Apricot & Pistachio Buns

Apricot & Pistachio Buns! Sweet, tart apricots and salty, savory pistachios complement each other very nicely. For these buns I highlight those flavors with a little cinnamon, ginger and one of my favorite spices, cardamom.

In the photos you can see the unusual technique I use for rolling the dough and forming the buns. I spent some time thinking about how to incorporate the nuts and fruit into the dough because I wanted to keep the apricots and pistachios somewhat separate.

I thought the flavors would get muddled if I just mixed it all together. At first I considered mixing the apricots into the dough and then using the pistachios as a filling. But I was worried that the flavor of the apricots would get lost in the rich dough.

So I decided to use both the fruit and nuts as filling, but layered them so that each flavor could stand out. It also happens that using this technique makes for a very striking pattern when a bun is cut to reveal the layers.

Using apricot preserves in the glaze adds another layer of apricot flavor and the preserves give the glaze a beautiful color.

Scroll through the step by step photos to see how to make Apricot & Pistachio Buns:

a rectangle of dough with ground pistachios sprinkled over half the surface
Roll the dough to a 16″x20″ rectangle. Brush with butter and sprinkle the upper half with the pistachio filling.
a rectangle of dough folded over pistachio filling
Fold the bottom half of the rectangle over the pistachio filling. Brush with more butter.
a rectangle of dough covered with chopped apricots
Sprinkle the chopped apricots over the dough. Tightly roll from the side closest to you. Pinch the seam shut.
a cylinder of bun dough cut into 1" rounds
Cut the dough into 12 even portions.

I baked the Apricot & Pistachio Buns in jumbo muffin tins, but you can line them up on a buttered or parchment lined sheet pan. If you use regular sized muffin tins you probably want to cut the buns a little smaller, maybe getting 14-16 buns instead of 12.

You might want to these other breakfast pastries: Cinnamon BunsCroissants, Chocolate CroissantsAlmond CroissantsCheese DanishApple DanishSour Cherry Strudel.

If you love this recipe as much as I do, I’d really appreciate a 5-star review.

apricot pistachio buns 13a
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5 from 1 review

Apricot & Pistachio Buns

Sweet, tart apricots and salty, savory pistachios complement each other very nicely. For these Apricot & Pistachio Buns I highlight those flavors with a little cinnamon, ginger and one of my favorite spices, cardamom.
Prep Time4 hours
Bake Time15 minutes
Total Time4 hours 15 minutes
12 servings
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  • 8 oz whole milk (1 cup scalded and cooled to 100 °F)
  • 2 oz granulated sugar (¼ cup)
  • 2 oz unsalted butter (melted)
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 ¼ teaspoons dry yeast
  • 17 ½ oz unbleached all purpose flour (3 ½ cups, see note)
  • 1 teaspoon table salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon ground cardamom
  • ½ teaspoon ground ginger


  • 7 oz dried apricots (1 cup)
  • 5 oz pistachios (1 cup)
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 2 oz unsalted butter (melted)
  • ½ cup Apricot Preserves (heated for 30 seconds in the microwave)
  • 8 oz confectioner sugar (2 cups)
  • 2 tablespoons warm water (approximately)


  • In a large mixer bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer, combine8 oz whole milk, 2 oz granulated sugar, 2 oz unsalted butter, 1 large egg and 2 ¼ teaspoons dry yeast.
  • Add 2 cups of the flour, 1 teaspoon table salt, 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon, ½ teaspoon ground cardamom, ½ teaspoon ground ginger. Mix with the paddle on medium speed to form a thick batter. Change to the dough hook. With mixer on low add remaining flour, 1/2 cup at a time. If mixing by hand mix as much flour as you can with a spoon or spatula then knead in the remaining flour.
  • Knead for 5 minutes. The dough should clear the sides of the bowl and gather on the hook.
  • Dump the dough onto a lightly floured surface. Knead into a smooth ball. Place the dough in a lightly oiled bowl, turn once to grease the surface. Cover with plastic wrap and leave at room temp to rise until doubled in size (about 1½ hours).
  • Pour boiling water over 7 oz dried apricots, soak for ½ hour, drain and chop into small bits.
  • Process 5 oz pistachios with 2 tablespoons granulated sugar, ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon and ½ teaspoon ground cardamom in a food processor or blender until coarsely ground. Set aside ¼ cup for topping the buns.
  • Brush 12 jumbo muffin cups with melted butter.
  • Turn the dough onto a floured surface. Roll to a 16"x20"rectangle, brush the surface of the dough with melted butter, Sprinkle the upper ½ of the rectangle with pistachio filling, Fold the lower half of the dough over the upper ½ (see photos).
  • Brush the dough with melted butter then sprinkle with chopped apricots. Starting from the end closest to you, tightly roll the dough into a log, pinch the seam to seal.
  • With a serrated knife cut the log into 12 buns. Place a bun in each cup of the buttered muffin tin. Brush the tops of the buns with melted butter. If baking the same day allow the buns to rise for about an hour until doubled in volume.
  • If baking the next day, cover the buns with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight. Otherwise continue with the next step.
  • In the morning remove the buns from the refrigerator and allow to rise at room temperature until doubled in volume (about 1 – 1½ hours). Preheat the oven to 375 °F.
  • Bake until golden brown. About 15 minutes. Remove the buns from the pans and place on a cooling rack to glaze.
  • While the buns are baking, combine 8 oz confectioner sugar and ½ cup Apricot Preserves (warmed) in a small bowl. Add about 2 tablespoons of water to achieve a texture like pancake batter.
  • While the buns are still warm drizzle with the glaze and sprinkle with reserved pistachios

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If measuring the flour by volume use the “dip & sweep” method. That is, dip the measuring cup into the flour bin, overfill it, then sweep away the excess.


Serving: 1bun | Calories: 456kcal | Carbohydrates: 77g | Protein: 9g | Fat: 15g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 5g | Trans Fat: 0.3g | Cholesterol: 36mg | Sodium: 211mg | Potassium: 409mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 40g | Vitamin A: 933IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 60mg | Iron: 3mg
Have you tried this recipe?Mention @eileen.bakingsense or tag #bakingsense!

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  1. This recipe looks amazing! What an interesting combination. I am gluten and dairy free and am going to attempt my own variation. Do you have any GF recipes to share?

  2. These are so effective Eileen, the time you spent thinking about how to incororate the two flavours was definately worth while – they look amazing! And I bet they taste great too 🙂
    Angela x

  3. Wow what an amazing looking buns. Love the way you incorporated apricots and nuts into the buns — yumminess in each and every bite. Awesome.

  4. Welcome to BreadBakers! These are beautiful and I love the way you were able to highlight the separate flavors.
    Apricots are one of my favorite fruits and while I’m not a fan of nuts, I want to try these badly enough that I can definitely manage the pistachios. Thanks for sharing!

  5. sooooo beautiful ! loved the 2 layers as well as ur topping !! bookmarking to try as we are huge fans of pistachio….

    welcome aboard to Breadbakers 🙂

  6. What gorgeous swirled buns! So glad to meet you through the #BreadBakers and I look forward to reading your blog.

  7. Oh I LOVE how these buns turned out! They look delicious, sweet and flaky! And a perfect combo of apricots and pistachios! : )

  8. Oh my gosh…..these are gorgeous. You are going to be a great addition to our fun little group. Welcome aboard.

  9. Welcome to Bread Bakers! What a brilliant way to showcase both flavors inside the buns. I’ll definitely try that technique one day (and hopefully your recipe too).