Vegan Orange Cardamom Buns

by My Vegan Minimalist
A plate of orange cardamom buns
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Pillowy and perfect vegan orange cardamom buns. Soft in the middle but crunchy and golden on the outside, these will instantly turn your kitchen into a bakery!

The heart-warming scent of cardamom mixed with zingy orange flavour and that uplifting fresh-out-of-the-oven bread scent just looming across your kitchen. Already starting to sound delicious? Just wait until you bite into these. P.S. – they’re so good you definitely won’t want to share them with anyone! 

Vegan Orange Cardamom Buns: The Ingredients

All the ingredients needed to bake an orange cardamom bun.

These are the ingredients you will need to make the knot buns (as seen on the left photo above)

  • flour 
  • instant yeast
  • salt
  • ground cardamom
  • almond milk (or other plant-based milk)
  • olive oil (or other vegetable oil)
  • orange

You will also need the following five ingredients to make your filling and glaze (filling ingredients seen on the right photo above)

  • brown sugar
  • dairy-free butter
  • cinnamon
  • cardamom
  • oranges
  • apricot jam (or other jam of choice)
  • shaved almonds

You might also find it handy to have a bradmaker. If not, there’s no need to worry. Whilst having a breadmaker makes the kneading process a tad easier, it’s far from necessary. 

Bite shot of a vegan orange bun on a small plate.

If you have any previous experience in making knot buns, you will know it’s a surprisingly easy job. If not, you might feel overwhelmed. How do you get the beautiful bun shapes? How to actually twist them into a knot? And how to ensure the filling stays put?

No need to worry. I’ve broken it down into easy-to-follow steps. Moreover, clear image instructions are there to offer you a helping hand whilst you bake these drool-worthy little buns. Every single step is shown in the photos below and thorough instructions are available for those wanting that extra bit of guidance. 

The process of making these vegan orange cardamom buns goes as follows:

  • 1 – Combine the ingredients into a dough and knead.
  • 2 – Let rise.
  • 3- In the meantime, make the simple filling.
  • 4 – Roll out the dough, cover with filling and form into knot shapes.
  • 5 – Let rise again.
  • 6 – Pop into the oven and bake!
  • 7 – Glaze with homemade jam glaze and enjoy! 

Are you ready? Let’s see how to turn our hero ingredients into delicious vegan orange buns! 

How To Make The Bread Dough: Knot Buns Edition 

Step-by-step process of making bread dough for vegan knot buns.

Got all your ingredients? Let’s dive straight in!

  1. First, add warm almond milk and water to a large mixing bowl. Then add the rest of the dough ingredients in the following order: yeast, olive oil, flour, cardamom, orange zest, and finally, salt. Please do ensure you follow this order. It’s particularly important that the salt and yeast do not touch. If you look carefully at Image 1 you will find that I made a little well in the dough and filled it with salt. This ensures the salt doesn’t touch and subsequently kill the yeast.
  2. Next, it’s time to bring all the ingredients together to form a small dough ball. If you’re having any trouble forming the dough, please refer to the troubleshooting section below.
  3. Knead for approx. 10 minutes (either in a breadmaker or by hand). By this point your dough should be elastic and shaped into a loose ball. Image 3 shows how your dough should look after a 10-minute knead period. If you’re having trouble kneading due to overly sticky or dry dough, make sure to check out the troubleshooting tips below. 
  4. Finally, cover your dough with a large damp cloth and let rise at room temperature for at least 1 hour until doubled in size. Make sure the cloth doesn’t touch your dough. 

Whilst your dough is rising, prepare your filling simply by mixing sugar, cardamom and orange zest in a small bowl. 

Once your dough has doubled in size, it’s time to roll it out and get creative. This is the fun part! Wondering how to make your perfect vegan know buns? Let’s have a detailed look below!

Forming Your Orange Cardamom Buns Step-by-Step

12 steps needed to create the perfect cardamom bread bun.
  1. Take your dough out of your mixing bowl and place it on a smooth surface. Sprinkle a dash of white flour on the surface to make the rolling process smoother.
  2. Start rolling out your dough using a wooden or marble rolling pin.
  3. Roll out your dough until it measures approx. 0,5 cm in thickness (this is the equivalent of 0,2 inches).
  4. Use a spoon to spread out dairy-free butter equally across the surface.
  5. Keep spreading out your butter across the surface.
  6. The dairy-free butter is now equally spread across the dough.
  7. It’s time to add your filling. Spread it out equally across the surface.
  8. You will now need to fold your dough. Take the top third of your dough and carefully pull it over the second third.
  9. Finally, pull the lower third of your dough over the second third to create a dough ‘pocket’. Press down the top side gently.
  10. Start cutting your dough.
  11. Cut it into 12 to 13 equally-sized rectangles.
  12. Ta-daaa! You’ve cut your dough into equal (more or less *winks*) shapes and you’re close to the final steps now. 

Well done! Now it’s time to shape our pillowy dough into beautiful knots. You can follow the tutorial below or form them into any other knot shape of choice. There are absolutely tons of ways of creating the knot, so feel free to go wild and let your creativity flow.

How To Shape Your Knot Buns

8 steps in the process of forming a knot bun.
  • 1 – Hold one strip of dough, one hand at each end.
  • 2 – Very gently stretch the strip length-wise to create a longer more compact strip of dough. Be careful not to squeeze it too hard as this might make the filling fall out.
  • 3 – Hold the left end still whilst twisting the right end of the dough three times.
  • 4 – Keep a hold of the left end of the dough and wrap the right end around the back of your fingers.
  • 5 – 7 Keep moving the right end to fold all the way around and over your left end of the dough. Finally, push the right end under the left to make your knot.
  • 8 – Place all your cardamom buns on parchment paper.

Still having trouble forming your knots? This video tutorial shows you a very simple and quick way to form a knot.

Once you’ve got your knots ready on the parchment paper, it’s time to simply brush them over with almond milk, cover in cling film and let rise for at least 30 minutes. Do ensure that your cling film is NOT touching the buns at all. You can do that by placing them in a large baking tray with higher sides and placing the cling film over the sides. Alternatively, you can use a taller object, e.g. glass/mug, to hold the cling film higher. Simply place four mugs or glasses at each side and cover with cling film.

In the meantime, you can pre-heat your fan oven to 356°F (or 180°C fan oven).

Once your second rise is finished, brush the knots AGAIN with almond milk, making sure to really cover the entire top surface. Sprinkle them with almond shavings and pop in the oven for just 20 minutes until golden brown and perfectly soft in the middle.  

Troubleshooting Your Knot Buns

One vegan orange cinnamon bun on a smal plate with a gold spoon placed next to it.

Why is my dough so dry?

This recipe has been tested an insane amount of times (I swear I’m obsessed with these!), so your dough shouldn’t be too dry. If, however, your dough is dry for any reasion, it might not be able to form into a ball. If that happens, slowly add 1 tsp of water at a time unti it has stuck together to form a perfect dough ball.

My dough is too sticky- How do I fix that?

If your dough keeps sticking to the sides of your bowl or to your fingers, simply add 1 tsp of flour at a time. 

My dough keeps ripping! What went wrong?

This happens if you haven’t kneaded your dough enough. Some typical signs of under-kneading include floppy, loos dough that tears very easily. If you’re interested in learning more about under-kneading & over-kneading check out the Kitchn article here!


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That wraps it up! As always, if you have any trouble making my vegan orange cardamom buns, simply comment down below or message me directly on Instagram. I’ll be sure to help you out in case you get stuck!  

Vegan Orange Cardamom Buns

Pillowy, soft on the inside and crunchy on the outside. Easy vegan knot buns you just need to taste!

Course Breakfast, Dessert
Cuisine Vegan
Keyword Vegan Breakfast, Vegan Desserts
Prep Time 2 hours 3 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Servings 13
Calories 257 kcal
Author My Vegan Minimalist

Ingredients

FOR THE BREAD DOUGH

  • 400 g flour
  • tsp instant yeast
  • 1 tsp salt
  • ¾ tsp ground cardamom
  • 100 ml water
  • 100 ml almond milk
  • 60 ml olive oil use light olive oil
  • 1 orange zest only

FOR THE FILLING

  • 55 g brown sugar
  • 3 tbsp dairy-free butter
  • tbsp cinnamon
  • 1,5 tbsp ground cardamom
  • 2 oranges zest only

FOR THE GLAZE

  • 55 g apricot jam or other jam of choice
  • 200 ml water

TOPPINGS

  • 4 tbsp shaved almonds
  • 5 tbsp almond milk for brushing over your buns before baking
  • 1 orange zest only

Instructions

FOR THE BREAD DOUGH

  1. First, add warm almond milk and water to a large mixing bowl. Then add the rest of the dough ingredients in the following order: yeast, olive oil, flour, cardamom, orange zest, and finally, salt. Please do ensure you follow this order. It’s particularly important that the salt and yeast do not touch.

  2. Next, it’s time to bring all the ingredients together to form a small dough ball.

  3. Knead for approx. 10 minutes (either in a breadmaker or by hand). By this point your dough should be elastic and shaped into a loose ball.

  4. Finally, cover your dough with a large damp cloth and let rise at room temperature for at least 1 hour until doubled in size. Make sure the cloth doesn’t touch your dough.

  5. After the 1hr has passed, sprinkle a dash of white flour on a flat surface to make the rolling process smoother. Take your dough out of your mixing bowl and place it on the surface, ready to roll.

  6. Start rolling out your dough using a wooden or marble rolling pin. Roll out your dough until it measures approx. 0,5 cm in thickness (this is the equivalent of 0,2 inches).

  7. Use a spoon to spread out dairy-free butter equally across the surface.

  8. It’s time to add your filling (see instructions below). Spread it out equally across the surface.

  9. You will now need to fold your dough. Take the top third of your dough and carefully pull it over the second third. Finally, pull the lower third of your dough over the second third to create a dough ‘pocket’. Press down the top side gently.

  10. Cut dough into 12 to 13 equally-sized rectangles.

  11. Now is the time to form your knots (refer to the instructions in the blog post above – the photos might help you make the knots – alternatively, you can shape these into any other knot shape). Hold one strip of dough, one hand at each end. Very gently stretch the strip length-wise to create a longer more compact strip of dough. Be careful not to squeeze it too hard as this might make the filling fall out. Hold the left end still whilst twisting the right end of the dough three times. Keep a hold of the left end of the dough and wrap the right end around the back of your fingers. Keep moving the right end to fold all the way around and over your left end of the dough. Finally, push the right end under the left to make your knot. Place all your cardamom buns on parchment paper.

  12. Once you’ve got your knots ready, it’s time to simply brush them over with almond milk, cover in cling film and let rise for at least 30 minutes. Do ensure that your cling film is NOT touching the buns at all. 

  13. In the meantime, you can pre-heat your fan oven to 356°F (or 180°C fan oven).

  14. Once your second rise is finished, brush the knots AGAIN with almond milk, making sure to really cover the entire top surface. 

  15. Sprinkle them with almond shavings and pop in the oven for just 20 minutes until golden brown and perfectly soft in the middle. 

  16. Once baked, serve with your homemade jam glaze (instructions below) and sprinke with extra shaved almonds and orange zest.

FOR THE FILLING

  1. Prepare your filling simply by mixing sugar, cardamom and orange zest in a small bowl. 

FOR THE JAM GLAZE

  1. Heat up your apricot jam and water in a small pan. Stir occasionally to prevent from sticking to pan. Serve with knot buns.

Nutrition Facts
Vegan Orange Cardamom Buns
Amount Per Serving
Calories 257 Calories from Fat 81
% Daily Value*
Fat 9g14%
Saturated Fat 1g6%
Sodium 224mg10%
Potassium 167mg5%
Carbohydrates 39g13%
Fiber 3g13%
Sugar 11g12%
Protein 5g10%
Vitamin A 99IU2%
Vitamin C 22mg27%
Calcium 60mg6%
Iron 2mg11%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
A plate of many vegan orange buns surrounded by oranges, almonds and jam.

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