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Vanilla Glazed Chai Buns

I really don’t know where the idea for this recipe came from but they were delicious and would have paired perfectly with a grande chai tea latte from Starbucks…mmm…

Vanilla Glazed Chai Buns

Adapted from Martha Stewart


  • 2 tablespoons active dry yeast
  • 1/3 cup warm water
  • 1 cup whole milk, at room temperature
  • 8 ounces (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 2 teaspoons coarse salt
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 5-6 cups all purpose flour, plus more for surface
  • Vegetable oil, for bowl


  • 4 ounces (1 stick) unsalted butter
  • 1 cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 1 1/2 tsp. ground cardamom
  • 1 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp. ground ginger
  • 1/4 tsp. ground cloves
  • 1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg

Vanilla Glaze

Elinor Klivans

  • 1 cup confectioners’ sugar
  • 1/4 cup pure maple syrup
  • 3 tablespoons heavy cream
  1. Sprinkle yeast over warm water in a small bowl. Let stand until foamy, about 5 minutes
  2. Whisk milk, butter, eggs, maple syrup, salt, and vanilla with a mixer on medium speed. Add yeast mixture, and whisk for 1 minute. Switch to dough hook, reduce speed to low, and add 4 cups flour. After flour is incorporated, raise speed to medium, and continue kneading
  3. Add remaining flour, 1/2 cup at a time, mixing until dough no longer sticks to the bowl. Raise speed to medium-high, and knead for 10 minutes. (Alternatively, knead by hand until smooth, 15 to 20 minutes)
  4. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface, and knead until dough is very smooth, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a lightly oiled bowl, cover with plastic, and set aside in a warm, draft-free spot until doubled in size, about 1 hour
  5. Make the filling and topping: Melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Stir in maple syrup, corn syrup, and sugar, bring to a gentle simmer, then remove from heat. Let cool. Combine mascarpone and cream cheese in a bowl.
  6. Punch down dough. Turn out onto a lightly floured surface, and divide into 3 portions. Roll each into a ball. Freeze 2 for up to 3 months (thaw in the refrigerator before using). Roll remaining dough into a 10-by-13 1/2-inch rectangle. Brush lightly with maple syrup, spread mascarpone mixture evenly on top, leaving a 1-inch border, and sprinkle with pecans. Starting on 1 long side, roll dough into a log. Pinch along seam to seal. Cut into nine 1 1/2-inch-thick slices
  7. Pour maple syrup mixture into an 8-inch square baking pan. Place buns, cut sides down, in pan, 3 to a row. Let buns rise in a warm, draft-free spot until doubled in size, 30 to 40 minutes
  8. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Place oven rack in lower third. Bake buns, rotating halfway through, until brown and bubbling, about 1 hour. (If buns darken too quickly, cover with foil.) Set a wire rack on a baking sheet
  9. In the meantime, in a bowl, stir together the confectioners’ sugar and maple syrup until well blended. Add the cream and whisk until smooth. Add a few more drops of cream or water if needed to make a smooth glaze that is easy to spread but thick enough to cling to the buns
  10. Immediately invert buns onto rack and pour maple glaze over the buns. Let cool

The dough. I’ve made this dough before when I tried out Martha’s recipe for honey buns and I must say, it came out much better than the first time

Here’s the dough after all of the kneading and rising

The butter layer

The brown sugar and spice layer

The rolling and the cutting is by far my favorite part! 🙂

Pre-baked. And unfortunately this is the last picture I was able to take of these buns because literally before I even had the chance to make the glaze to pour on top of them, they were already gone. So I advise you- while they’re cooling, put them in a SAFE place where not even you can access them because when it comes to these buns, you will be your own worst enemy…take it from me.


2 responses »

  1. post not working in firefox

  2. I’ve made cinnamon rolls before, but I like the idea of chai filled rolls even better. Yours look delicious. Great idea. I have a linky party on my blog every Saturday called “Sweets for a Saturday” and I’d like to invite you to stop by this weekend and link this up or any other sweet treats you’ve made this week.


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