These Strawberry Sweet Rolls with Lemon Cream Cheese Glaze are absolutely moist and sticky, made with a homemade tender dough, a sweet strawberry filling with chunks of strawberries tucked away in between, and a sweet + tangy glaze that adds a punch of great flavor to this recipe.
To begin, set the unsalted butter, cream cheese, and eggs out to warm at room temperature. Then, begin warming your milk in a small pot. Once it comes to boil, remove the heat and add to the bowl of your electric mixer along with the butter. Simply stir gently until your butter fully melts. **Be sure to check with your fingers whether the milk-butter mixture is WARM because by it being too hot, the yeast will die and not activate!**
Now, stir in the brown sugar and add your yeast. Whisk ingredients together until well incorporated, and let it sit for about 10 minutes, until it becomes "foam-like". **This means that your yeast is activate and ALL IS WELL.**
At this point, do a light stir and add the eggs, sea salt, vanilla extract, and flour, mixing on low speed using the "dough hook". Once all ingredients are incorporated and your dough has formed, increase your mixer's speed to medium-high and knead for about 10 minutes, until dough becomes elastic-like. **Be sure to add more flour or milk (1 Tbsp at a time) if dough is too sticky or dry.**
Once dough is fully kneaded, remove dough from mixing bowl, form a dough ball, and place in a lightly greased large bowl, rolling it around once so that it is greased. Then cover bowl with plastic wrap and let it sit and rise for an hour to an hour and a half.
In the meantime, preheat oven during the last 15 minutes before dough is finished rising.
When dough has doubled in size, remove it gently from the bowl and place on a floured surface. Using a rolling pin, roll it out to a rectangle (approximately 9"x14), trimming the edges if needed. **Try not to make the dough too thin or else rolling it up will be hard to do!**
Then, add strawberry filling/compote, a pinch of cinnamon, and 1/4 cup of brown sugar to a medium bowl and mix together well. **I always like to add spices or seasonings to anything I use.** Generously spread strawberry filling over flattened dough using a spatula until fully coated.
Tightly roll dough (long-ways) and using a pastry cutter, cut dough into 1.5" rolls, placing each roll into a large baking dish (lined with parchment paper!). ThHIS MIGHT GET A BIT MESSY! **If any strawberries fall out (inevitable), simply tuck them back inside each roll!**
Then place plastic wrap over the baking dish with rolls and let them rise again (for another 20 minutes).
Once the rolls have doubled in size for a second time (or have gotten significantly larger), brush rolls with a little more melted butter and then bake them for approximately 30-35 minutes in the oven.
While all the baking magic is happening, make the lemon cream cheese glaze (See recipe below) and set aside in the refrigerator to keep chilled.
Beat the cream cheese and butter together, until creamy. **Scrape down the sides, if needed.**
Add the powdered sugar, vanilla extract, lemon extract, and Tbsp of heavy cream. **For desired consistency, add additional powdered sugar and/heavy cream until it's the way you like it.**
Remove the sweet rolls from oven and wait 5 minutes or so, and then spread the glaze atop everything using a icing tool and BAM! Bon Appetite!
TO STORE: Sweet Rolls can be kept fresh at room temperature when tightly wrapped or sealed for up to 3 days. Fresh for up to 1 week in the Refrigerator. Baked rolls can be frozen up to 2 months.
RAPID (INSTANT) RISE YEAST VS. ACTIVE DRY YEAST: If you’re not using the Rapid Rise Yeast for this recipe, please know that the rise time will be twice as long (about 3 hours) since regular Active Yeast doesn’t work as quickly.
HOMEMADE STRAWBERRY COMPOTE: Combine 3 cups diced strawberries, 1 cup pure cane sugar, 2 Tbsps lemon juice, 1/4 cup water, and 1/4 tsp vanilla extract in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil. Lower heat to simmer until the strawberries are soft. Now mix 1 Tbsp corn starch in a small bowl with 2 Tbsps warm water until well combined and lump-free. Add mixture to saucepan with strawberries and stir until syrup thickens and reduced slightly, approximately 8-10 minutes, Continue to stir occasionally.