When life gives you lemons, you make a big batch of sweet lemon rolls! These rolls have a fluffy soft dough like traditional rolls, but with a bit of added lemon zest. In between the layers of dough lies a tart yet sweet lemon filling. Rich, luscious blueberry cream cheese icing is smeared all over the top, creating perfectly balanced rolls.
I love the taste of lemon, that flavor that makes you pucker your lips and zings your tastebuds! I experimented with these sweet lemon rolls with a couple different icings until I finally chose blueberry. The pairing of juicy plump blueberries with acidic lemons is just heavenly. The cream cheese adds a rich component to a fresh dessert. These sweet lemon rolls would be perfect for breakfast, Easter, a brunch get-together, or just a sweet treat!
Sweet Lemon Rolls with Blueberry Cream Cheese Frosting
- Stand mixer or hand mixer
- Rolling pin
- 2 ½ teaspoons active yeast
- ¾ cup milk slightly warmed, not hot to touch
- 1 stick unsalted butter softened to room temperature
- 2 eggs
- ¼ cup granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 lemon zested
- 4 ½ cups all purpose flour
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 lemon zested
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter softened
- ¼ teaspoon powdered ginger
- 2 lemons juiced
Blueberry Cream Cheese Icing
- 1 stick unsalted butter softened
- 8 ounces cream cheese softened
- ⅛ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- ½ cup frozen blueberries thawed and mashed
- 3 cups powdered sugar
Make the sweet lemon rolls:
- In a large bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer, sprinkle yeast over warmed milk until a foam appears on top. Ensure the milk is not too hot, or it will kill the yeast.
- Using the mixer paddle on the stand mixer or your hands, combine the softened butter, eggs, sugar, vanilla, lemon zest, and one cup of flour into the yeast mixture. Add the salt and nutmeg. Add the remaining flour.
- Using the dough hook, knead for about 5 minutes, or your hands knead for about 10 minutes. The dough should be smooth yet stretchy.
- Lightly coat the outside of the dough in oil and place it in a large bowl. Cover in plastic wrap and a hand towel and let rise for 1 hour or until doubled.
Prepare the lemon filling:
- While the dough rises, make the filling. In a medium-sized bowl, using a hand mixer, beat together the lemon zest, sugar, and butter until creamy. Add the ginger. Add the lemon juice slowly, mixing in between each addition. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
Assemble the rolls:
- Lightly grease a 9x13 baking dish. Lightly flour a work surface and roll out the dough to 10x15 inches.
- Spread the lemon filling all around the dough. Roll the dough starting with the bottom longest end. Pull the dough and push the filling down as you roll to keep it inside the roll. Cut into 12 even rolls and place them into a baking dish.
- Cover the rolls with a towel and let rise for 1 hour or until puffy and doubled.
Bake the rolls:
- Heat the oven to 350F. Bake for 30-35 minutes until golden but still moist in between the dough layers.
Make the blueberry cream cheese icing:
- In a small bowl, mash the blueberries and set them aside.
- In a large bowl with a stand mixer or hand mixer, beat the butter until light and fluffy. Then add the cream cheese and continue to beat until fluffed.
- Add the salt, vanilla extract, and mashed blueberries and beat until combined.
- Add the powdered sugar ½ cup at a time until all is added and the consistency is creamy and fluffy.
Glaze the rolls:
- Let cool for 5 minutes, but serve while the rolls are still warm. Smear the blueberry icing over the sweet rolls and sprinkle the remaining lemon zest on top.
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