This Cinnamon Brown Sugar Glaze is the perfect topping for cakes, donuts, cookies, quick breads, pastries, scones, and many other desserts.

Cinnamon brown sugar glaze dripping off of a whisk into a bowl.

Cinnamon Brown Sugar Glaze

I first made this cinnamon brown sugar glaze for my pumpkin loaf, but it tastes great on apple scones and apple cake too.

Think of it like the icing on the frosted brown sugar cinnamon Pop-Tarts — but it can go on ALL the things.

Desserts like cakes, donuts, cookies, quick breads, scones, muffins, etc. You name it! A little bit of cinnamon brown sugar glaze can elevate most treats. The best part is that it takes less than a minute to make!

Cinnamon brown sugar glaze in a bowl.

Simple Sugar Glaze

A powdered sugar glaze is the most basic glaze for topping desserts. It can consist of as little as two ingredients: Powdered Sugar and Milk (or juice, or water).

Glaze can be made in a variety of consistencies—from thick to thin—which dry to varying degrees of stiffness but do not harden, thanks to lower sugar content.

My recipe for cinnamon brown sugar glaze takes the simple powdered sugar glaze up a notch with just a few additional ingredients.

Ingredients

There are only 5 ingredients needed for this cinnamon brown sugar glaze recipe:

Labeled image of ingredients to make cinnamon brown sugar glaze.
  • Butter – This gives the glaze a slightly buttery taste and creamier texture. Unsalted or salted butter works great. Use salted butter if you’d like to balance out some of the sweetness from the sugars.
  • Brown Sugar – For sweetness and that deep caramel-like flavor.
  • Milk – To thin the glaze and add creaminess.
  • Powdered Sugar – Dissolves quickly and creates a smooth glaze. You can add more powdered sugar for a thicker glaze, or less for a thinner glaze.
  • Ground Cinnamon – To flavor the glaze. (You can leave this out if you’d prefer.)

How to Make Cinnamon Brown Sugar Glaze

This brown sugar glaze can be made in the microwave or on the stovetop.

Steps to make cinnamon brown sugar glaze.
  1. Melt the butter, brown sugar, and milk together in a bowl in the microwave for 30 seconds. (Cover bowl, in case it splatters.) Alternately melt ingredients together in a small saucepan on the stovetop. Then remove from heat.
  2. Once the butter is melted, whisk until the brown sugar dissolves.
  3. Add powdered sugar and cinnamon.
  4. Whisk until smooth. Cool slightly.
Pumpkin loaf with cinnamon brown sugar glaze on top.
  • Pour, spoon, spread, or drizzle the cinnamon brown sugar glaze onto the desired dessert and allow time for glaze to set.

Recipe Tips and Information

Thin Glaze – The hotter the glaze, the thinner it will be. The glaze will also be thinner if you add it on top of a hot dessert, just out of the oven. You can also use half the amount of powdered sugar to make it more thin, and slightly translucent.

Thick Glaze – If you want the glaze to apply thicker on your dessert, let it cool down slightly and make sure the dessert you are topping it with has also cooled down. You can keep stirring the glaze to help it cool down faster. Stirring regularly also helps to keep if from crusting, since it will start to set up as it cools.

Cinnamon brown sugar glaze dripping off of a whisk into a bowl.

Make it Fresh – Glazes work best if used relatively soon after being made, so they don’t have time to set up and crust. It’s very quick to whip up too.

Make it Ahead – While I believe fresh glaze is best, you can make the glaze the day before you’re going to use it. Store it in the refrigerator in an airtight container. Bring the glaze back to room temperature and whisk before using, adding a few drops of additional milk if needed. You can alternately nuke it in the microwave for 10 seconds to loosen it up a bit.

How to Store Baked Goods with Glaze – You can cover and store baked goods with basic powdered sugar glaze (even those that contain milk) at room temperature for up to 3 days. Since the ratio of sugar to dairy is high, it stabilizes the glaze and acts as a preservative against spoilage.

Pumpkin bread with cinnamon brown sugar glaze on top.

More Glazed Desserts

Did you Make this Recipe?

Cinnamon brown sugar glaze dripping off of a whisk into a bowl.

Cinnamon Brown Sugar Glaze

Prep Time: 1 minute
Total Time: 1 minute
Yield: 12 servings

Butter, brown sugar, milk, powdered sugar and cinnamon is all you need to make this quick glaze for topping desserts.

Ingredients

  • 1 Tbsp butter
  • 1/4 cup light brown sugar, gently packed
  • 2 Tbsp milk
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 1/8 tsp ground cinnamon

Instructions

  1. Melt the butter, brown sugar, and milk together in a bowl in the microwave for 30 seconds. (Cover bowl, in case it splatters.) Alternately melt ingredients together in a small saucepan on the stovetop. Then remove from heat.
  2. Once the butter is melted, whisk until the brown sugar dissolves.
  3. Add powdered sugar and cinnamon. Whisk until smooth. Cool slightly.
  4. Pour, spoon, spread, or drizzle the cinnamon brown sugar glaze onto the desired dessert and allow time for glaze to set.

Notes

  • YIELD: Approximately 2/3 cup of glaze.

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Nutrition Information:
Yield: 12 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 42Total Fat: 1gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 3mgSodium: 10mgCarbohydrates: 8gFiber: 0gSugar: 8gProtein: 0g

This data was provided and calculated by Nutritionix, and is an estimation only.

*Originally published 10/16/2012 as a topping for this Pumpkin Bread. Post updated September 2023.