Cheater Meyer Lemon Rolls

My inner foodie says recipes like this roll recipe are an embarrassment. My inner busy mom [holy crap, I’m a mom?!] says there’s nothing wrong with a super-quick and easy recipe now and then, even if it’s made with processed food (like, eek, Velveeta) or, in this case, refrigerator crescent rolls.

It’s all about finding time – or reserving that time for other things – and sometimes you only have a five-minute pocket to satisfy your desire to whip up something in the kitchen for your hungry family.

And that’s how I justify these rolls.

You start with a tube of crescent rolls, slicing the dough like cinnamon rolls and laying them in a pie dish. Then you pour a mixture of brown sugar, butter, Meyer lemon zest and juice over the top. Bake for about 13 minutes or so. And then enjoy immediately, preferably with a nice, strong mug of coffee, especially if you were up several times last night with a hungry baby.

So they’re a bit of a cheat. They’re also really, really delicious. The sauce creates a tart, lemony-orange caramel on the bottom of the rolls, and the zest settles into the cracks along the top.

Try it with an orange or a lemon instead of the Meyer lemon – equally good. I just happen to have a plethora of Meyer lemons at the moment, thanks to the trip to Costco that I talked about here. (I’m thinking Meyer Lemonade or even Meyer Lemon Drops later on today with the remainder. Yum.)

Here’s the recipe!

Print Recipe

Cheater Meyer Lemon Rolls

So they're a bit of a cheat - they use refrigerator crescent rolls. They're also really, really delicious. The sauce creates a tart, lemony-orange caramel on the bottom of the rolls, and the zest settles into the cracks along the top.

Yield: 6 rolls

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 13 minutes

Total Time: 23 minutes


  • One tube refrigerator crescent rolls
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons Meyer lemon zest (about one lemon)
  • 2 tablespoons Meyer lemon juice (also about one lemon)


  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Butter a pie plate/dish or spray with non-stick cooking spray.
  2. Open the tube of crescent rolls, but don't separate them. Instead, lay the unrolled tube of dough on a cutting board and cut into six slices.
  3. Lay the slices cut-sides down in the pie plate.
  4. In a small saucepan over medium heat, bring the butter, brown sugar, zest and juice to a boil, stirring constantly. Once the mixture comes to a boil, set it aside and let cool for a minute, so that it's not boiling hot when you pour it over the rolls.(Safety first!)
  5. Once cooled slightly, pour the brown sugar/lemon mixture over the roll slices.
  6. Bake for about 13 minutes, or until golden brown. Serve immediately.

Adapted from Pillsbury

Originally posted on The Hazel Bloom January 21, 2012. Updated and posted on Kitchen Treaty December 10, 2012. More about this

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8 Responses to “Cheater Meyer Lemon Rolls”

  1. Anne Marie posted on January 21, 2012 at 12:52 pm

    These look yummy! And it’s my kind of recipe, easy! :)

  2. Janet@FCTC posted on January 21, 2012 at 6:22 pm

    Shortcut or not, I’d love to try these! They sound great and as a fellow mom, I can sooo appreciate the quick and easy factor.

  3. Ann posted on January 21, 2012 at 8:50 pm

    I gotta tell you – I LOVE making foods from scratch, but there is nothing wrong with something like this! If you like it – your family likes it and you were able to put it together with minimum fuss…I say it’s a winner!

  4. spiceblogger posted on January 23, 2012 at 9:47 am

    Nothing wrong with quick fixes sometimes! ;)
    Thanks for the friend request on Foodbuzz. I buzzed ya! ;)

    Happy Cooking….

  5. Renae posted on January 23, 2012 at 2:44 pm

    I know what you mean about recipes like this. I feel the same, but I’m getting over it. Sometimes you need a few quick and tasty recipes. This looks fantastic! Of course, I have a weakness for caramelly things. Of course, I also have a weakness for crescent rolls…

  6. KonstantKraver posted on January 26, 2012 at 10:33 pm

    Nothing wrong with a super quick recipe especially when it turns out looking as amazing as these little beauty’s

  7. Pingback: Archived! Meyer Lemon Recipes, Holiday Baking Baking & More | Kitchen Treaty

  8. Pingback: Cheater Meyer Lemon Rolls - The Hazel BloomThe Hazel Bloom

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