Meyer Lemon Rolls with Lemon Frosting

This post may contain affiliate links. Please see my disclosure policy.

Learn how to make soft fluffy lemon rolls made with fresh lemons! Lemon lovers will adore these Meyer lemon rolls with sweet and tangy lemon filling and frosting. Recipe makes 12 rolls.

Meyer Lemon Rolls

The Best Lemon Rolls

These sweet, lemony rolls bake up golden and pillowy, perfect for breakfast or weekend brunch. When I want a citrus twist on classic cinnamon rolls, I reach for Meyer lemons. Flavored with fresh Meyer lemon zest and juice, these fluffy yeasted rolls are a lemon dream.

A few helpful tips before you begin:

  • Lemons – If you can’t find Meyer lemons, feel free to use regular lemons. The only change is that the flavor of the rolls will be slightly more tangy and zesty.
  • Room temperature ingredients – Yeast needs a warm environment to thrive, so bring milk, butter, and egg to room temperature before baking. Room temperature ingredients incorporate more easily into the dough and also keep the dough at the right temperature for optimal rising.
  • Don’t over-mix or over-knead the dough – For pillowy soft lemon rolls, mix the dough just until the ingredients are incorporated and the dough is smooth and soft. Knead the dough on low speed for 3 minutes or just until smooth and elastic. You can tell you’ve kneaded dough for too long when it starts to feel dense and becomes difficult to stretch.
  • Baking time – It can be a bit tricky to know when rolls are fully baked, so use a digital thermometer. Bake rolls until light golden and the internal temperature reaches between 195°and 200°F.
  • Let rolls cool before frosting – Allow the rolls to cool for at least 30 minutes before spreading with icing (this prevents the frosting from melting off the rolls and into the pan).

Love baking with Meyer lemons? Find more inspiration in this round up of favorite fresh Meyer lemon recipes!

Meyer Lemon Rolls

How to Make Lemon Rolls

Combine 2 cups (280 g) flour, yeast, sugar, and salt in a large mixer bowl. Mix on low speed for 30 seconds until incorporated.

Heat milk for 45 seconds to 1 minute, until very warm (120-130°F). Add warm milk, butter, and egg to flour mixture. Mix on low speed for 25 seconds until combined. 

Mix in remaining 1 1/2 cups (210 g) flour on low speed for 20 seconds, just until incorporated and a soft dough forms.

Knead dough on low speed for 3 minutes or until smooth and elastic.

Place dough in a large bowl coated with nonstick spray and cover with plastic. Let the dough rise in a warm place until doubled in size, about 40 minutes.

To make the lemon filling/frosting, combine butter, salt, powdered sugar, lemon zest, lemon juice, milk, and vanilla in a large mixer bowl. Beat on low speed until combined, then on medium speed until smooth and creamy.

Turn dough out on a lightly floured board and roll into a rectangle. Spread 3/4 cup (195 g) of lemon filling over dough with an offset spatula, leaving a 1/4-inch border. Set aside the rest of the filling to frost the baked rolls.

Carefully roll dough up into a tight log and pinch edges to seal. Slice dough crosswise into 12 equal slices.

Place rolls cut side up into prepared baking dish. Cover loosely with plastic and let rise in a warm place until doubled in size, about 30 minutes. 

Bake rolls for 25 to 30 minutes, until golden and the internal temperature reaches 195°F to 200°F. Remove from oven and place on a wire rack to cool for 30 minutes. Spread lemon frosting over the warm rolls before serving.

Meyer Lemon Rolls

Make Ahead Lemon Rolls

To make the rolls ahead, place rolls cut side up into prepared 13 x 9-inch baking dish and cover tightly with plastic. Let rest in the refrigerator overnight (up to 16 hours).

On baking day, let the rolls come to room temperature and rise on the counter until doubled in size (about 30 to 45 minutes) before baking as directed.

Storing Tips

Lemon rolls taste best freshly baked. Store leftover rolls tightly covered overnight at room temperature. You can also refrigerate the rolls for up to 3 days in an airtight container. Re-warm rolls in the microwave for about 15 seconds before serving.

Freeze Rolls After Baking

To freeze baked lemon rolls (unfrosted), cool rolls to room temperature. Tightly cover the entire pan with a layer of plastic wrap and a layer of foil. Freeze baked rolls up to 2 months.

When you’re ready to heat, defrost the rolls at room temperature (still covered to prevent condensation from forming). Warm rolls in the oven at 350°F for 15 minutes, or until heated through. Frost as directed and enjoy!

To freeze individual lemon rolls, wrap each roll in plastic wrap, then store the rolls in a freezer bag for up to 2 months.

Defrost the rolls at room temperature (still wrapped to prevent condensation from forming). Warm rolls up individually in the oven at 325°F for 10 minutes, or in the microwave for about 15 seconds. Keep in mind that the lemon frosting will warm through and become more of a lemon glaze. Still delicious! 🙂

Meyer Lemon Rolls

More Meyer lemon recipes you’ll love:

Did you try this Lemon Rolls Recipe? Let me know by leaving a comment and rating below!

Print
clock clock iconcutlery cutlery iconflag flag iconfolder folder iconinstagram instagram iconpinterest pinterest iconfacebook facebook iconprint print iconsquares squares iconheart heart iconheart solid heart solid icon
Meyer Lemon Rolls

Meyer Lemon Rolls with Lemon Frosting

  • Author: Laura Kasavan
  • Prep Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Total Time: 2 hours
  • Yield: 12 rolls
  • Category: Breakfast
  • Method: Bake
  • Cuisine: American

Description

Learn how to make soft fluffy lemon rolls made with fresh Meyer lemons! These sweet, lemony rolls bake up golden and pillowy, perfect for breakfast or weekend brunch. Recipe makes 12 generously sized rolls.


Ingredients

Dough

  • 3 1/2 cups (490 g) all-purpose flour, divided
  • 1 package (7 g) instant yeast
  • 1/4 cup (50 g) granulated sugar
  • 1/2 tsp (3 g) salt
  • 1 cup (240 g) low-fat milk
  • 1/4 cup (56 g) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 large egg (50 g), at room temperature

Lemon Filling/Frosting

  • 3/4 cup (168 g) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1/2 tsp (3 g) salt
  • 4 cups (480 g) powdered sugar
  • 3 Tbsp (9 g) Meyer lemon zest
  • 2 Tbsp (30 g) fresh Meyer lemon juice
  • 2 Tbsp (30 g) milk
  • 1 tsp (4 g) vanilla extract

Instructions

  1. Make dough: Combine 2 cups (280 g) flour, yeast, sugar, and salt in a large mixer bowl; mix on low speed for 30 seconds until incorporated. Heat milk in a microwave-safe measuring cup for 45 seconds to 1 minute, until very warm (120-130°F). Add warm milk, butter, and egg to flour mixture and mix on low speed for 25 seconds until combined. Mix in remaining 1 1/2 cups (210 g) flour on low speed for 20 seconds, just until incorporated and a soft dough forms.
  2. Switch out the flat beater for a dough hook, and knead dough on low speed for 3 minutes or until smooth and elastic. The dough is ready when it feels tacky but doesn’t stick to your fingers (if necessary, add additional flour 1 tablespoon at a time while kneading – see note below).
  3. Place dough in a large bowl coated with nonstick spray and cover with plastic. Let the dough rise in a warm place until doubled in size, about 40 minutes.
  4. Lemon filling/frosting: Combine butter, salt, powdered sugar, lemon zest, lemon juice, milk, and vanilla in a large mixer bowl. Beat on low speed until combined, then beat on medium speed for 1 minute until smooth and creamy.
  5. To check if dough has doubled, lightly flour two fingers and press them down into center of dough. If indentations remain, gently press down dough; cover and let rest 5 minutes. Line a 13 x 9-inch baking pan with parchment paper or spray with nonstick spray.
  6. Turn dough out on a lightly floured board and roll into an 18 x 12-inch rectangle. Spread 3/4 cup (195 g) of lemon filling over dough with an offset spatula, leaving a 1/4-inch border. Set aside the rest of the filling to frost the baked rolls.
  7. Carefully roll dough up into a tight log and pinch edges to seal. Trim off uneven ends and score dough into 12 equal slices. Use unflavored dental floss to slice dough crosswise (slip a long slice of floss under log of dough and cross on top to cut slices cleanly). Place rolls cut side up into prepared baking dish. Cover loosely with plastic and let rise in a warm place until doubled in size, about 30 minutes. While the rolls rise, preheat oven to 350°F.
  8. Bake rolls for 25 to 30 minutes, until golden and the internal temperature reaches 195°F to 200°F. Remove from oven and place on a wire rack to cool for 30 minutes. Spread lemon frosting over the warm rolls before serving (save any extra frosting to serve with leftover rolls the next day).
  9. Store leftover rolls tightly covered overnight at room temperature or refrigerate the rolls for up to 3 days in an airtight container. Re-warm rolls in a warm oven (325°F) or in the microwave for about 15 seconds before serving.

Notes

Extra flour: Feel the texture of the dough with your fingers before adding any additional flour. The dough should feel tacky (but not sticky). I very rarely need to add any additional flour during the kneading process.

Filling/frosting: Save any extra frosting tightly covered in an airtight container in the refrigerator to serve with leftover rolls the next day.

Make ahead rolls: Work up to step 7. Cover the rolls with plastic wrap and refrigerate up to 16 hours. On baking day, remove the chilled rolls from the refrigerator and let rise in a warm place until puffy (about 45 minutes). Bake as directed.

Keywords: Meyer Lemon, Lemon, Rolls, Lemon Rolls, Breakfast

Leave a Comment & Rate this Recipe

If you love this recipe, please consider leaving a comment and review to help other readers. If you have a question, I'd love to hear from you too.

As always, thanks for your feedback!

Recipe rating

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

30 Comments

  1. My children and I DEVOURED these!! Thank you so much for sharing! Meyer lemon anything is great but this is a genius recipe and we loved it. 💛🍋

  2. These make me want to go on the hunt for meyer lemons! Perfect for breakfast or brunch! 🙂

  3. oh how I would love to have a Meyer lemon tree of my own!! I’m still getting used to the weather here in WI and our community garden. . love love love these lemon rolls!!! perfection! Happy 2015, Laura! can’t wait to see all the deliciousness you bring!

  4. Meyer lemon are my fave lemon flavour. There is nothing it can be added to that I wouldn’t like!

  5. Wow a tree laden with Meyer lemons! I can only dream of that in the UK and I bought a little Meyer lemon tree seedling… Two years on it is still teeny so I doubt we will ever see any lemons. Your rolls look absolute perfection – I would love some for a weekend breakfast