I’ve always loved those little bursts of cinnamon in scones, cinnamon rolls, and sweet treats, but the so-called cinnamon chips in the grocery store are NOT the same. They have all kinds of fillers to make them smooth and shapely like chocolate chips, and probably some emulsifiers so that they melt nicely, and fake cinnamon flavoring.
Imagine my glee when I started searching for a recipe purely out of frustration and found one right away! Even better, the output was precisely what I’d been wanting. These bits have strong cinnamon flavor with just a little sweetness, they hold together well (I like to cut mine into very small pieces), and they keep just fine in the cupboard. They are terrific in scones, quick breads, cookies (I’m looking at you, Snickerdoodles), smoothies, and even make just-add-water pancakes seem like a special treat.
I found the recipe here: http://www.mind-over-batter.com/diy-situations/diy-cinnamon-chips/ and do not make any alterations, except that I use a chef’s knife to cut the bits into tiny cubes and then let them dry out for a few hours on my counter. They aren’t crunchy (you could easily mash them with the back of a spoon) but they don’t stick together and will not melt at room temperature. Simple and delicious!
Cinnamon Bits At Home
2/3 cup granulated sugar
3 tablespoons ground cinnamon (I prefer a dark, toasty cinnamon like Saigon)
2 tablespoons vegetable shortening
2 tablespoons light corn syrup
¼ teaspoon vanilla extract
1. Preheat oven to 200F. Butter a sheet of parchment paper and place on a cookie sheet or jelly roll pan. Set aside.
2. In a medium bowl, combine all ingredients. Mix with fork until the mixture is uniform and crumbly. Spread on parchment lined baking sheet, flattening with your hands to about 1/8 inch thick. Bake until mixture is melted and somewhat bubbly, about 35 minutes.
3. Cool completely, and then cut into small pieces.
Makes about 2 cups. Store in airtight container.