Orange Cardamom Rolls

Orange Cardamom Rolls recipe by The Wood and Spoon Blog by Kate Wood. Recipe adapted from food52. Simple twists of dough filled with cardamom, orange zest, and cinnamon. These are topped with a cream cheese icing/ frosting / glaze. These can be re warmed and made ahead. These Buns are easy to twist and I'll show you how to roll them on . Breakfast idea, brunch idea, Christmas breakfast, holiday breakfast, cinnamon rolls buns, recipes using cardamom.

So what’s on your Christmas list? A bike? A record player? New running shoes or a spiralizer? Maybe you’re ready to test the murky waters of mom jeans and lace-up shirts, or perhaps you’re simply looking to expand your collection of baking essentials.

Christmas in our house has changed quite a bit since we’ve had babies. My shopping time this year was spent hunting for water resistant bibs and hooded towels big enough to cover the hind parts of my extra fluffy toddler. Gone are the days where I would shop out my lengthy list of J.Crew sweaters and concert tickets and Kate Spade totes. This year, I didn’t need or ask for anything specific, but for fun, I decided to make up a wish list of random intangibles- my grown up Christmas list. These are items that are in no way achievable, but still super fun to dream about. Don’t judge me, but feel free to make up your own as we go along. 

Orange Cardamom Rolls


  1. Sleep.- and not just a night of 8 or 9 solid hours either. I want a week’s worth of sleep completely undisturbed from the baby monitor or my husband tossing about next to me. I want to lay in bed in the morning for an extra hour or two and not think about unloading the dryer or going to work or whether or not I’m going to start leaking milk from every orifice of my body. Basically I want permission to sleep and be lazy.

  2. Bake with Ina Garten and Taylor Swift. Have I talked about this dream too much already? In my wildest fantasies, I’m chilling in the Hamptons, drinking French wine with Jeffery. Taylor is in the corner wearing a cat sweater and playing the “1989” album. She tells me all about what happened with Harry Styles and invites me to spend the next July 4th at her place in Rhode Island. Later, Ina teaches me how to roast chicken and we laugh at the peasants who can’t afford Nielsen-Massey vanilla. Is that obnoxious? Sorry. 
  3. Hair. Did you know that pregnancy hormones do weird things? Did you know sometimes hormones can cause you to lose hair? Did you know that sometimes all of that hair loss is focused in one specific area in your hairline and that it can even make you kinda look like you’re balding? Well, if Santa doesn’t bring me some hair or at least a phone number for Beyonce’s wig person, I’m going to be in serious trouble.
  4. I’m not sure what it’s called, but I want that disease where you can eat a lot and never have to work out. I want to eat chips and drink beer and put extra frosting on my cookies and not worry about that annoying pillow of fat that hangs out where my butt meets the back of my thigh. I don’t want to do another box jump or lunge, but I also want to be considered for Blake Lively’s body double if she ever films a sequel to “The Shallows.” Is that too much to ask?
  5. Adele’s singing skills. I want people to hear her voice on the radio and be like, “Hmm, I’m not sure, but that actually might be Kate Wood.” 
  6. Take a DeLorean time hop back to 1985 and watch a Queen concert. Maybe I could pick up my husband (he would have been in Kindergarten at the time) and he could go with me? That’s a weird item for a wish list, isn’t it? Don’t judge. 
  7. Orange cardamom rolls.

Orange Cardamom RollsOrange Cardamom Rolls

Yeah, yeah, that list is ridiculous and unrealistic. But! You can totally achieve that last item. Because today, I’m sharing this recipe for orange cardamom rolls. 

This recipe was adapted from Posie Harwood who writes a number of terrifically inspired posts both for her blog and on behalf of Food52. Her cardamom rolls have been on my radar for a while, and when I finally had a chance to make them a few weeks ago, I was tremendously pleased with the results. Out of the oven, these orange cardamom rolls are fluffy, fragrant, and perfect with a cup of coffee. I topped them with an orange zest glaze which sweetens up the knots of dough and makes them irresistible to look at. 

These orange cardamom rolls start out similar to cinnamon rolls– a yeast dough sweetened with sugar and moistened up with eggs and butter. The dough rises for a short time before a cinnamon sugar schmear is slathered all over and folded inside the rolled out sheets of dough. A few loops and twists transforms thin slices of dough into pillowed swirls of soft and chewy bread that tastes as delicious straight from the oven as they do heated up the next morning.

Orange cardamom rolls look elegant, and feel special- a perfect treat to wrap up for someone you love or to serve to family and guests on Christmas morning. I photographed these rolls on a cake stand because they were so beautiful and what is a birthday without a cake of some sort! So HBD, Jesus! This one’s for you!

Orange Cardamom Rolls

I hope you all have a merry week celebrating Christmas or just spending time with your family and friends. Make these orange cardamom rolls for Christmas breakfast and maybe even take time to come up with your own grown up Christmas list. I hope you all won’t completely judge me for mine, but if you happen to have any resources to make my wishes come true, you know who to call. Kidding…. but really. 



Orange Cardamom Rolls

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5 from 2 reviews

These orange cardamom rolls are fluffy knots of sweetened dough, lightly spiced with cardamom and a cinnamon sugar filling, and topped with a zesty orange glaze.

  • Author: Kate Wood
  • Prep Time: 90
  • Cook Time: 30
  • Total Time: 2 hours
  • Yield: 24


For the dough

  • 1cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 12 ounces evaporated milk
  • 2 teaspoons coarse salt
  • 1/4 cup warm water
  • 4 1/2 teaspoons (2 packages) active dry yeast
  • 7 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened but not melted
  • 3 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup sugar

For the glaze

  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 2 tablespoons cream or whole milk
  • Zest of 1 medium orange


To prepare the dough

  1. Combine the sugar, cardamom, butter, evaporated milk, and salt in a medium sized saucepan, and, stirring occasionally, heat over medium heat until the butter has just barely melted. Remove from the burner and allow to cool to warm.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer, sprinkle the yeast over the warm water and allow to dissolve. You can gently stir it after a few minutes if not all of the yeast has been dissolved. Once dissolved, add 3 cups of flour, the sour cream, eggs, and warm butter mixture to the yeast. Stir until well combined and then begin to the remaining flour while mixing on low speed. You may only need about 6-1/2 cups of flour total, or as much as 7-1/2 cups, but add it until the dough is able to pull away from the walls of the stand mixer. It will still be quite sticky, even sticking to unfloured fingers quite easily, but be sure to not add too much flour as this can make the rolls tough. Switch to the dough hook and knead the dough for 4 minutes on medium speed.
  3. Grease a large bowl with cooking spray, butter, or oil, and place the dough in there, covered tightly with plastic wrap. Allow it to rest for about 1-1/2 hours, or until the dough has doubled in size. If the dough is not growing after about an hour, be sure your bowl is in a warm, draft-free spot in your kitchen.
  4. Once doubled in size, prepare the cinnamon filling by combining the butter, cinnamon, and sugar in a small bowl by smooshing it into a paste with the back of a fork or a rubber spatula. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and prepare 2 sheet pans lined with parchment paper.
  5. Sprinkling a good bit of flour on your work surface for rolling the dough and then remove half of the dough from the bowl. Roll it out into a rectangle approximately 9″x20″, adding small bits of flour as needed to keep the dough from sticking to the surface or the pin. Spread half of the filling evenly on the dough leaving a 1″ border around the perimeter of the rectangle. Fold the dough in half lengthwise to form a 9″x10″ square and roll or pat it out to thin the folded dough a bit. Using a sharp knife, cut 1/2″ strips of dough (approximately 12 total). Take one strip of dough and wrap it around your index and middle finger twice. Remove the double loop from your fingers and tuck both ends of the dough back through the center loop to form a bit of a twisted knot. Place each knot on the prepared sheet about two inches apart, being sure to keep the loose ends on the underside of the bun. Repeat this entire process with the second half of dough and then cover both sheet pans with plastic wrap to rest for about 15 minutes. Bake in the preheated oven for 20 minutes or until golden brown. Allow to cool while you prepare the glaze.

To prepare the glaze

  1. Using a whisk, combine all ingredients in a medium sides bowl, stirring until it is uniform in consistency. You can warm it for about 10 seconds in the microwave to make a more pourable glaze, or add a teaspoon or two of cream to thin it out. Drizzle the glaze over your warm or cooled rolls and enjoy!



  • Rolls are best eaten on the day they’re made but will keep up to three days. Rolls are best eaten slightly warm.
  • The glaze prepared as the recipe has written will set up to be slightly firm at room temperature. If you add more liquid to it it is likely the glaze will remain sticky and wet even after sitting for some time.

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Recipe Adapted From: Posie Harwood

13 thoughts on “Orange Cardamom Rolls”

  1. I absolutely love this recipe, it’s a family favorite and it’s my go to Christmas morning baked treat. The cardamom/orange flavors are perfect and the dough is pillowy soft! Thank you for sharing!

  2. I’ve had this recipe printed for ages but just finally made them tonight in a pre-holiday baking frenzy. These are what I’ve been missing in my sweet bread repertoire, as they are delectable AND beautiful. And unique! I froze more than half of them for later delight (hoping they don’t lose too much of their pillowy awesomeness), but had to sneak a few for out-of-the-oven noshing and oh my goodness. I’m already excited for tomorrow’s breakfast with a side of these.

  3. mmm cardamom. these rolls sound heavenly girl! also this wish list. just perfect. what is the holidays if not a time to wish for what we really really want! wishing you and yours a happy and healthy one, xx

  4. “Pillow of fat that hangs out between your butt and meets the back of your thigh” πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚ amen to that. I actually had to return a pair of amazing jeans that I got because of this and I knew I wouldn’t work to get rid of it. Ha! This is beautiful in every way and I can’t wait to try it!

    1. Aren’t you seeing it everywhere!?! I see cardamom in every 10 recipe I look at now! The list is entirely hypothetical, but also ridiculous funny to think about. πŸ˜‰

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