April 12, 2022

Raspberry Lemon Sweet Rolls

These delicious Raspberry Sweet Rolls are made with delicious raspberry jam, fresh raspberries, lemon zest, and covered in the perfect lemony cream cheese icing!

Why You’ll Love These Raspberry Sweet Rolls

  • They’re bursting with raspberry flavor! From the sweet raspberry jam to the fresh raspberries, there is plenty of delicious raspberry goodness in every single bit.
  • LEMON CREAM CHEESE ICING!! Do I really need to say more? The cream cheese icing on these rolls has the perfect balance of sweetness and fresh lemon.
  • They’re easier to make than you might think! I know rolls like this can seem intimidating but trust me, you can do it! This recipe is easier to make than you might think.

Watch How to Make This Recipe

raspberry sweet roll ingredients

Ingredients You Need for This Raspberry Sweet Rolls Recipe

Whole Milk: we’re using plain whole milk for these sweet rolls. If you would like to use another type of milk, I’ve included some options below.

ACTIVE DRY YEAST: yeast helps the sweet rolls to rise and become fluffy. For this batch of rolls we’re using two packets of yeast.

Sugar: you’ll need a little granulated sugar to sweeten the dough and help activate the yeast.

Eggs: for the perfect chewy texture I like to use one egg yolk and one whole egg.

All Purpose Flour: regular white all purpose flour is all you need. If you want extra fluffy sweet rolls you can use bread flour instead if you prefer!

Salt: this is a must and helps to give your sweet roll dough flavor.

Butter: I prefer to use unsalted butter in both the dough and filling of these rolls.

Raspberry Jam: part of the delicious raspberry filling in these sweet rolls comes for raspberry jam or preserves. You’ll use a generous amount of your favorite as a filling for the sweet rolls.

Fresh Raspberries: For extra raspberry flavor we’re using a few fresh raspberries in the filling as well. They’ll cook and become a bit jammy while the rolls are baking.

Cornstarch: this helps to thicken the liquid from the fresh raspberries so we don’t end up with watery rolls.

Lemon Zest and Juice: fresh lemon flavor is bursting all throughout these rolls from the jam to the cream cheese frosting.

VANILLA EXTRACT: a bit of vanilla extract in the filling and dough helps to give these rolls a delicious hit of vanilla flavor.

raspberries tossed in corn starch

Ingredient Frequently Asked Questions

  • Do I have to use whole milk? – no! I’ve used buttermilk, full-fat coconut milk, and almond milk for these rolls and they all work great!
  • Can I make these dairy free? – yes! just use a non-dairy milk and softened vegan butter!
  • Can I use gluten free flour? – I haven’t tested these cinnamon rolls with gluten free flour.
  • What can I swap for cornstarch? – If you don’t have any cornstarch on hand you use arrowroot starch instead.

Helpful Kitchen Tools

  • CANDY THERMOMETER – to help you make sure that the milk is just the right temperature.
  • LARGE MIXING BOWL – you’ll need a bowl with a lot of room to mix the dough.
  • WOODEN SPOON – I prefer using a wooden spoon to stir the dough because it has a nice firm handle.
  • TEA TOWEL – to cover your dough while it rises.
  • ROLLING PIN – you’ll need this to roll out the dough. I prefer to use French rolling pin without handles to get the dough an even thickness.
  • SERRATED KNIFE – this makes cutting the cinnamon roll dough a breeze! I’ve heard that you can use unflavored dental floss to cut the rolls as well.
  • PARCHMENT PAPER – to line the baking dish and prevent any mess.
  • 9×13 BAKING DISH – this recipe makes 12 cinnamon rolls so you’ll need a 9×13 pan to hold all the rolls.

cream cheese icing

The Most Delicious Lemon Cream Cheese Icing

One of the best parts of these rolls is the delicious cream cheese icing! A combination of cream cheese, butter, powdered sugar, vanilla, and a hefty dose of fresh lemon juice gives the icing the best flavor. Feel free to add extra lemon if you really want the icing to have a bit of extra tang!

yeast in milk

How to Make Raspberry Jam Sweet Rolls

Step One: Warm the buttermilk to 110-115 degrees Farenheit and then transfer to a large mixing bowl. Sprinkle the yeast on top of the warm milk and then sprinkle the granulated sugar over the yeast. The yeast should begin to foam and become frothy. If after 5 minutes the yeast does still not start to foam or become frothy, throw out the milk mixture and start again with new yeast. Next, add the melted butter, egg, and egg yolk to the mixture and whisk together until well combined.

Step Two: Add the all purpose flour and salt to the wet ingredients and use a wooden spoon to stir in the flour until it is well combined a dough forms, being sure to incorporate all of the flour from the sides of the bowl. You’ll know it’s time to move on to the next step once it becomes hard to stir. The dough will be thick, shaggy dough that’s still quite a bit sticky and that’s ok!

Step Three: Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and then use your hands to knead the dough for 8-10 minutes until it becomes elastic and can easily form into a smooth ball. The dough should feel slightly tacky but it should not stick to your hands or the kneading surface. If the dough is still too sticky, add 1 tablespoon of flour at a time and continue to knead the dough until it becomes a smooth, elastic ball.

roll dough

Step Four: Grease a clean, large bowl with one teaspoon of avocado oil and then transfer the ball of dough to the greased bowl. Cover the bowl with a tea towel and let the dough rise in a warm area (like the top of your oven/stovetop) for 1 – 1 1/2 hours or until the dough has doubled in size.

While the dough is rising, make the filling by tossing together the raspberries, vanilla, cornstarch, and lemon zest.

Step Five: Once the dough has risen, punch it down to release the extra air and then transfer to a lightly floured surface. Shape the dough into the shape of a rough rectangle and then use a rolling pin to roll the dough out into a 20×16 rectangle that is roughly 1/4 inch thick.

raspberry roll filling

Step Six: Use a spatula or knife to spread the softened butter evenly over the dough and then spread the jam over the dough in an even layer. Then spread the fresh raspberry mixture evenly over the dough.

Step Seven: Tightly roll up the dough, on the long side, and place seam side down. Pinch the seal a bit so the rolls don’t unravel. Use a sharp serrated knife or unflavored dental floss to cut the roll into 12 equally sized pieces. Place the cinnamon rolls in a 9×13 casserole dish, lined with parchment paper, evenly spaced a part. You should have 3 rows with 4 rolls per row.

raspberry rolls after first rice

Step Eight: Cover the casserole dish with a tea towel and let the cinnamon rolls rise for another 30-45 minutes until they have almost doubled in size.

Step Nine: Bake the cinnamon rolls on the center rack at 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes or until the rolls are a light golden brown. Remove the cinnamon rolls from the oven and let cool for 10 minutes before icing.

Step Ten: Make the cream cheese icing! Add the cream cheese, butter, and confectioner’s sugar to a mixing bowl. Use a hand mixer to mix the frosting until it is fluffy and the confectioners sugar is well incorporated without any lumps. Next, add in the lemon juice and vanilla extract and mix on high again until well combined. Set aside.

raspberry rolls after second rise

My Favorite Tips and Tricks for the Raspberry Rolls

  • Make sure your yeast is not expired – check the label on your packets of yeast to make sure that it hasn’t expired so that you get a good rise on your sweet rolls.
  • Don’t overheat or underheat your milk – in order for your yeast to activate properly you want to be sure that your milk is heated to 110-115 digress Fahrenheit. I like to heat my milk in a small pot on the stovetop but you can also heat it in the microwave in increments of 15-20 seconds until warm. Use a candy thermometer to ensure the milk is not too hot or too cold.
  • Make sure your eggs are room temperature – this helps to keep the milk the right temperature and not negatively impact your yeast activating.
  • Measure the flour correctly – be sure to measure your flour by spooning it into the measuring cup and then using a knife to level it out. Measuring it correctly will ensure that you don’t add too much flour to the dough.
  • Swap AP flour for bread flour – I’ve made these rolls with both all purpose flour and bread flour and both ways come out great. But, if you want extra fluffy chewy sweet rolls then bread flour is the way to go!
  • Use room temperature butter in the filling – I’ve tested these with both melted butter and room temperature butter and room temperature butter seems to work best. I found that filling tends to leak out of the rolls when you use melted butter.
  • Use measuring tape – I used to really struggle with getting evenly sized sweet rolls until I started to use a measuring tape. Now, I keep one in the kitchen and it helps me to cut evenly sized rolls every single time.
  • Line your pan with parchment paper – if you want to make clean up a breeze and keep your rolls from sticking to the pan, don’t forget to line your baking dish with parchment paper before adding the rolls.
  • Don’t over bake – your sweet rolls should be a nice light golden brown on the top but not too dark. If you tap the top of a roll and it sounds hollow then you know they are done.
  • Practice makes perfect – here’s the thing with any type of sweet or cinnamon roll, you get better at making them the more you make them. I’ve made dozens of batches of both my homemade cinnamon rolls and these raspberry sweet rolls at this point, and I still feel like I learn a new little trick or find something I want to tweak every time I make them. Just know your rolls will be delicious and you’ll feel even more confident making them with more practice.

baked raspberry sweet rolls

Frequently Asked Questions

What’s the best way to heat the milk?

I prefer heating the on the stove top in a small pot. However, you can also heat it in the microwave by heating it in 15-20 second increments. Just be sure to use a candy thermometer to ensure it’s the right temperature.

Can I use a stand mixer?

Yes! Instead of kneading by hand, if you have a stand mixer you can knead the dough using a dough hook. Just know that if you don’t have a stand mixer, don’t worry! Personally, I never use a stand mixer.

How to Make Overnight Raspberry Sweet Rolls

You can easily make these raspberry rolls the night before and bake them the next morning.

To make overnight: Roll, cut, and place the raspberry sweet rolls in a parchment lined baking dish after they have finished their 1st rise. Then, cover the rolls tightly with plastic wrap and place in the fridge overnight. The next morning, remove the baking dish from the fridge and let the rolls finish their second rise in a warm area for about 45 minutes to 1 hour before baking.

raspberry sweet rolls in pan

I hope you love these Raspberry Sweet Rolls as much as we do!

If you do give this recipe a try, I want to know! Leave a comment with a star rating below. You can also snap a photo & tag @allthehealthythings on INSTAGRAM. Your reviews help support All the Healthy Things and make it possible for me to continue to create the recipes you know and love.

Print

Raspberry Lemon Sweet Rolls

  • Author: Ashlea Carver
  • Prep Time: 2 hours 45 minutes
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Total Time: 3 hours 10 minutes
  • Yield: 12 1x
  • Category: Desserts
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Gluten Free
/
Scale:
  • Author: Ashlea Carver
  • Prep Time: 2 hours 45 minutes
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Total Time: 3 hours 10 minutes
  • Yield: 12 1x
  • Category: Desserts
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Gluten Free

Ingredients

Dough

  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 21/4 oz packets active-dry yeast
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup butter, melted
  • 1 egg + 1 egg yolk, room temperature
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 4 cups all purpose flour, spoon and leveled
  • avocado oil or avocado oil non-stick spray

Filling

  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup raspberry preserves
  • 1 cup fresh raspberries
  • 1/2 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch

Cream Cheese Frosting

  • 8 oz cream cheese, softened to room temperature
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 3/4 cup confectioner’s sugar, plus more to taste
  • 1/2 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice

Method

  1. Warm the milk to 110-115 degrees Farenheit and then transfer to a large mixing bowl. Sprinkle the yeast on top of the warm milk and then sprinkle the granulated sugar over the yeast. The yeast should begin to foam and become frothy. If after 5 minutes the yeast does still not start to foam or become frothy, throw out the milk mixture and start again with new yeast. Next, add the melted butter, egg, and egg yolk to the mixture and whisk together until well combined.
  2. Add the all purpose flour and salt to the wet ingredients and use a wooden spoon to stir in the flour until it is well combined a dough forms, being sure to incorporate all of the flour from the sides of the bowl. You’ll know it’s time to move on to the next step once it becomes hard to stir. The dough will be thick, shaggy dough that’s still quite a bit sticky and that’s ok!
  3. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and then use your hands to knead the dough for 8-10 minutes until it becomes elastic and can easily form into a smooth ball. The dough should feel slightly tacky but it should not stick to your hands or the kneading surface. If the dough is still too sticky, add 1 tablespoon of flour at a time and continue to knead the dough until it becomes a smooth, elastic ball.
  4. Grease a clean, large bowl with one teaspoon of avocado oil and then transfer the ball of dough to the greased bowl. Cover the bowl with a tea towel and let the dough rise in a warm area (like the top of your oven/stovetop) for 1 – 1 1/2 hours or until the dough has doubled in size.
  5. While the dough is rising, make the filling by tossing together the raspberries, vanilla, cornstarch, and lemon zest.
  6. Once the dough has risen, punch it down to release the extra air and then transfer to a lightly floured surface. Shape the dough into the shape of a rough rectangle and then use a rolling pin to roll the dough out into a 20×16 rectangle that is roughly 1/4 inch thick.
  7. Use a spatula or knife to spread the softened butter evenly over the dough and then spread the jam over the dough in an even layer. Then spread the fresh raspberry mixture evenly over the dough.
  8. Tightly roll up the dough, on the long side, and place seam side down. Pinch the seal a bit so the rolls don’t unravel. Use a sharp serrated knife or unflavored dental floss to cut the roll into 12 equally sized pieces. Place the cinnamon rolls in a 9×13 casserole dish, lined with parchment paper, evenly spaced a part. You should have 3 rows with 4 rolls per row.
  9. Cover the casserole dish with a tea towel and let the cinnamon rolls rise for another 30-45 minutes until they have almost doubled in size.
  10. Bake the cinnamon rolls on the center rack at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes or until the rolls are a light golden brown. Remove the cinnamon rolls from the oven and let cool for 10 minutes before icing.
  11. Make the Cream Cheese Icing: Add the cream cheese, butter, and confectioner’s sugar to a mixing bowl. Use a hand mixer to mix the frosting until it is fluffy and the confectioners sugar is well incorporated without any lumps. Next, add in the lemon juice and vanilla extract and mix on high again until well combined. Set aside.

Keywords: raspberry sweet rolls, raspberry sweet rolls recipe, raspberry jam sweet rolls

Recipe by: Ashlea Carver / All the Healthy Things | Photography by: Eat Love Eat

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Recipe rating

    2 comments
  1. These were delicious! I used almond milk with no problems. When rolling them up I made sure to tuck the whole raspberries in the roll, it seemed weird at first but it worked. I iced them, refrigerated overnight, and they are great warmed up a little the next morning! 🙂

    • yes, you’re a pro! tucking those raspberries is how to do it! so happy you loved these and that the almond milk worked out so well for you!

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