Orange Rolls

5 from 10 votes

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Sweet, light, chewy, fluffy, and simple to make! These mouth-watering Orange Rolls will hit the spot any day of the week.

close up of orange roll with cream cheese icing

What are Orange Rolls?

Similar to Cinnamon Rolls, Orange Rolls are chewy, sweet, and warm. But instead of using cinnamon-sugar, you have a citrusy and lightly spiced sugar filling. Plus they are topped with an orange cream cheese frosting too!

Despite the time it takes to make these treats, they’re a great breakfast, snack, or dessert. Yes you have to wait for the dough to rise and yes you have to fill them and then wait again, but after all of that, I promise it’s worth it!

Main Ingredients

Orange Rolls are made up of three components, the dough, the filling and the icing! Here’s exactly what you need for all three:

For the Dough

  • Warm Water + Yeast + Sugar – these three are added together to help the yeast proof. This ensures that your dough will rise!
  • Flour – just regular all-purpose flour to fill out the dough. As it’s kneaded, gluten forms which makes the rolls soft and chewy.
  • Butter – used for flavor and texture.
  • Salt – used for flavor.

For the Filling

  • Butter – this acts as the glue that holds the rest of the filling onto the dough.
  • Sugar – to sweeten.
  • Orange Zest – to flavor!
  • Cinnamon – a warm spice that compliments the orange zest!

For the Icing

  • Cream Cheese + Butter – for flavor and for creaminess!
  • Oranje Zest + Juice – I use both orange zest and fresh juice to flavor the icing, so good!
  • Vanilla Extract – a subtle flavor that smooths out some of the stronger citrusy notes.
  • Corn Syrup – to sweeten and to improve the texture and shininess of the frosting.
  • Powdered Sugar – to sweeten and thicken the frosting.
risen orange rolls in baking sheet

How to Make Orange Rolls

For full details on how to make these incredible orange rolls, including increments, see the recipe card down below πŸ™‚

Make the Dough

  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer, stir warm water together with yeast and some sugar. After a couple of minutes, the mixture should be foamy.
  2. Add in the remaining sugar and 2 cups of flour and start to mix with the dough hook attachment. Stir in melted butter and salt. Add in another 1-2 cups of flour and let the machine work to knead it into the dough. Add in the remaining 2 cups of flour (if needed) bit by bit, letting the machine knead in the flour for several seconds before adding in more flour.

Note: Only add in enough flour to get a dough that is mostly smooth, has cleaned the sides of the bowl, the bottom is still sticking and when you touch it with your hands, it is tacky but not sticky enough to stick to your hands.

  1. Scrape the dough out of the bowl and into a well-greased large bowl. Roll it around to coat in oil, cover, and refrigerate for a couple of hours or overnight.

Filling and Cutting Orange Rolls

  1. In a medium-size bowl, stir sugar, orange zest, and cinnamon together until combined. Set aside. 
  2. Flour a clean surface and dump the risen dough onto the board. Sprinkle the dough and rolling pin in more flour and start to roll it into a rectangle.
  3. Using your fingers, spread the soft butter over the entire piece of dough, leaving a border along the top of the longer side. Sprinkle the orange sugar mixture over the butter evenly.
  4. Roll dough neatly into a tight swirl, towards the border of dough without sugar. Bring the entire log of the dough towards you, moving the seam side down to hold in place. Using a serrated bread knife, cut into rolls and place onto buttered parchment paper on a lightly colored half sheet pan.
  5. Cover rolls with plastic wrap and rise until puffed and pretty. Bake orange rolls until the tops are golden brown.

Making the Orange Cream Cheese Frosting

  1. In a small bowl, measure out all ingredients for frosting. Mix slowly until incorporated and then increase the speed to whip until completely smooth and light.
  2. Spread frosting overtop warm orange rolls. Serve warm or at room temperature.
close up of orange roll with cream cheese icing

Storing Orange Rolls

I like storing my baked and iced orange rolls covered well with plastic wrap, at room temperature for up to 24 hours.

They can last up to 48 hours in the fridge, but I just prefer serving mine warm and fresh when they are at their peak softness and they just don’t stay that way for longer than 48 hours, unfortunately.

orange rolls on baking sheet

More Cinnamon Roll Recipes to Try!

This isn’t my first rodeo when it comes to sweet rolls! If you tried this Orange Roll recipe, let me know how it went in the comments below πŸ™‚

Here’s the printable. Have a great day, friends!

5 from 10 votes

Orange Rolls Recipe

Sweet, light, chewy, fluffy, and simple to make! These mouth-watering Orange Rolls will hit the spot any day of the week.
servings 24
Prep Time 25 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Total Time 2 hrs 40 mins

Ingredients

For the dough-

  • 2 cups warm water
  • 4 1/2 teaspoons quick rise yeast 2 packets
  • 6 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 6 cups all purpose flour give or take 1 cup, see NOTES below
  • 5 tablespoons melted butter and cooled
  • 2 teaspoons salt

For the filling-

  • 1/2 cup butter melted
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons orange zest
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon

For the icing-

  • 2 oz cream cheese
  • 1/4 cup softened butter
  • 1 teaspoon orange juice
  • 1 tablespoon orange zest
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon corn syrup
  • 1 1/4 cups powdered sugar

Instructions

Make the Dough-

  • In the bowl of a stand mixer, stir warm water together with yeast an 3 tablespoon sugar until mostly dissolved. After 10 minutes, mixture should be foamy. (If nothing has happened, throw it out and try again OR buy fresher yeast.)
  • Add in remaining 3 tablespoons of sugar and 2 cups of flour and start to mix with the machine on low to medium speed with the dough hook attachment. Stir in melted butter and salt. Add in another 1-2 cups and let the machine work to knead it into the dough, about 2 minutes or kneading on low to medium speed. Add in remaining 2 cups of flour (if needed) bit by bit, letting the machine knead in the flour for several seconds before adding in more flour. Only add in enough flour to get a dough that is mostly smooth, has cleaned the sides of the bowl, the bottom is still sticking and when you touch it with your hands, it is tacky but not sticky enough to stick to your hands. This whole process should take about 10 minutes.
  • Scrape the dough out of the bowl and into a well greased large bowl. Roll it around to coat in oil, over and rise on the counter 2-3 hours. Alternately, you can refrigerate 2-3 hours to overnight.
    greased dough ball in metal bowl

Filling and Cutting Orange Rolls-

  • In a medium-size bowl, stir sugar, orange zest and cinnamon together until combined. Set aside.Β 
    orange zest, cinnamon and sugar in glass bowl
  • Flour a clean surface and dump risen dough onto the board. Sprinkle the dough and rolling pin in more flour and start to roll a 24"x18 rectangle (approximately). As you roll, be sure to move the dough around to ensure no sticking. Add more flour as needed.
    rolled dough in a rectangle
  • Using your fingers, spread the soft butter over the entire piece of dough, leaving a 1 inch border along the top of a longer 24" side. Sprinkle the orange sugar mixture over the butter evenly.
    butter, orange zest and sugar on rolled out dough
  • Roll dough neatly into a tight swirl, towards the border of dough without sugar. Bring entire log of dough towards you, moving the seam side down to hold in place. Using a serrated bread knife, cut into 1 1/2" rolls (approximate is fine) and place onto buttered parchment paper on a lightly colored half sheet pan. (You should end up with 16 nice cinnamon rolls and 2 small end pieces that you can squeeze onto the sheet pan too or just toss.)
    cut orange rolls in baking sheet
  • Cover rolls with plastic wrap and rise 1 hour or until puffed and pretty. Bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes or until tops are golden brown.
    pan of baked orange rolls with no icing

For the Orange Cream Cheese Frosting

  • In a small bowl, measure out all ingredients for frosting. Mix slowly until incorporated and then increase the speed to whip until completely smooth and light.
    citrus cream cheese icing in white bowl
  • Spread frosting overtop warm orange rolls. Serve warm or at room temperature.
    close up of orange roll with cream cheese icing

Notes

Don’t let the 6 cup increment of flour fool you! This is an approximation. Only add enough flour to get you a dough that:
  • has cleaned the sides of the mixing bowl
  • still sticks to the bottom of the mixing bowl
  • is mostly smooth
  • is tacky when touched but isn’t sticky enough to leave a residue or stick
When in doubt, leave the dough a little on the sticky side and then refrigerate. You can always add in more flour later as you’re rolling out the rolls to compensate.

Nutrition

Calories: 272kcal | Carbohydrates: 43g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 9g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Cholesterol: 24mg | Sodium: 276mg | Potassium: 58mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 18g | Vitamin A: 284IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 11mg | Iron: 2mg
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: orange rolls

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Recipe Rating




26 Responses
  1. Cat Davis | Food Family & Finds

    Mmmm orange rolls are my weakness. I made a bread machine version of these a couple of weeks ago and had my hubby mad at me for baking something so sweet and tempting while he’s trying to lose weight.

  2. Leslie

    Lauren, I would LOVE to have one of these orange rolls! I’ve been seeing this kind of sweet roll recipe more and more, and I just need to break down and make these things!!! I am salivating over the pictures now.

    I also love when my packages come hand delivered!! I have one coming, although I’m sure facial moisterizer isn’t nearly as exciting or fun as what your boxed were filled with! πŸ˜‰
    Blessings,
    Leslie

  3. Alice @ Hip Foodie Mom

    Hi Lauren!
    These sweet orange rolls look great! and wow! can’t wait for the ecookbook! congrats! I love heidi from Foodie Crush! very cool!

  4. Kate

    5 stars
    Made them and loved them! I made 12 big rolls and used a orange cream cheese icing. They were perfect! Thanks for the recipe!

  5. Allison Koehler

    I grew up having orange rolls (not the homemade kind) on Christmas morning. I am so excited to make this recipe this since my parents will be visiting for the first Christmas together in 9 years. My kids have never spent Christmas with grandma and grandpa, and this year the orange rolls will be extra special. Thanks!

  6. Desiree

    5 stars
    THESE are a Thanksgiving morning tradition at my house! On Thanksgiving Eve I make the dough and fill it, then pop it in the fridge until morning. It isn’t the perfect thing to snack on during the Macy’s parade!

  7. Peggy

    5 stars
    These are sooo good! I threw the dough ingredients in my bread maker and set the dough function. I just finished them and this recipe is great. The dough wasn’t super sticky and it was easy to work with. It had just enough of an orange flavor! This is my new favorite roll dough to use!

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