These Orange Apricot Sticky Buns are light and fluffy, filled with a sweet brown sugar apricot compote and drizzled with an orange glaze. The yeasted dough is soft, buttery and incredibly addicting. Easily made vegan and ready to eat in the same day.
How To Make Orange Apricot Sticky Buns
Proof the yeast: For this recipe, you’ll need active dry yeast, which must be proofed in warm water before adding any other ingredients. I measure out my water then heat it in the microwave until it’s just barely hot. If you’re nervous about killing the yeast, use a kitchen thermometer to make sure it registers between 110-115ºF. Pour in the yeast and sugar then set that aside until it begins to foam slightly and bubble around the edges.
Mix the dough: Once the yeast has proofed, pour in some melted butter, flour and salt. Use a wooden spoon to work the mixture into a dough. It will be very sticky. Now cover the bowl with a damp kitchen towel and set it in a warm place to rise. I like to place mine in the oven (turned off—don’t forget it’s in there and start preheating by accident!) This first rise should take about 90 minutes, but depending on the temperature of your room, it may take more or less time for the dough to double in size.
Make the apricot compote: While the dough rises, pit your apricots and chop them into little pieces. Bring the apricots, orange juice and brown sugar to a medium simmer in a saucepan. Cook until the mixture has a jam like consistency, about 10-15 minutes. Transfer the compote to a jar and place in the fridge to cool completely.
Roll out the dough: Once the dough has doubled in size, dump it out onto a heavily floured work surface. It’s a lot of dough, so I recommend working directly on you counter top. It’s also a very sticky dough, so you will need to add a good amount of flour so it doesn’t stick. Try to use as little as possible so the buns turn out light and fluffy.
Use a rolling pin or just press the dough into a large rectangle. Spread over some softened butter then your chilled apricot compote. If you’re apricot compote has not cooled all the way, it’s going to be a little tricky to roll, but do your best to roll the dough into a log, pinching the sides so the filling doesn’t escape. My favorite method for cutting cinnamon rolls or sticky buns is with twine. I highly recommend using it here, as the pressure of a knife may collapse the rolls.
Place all those beautiful rolls into a very large skillet or baking dish, giving them ample room to rise (they will puff up A LOT). Final rise—place the dish in a warm place for about half an hour while the oven preheats.
Bake: You’ll know these buns are ready when the tops are golden brown and the filling is bubbling around the edges. It’s a little hard to tell if they’re baked through the center because of the gooey apricot filling, but err on the side of less time to ensure they don’t become dry.
Make the glaze: usually I would say the glaze is optional, but I really don’t think it is for these sticky buns. It’s super easy too! Just whisk powdered sugar with orange juice and done!
Serve: these are best served warm, but wait at least 10-20 minutes before glazing and eating. Enjoy!
Tips for Making Orange Apricot Sticky Buns
- To make these orange apricot sticky buns vegan, use dairy free butter. I recommend using Earth Balance baking sticks.
- It’s important that the apricot compote has cooled completely before you spread it on the rolls. To speed up the cooling process, place the jar in the freezer and stir every 30 minutes until thick and chilled.
- I have not tried this recipe using dried apricots, however, if that is all that is available, I recommend soaking the apricots in boiling water for a couple hours before making the compote.
- The dough can be made and rolled in advance up to the point of baking. Instead of placing it in a warm place for that second rise, cover your dish tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight. The following morning, allow to come to room temperature and bake as instructed.
More Sweets to Try
- Blueberry Peach Cornbread Crumble
- Vegan Zucchini Bread Pancakes
- Vanilla Roasted Strawberry Shortcake
- Maple Brown Sugar Coffee Cake