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Orange Cardamom Rolls

Like cinnamon rolls but with orange and cardamom



1 cup milk

¼ cup butter

1 egg

1 tbsp vanilla

⅓ cup granulated sugar

1 packet yeast

4 cups flour


Zest of 1 orange

1 tbsp orange juice


¼ cup softened butter

½ cup granulated sugar

Pinch of salt

3 tbsp orange zest

1 tbsp ground cardamom


1 ½ cups powdered sugar

2 ½ tbsp orange juice

1 tbsp softened butter


  1. In a pot over medium-low heat, melt the butter into the milk.

  2. Take the milk off the stove and let cool to lukewarm. Whisk egg and vanilla into the milk.

  3. Incorporate the dry ingredients together in a large bowl. Add the milk mixture a little at a time.

  4. Mix until dough is shaggy and workable.

  5. Now knead the dough until smooth and not sticky. Rest for 10 minutes.

  6. Roll the dough into a rectangle. Spread the room temp butter over the dough, leaving some bare space on the longest edges.

  7. Sprinkle the sugar, salt, zest, and cardamom over the butter.

  8. Grab a long side and roll it up tightly to the other long side.

  9. Using fishing line, floss, or thread, cut the very ends off the roll (you can throw these away). Divide the roll into half, then fourths, then eighths.

  10. Arrange the rolls on a greased cookie sheet or dish, they can touch each other. Cover them and let them rise for 1 hour.

  11. Preheat the oven to 350 F. Bake for 20 minutes, check the rolls. Bake for 5 minute extra increments until they are a little golden brown on the top.

  12. In a small bowl, combine the butter and powdered sugar. Add the orange juice until you reach a desired consistency. Spread the icing over the rolls when they are done baking


Steps 1 and 2 - milk

Make sure that you don't heat the milk any warmer than you can touch. Let it cool to lukewarm before you add the egg (we don't want to accidentally make a scrambled egg).


Many recipes call for bread flour, but I'm keeping it simple with AP flour. If you have bread flour, use it, but most people probably only have AP flour. If 4 cups of flour doesn't bring the dough to a non-sticky consistency, add more tablespoon by tablespoon.


I used Fleischmann's active dry yeast, which comes in 1/4 oz packs. You can find this brand at almost every store.


We use butter 3 times in this recipe. The first time, we melt it in milk. The remaining 2 times, the butter should not be melted. The butter should be soft. Soft to spread over the dough. Soft for the icing. Don't melt your butter those times, ok?

Using fishing line/floss/thread to cut the rolls

Place the roll on top of whatever you're using to cut (lets say you're using fishing line). Take each end, cross them over the top of the roll, and pull until the line slices the roll. You can use a knife but it will squish the rolls a bit.


Do not skip the icing! It's easy. More importantly, it's essential. The icing is sweet, orangey, sticky, and 100% necessary. It takes these rolls to the next level. Spread it on when they're still warm and it will seep into the swirls to create something majestic.

Want to make cinnamon rolls instead?

Just forget the oranges and cardamom! Use brown sugar instead of white, and cinnamon instead of cardamom. Works the same, but use a tad less flour to compensate for not using orange juice in the dough. Sub milk for orange juice in the icing. Or, you can always make your own classic cream cheese icing, but to be perfectly honest, I don't like cream cheese icing.


Baked goods are often high in sugar, fat, and carbs. As someone who bakes often, I have to watch how much I eat. I love to eat. I do. I also love to have a healthy body. That being said, I appreciate when a recipe states a calorie count. So I've decided to provide that for you.

Total calories in rolls: 3,393

Personally, I think every calorie is worth it in this recipe. I have zero guilt when eating these because they are so good. That being said, divide the number above by how many rolls you made (counting the bits you took off the end). I baked 9 rolls, and I'm counting the end bits as only 1 roll because they were about half the size of the other rolls. So 10 in total. Each roll is 339 calories, then (not including icing).


Once you've made and kneaded your dough, the surface should spring back after you press it.

Rub 1/4 cup chunk of softened butter over the rectangle.

Cover with filling.

I used fishing line to divide my rolls, and I made 9 instead of 8.

Let them rise for 1 hour after cutting them and setting them in a dish.

These were done after 25 minutes.

I iced these after allowing them 8 minutes to cool a little (they were still warm though).

They cut easily.

Sticky icing and flaky bread!

So delicious!

What a wonderful spin on a cinnamon roll! Cardamom is such an interesting flavor, and a little goes a long way. Orange perfectly compliments the spice. You may have also noticed that I didn't use cream cheese for the icing. I don't like cream cheese. I researched many cinnamon roll recipes because the concept is the same, and some are pretty complicated. This is as easy a recipe as I could create while still producing a lip-smacking roll. My goal is always to make simple, yet delicious recipes. Trust me, these are addicting. I can honestly say that these are the best rolls I've ever had, and I've had many cinnamon rolls over my lifetime. I actually exceeded my own expectations with this recipe, I'm not kidding. These are heavenly. Just try them for yourself.



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