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Lemony Sweet Rolls with Marzipan

These soft and full of flavours sweet rolls are so amazing. Tangy lemons and marzipan complement amazingly in these delicious rolls. They are best while still warm!

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The sweet rolls are among the most loved baked goods in many homes. These sweet rolls hides refreshing burst of lemon. The lemon elevates them beyond ordinary sweet roll to something special. Tender and buttery, with a crisp golden crust, they are sweet and savour at the same time. 

The cardamom gives a certain spicy warmth that goes well with the almonds, but if you don't like the flavour of cardamom you can reduce the amount of omit it completely.

We have a good news for you, these lemon sweet rolls use quick-method sweet roll dough. The rising time is around 1 hour.

Once you have the dough ready, spread the filling all over rolled dough. Roll the dough up tightly, cut into rolls, arrange into the pan, and let rise for 60-70 minutes until doubled in size. Turn the oven on, and bake until lightly browned. The fresh lemon scent is amazing! 

More lemon desserts you'll want to try:

How to make these lemony sweet rolls

For making these sweet rolls, leave time as there are several steps you need to follow. Because first you need to make the dough then it needs to rise in a warm place for at least 1 hour.

Next, you'll need to roll out the dough and spread the filling, then you'll need to roll up the dough into a tight roll and slice it into 10 slices. Finally, rolls need to rise again for another 30 minutes then be baked.

Making the dough for sweet rolls

Making the dough is a breeze once you have prepared all the ingredients. This recipe requires: ALL PURPOSE FLOUR, INSTANT DRY YEAST, WHOLE MILK (lukewarm), BUTTER (melted), SUGAR and SALT and LEMON ZEST for amazing lemony aroma. These simple ingredients will create a soft pliable dough that baked up into golden sweet rolls.

The process is simple: first combine flour, instant yeast and salt in a large bowl. Make a well in the middle, add egg, sugar, melted butter and lemon zest. Now star pouring milk into this while incorporating flour.

Beat the dough using a wooden spoon until you get a soft shiny dough. Leave to rise until it's doubled in size (this can take around 1 hour).

What is filling made of?

These rolls are something special as they combine zesty lemon flavour with sweet taste of marzipan. Marzipan is almond paste made of ground almonds, sugar and egg whites. Thanks to it's sweet and nutty flavour, it's a great addition to cakes and other sweets. It has soft and chewy texture.

It's great addition to cakes and other baked goods (like in our puff pastry twist). Use quality marzipan - we love Dr Oetker's marzipan but use any other good kind.

Beside marzipan you will need BUTTER, SUGAR and freshly grated LEMON ZEST for adding some extra lemon aroma. Butter is first melted and then cooled. Add lemon zest to the butter.

Shaping the rolls

Once the dough is risen, roll out it into a rectangle 35x20cm. Spread the filling on the surface (leaving some space on the edges) then sprinkle with marzipan.

Tightly roll up the dough then cut into 10 even slices. From this dough we get 10 rolls which fits well in 24cm springform or 24x24cm baking pan. First grease generously with the butter then arrange slices into the pan with cutted sides up and let it rise for another 30 minutes.

These rolls are best enjoyed the same day they are made, but can stay fresh in an airtight container for 5 days in the fridge.

Looking for more tasty desserts? Check these out:

Lemony Sweet Rolls with Marzipan

MAKES: 10 sweet rolls
COOKS IN: 1 hour 50 minutes plus rising time
LEVEL: Moderate


For the dough

  • 420g (3 1/2 cups) plain flour
  • 7g (2 teaspoons) instant yeast
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 egg
  • 50g (1/4 cup) granulated sugar
  • 60g (5 tablespoons) butter
  • 1 tablespoon finely grated lemon zest
  • 240ml (3/4 cup) whole milk

For the filling

  • 42g (3 tablespoons) butter, melted and cooled
  • 2 tablespoons finely grated lemon zest
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 40g packed brown sugar
  • 200g marzipan, shredded

For the lemon glaze

  • 120g icing sugar
  • 2-3 tablespoons lemon juice, freshly squeezed

Shop kitchen essentials for this recipe:

Kitchen Scale | Large Mixing Bowl | Small Saucepan | Pastry Mat + Rolling Pin | Sharp Kitchen Knife | 24cm Springform Pan | Citrus Juicer & Zester | Measuring Spoons


  1. FOR MAKING THE DOUGH, place the butter is a small pan and melt over a low heat. Add the milk and set aside. The mixture should be slightly warm.

  2. Combine the flour, instant dry yeast and salt in a large mixing bowl.

  3. Make a well in the middle, then add an egg, sugar and melted butter. Stir to slightly combine. Now, slowly pour in the milk while stirring with a wooden spoon and incorporating the flour.

  1. Tip the dough onto dusted work surface and knead gently until it becomes smooth and shiny (5-6 minutes). Transfer back to the same bowl (slightly dusted), cover with a clean kitchen towel and leave in a warm place to rise until doubled in size (around 1 hour).

  2. FOR THE FILLING, stir the melted butter, cardamom and lemon zest in a small bowl.

  3. Generously grease the sides and bottom of 24x24cm baking pan.

  4. Turn the dough onto a lightly flour work surface and using a rolling pin roll out into a rectangle, about 35x20cm. Brush the butter over the dough (leaving 2cm border around the edges), sprinkle with sugar and marzipan, then roll it lengthways to form a log. Using a sharp knife cut the dough into 10 even slices.

  5. Place slices into prepared baking pan with cut side up. Cover the pan and set aside to rise for another 20-25 minutes.

  6. Preheat the oven to 180 C.

  7. Bake rolls for 18-20 minutes or until golden brown on the tops and edges. 

  8. FOR THE GLAZE, mix the lemon juice with icing sugar until smooth and pour over the warm rolls. If you want a thicker glaze, add more icing sugar and if you prefer thinner, add more lemon juice or cream.

We recommend using the measurement in grams & ml (instead of cups & spoons) for more accuracy and better results.