Lemon Blueberry Sweet Rolls

I am in love with lemon anything, especially in breakfast and dessert. And since three of the top 12 posts of 2014 were lemon, I know y’all love it too.

Let’s not waste any time in 2015. It’s time for the first lemon recipe of the year: Lemon Blueberry Sweet Rolls!

Lemon Blueberry Sweet Rolls have lemon in the yeast dough, the filling, and the glaze!

You guys. BIG NEWS ALERT:

Jordan ate a cheeseburger. And she liked it.

Now, I know some of you are all, “Huh? That’s big news??” But trust me, it is. Since Jordan could chew I’ve been trying to get her to eat a hamburger and she would never touch one, ever. She is super picky (the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree) and the list of foods she likes is less than what she doesn’t. I have to give her credit, she’s gotten good at tolerating things. She almost always at least eats a few bites of what we serve for dinner, but hamburgers were a huge hurdle.

Do you know how hard it is to find restaurants that make kids meals for picky kids? (Or adult meals? She’s approaching 10, the kid menu cutoff for some restaurants.) Kids that don’t like chicken, hamburgers, turkey sandwiches, pasta, potatoes, or soup? It’s been hell, but now? Now she can order a burger. #hallelujah

Also? Being able to say “I told you so” was a pretty nice perk.

Lemon Blueberry Sweet Rolls have lemon in the yeast dough, the filling, and the glaze!

Being a super picky eater, I totally understand where she’s coming from. Trying new things is hard, even for me, even now. One of the things I’m so glad I decided to finally try? Lemon. How did I live my life without loving lemon desserts??? Now? I can’t get enough.

And in case you didn’t know, lemon and blueberry go hand in hand. And in sweet rolls? It’s like they’re made for each other.

Lemon Blueberry Sweet Rolls

Ever since I made easy lemon sweet rolls a few years ago, I’ve been dying to make a scratch version. And I’m so glad I did. And, by the way, from scratch is easy too. Believe me!

I adapted my overnight cinnamon rolls for this recipe. That post has a photo tutorial of how your dough should look at each step, so if you’ve never made yeasted cinnamon rolls before, start there. That dough is the same recipe I’ve used for several rolls: almond, peanut butter, and zucchini to name a few. Don’t be scared of using yeast! Just be sure that you have fresh and that it’s not expired. This recipe uses active dry yeast because I know it’s readily available at so many grocery stores. Red Star Yeast is my favorite.

The only difference between that dough and this one is that I decreased the milk and added lemon juice and zest.

And, OMG, that decision? Epic. These are the fluffiest rolls I’ve ever made. And? When you open the oven? All you smell is lemon. #FTW

Lemon Blueberry Sweet Rolls have lemon in the yeast dough, the filling, and the glaze!

Since these are sweet rolls and not cinnamon rolls, there is no cinnamon. Instead, they are filled with a sugar and butter mixture that is bursting with lemon zest. So, if you’re keeping track, there is lemon in the dough AND the filling.

Also? There’s lemon in the frosting. But we’ll get to that.

You can stop at lemon filling, but why? Blueberries just make it more fun. I used small, miniature blueberries for these sweet rolls. They are often labeled “wild” and you can find them at Trader Joe’s or Whole Foods in the frozen section. We don’t love big blueberries in our baked goods in my house, but we love the mini version. However, you can use regular sized as well. Fresh or frozen will work, just make sure you defrost the frozen ones, and drain them well.

Once you roll up the sweet rolls and cut them (you can make 9 large or 12 small) you place the pan in the refrigerator overnight. That makes breakfast a snap: let the rolls warm up to room temperature while the oven preheats, then bake and serve. Breakfast in 40 minutes instead of 4 hours.

And, of course. The glaze. All sweet rolls need glaze. A cream cheese glaze with lemon juice for more lemon flavor.

If you kept track all the way though, that means there is triple lemon in these rolls.

Lemon Blueberry Sweet Rolls

And that? Is perfection. Is this lemon popular recipe #1 of 2015? We shall see… 🙂

Did you make this recipe?

Lemon Blueberry Sweet Rolls

I used my favorite cinnamon roll recipe and turned it into a lemon sweet roll with blueberries! This is the perfect recipe to use up your lemon stash and it’ll make the cold morning feel like spring!

Ingredients:

For the Dough:

  • 2/3 cup warm non-fat milk (think hot bath water, about 45 seconds in the microwave)
  • 1 package active dry yeast (about 2 1/4 teaspoons)
  • 1/3 cup + 1/2 teaspoon sugar, divided
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest (from 1 medium lemon)
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (from 1 medium lemon)
  • 3 – 3 1/4 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
  • Paddle attachment & dough hook for your mixer

For the Filling:

  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons lemon zest (from 1-2 medium lemons)
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1-2 cups blueberries, fresh or frozen (if frozen, make sure they are thawed and drained), see note

For the Frosting:

  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 2 ounces cream cheese, very soft
  • 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • Pinch salt
  • 3-4 teaspoon fresh lemon juice

Directions:

Make the Dough:

  1. Place milk in a microwave safe measuring cup. Heat for 45 seconds in the microwave, until it’s about 120°F, think hot bathwater. (The time you heat it will need to be adjusted depending on your microwave. You can use a candy or a meat thermometer to test the temperature.) Add yeast and 1/2 teaspoon sugar and stir. Let it sit for a few minutes until frothy.
  2. Place sugar, butter, salt, lemon juice, lemon zest, 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 3 cups 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 will be slightly sticky and elastic. There will be minimal transfer to your finger if you poke it. If it’s still very wet, add up to 1/4 cup more flour, 1 tablespoon at a time.
  4. Spray a large bowl with cooking spray and place the dough in it. Spray the top of the dough ball with cooking spray (lightly) and cover the bowl with plastic wrap. Let sit for 2-4 hours until it doubles in size. 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.

Prepare your Rolls:

  1. Stir together butter, sugar, lemon zest, salt and flour until it forms a paste.
  2. Once the dough is risen, roll it out on a lightly floured surface into a large rectangle, about 10” by 14”. Spread the filling as evenly as possible over the rectangle, making sure to reach to the sides so the outer rolls have enough filling. Sprinkle with blueberries. I used 1 cup of mini (or “wild”) blueberries that were defrosted and drained. If you’re using regular sized berries, you might want to use more of them.
  3. Roll the dough up tightly from the long end. Slice it into 12 equal rounds. Place the rolls into a 9×13” pan that has been sprayed with cooking spray.
  4. Cover the rolls with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight. (Or, if you want to make them  the same day, cover with plastic wrap and let them sit for 1 hour until they’ve puffed up a little, then continue as directed below.)
  5. When ready to bake, preheat oven to 350°F. Remove the rolls from the refrigerator and let them warm up to room temperature while the oven is preheating. Remove the plastic wrap and bake for 23-28 minutes, or until they are golden brown. (Mine took 24, be careful not to over bake. The bottoms will turn golden before the tops do.) Note: the blueberries will drain to the bottom of the pan overnight. That’s not a problem.

Make the frosting:

  1. Whisk the melted butter and softened cream cheese until mostly smooth. If your cream cheese is too stiff, you can use a hand mixer. Whisk/beat in powdered sugar and 3 teaspoons lemon juice, adding more as desired for thickness. Pour over warm rolls and serve.

Notes:

Note about blueberries: I prefer to use mini blueberries in my baking, as it’s what my family prefers. They are often labeled “wild” and they are smaller than normal berries. You can often find them at Trader Joe’s or Whole Foods. You can use regular sized berries, fresh or frozen, but make sure frozen berries are thawed and drained. Use 1-2 cups, deepening on how many berries you want in your rolls.

The recipe is written for 12 rolls, but you can make 9 large ones instead. Bake in a 9×9″ pan or a 9″ round pie plate and bake for a few minutes longer.

All images and text ©. Please do not use my images without prior permission. If you want to republish this recipe, please re-write the recipe in your own words, or link back to this post for the recipe.

Easy Lemon Sweet Rolls

Lemon Sweet Rolls 2 words

Cinnamon Pull Apart Bread

Cinnamon Roll Pull-Apart Bread (9 of 10)w

Easy Lemon Danish

Easy-lemon-cream-danish (4 of 7)w

Peanut Butter Cinnamon Rolls

peanut butter cinnamon rolls (5 of 7)

Sweets from friends:
The Best Orange Glazed Sweet Rolls by Averie Cooks
Pineapple Coconut Sweet Rolls by Pineapple & Coconut
Honey Oatmeal Sweet Rolls by Barbara Bakes

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67 comments

  1. These look amazing! Soooooo soft and perfectly fluffy and that GLAZE! I want to drink that, oh yes I do! Pinned!

  2. I’m drooling. Those rolls look out of this world! The lemon-blueberry combo looks like a small taste of spring, which is something I needed very badly because winter has hit us hard and fast!

  3. Mmmm how I wish I had one of these for breakfast! Sweet rolls of any flavor are cool with me 🙂

  4. Yes, the glaze is essential. I’d probably go to town on that with just the spatula (no spoon required). 🙂

  5. I’m right there with you in the love of all things lemon. And the blueberries are a must. This is so beautiful 🙂

  6. Her first cheeseburger and you even documented it! How awesome!
    And about these rolls…yeah. I’m drooling….and pinning. Ok, but more drooling.

  7. Thankfully, after much “food therapy” my kids have developed pretty sophisticated palates…and let me tell you, the novelty never wears off each time we sit down and eat the same meal….yay for your daughter exploring the wild side with hamburgers! 🙂 And I’ve always loved lemon desserts, so I’m about 10 million calories ahead of you on that one, unfortunately :/

  8. Gosh, this looks great. Lemon and blueberry just go together hand in hand. Love those two combined!

  9. So beauuuutiful!!! Almost too pretty to eat. Almost. 😉

  10. Lemon and blueberry may be one of my favorite fruity combos ever! These are the bomb dot com! 

  11. Yum!  I love lemon in baked goods, though I just discovered that a few years ago!  It’s just so fresh, and springlike!  I experimented with sweet rolls (rather than the usual cinnamon rolls) for the first time on Christmas and made orange rolls.  So good, so after seeing these, I definitely need to try lemon ones!  Pinned!

  12. Oh wow, these rolls look SO fluffy – like they’ll melt in your mouth! I don’t think I’ll be able to stop at just one…!

  13. I TOTALLY get what you mean w/ Jordan, I have a picky eater too! So much so that we had monetary incentive if he’d try 50 new foods! He came out of it liking and still eating about 4 of the 50 that he tried, that was a win to me!.

    This is like my perfect breakfast/dessert/snack combo! I love all things lemon and blueberry so this is just PER-FECT! Just amazing and I can tell they’re soft and buttery! Pinning and drooling. 🙂

    • That’s a good idea, she’s all about money now. She can manage pretty well at most places, especially now with the burger, but the last hurdle is my favorite italian restaurant. They don’t have pizza, so it’s just pasta. I never get to eat there. I’m totally bribing her with money next time I’m craving it!

  14. These look beautiful!  I love how the blueberries peek through 🙂

  15. Wow!  These look craaaaazy good!  I have to have these ASAP (except that right now I am trying to be good – have to wait for my cheat day!  Another of your amazing creations!

  16. Dorothy, I *LOVE* lemon stuff. Love lemon so much, but never would’ve thought to make lemon sweet rolls!! Such a great idea. And I agree that lemon and blueberries are perfect together – I love them as a combo! These look fabulous!

  17. These look deeelish! (And YAY for cheeseburgers!)

  18. Your lemon desserts ALWAYS get me, Dorothy!! These look so ooey gooey and delicious 😀 

  19. These rolls look incredible, Dorothy! So soft and fluffy!! Lemon desserts always have my heart and combining them with blueberries makes them even more irresistible! Yay, so glad Jordan likes cheeseburgers now too 🙂

  20. Lemon desserts are so sneaky. They don’t seem as exciting as chocolate, and then I can’t stop eating them! They’re more addictive. And this looks like the happiest sweet roll ever.
    By the way, congrats on getting to say “I told you so” to Jordan. That’s always so satisfying!

  21. These lemon rolls look perfect, Dorothy! Such a great idea to combine lemon and blueberries. Such a fun twist! Pinned!

  22. My Friday morning could use one of these! They look incredible!

  23. I love all of your cinnamon/sweet rolls.  Could I do this one with your quick cinnamon roll recipe?  Would it work to replace water with lemon juice in the dough and make the adjustments to the filling and frosting?

  24. Girl, when can we hang?! I NEED to be invited for breakfast. 😉 I love every component of these rolls. They look perfectly soft and fluffy. 

  25. I love lemon so much! And well done to Jordan for overcoming that burger hurdle! These look so good, using the wild blueberries instead of the regular ones is so smart; more blueberries per bite and wild ones, I find, are sweeter. This is so spooky – in this month last year, I posted a blueberry sweet roll recipe too but… Your’s look so much better! x

  26. Bring on the lemon recipes! I can’t wait to get my hands on some meyer lemons. I’ve been scanning the grocery stores. I think they are almost here!

  27. That’s great news that Jordan likes burgers now, that makes things so much easier for you when you eat out! Ummm these rolls look amazing! Lemon & blueberry go so great together.

  28. There is something so right about lemon and blueberry!!!  These rolls are amazing and yes, that glaze…I want to gulp it down!!!

  29. Lemon everywhere! These are my kind of rolls… so delicious 🙂

  30. Yay Jordan!! Good job for being a risk taker and trying something new. This is what we tell my daughter who is also a very picky eater. 🙂 And what a great idea on using small blueberries. Brilliant! So gonna try these asap! Pinned!! Have a great weekend Dorothy! 

  31. And there’s that lemon breakfast we were talking about! These look heavenly Dorothy! Pinned!

  32. The Jordan hamburger tale is priceless!  And these rolls are calling my name.  I love the combo of lemon and blueberry.  Gorgeous and pinned.

  33. Yum Yum. These look so good. Pinning.

  34. The photo from above of the entire pan of sweet rolls is stunning! Wow, yum, and beautiful all rolled into one. 🙂 I have no doubt that these will be in the most popular recipes category all year! Congrats to Jordan for being brave enough to expand her culinary repertoire!

  35. HOORAY for In-N-Out!! 🙂 Those were actually the only fast-food burgers my brother & I would eat as kids. Mainly because my brother wanted ketchup-only, and everywhere else would mess it up with mustard or pickles. And I’m dying over these lemon rolls! I definitely need to try putting lemon juice & zest in a sweet roll recipe soon!

  36. I am drooling over these! Amazing!!!

  37. I just can’t even with these sweet rolls! Lemon and blueberry are definitely a match made in heaven! Love how fluffy they are. Homemade, from scratch cinnamon/sweet rolls are on my list for 2015! And congrats on the hamburger! If I don’t have a kid that like everything, I just don’t know what I’ll do! 

  38. These look amazing! Can this recipe also be made the day before and refridgerated overnight? 

  39. These look amazing, Dorothy. I’d have a hard time staying out of them. The icing looks to die for.

  40. These sound amazing! Bookmarked, printed, sent to my sister. Blemonberry all the way!

  41. What is the nutrition info on the blueberry and lemon sweet rolls?

  42. I bookmarked this recipe when it was first posted as an idea for a filling in my tried and true sweet dough recipe. I and am delighted with the filling, which I doubled, with the exception of the blueberries. The rolls will be sold at my Church’s annual blueberry festival on Saturday. Looking forward to feedback on their taste. Keep posting great treats. 

  43. Definitely trying these!  Can they be frozen?  What about before baking?  If you can freeze prior to baking, would you thaw fully first before baking, or bake from frozen?  If the latter, at what temp and roughly how long?  Thanks!!

  44. These look Awesome, thanks for the recipes!

  45. Have you ever heard of trying this with KAF Gluten Free flour and xanthan gum? Whenever I make GF cinnamon rolls I use Bobs Red Mill pizza dough flour because it is a great bread flour starter.

    • I haven’t tried GF flour in any yeast roll yet. But I have used the 1:1 all-purpose to GF flour before in cupcakes and bars and it’s worked. Let me know if you try it!

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