Morning Buns

A mix between a cinnamon roll and croissant. Sweet, crunchy, flaky, buttery. Heaven! 

Total Time
6 hours 25 minutes
Simple Tasty Recipes


  1. MAKE DOUGH Combine flour, sugar, yeast, and salt in large zipper-lock bag. Add butter to bag, seal, and shake to coat. Press air out of bag and reseal. Roll over bag several times with rolling pin, shaking bag after each roll, until butter is pressed into large flakes. Transfer mixture to large bowl and stir in sour cream, orange juice, water, and egg yolk until combined.

  2. ROLL DOUGH Turn dough onto floured surface and knead briefly to form smooth, cohesive ball. Roll dough into 20 by 12-inch rectangle. Starting at short edge, roll dough into tight cylinder. Pat cylinder flat to 12 by 4-inch rectangle and transfer to parchment-lined rimmed baking sheet. Cover with plastic wrap and freeze for 15 minutes.

  3. FILL AND SHAPE Line 12-cup muffin tin with foil liners and grease liners with cooking spray. Combine granulated sugar, brown sugar, orange zest, cinnamon, and vanilla in medium bowl. Remove dough from freezer and place on lightly floured surface. Roll dough into 20 by 12-inch rectangle and sprinkle evenly with filling, leaving ½-inch border around edges. Starting at long edge, roll dough into tight cylinder and pinch lightly to seal seam. Trim ½ inch dough from each end and discard. Cut cylinder into 12 pieces and transfer, cut side up, to prepared muffin cups. Cover loosely with plastic and refrigerate at least 4 hours or up to 24 hours.

  4. LET RISE AND BAKE Adjust oven rack to middle position and place loaf or cake pan on bottom of oven. Remove plastic from buns and place in oven. Set oven to warm setting, and let buns rise until puffed and doubled in size, 20 to 30 minutes. (It's okay if they don't fully rise, the will rise more when you bake them.) Remove buns from oven and heat oven to 425 degrees. Bake until buns begin to rise, about 5 minutes, then reduce oven temperature to 325 degrees. Bake until deep golden brown, 40 to 50 minutes, rotating pan halfway through baking. Let buns cool in muffin tin on wire rack for 5 minutes, then transfer to wire rack and discard liners. Serve warm.

  5. MAKE AHEAD: Transfer filled muffin tin to freezer until buns are firm, about 30 minutes. Transfer buns (with liners) to zipper-lock bag and freeze for up to 1 month. To finish, return buns to muffin tin and refrigerate for at least 8 hours or up to 24 hours. Proceed with step 4. 

Ingredients for 12 buns

  • Dough
  • 3 cups
    all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon
  • 1 envelope (2 1/4 teaspoons)
    instant or rapid-rise yeast
  • ¾ teaspoon
  • 24 tablespoons
    unsalted butter, cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices and chilled
  • 1 cup
    sour cream, chilled
  • ¼ cup
    orange juice, chilled
  • 3 tablespoons
    ice water
  • 1 large
    egg yolk
  • Filling
  • ½ cup
    granulated sugar
  • ½ cup
    packed light brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon
    grated orange zest
  • 2 teaspoons
    ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon
    vanilla extract

Total Time

  • Preparation Time
    6 hours (including resting time)
  • Cooking Time
    25 minutes

Suggested Equipment


I first fell in love with morning buns while visiting a local bakery, Tartine, in Berkeley, California. (I highly recommend you go if you are in town.) Since being ordered to stay in place during the COVID-19, I wanted to bring back some great memories of waking up early to drive over and grab a fresh morning bun and wander the local downtown with birds chirping and the brisk California air in my hair. This was the next best thing. If you are wondering what a morning bun is, it is best described as a cinnamon roll and croissant crossover.  These are best enjoyed fresh out of the oven with a nice cup of tea or coffee. :) 

Recipe from America's Test Kitchen.

Additional Images