Crazy for Crust

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Apr 22

Almond Sweet Rolls

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I love almond. Almond croissants, almond scones, almond frosting, almond extract. I can never get enough.

These Almond Sweet Rolls take my addiction to a new level. There like eating an almond croissant…in sweet roll dough!

All the flavors of an almond croissant...in a sweet roll!

We live almost exactly 2 hours from my parents and we drive down often to visit. Exactly halfway into the drive is a Peet’s coffee, off of I-80 in Fairfield. I always look forward to stopping at Peet’s because they have the best almond croissants,  bear claws, and scones. It’s a sad, sad day when we get there and they’re out of them.

Those suckers go fast. Almond is popular, yo’.

Now I don’t have to wait to go to Peet’s to get my almond danish fix. I can make these Almond Sweet Rolls at home, and all will be right with the world.

All the flavors of an almond croissant...in a sweet roll!

Anyone who is a lover of almond flavor like me (if the extract tasted like it smelled I’d drink it) knows how good almond paste is. Almond paste is made from almonds and sugar (and sometimes other ingredients like extracts and egg whites) that are ground together into a paste. It adds great flavor to all sorts of recipes, and is often the filling for many almond flavored breakfast pastries.

I used a packaged almond paste for this recipe. You can buy it in the baking aisle near the baking chocolates and that sort of thing. It’s usually high on a shelf because hardly anyone buys it, and it’s pricey…but so worth it. You can make your own, and that’s on my to-do list (simply google “almond paste” and you’ll find a million recipes).

I decided to make an almond paste filling for my favorite cinnamon roll recipe. I added an entire 7oz tube of almond paste to these rolls, which made them slap you in the face with almond flavor.

Packaged almond paste is kind of hard (almost like marzipan candy) so the easiest way to make a smooth filling is by using the food processor. If you don’t have a food processor, I suggest you break or cut the paste into small bits, then use a mixer to incorporate the egg and sugar. You want to avoid lumps as much as possible in your filling.

And, well. No almond sweet roll is complete without an almond flavored glaze.

All the flavors of an almond croissant...in a sweet roll!

When I topped the rolls with the drizzle,  angels sang and all was right with the world. Then I ate the rest with a spoon. #truestory

You can use your favorite cinnamon roll dough for this recipe, or you can even use a packaged dough. I just love this butter rich egg yeasted dough, and I’ve made it so many times. It’s fluffy and perfect, and I know you’ll love it. And don’t be afraid of yeast. I use red star active dry yeast because it’s my favorite and you can find it in pretty much every grocery store.

When proofing your yeast, you can use a thermometer if you have one to test the milk temperature. Or, just think “hot bathwater”. That’s what  I do. The yeast doesn’t get super frothy and bubbly before it gets added to the butter and egg mixture, but it does bloom slightly.

One of my favorite things about this recipe (besides the almonds, of course) is that it can be done ahead of time. Who wants to get up at 3am and make breakfast? #notme I make the dough and the rolls the afternoon before, then put them in the pan and refrigerate overnight. The next morning, let the rolls warm up on the stovetop while you’re preheating the oven. That’s as much work as my morning brain can do pre-coffee.

This recipe makes 9 large rolls (who doesn’t want a really large sweet roll???) or 12 smaller ones. Make sure you use the right size pan (as indicated in the recipe).

Make these for Mother’s Day or a random Tuesday, and you’ll hear the almond angels sing too.

Almond Sweet Rolls (7 of 10)

Waaaaay better than anything at a coffee shop. I promise!

Almond Sweet Rolls

Yield: 9-12 rolls

Almond Sweet Rolls

Like an almond croissant...but in a sweet roll!

Ingredients

    Dough:
  • 2 1/4 teaspoons (or 1 package) active dry yeast
  • 3/4 cup non-fat milk
  • 1/3 cup + 1/2 teaspoon sugar, divided
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 egg
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
  • Paddle attachment & dough hook for your mixer
  • Filling:
  • 1-7 ounce tube of almond paste (a heaping packed 1/2 cup)
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • Glaze:
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 3/4 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1-2 tablespoons non-fat milk
  • Slivered almonds, for garnish

Instructions

  1. Place milk in a microwave safe measuring cup. Heat for 30-45 seconds in the microwave, until it’s about 120°F (use a thermometer if you have one or think hot bathwater when feeling it. Add yeast and 1/2 teaspoon of sugar and stir. Let it sit for a few minutes to proof.
  2. Place 1/3 cup sugar, butter, salt, and egg in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Mix until the butter is distributed throughout the liquids, although it may be chunky. Pour in the milk/yeast mixture and stir for a few seconds.
  3. Add flour and stir with the paddle attachment just until the mixture starts to stick to the paddle. Then replace the paddle with the dough hook. Continue mixing on low speed until the dough forms a ball in the center of the bowl. The dough should be in one piece and it will be slightly sticky, but you should be able to handle it without getting too much dough on your fingers. If it’s really wet, add up to 1/2 cup more flour (but add it 1/4 cup at a time). I always use 3 cups, but depending on the temperature in your kitchen and where you live, you may need a little more.
  4. Spray a large bowl with cooking spray and place the dough ball in it. Spray the top of the dough ball with cooking spray (lightly) and cover the bowl with plastic wrap. Let sit for 1-2 hours until it doubles in size.
  5. Note on rising: if your house is warm, it should rise no problem. If it’s cold in your house, it may take longer for the dough to rise, so plan accordingly!
  6. Make the filling: place almond paste, egg, and sugar in a food processor and process until smooth and creamy and no lumps of almond paste remain. If you don’t have a food processor, I suggest cutting or breaking the almond past into small chunks and then using a mixer to incorporate the sugar and egg. A food processor is easier (and faster!)
  7. When the dough has risen, turn it out onto a cutting board that has been lightly dusted with flour. Roll it into a rectangle that’s about 10x14”. Spread the filling on the dough and tightly roll it up. Using a serrated knife, cut the dough into 9 large cinnamon rolls or 12 smaller. For 9 rolls, use a 9” square pan. For 12 rolls, use a 9x13” pan. Spray your pan with cooking spray and place the rolls gently in the pan.
  8. You have two options now. 1. Let the dough rise for 30 minutes, then bake as directed below or 2. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight, then remove the rolls from the refrigerator and let come to room temperature in the morning while the oven is preheating.
  9. Preheat oven to 350°F. Bake rolls for 25-35 minutes, until they’re golden brown on the top. Let cool at least 15 minutes before frosting and serving.
  10. Make frosting: whisk melted butter, powdered sugar, and almond extract until smooth. Add 1 tablespoon of milk and whisk until smooth. If the glaze is too thick for your liking, you can add up to 1 more tablespoon of milk. (The pictured rolls use 1 tablespoon.) Garnish with sliced almonds.

Notes

If you like raspberry, cherry, or strawberry with almond, you can add a swirl of your favorite jam or preserves (about 1/4-1/2 cup) into the filling. Simply spread the jam over the almond paste filling before rolling. Or, skip the almond glaze and spread the rolls with jam or preserves when serving.

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33 Responses to “Almond Sweet Rolls”

  1. Medeja posted on April 22, 2014 at 3:50 am (#)

    Omg! I love that almond filling! :)

  2. sally @ sallys baking addiction posted on April 22, 2014 at 4:32 am (#)

    I think almond has to be one of my favorite flavors, Dorothy! Almond extract is one of my favorite things to bake with!! And almond paste brings back so many memories of my mom’s baking. I need to use that stuff more often! These are amazing rolls.

  3. Chloe @ foodlikecake posted on April 22, 2014 at 4:44 am (#)

    Those look amazing! I love all the almond flavor in it!

  4. Aimee @ ShugarySweets posted on April 22, 2014 at 4:50 am (#)

    Almond or lemon I’m not sure which I love more!!! These sound fabulous Dorothy!!

  5. Jamie@Milk 'n' Cookies posted on April 22, 2014 at 4:56 am (#)

    These look fantastic! I have always been a fan of all the almond treats you named, especially bear claws. There is something so addictive about almond paste. These sweet rolls look like a great way to get that almond fix. And I love that they can be made ahead of time!

  6. Faith @ Pixie Dust Kitchen posted on April 22, 2014 at 5:23 am (#)

    I’m about to find a way to make these in my dorm room, because I need these in my life STAT. I love how much almond is in these- I’m not a fan of the actual nut, but I love almond butter and extract in baking!

  7. Averie @ Averie Cooks posted on April 22, 2014 at 8:01 am (#)

    They look so soft, fluffy, and wonderful! I love almond extract and want to use it in everything! I can only imagine how amazing these smelled while baking!!! pinned

  8. Chelsea @chelseasmessyapron posted on April 22, 2014 at 8:52 am (#)

    Oh man I love almond! I’ve never seen anything like almond sweet rolls! Which is why you are the dessert queen! Can’t wait to try these; pinning!

  9. Laura Dembowski posted on April 22, 2014 at 1:04 pm (#)

    These rolls look killer! I once made almond paste and loved it. I keep thinking about making it again and just needed a recipe to inspire me.

    • Dorothy Kern replied on April 23rd, 2014 at 10:32 am

      You must tell me how it is with homemade almond paste. I swear, that’s next on my list to make!

  10. Laurie F. posted on April 22, 2014 at 4:31 pm (#)

    Coconut, lemon, now almond paste – yippee! These look so good they almost jump off the page. I’m putting hubby and daughter on Mother’s Day duty to make these!

  11. Mom posted on April 22, 2014 at 5:25 pm (#)

    Oh, these were soooooooooooooooooooooooo gooooooooooood!!!! I think I heard the almond angels sing with every bite!

  12. Amy @ Amy's Healthy Baking posted on April 22, 2014 at 6:12 pm (#)

    Oh goodness Dorothy… As much as I adore almond extract, I still have yet to experiment with almond paste! I’ve seen it on the baking aisle, but that price tag gets me every time… My wallet wouldn’t be very happy with me, even if my taste buds were! ;) I had no idea there was a Peet’s right off the freeway in Fairfield. My mom loves their hot chocolate, so maybe I can convince her to meet me there instead of driving all the way home. Worth a shot, especially if I get a sweet almond pastry out of the deal!

  13. Crystal posted on April 22, 2014 at 6:37 pm (#)

    Super delicious!! I didn’t know that there was almond paste in the store. I’m going to have to check it out. These almond rolls look amazing!! Thanks for the recipe!!

    • Dorothy Kern replied on April 23rd, 2014 at 10:31 am

      Thanks Crystal!

  14. Kayle (The Cooking Actress) posted on April 22, 2014 at 6:41 pm (#)

    hoooooooooooooooo!!!!!!! I adoooore this! Almond croissants are tres tasty and these sweet rolls? EVEN BETTER!

  15. Lindsey @ American Heritage Cooking posted on April 22, 2014 at 7:07 pm (#)

    Oh me, me, me!!! I want one! I ate croissant d’amandes all over France when I lived there, whhiiiich could explain the 15 pounds I gained. Anyways, moving on to your rolls! These look so delicious I can hardly stand it! Pinned

    ps- so I’m not the only one who’s tried almond extract and been totally disappointed!!!

    • Dorothy Kern replied on April 23rd, 2014 at 10:31 am

      Thanks for the pin Lindsey!!

  16. Kathy posted on April 22, 2014 at 7:37 pm (#)

    These sound and look divine! I love almond everything too! Pinning!

    • Dorothy Kern replied on April 23rd, 2014 at 10:31 am

      Thanks for the pin Kathy!

  17. Kelly - Life made Sweeter posted on April 23, 2014 at 3:50 am (#)

    Oh my, I am such a sucker for sweet rolls and I love that you filled these with almond paste! That sounds amazing and must have smelled incredible while baking up in the oven. This is like the breakfast of my dreams – pinning!

    • Dorothy Kern replied on April 23rd, 2014 at 10:29 am

      Thanks for the pin!!

  18. Jessica @ A Kitchen Addiction posted on April 23, 2014 at 9:14 am (#)

    What a great idea for a sweet roll! Love all of the almond flavor you packed into them!

  19. Valentine posted on April 23, 2014 at 3:27 pm (#)

    Hi! I’m a longtime reader and love your blog for the beautif pictures and the fact that you always include a little story, not just a recipe. My life is actually th geographic reverse of yours: I grew up in the Sacramento suburbs, then moved to the Bay Area and fell in love with San Francisco! That said, I’m kind of SHOCKED that you stop at peet’s of all places. Have you ever had the frangipane tart from tartine?? I love almond as well and die and go to almond heaven when I have them.

    • Dorothy Kern replied on April 23rd, 2014 at 7:05 pm

      Oh gosh, the only reason I stop there is because it has a potty! We can’t go more than an hour in the car without one, and their coffee is way better than the Chevron across the street! :)

      But I need to go to tartine – never been. I want to eat my way through SF again this summer, I hope we can spend some time there at some point! :)

  20. Shareba @ In Search Of Yummy-ness posted on April 23, 2014 at 4:39 pm (#)

    These look so good! I’ve pinned this for later :D

  21. Rachel @the dessert chronicles posted on April 23, 2014 at 5:05 pm (#)

    I can never get enough almond either! It is my absolute favorite flavor. I would definitely go nuts for one of these sweet rolls, so I will have to make them next time I make a big brunch!

  22. Dawn Bradley posted on April 23, 2014 at 7:01 pm (#)

    I would wear almond scented perfume, if there was such a thing! Almond is my absolute favorite flavoring for sweets!!

  23. sue/the view from great island posted on April 25, 2014 at 8:48 am (#)

    I somehow missed this post, and I’m glad Pinterest found them for me! I adore almond and these look insanely good!

  24. Debbie Caraballo posted on April 26, 2014 at 9:10 pm (#)

    Almond is one of my very favorite flavors…these rolls look so good, I can almost smell them. Almond paste is a great ingredient, even it it’s a bit ornery – I use it in Italian Rainbow Cookies. Definitely pinning this one, and that Almond Cupcake recipe too! Thanks, Dorothy!

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  26. Robin posted on May 3, 2014 at 9:00 pm (#)

    Oh, dear. These were too good to pass up. In the fridge for a morning meeting at my home. Too bad if no one else likes almonds!

  27. Emily @ Life on Food posted on May 11, 2014 at 4:41 pm (#)

    There is something special about almond paste in baked goods. I love it and I know I would love these buns! They look amazing!!

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