Oh, honey. I don’t even know where to begin with these breakfast rolls. They’re so simple. They’re so versatile. They’re perfect for breakfast or brunch or after dinner or anytime, and they’re just so refreshing and really, really simple to make. If you’re like me, you open your pantry door and you have a variety of cake mixes for “just in case.” You know the story– just in case someone in the church has a baby and you need to whip up a quick cake, or just in case you forgot it was someone’s birthday and you need to make something quickly, or just in case you see a to-die-for recipe using a cake mix on Pinterest.
Well, darlings… these simple Lemon Poppyseed Breakfast Rolls are going to make use of that Lemon cake you have tucked in the back of your pantry, somewhere behind the Funfetti and Chocolate mixes. And trust me, you’ll be stocking up on Lemon cake mix after you try this, because it’s oh-so-yummy.
Start with a moist Lemon cake mix (I love Pillsbury’s Lemon Moist Supreme mix), as well as flour, powdered sugar, cream cheese, vanilla, poppy seeds, yeast, salt, and Pillsbury Creamy Supreme Lemon frosting.
Start by mixing your cake mix, 1 teaspoon salt, and 5 cups of flour in a large bowl.
Separately, activate 2 packets of yeast in 2 1/2 cups of warm water. I like to add a teaspoon of granulated sugar for it to feed on, too, but that’s up to you.
Once the yeast is activated, add it to the flour mixture along with a teaspoon of vanilla. I had to combine it with my hands in order to get it fully incorporated, so you might need to do the same.
Then, cover it tightly with saran wrap and let it rise. I let mine rise for an hour, then punched it down and let it rise for an hour more in a warm, sunny spot.
You’ll find after rising that your dough has more than doubled in size. Perfect! As it rises the second time, go ahead and pull your cream cheese out of the fridge so it has plenty of time to soften.
Cream together an 8 ounce package of Philadelphia cream cheese and 1/3 cup powdered sugar. You may have to nuke it for about 10 seconds to get it nice and soft and spreadable.
Roll out your dough on a large, floured surface.
You’ll spread your cream cheese and powdered sugar mixture all over the surface of the dough. It won’t look like it’s enough to spread, but you’ll be surprised… this cream cheese here is going to be miracle cream cheese. As your rolls bake, the Philadelphia will melt into the rolls, turning it into a moist, flaky piece of heaven.
Cover the surface of the cream cheese with your poppyseeds. Seriously, go nuts. You can even use more than I used. Or less, suit your fancy. But I like a LOT of poppyseeds on there.
Carefully roll the dough up, cinnamon roll style, into a nice, tight roll.
Then, cut it into even slices. I got 24 Lemon Poppyseed Breakfast Rolls out of this, 12 per pan.
Let your rolls rise a bit more after slicing… you can see the top image before rising and the bottom one after rising for half an hour– let those rolls grow until they can touch! Then, bake them at 350 for about 20 minutes.
These are my rolls fresh out of the oven.
Spread your fresh lemon poppyseed rolls with half of the container of Pillsbury Lemon frosting immediately, so it will soak into the rolls. You can reserve the other half for frosting the rolls more once cooled, or for another recipe.
I like to have mine as a standalone breakfast, warmed up a bit and slathered with extra lemon frosting and a sprinkling of more poppyseeds.
My mom likes to warm hers, cut it, and spread some butter on. I totally get why– look at these beautiful flaky crevices with poppyseeds smattered throughout.
Perfect to enjoy on the deck, enjoying the morning summer air with a cup of coffee, before the day gets too warm, while everything is quiet.
They’d be a great addition to any brunch or breakfast, served with fresh fruit or by itself, and the beauty is that it’s not too sweet– it’s just got a hint of lemon and a delicious taste of fresh-baked bread. It’s also great because you can make it sweet with the addition of extra frosting if you’d like, or keep it simple and straightforward with some fresh strawberries or grapes on the side.
Looking for more breakfast ideas? Try my Blueberry Peach Coffee Cake or Biscuits with Chocolate Gravy. Want to play with Cake Mix? Try my Cake Mix Brownies. Looking for more great Pillsbury recipes? Check out these Root Beer Doughnuts and Apple Cider Doughnuts or Three Twists on Pigs in a Blanket!
What’s your perfect brunch treat? Let me know in the comments below!