Small Batch Lemon Sweet Rolls with Lemon Glaze

These Small Batch Lemon Sweet Rolls with an easy Lemon Glaze are the perfect breakfast for this summer! Buttery sweet dough, swirled with a sweet homemade lemon curd. Then, after baking, generously drizzled with the easiest two ingredient lemon glaze. There’s nothing not to love about these lemon rolls, every bite tastes just like summer and practically just melts in your mouth! These sweet breakfast rolls are a great make ahead bake for summer mornings or even to have as a sweet bite in the afternoons with a cup of coffee. Enjoy them warm, right out of the oven, for a summer treat that everybody will love!

overhead shot of lemon rolls in pie pan with a napkin, forks, lemons, flowers, lemon curd, and plates

→ This post is also available as a Web Story: Lemon Sweet Rolls

About The Recipe

We are officially a few days into the first few days of Spring, and I could not be more excited! The days are finally warming up, the sun is just a little bit brighter, and the grass is actually green. So, if you asked what the inspiration behind this recipe is, I’d definitely say the warmer weather…that and my brother’s two favorite things are lemon and any kind of sweet roll!

So, I don’t think there is any better time than now to share these deliciously easy lemon rolls.

lemon sweet rolls in pie pan with berries, fruit, a bowl of lemons, flowers, and two glasses

If you didn’t know, I absolutely love summer. My mom and I both do. We don’t survive too well without sunshine! We both thrive when the weather is warm and we’re able to see life…well, grow and be green around us. It just makes everything seem a little bit better.

And, lately, we’ve both been a little bit stressed out. So, when the sun finally started to come out a week or so ago, things really started to relax. Now? It’s hard to keep us inside!

That is, until we want to bake something. We came up with the idea of these lemon sweet rolls after we noticed just how much citrus we had in the fridge. That, and it seemed like the perfect recipe to introduce Spring/Summery recipes.

And these rolls are everything we could have ever wanted and more! They’re sweet, lemon-y, soft, gooey, and oh so delicious…everything a perfect sweet roll should be!

Equipment Needed

Ingredients

For The Custard:

  • Sugar
  • Egg Yolks
  • Lemon Juice
  • Lemon Zest
  • Salted Butter
lemon zest, sugar, lemon juice, egg yolks, butter on marble counter

For The Dough:

  • All-Purpose Flour
  • Sugar
  • Salt
  • Instant Yeast
  • Lemon Zest
  • Unsalted Butter
  • Whole Milk
  • Egg
egg, yeast, flour, baking powder, lemon zest, sugar, milk, and butter on marble counter

Instructions

In a medium sized bowl, whisk together the sugar, egg yolks, lemon juice, and lemon zest. Place bowl over the top of a simmering pot of water and cook, stirring constantly, until the mixture has thickened significantly.

Strain through a fine meshed sieve into a clean bowl.

Stir in the butter a few tablespoons at a time. Make sure the butter is well incorporated.

Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate.

lemon custard covered with plastic wrap in glass bowl

In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the flour, sugar, salt, yeast, and lemon zest. Set aside.

In a small saucepan, combine the butter and whole milk. Place over low heat and heat to 120-130 degrees.

milk added to melted butter

With the mixer running, slowly add milk mixture to flour mixture.

Stir in the egg. Knead the dough for 8-10 minutes, or until it’s smooth.

Place the dough in a lidded container and let proof for about 1 hour and 30 minutes to 2 hours, or until the dough has doubled in bulk.

Once the dough is done proofing, turn out onto a lightly floured surface and roll out to about 1/4 inch thick. Spread the top of the dough with lemon custard.

Cut into 1 1/2 inch strips. Roll them and place in a greased 8 inch pan.

Cover and let rise for 1 hour.

Bake at 350 for 15-20 minutes, or until lightly browned.

baked lemon rolls in pie pan

While the rolls cool, mix together powdered sugar and lemon juice in small bowl.

Drizzle the tops of the lemon rolls with the glaze and serve!

lemon roll on two plates with jar of white flowers, blueberries, and a bowl of lemons behind

How To Buy The Right Lemons & How To Get The Most Juice

This might sound weird to some of you, but there is actually a method behind picking out citrus at the store/farmer’s markets! Here’s a a few quick tips on how to get the perfect lemon so you know what to get.

  • When you’re shopping, do not go for the larger lemons. I know it may be tempting, because the larger the lemon…the more juice it must have, right? Well, generally that size yields more in rind. Not juice.
  • Pick them up! Unsure of what you’re really looking for? Use the scale you see by the other fruits. See what’s heavier. The heavier the lemon, the more juice it’ll likely have.
  • Squeeze it gently. A thinner rind will have some give to it, whereas a thicker rind will be pretty hard and generally have very little to no give at all. If you have to squeeze pretty hard to get some give, set it back down.

Okay, so now that you have your lemons, you may be wondering how to get the most amount of juice possible! The first step, make sure the lemons are room temperature. From there, roll them onto the counter until they’re super soft and squishy! This will yield the most amount of juice. Especially if you’re using a citrus juicer!

How To Store

The best way to store these rolls is in the freezer! They keep for so much longer and, when you reheat them, it’s just like having a freshly baked roll whenever you want it. Of course, you can also keep them in the fridge for about a week or so!

overhead shot of lemon sweet rolls with one taken out of the pan with berries, a white napkin, lemon curd, and forks

Expert Tips

  • You can melt butter first and then add milk.
  • If milk mixture gets too hot, don’t worry! Allow it to cool to 120-130 degrees before pouring it into the dry ingredients.
  • You could also proof the dough in glass bowl covered with plastic wrap.
  • Use a pizza cutter to cut dough into strips before rolling. Or roll the dough as one large roll and then use a sharp knife or a piece of plain-unflavored dental floss to cut into rolls!
  • If you want the dough/rolls to proof faster, place them near something warm like the oven!
  • The curd may burn before the rolls are done baking. Cover with foil to prevent over-browing/burning of the curd.

When you make this Small Batch Lemon Sweet Rolls with Lemon Glaze, leave a comment down below! We love hearing from you and answering any questions you might have! Also, be sure to tag us on social media and hashtag it #BakersTable.

overhead shot of lemon rolls in pie pan with a napkin, forks, lemons, flowers, lemon curd, and plates

Small Batch Lemon Sweet Rolls with Lemon Glaze

Traci
Bright, summery, extra lemon-y, perfectly sweet, and so delicious! That's the perfect way to describe these easy Small Batch Lemon Sweet Rolls with Lemon Glaze.
5 from 8 votes
Prep Time 35 mins
Cook Time 30 mins
Additional Time 3 hrs
Total Time 4 hrs 5 mins
Course Breakfast
Cuisine American
Servings 8
Calories 491 kcal

Ingredients
 

Lemon Curd

  • 1 cup sugar
  • 8 egg yolks
  • ½ cup lemon juice
  • 1 Tablespoon lemon zest
  • 6 Tablespoons salted butter

Rolls

  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons instant yeast
  • ½ teaspoon lemon zest
  • 5 Tablespoons unsalted butter
  • ½ cup whole milk
  • 1 large egg

Lemon Glaze

  • ½ cup powdered sugar, sifted
  • 1 Tablespoon lemon juice

Instructions

Lemon Curd

  • In a medium bowl, whisk together sugar, egg yolks, lemon juice, lemon and zest.
  • Place over the top of a pot of simmering water.
  • Cook, stirring constantly, until curd has thickened to a pudding consistency.
  • Remove from heat and strain through a fine mesh sieve into a clean bowl.
  • Stir in butter.
  • Cover and refrigerate.

Rolls

  • In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine flour, sugar, salt, yeast, and lemon zest. Set aside.
  • In a small saucepan, combine butter and milk.
  • Heat to 120-130 degrees.
  • With the mixer running, slowly add milk mixture to flour mixture.
  • When combined, add egg.
  • Knead for 8-10 minutes until dough is smooth and elastic.
  • Place in a lidded container that has been sprayed with cooking spray.
  • Allow to proof 1 1/2-2 hours, or until doubled in bulk.
  • While dough is rising, spray, spray an 8-inch pan with cooking spray. Set aside.
  • Turn out onto lightly flour surface.
  • Roll into a rectangle 1/4" thick.
  • Spread dough with lemon curd, going all the way to the edges.
  • Cut dough into 1 1/2" strips.
  • Beginning with short side, roll up into rolls.
  • Place rolls is prepared pan.
  • Cover and allow to rise 1 hour, or until doubled.
  • While rolls are rising, preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • Bake fully proofed rolls 15-20 minutes, until golden brown.
  • Remove from oven and allow to cool.

Lemon Glaze

  • In a small bowl, combine powdered sugar and lemon juice.
  • Beat with a whisk or an electric mixer until smooth.
  • Drizzle over cooled rolls.

Notes

  • You can melt butter first and then add milk.
  • If milk mixture gets too hot, don't worry! Allow it to cool to 120-130 degrees before pouring it into the dry ingredients.
  • You could also proof the dough in glass bowl covered with plastic wrap.
  • Use a pizza cutter to cut dough into strips before rolling. Or roll the dough as one large roll and then use a sharp knife or a piece of plain-unflavored dental floss to cut into rolls!
  • If you want the dough/rolls to proof faster, place them near something warm like the oven!
  • The curd may burn before the rolls are done baking. Cover with foil to prevent over-browning/burning of the curd.

Nutrition

Serving: 1RollCalories: 491kcalCarbohydrates: 67gProtein: 9gFat: 22gSaturated Fat: 12gPolyunsaturated Fat: 2gMonounsaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 259mgSodium: 247mgPotassium: 134mgFiber: 2gSugar: 40gVitamin A: 796IUVitamin C: 8mgCalcium: 56mgIron: 2mg

Nutritional information is only an estimate. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed.

When you make this recipe, remember to tag @abakers_table or hashtag it #BakersTable!

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