Mennonite Girls Can Cook is a collection of recipes which were posted daily for a period of ten years from 2008 to 2018. We have over 3,000 delicious recipes that we invite you to try. The recipes can be accessed in our recipe file by category or you can use the search engine.

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Alvina's Cinnamon Twists

Alvina is my cousin by marriage and even though she has always lived about 1500 miles from us, the visits we’ve had have always felt like we are truly family! Besides being an excellent cook and home- maker, Alvina has a wonderful warm personality and the best laugh! It’s on one of our visits to their place, that I first remember seeing these tempting little twists on her counter and enjoying them, of course. I love having sweet reminders of our times together and when I make these now and wish that the highway between our houses would not be so long.


Your favorite biscuit or scone pastry. I use:
  • 2 cups flour
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 tsp cream of tartar (optional)
  • 6 tablespoons butter, room temp.
  • 1 cup buttermilk or milk
filling and icing:
  • 2 - 3 tablespoons melted butter
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar 
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 tablespoon flour
  • 3/4 cup icing (confectioner's) sugar

  1. In medium sized bowl, mix dry ingredients, then cut in butter with pastry blender. 
  2. Add buttermilk, stirring with fork until dough holds together. Shape into a ball.
  3. You can divide pastry in half and pat into a rectangular shape on lightly floured surface, roling each half out to 6 x 12 inch strip OR roll out the whole recipe to 6x24.
  4. Spread with melted butter, then with sugar/cinnamon/flour (mixed)
  5. Starting from long side, fold over twice, so that you have a 2 inch strip that has 3 layers.
  6. Cut into 3/4 inch slices and twist each slice so that it looks like the figure 8. (right hand twists away from you and left hand toward you)
  7. Place on greased and floured (or parchment paper lined) cookie sheet.
  8. Bake at 400F until golden. About 12 - 14 minutes. Yield: approx. 30 mini twists
Fill a 1 cup measuring cup 3/4 full of icing sugar. Stir while adding a little water at a time, until it has an easy spreading consistency. Drizzle or brush over warm twists. (If you did not use
parchment paper, remove twists from sheet with lifter before sugar, that has run out, hardens.)


  1. Anneliese, i can attest to all the kind words that you shared today about Alvina, since she is my cousin by marriage as well. That laugh is definately a family trait, her sister Katie which is now a very very dear friend of mine has that laugh and when i first met her at Alvina's wedding i thought she had to much to drink, but it was a dry wedding so that wasn't the
    Anyway i can say with confidance any recipe with Alvina's name attached to it is a sure hit...she is amazing, in more way than one!!
    Alvina does this win me any brownie points for some of your home

  2. OH Boy .. this really is a Mennonite Cookbook what with all the connected relations. I love it. These little Twists looks just scrumptious and similar to something that I make jelly roll style. twists. . .rolls. . anything with cinnamon goes good with coffee.
    Thank you Alvina and Anneliese. .and Charlotte too.

  3. This recipe reminds me of the cinnamon rolls I used to make for school school lunches that is! I didn't twist them but rather just baked them in rolls and then cut them in slices later. Then I'd pack a lunch box full of these and trade with other students for items from their lunch boxes! Would not be allowed to happen these days.
    These are so yummy..thanks gals for sharing the recipe!

  4. Thanks Anneliese and Charlotte for all the kind words about me. I have always thought that you should make a cookbook because everything that we have been at your house for any meal it has left our family with great memories of wonderful food served by you,tomato soup, special chicken, your mom's chocolate camping cookies,etc. This site has become my cookbook. And yes, it would be so nice to have you for coffee, hope to see you in fall.
    As for the twists I sometimes use half the recipe I make biscuits (great with that fresh strawberry jam) and the other half I make the twists. My overnight company thinks I have been slaving in the kitchen all morning. I like this recipe for many reasons, one it is a quick snack to make, last minute invite, bring to a sick friend. Cinnamon is good for the sole.
    Thanks for posting one of my favorite recipe.

  5. boy oh boy...fellowship over cinnamon twists and posts....feels so good makes me want to be related.

    Wonderful twists...thanks yet again Anneliese for a great post..and thanks to your cousin as well....

  6. Cinnamon is good for the soul? Good...because I can't pass by anything cinnamon.

    Thanks for sharing Alvina's recipe...a new twist on cinnamon twists!

  7. These are some of the most cherished recipes because of the memories hidden in our visits.
    It looks like now I will learn "The Twist"

  8. Aunt Lisa, this looks like a great recipe that I will have to try soon! And I agree - Aunt Alvina is a great cook and has a contagious laugh :) Hilarious that there is more than one person related to her on this blogsite - definitely mennonite!


  9. What a great technique for getting a beautiful twist. I'm sure they taste terrific too. I'm going to try this. Thanks for sharing. You gals are the BEST!


  10. I love this blog and just wanted to let you know that I made these twists for my family yesterday and they were a huge hit! My first batch has disappeared within 24 hours!!! Thanks for the great recipes written up in such a generous and warm-hearted blog.

  11. I always inspired by you, your thoughts and attitude, again, appreciate for this nice post.

    - Thomas

  12. Wow these are soooo good. I made them this afternoon and have been giving them away (otherwise I will eat them all). Thanks Anneliese.. claudia

  13. I tasted this, Kari brought to Mrs. Pauls viewing, it was soooo good!


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