On pita chips or bagel chips. Sprinkled on biscotti, donuts, or donut holes. Roll your churros in cinnamon sugar. Stirred into coffee or chai. Stirred into waffle or pancake batter or sprinkled on waffles, pancakes, or French toast. Top a cupcake with cinnamon sugar or frost the cupcake first and then sprinkle with cinnamon sugar. Sprinkle apple slices with cinnamon sugar. Or sprinkle roasted squash or baked sweet potatoes with cinnamon sugar. Atop pumpkin pie. Atop coffee cake. Top your crumble, your cobbler, your crisp, your rugelach, or your kugel with it. Your sugar cookies, your carrot cake, your snickerdoodles, your oatmeal cookies, your homemade granola bars, your warmed tortillas, your gingerbread, or your gingerbread cookies. Make compound butter.

Additionally, since there are so many varieties of cinnamon and granulated sugar, it could be fun to mix and match and play around with these in a variety of combinations. I would be interested in the differences among Vietnamese, Ceylon, and Chinese cinnamon, for example, and a regular versus a superfine versus a turbinado sugar. Matching a combination with an intended use could be an interesting exploration and make a lovely homemade gift pack (perhaps a trio of mixes?).

I’m fairly certain this is way better than the store-bought version my mother kept on hand for my younger sibling’s cinnamon toast habit when we were kids. While this is a simple recipe, the trick is the proportion of ingredients.

I used a combination of Korintje (Indonesian) and Vietnamese cinnamons and whisked them together in 5 minutes. I used 1 tablespoon Korintje cassia (8.3 grams) and 1 tablespoon Vietnamese cinnamon (6.4 grams). I tried this as a scant sprinkle on plain yogurt, my cappuccino, a warmed tortilla, some French toast, and on my favorite oat muffin recipe before putting the muffins into the oven. I also plan on using it on baked acorn squash and maybe even on buttered toast.

The only thing I would add is that if your jar has a sprinkling lid, that would be handy for sprinkling for baking—think biscuit cinnamon rolls or braided breads. This recipe makes too much for a standard spice jar, but I had a slightly larger fresh spice jar on hand.

This takes all of 2 minutes to throw together. I halved the recipe as I don’t bake a lot and didn’t want another jar of something sitting around.

I used this mixed with butter to cook apples for a Dutch baby pancake. For someone who makes things like buttered toast regularly, I can see having a stash of this on hand.

Let’s be frank, making cinnamon sugar isn’t a difficult or novel pursuit. However, it is utterly delicious and deserves a place in everyone’s kitchen.

Spread some warm tortillas with butter and sprinkle on some cinnamon sugar, roll them up, and you have yourself a sweet and easy snack (okay, my happy childhood memories are built on these). I especially appreciate anything cinnamon sugar-enhanced with just a touch of coarse salt. It may be simple, but, oh, is it mighty fine.

Why buy cinnamon sugar when you can just make your own in 5 minutes?! We are trying to cut back on refined white sugar, but that doesn’t mean we can’t enjoy some cinnamon sugar.

I also made this recipe using palm sugar (coconut sugar). I just made a straight substitute and it was just as cinnamon-sweet as the traditional recipe.

When I was a kid, my Dad used to buy fresh ricotta from the Italian market, and when we got home, the cheese would still be warm, and we would sprinkle cinnamon sugar on it and eat it with a spoon.

Today, my Dad till brings me fresh ricotta from the market, and now I sprinkle coconut sugar cinnamon on it. Memories of childhood—you can’t beat that! I also like to sprinkle it on warm cereal and yogurt.

If someone doesnʻt know how to cook or their mother didnʻt make this for them when they were a kid, then you might need a recipe. I always have a little Tupperware container of this on hand. What I liked is that this has a simple, straightforward enough cinnamon flavor. I think a true cinnamon lover could add more.

Sometimes when you use cinnamon sugar for baking, itʻs nice to have a bit more of a cinnamon kick. If someone doesn’t like cinnamon too much and only wants a hint, he or she could certainly use less. The type of cinnamon also makes a difference. The better quality cinnamon that you use, the better the cinnamon sugar produced.

I used this recipe for cinnamon toast (toast spread with softened butter and then sprinkled with cinnamon sugar). In the past, I’ve used it for sprinkling on puff pastry and making cookies or twists. I’ve also used it for many of the suggestions included—tortillas, apple slices, cookies and cakes and muffins straight out of the oven, ice cream, and the whipped cream atop hot chocolate or coffee.

The cinnamon sugar took literally 3 minutes to mix up and put in the jar. I have seen cinnamon sugar for sale and I have never understood the need for such a product. I don’t usually measure when I make cinnamon sugar, so I wondered how I would like the strength of this particular ratio of cinnamon to sugar. It was perfect—nice and strongly cinnamon-y.

I used the cinnamon sugar on buttered toast, oatmeal, and microwave popcorn.

About David Leite

I count myself lucky to have received three James Beard Awards for my writing as well as for Leite’s Culinaria. My work has also appeared in The New York Times, Martha Stewart Living, Saveur, Bon Appétit, Gourmet, Food & Wine, Yankee, Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune, The Washington Post, and more.

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Recipe Rating


  1. 5 stars
    After emptying the store-bought stuff, I kept the bottle and searched for a recipe. When I saw this one (Feb 2022), I was looking for a cinnamon/sugar recipe not sugared/cinnamon, so I went with this one. I have been making this recipe since. It is amazing how fast the bottle empties compared to that store-bought one. And yes, the recipe is printed on the bottle. My husband & I thank you so much. Love it.