2 1/2 - 3 cups white whole wheat or all-purpose flour, plus more as needed
1 packet (2 1/4 teaspoons) instant yeast (see notes for no yeast option)
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1 cup warm water or warm milk
2 teaspoons honey
7 tablespoons salted butter, at room temperature
1/4 cup granulated sugar
3 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 cup powdered sugar
2 tablespoons cream cheese at room temperature
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook, combine 2 1/2 cups flour, the instant yeast, and salt. Add the milk or water, honey, and 1 tablespoon butter. Knead on medium speed until the dough comes together, 1-2 minutes, adding in additional flour, as needed, until the dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl and is smooth. Cover and let rise in a warm place for 30 minutes to 1 hour.
2. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
3. In a bowl, combine the granulated sugar and 1 teaspoon cinnamon.
4. On a floured surface, roll the dough out into a rectangle about 1/4 inch thick, adding flour to the dough if it is sticky. Spread the dough with 4 tablespoons butter and sprinkle with cinnamon sugar. Fold the dough in half and cut into 12 strips. Twist each strip and then tie into a loose knot, it doesn't need to be perfect. Place on the prepared baking sheet.
5. Melt the remaining 2 tablespoons butter. Stir the melted butter together with the remaining 2 teaspoons cinnamon and the brown sugar. Spoon clumps of the brown sugar mix over the knots (see above photo). This is going to be your "crunch" layer.
6. Transfer to the oven and bake 8-10 minutes. Remove from the oven and working quickly, carefully spoon any of the brown sugar that has melted off back over the rolls. It doesn't need to look perfect. Return to the oven and continue baking another 8-10 minutes, until golden.
7. Meanwhile, make the Glaze. In a medium bowl, beat together the powdered sugar, cream cheese, vanilla, and 2 tablespoons water until smooth and combined. If needed, thin the glaze by adding water, 1 tablespoon at a time, until desired consistency is reached.
8. Drizzle glaze over the knots, if desired.