Bake a batch of Bunny Buns for friends and family. These darling little treats are easy to make and taste delicious, with soft-sweet dough and lemon-curd filling.
Chef’s Note: There are several steps, but I promise the bunnies are easy to make — and totally worth it!
Time Saver Tip: If you’re in a hurry, shape the buns without cutting the ears and skip adding the currents for eyes. You can use store-bought lemon curd for the filling, but homemade is always better. Be sure to serve the buns with extra lemon curd and a hot cup of Earl Gray tea.
Prep Time: 30 minutes | Cook Time: 12–15 minutes | Serves: 12
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons water – 100 degrees F
1/3 cup vegetable oil
2 tablespoons Red Star yeast
1/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon salt
3.5 cups King Arthur Bread Flour
1 tablespoon dried, ground cardamom
1/3 cup melted butter
1/2 cup prepared lemon curd (if store-bought)
For my easy microwave lemon curd:
1 cup of sugar
1 cup fresh Meyer lemon juice
3 lemons, zested
1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted
1/4 cup dried currants for bunny eyes
Easy microwave lemon curd:
- In a microwave-safe bowl, whisk together the sugar and eggs until smooth. Stir in lemon juice, lemon zest, and butter.
- Cook in the microwave for one-minute intervals, stirring after each minute until the mixture is thick enough to coat the back of a metal spoon.
- Remove from the microwave and pour into small, sterile jars. Note: This step can be done the day before if using homemade lemon curd. Store up to three weeks in the refrigerator.
- In a medium glass bowl, combine the water, oil, yeast, and sugar. Gently stir a couple of times with a rubber spatula and allow the mixture to rest for 15 minutes (the yeast will be bubbly).
- In your stand mixer, add the bubbly yeast mixture, salt, egg, flour, and cardamom. Using the dough hook, knead the mixture at medium-high speed until it forms a ball.
- Place dough on a lightly floured surface and roll into a long snake shape. Cut it into 12 equal pieces. To make a small-sized bunny bun, cut the 12 pieces in half again.
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
- Flatten a dough ball about 5 inches in diameter for the larger bunny bun, or 3 inches for the small bunny bun. Make sure the edges are thinner than the middle.
- Place 1 tablespoon of lemon curd in the middle of the larger buns. Use 1 teaspoon for smaller buns. Don’t overfill.
- Gather up the dough around the filling, pinching to seal well. The dough should be moist enough to form a good seal; if not, brush the edges with a tiny bit of water.
- Flip the bun over and form into a longish oval shape, rounding out any bumps if needed. Pick the side of the bun that looks best for the “face” of the bunny.
- Insert dried currants for eyes.
- Using a sharp pair of clean scissors, lay the point almost flat against the top of the bun lengthwise, right behind the eyes. Snip two “ears,” taking care not to cut through the dough into the filling. However, too shallow a cut and the ears won’t stand up during baking.
- Place the bunny buns on a parchment-lined cookie sheet and bake at 400 degrees F for 12-15 minutes, or until golden brown. Remove cooked Bunny Buns to a cooling rack. Brush with melted butter and serve with more lemon curd.