Vegan Lemon Sweet Rolls

Megan
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Vegan Lemon Sweet Rolls are a fresh alternative to my most popular recipe – classic cinnamon rolls. Bright citrus rolls topped with a cream cheese frosting will have your taste buds dancing. The perfect recipe for spring & summer gatherings.

Vegan Lemon Sweet Rolls are a fresh alternative to my most popular recipe - classic cinnamon rolls. Bright citrus rolls topped with a cream cheese frosting will have your taste buds dancing. The perfect recipe for spring & summer gatherings.

Spring is here and that means it’s time for sweet rolls! These Vegan Lemon Sweet Rolls are full of fresh citrus flavor, making them a great option for spring and summer gatherings. Plus, how absolutely stunning do they look? They will be a showstopper at any event appearance-wise and flavor-wise.

Essentially, these lemon sweet rolls are a fresh alternative to my most popular recipe on my blog: the best vegan cinnamon rolls. While traditional cinnamon rolls are always a good idea, I’ve been inspired by the spring produce and the lemons add a burst of freshness to this baked good. These spring-inspired lemon rolls are a great option if you want something different from the usual cinnamon roll recipe, or if you’re looking for something new to make for brunch or breakfast on Mother’s Day.

Vegan Lemon Sweet Rolls are a fresh alternative to my most popular recipe - classic cinnamon rolls. Bright citrus rolls topped with a cream cheese frosting will have your taste buds dancing. The perfect recipe for spring & summer gatherings.

The first time I recipe tested these lemon sweet rolls, it was an immediate triumph. My family and I finished the whole batch that night, we couldn’t get enough! I’ve been making them on repeat and we’ve been delighting in the rich citrus flavors these rolls offer.

If you’ve never had lemon sweet rolls, your life is about to change – not to be too dramatic! Imagine a classic cinnamon roll getting a fresh, spring makeover. These rolls are so light and airy, they melt in your mouth! My favorite part is biting into the soft, light and airy dough, followed by the tart but sweet lemon spread, and finally finishing off with the smooth cream cheese frosting. It’s heaven! You really can’t go wrong with this recipe because it has all of the elements needed for a perfect dessert: sweetness, tartness and creaminess!

Vegan Lemon Sweet Rolls are a fresh alternative to my most popular recipe - classic cinnamon rolls. Bright citrus rolls topped with a cream cheese frosting will have your taste buds dancing. The perfect recipe for spring & summer gatherings.

Vegan Lemon Sweet Rolls Ingredients

• All Purpose Flour – I have not tried this recipe with gluten-free all purpose flour so I’m not sure how it would work.

• Active Dry Yeast – this will make our rolls airy and light. It’s important to note that this recipe does not use instant yeast, it uses active dry yeast.

 Lemon Zest – in total, I used the zest of 2 whole lemons for this recipe.

Monk Fruit Sweetener – to keep this recipe refined sugar-free I’m using monk fruit sweetener, but regular sugar will work as well.

• Vegan Butter – I like to use the Earth Balance Vegan Butter Sticks. For this recipe, you’ll want to use sticks of butter as opposed to butter spreads. The butter spreads contain a lot more water, which we do not want in this recipe.

• Plant Milk – any plant milk should work (almond, oat, soy).

• Salt 

Vegan Cream Cheese Frosting Ingredients

• Vegan Cream Cheese 

• Vegan Butter

• Powdered Monk Fruit Sweetener – to keep this recipe refined sugar-free I’m using monk fruit sweetener, but regular sugar will work as well.

• Plant Milk

• Vanilla Extract

Vegan Lemon Sweet Rolls are a fresh alternative to my most popular recipe - classic cinnamon rolls. Bright citrus rolls topped with a cream cheese frosting will have your taste buds dancing. The perfect recipe for spring & summer gatherings.

A traditional recipe with a citrus twist, these Vegan Lemon Sweet Rolls are the perfect way to celebrate the season! I hope you try these sweet rolls that are full of fresh citrus flavor – you are sure to love them!

If you love this recipe, I’m sure you’ll also love my traditional vegan cinnamon roll recipe. It’s also my most popular recipe on the blog, and for good reason.

Vegan Lemon Sweet Rolls are a fresh alternative to my most popular recipe - classic cinnamon rolls. Bright citrus rolls topped with a cream cheese frosting will have your taste buds dancing. The perfect recipe for spring & summer gatherings.

More Spring Dessert Recipes You’ll Love:

Strawberry Shortcake Ice Cream Bars (vegan and gluten free)

Healthy Berry Crisp (vegan and gluten free)

Lemon Lush (vegan and gluten free)

 

Vegan Lemon Sweet Rolls

Vegan Lemon Sweet Rolls are a fresh alternative to my most popular recipe - classic cinnamon rolls. Bright citrus rolls topped with a cream cheese frosting will have your taste buds dancing — making it the perfect recipe for spring & summer gatherings.
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Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
Servings: 9 Rolls
Author: Megan

Ingredients

Dough

Lemon-Sugar Filling

  • 1/4 cup vegan butter softened
  • 1/2 cup monk fruit sweetener or sugar
  • 3 tsp lemon zest

Vegan Cream Cheese Frosting

Instructions

Make the dough

  • In a small bowl combine the non-dairy milk and vegan butter and heat in the microwave until warm, about 1 min 30 sec (it should feel like warm bath water, not too hot but not too cold). Transfer to the bowl of a stand mixer (or a large mixing bowl) and mix in the sugar and yeast. Let it sit for 5-10 minutes to allow the yeast to activate (you'll know it's done once its foamy at the top and smells of yeast).
  • Gradually add the flour 1/2 cup at a time to the mixing bowl while mixing with the dough hook of a stand mixer (or using a wooden spoon). The dough should be able to easily pull away from the bowl, it should not be too wet but not too dry. It should not stick to your hands. 
  • Add in the salt and lemon zest, then knead for 8-10 minutes either by hand or in a stand mixer.
  • Transfer the dough to a generously oiled bowl, cover with cling wrap and a tea towel and set it in a warm place to rise for 1 1/2 hours, or until doubled in size.

Make the filling

  • Add the softened vegan butter, monk fruit sweetener and lemon zest to a small bowl and mix together with a spatula until it turns into a spread.

Assemble the rolls

  • Once the dough is doubled in size, transfer to a generously floured surfaced and roll the dough into a 14×9 rectangle.
  • Using a spatula, spread the lemon-sugar filling evenly over the dough, leaving about 1/4-inch from the edges.
  • Tightly roll up the dough from the 9-inch side.
  • Using a serrated knife, cut about 1/2 inch off the ends. then make nine 1-inch cuts to make 9 even-sized rolls.
  • Place the rolls next to each other into an oiled or parchment lined 8x8 baking dish.
  • Cover the dish with cling wrap and a tea towel and set it in a warm place to rise for another 30-45 more minutes.
  • Preheat the oven to 350F. Bake the rolls uncovered for 35-40 minutes. If the middle of the rolls start to pop up while baking, just use a spatula to push them down.
  • Once finished baking, remove from the oven and let the rolls cool before frosting.

Make the frosting

  • Using a stand mixer or hand-held mixer, cream together all of the frosting ingredients: powdered sugar, vegan cream cheese, softened vegan butter, non-dairy milk, and vanilla extract.

Frost and serve

  • Spread the frosting over the rolls, garnish with lemon zest, and dive in!

Notes

  • In total, I used the zest of 2 lemons for this recipe.

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so it should only be used as an approximation.

2 Comments

  • VgfintheDR

    May 7, 2023 at 3:06 pm

    I got really excited about this, since your profile says “mostly gluten free” .. Until I read the recipe and went, Ugh, all purpose flour. I wish I could find a recipe for cinnamon or ANY type of yeast baked goods, that would actually turn out well, that’s gluten free! 😭

    1. Megan

      May 8, 2023 at 6:07 pm

      Aw! My cinnamon rolls are probably the only recipes of mine that are not gluten-free 🙃 I do plan on developing a gluten-free version though. 😊

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