Peppered Cranberry Breakfast Buns with Orange, Honey & Vanilla Syrup

We woke up to a very chilly morning, a fresh dusting of snow and deer in our front yard, which made for the perfect winter mountain scene. Since I am still home fighting a nasty cold, it was the perfect day to plan my Thanksgiving menu and begin baking a few goodies for our house-guests.

babi-collageThese Peppered Cranberry Orange Breakfast Buns are so delicious and are easy to make ahead of time, freeze and simply warm in the oven or microwave later on. This is also a fantastic recipe to use up any leftover cranberry sauce.

Serve these up with a steaming cup of coffee, hot chocolate or tea and you will have yourself some very happy campers.

cranberry-bun-collagePeppered Cranberry Orange Breakfast Buns with Orange, Honey & Vanilla Syrup

For the dough:
3/4 cup milk
1 package active dry yeast
1/2 cup granulated sugar
6 tablespoons chilled unsalted butter
1 large egg, plus 1 egg yolk at room temperature
3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 cup cranberry sauce
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

For sprinkling – 1/8 – 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

In a glass measuring cup, heat the milk in the microwave until warm, 15-20 seconds or so. Sprinkle the yeast over the warm milk and allow it to proof for 5-10 minutes until foamy.

In a food processor bowl, add the granulated sugar, flour and salt and pulse once or twice to mix. Cut the butter into cubes and drop it into the flour mixture. Pulse the food processor a few times until the butter is incorporated into the mixture. Add the milk, eggs and orange zest to the milk and yeast and give it a stir. With the food processor running, slowly pour in the milk and egg mixture . The dough should begin to pull together into a ball. You may need to add up to 1/4 cup more milk if it seems too dry.

Remove the dough from the food processor and knead it on a lightly floured surface for 2-3 minutes, until it becomes elastic.

Scrape the dough into a lightly oiled bowl, form into a ball, cover with plastic wrap and let stand at room temperature for 2 hours or until doubled in size.

cranberries-and-dough-collageCombine the cranberry sauce and cinnamon. Set aside.

On a lightly floured board, roll the dough into a 10 x16 rectangle about half an inch thick.

Spread the cranberry sauce mixture evenly across the dough, almost to the edges. Sprinkle with a bit of fresh ground black pepper.

Beginning at the long edge of the rectangle, roll the dough up into a tight cylinder. Pinch the long edge to seal.

cranberry-roll1-webUsing a sharp knife cut the log into 1 – 1.5 inch slices. You should get 11-12 slices.

Arrange the rolls in a greased pan with a little bit of space between them. Cover with a towel and let rise for 1 hour.

Unbaked-cranberry-buns-sm-webFor the glaze

1/2 cup of fresh orange juice
2 heaping tablespoons honey
1 tablespoon butter
1/2 teaspoon vanilla

This sauce is so good that you may want to double the recipe so you’ll have extra to serve with the buns!

Syrup-and-rolls-webCombine orange juice, honey, butter and vanilla extract in a saucepan over medium heat, stirring to dissolve the honey. Bring to a boil, then reduce to simmer until the glaze begins to thicken, about 4-6 minutes. Let cool.

Close-up-dough-with-pepperwebPreheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

Brush the tops of the buns with the glaze, sprinkle with just the slightest touch of freshly ground black pepper and then bake the rolls for 25-30 minutes until golden brown.

Remove from oven and brush the rolls with more glaze while still warm.




  1. These look scrumptious! Your guests will definitely be delighted! I’m going to try to make these over this weekend and I can’t wait to see how I do! Your photography is beautiful, Eva! The photos make the recipe irresistible! 🙂

    • Aw, thank you so much! Well, I really do love the creative process of making something in my kitchen and photographing it. Let me know how the recipe turns out for you. I live at 7,000 feet so I’m always a little nervous about the altitude adjustments with the baking temps and times. I’d love any input. Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

Please share your thoughts. I look forward to hearing from you!

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