Orange Bowknots

“This prizewinning recipe from 1946 has kept up with our tastes so well that it has appeared in many of our publications since. A reader recently wrote, ‘When I saw the recipe, I cried in the bookstore! I won a baking contest with it in 1954 – and bake them from my old margarine-stained cookbook at least once or twice a year.’ For that, and many reasons, this recipe is especially dear to our hearts.” – Better Homes and Gardens

“While I was visiting my Grandma, gathering stories about the recipes in this cookbook, she pulled out a cookbook that she particularly liked. I saw this recipe and she said it was a good one. So I’ve included it here.” – April Ferre

Orange Bowknots

Course: Rolls, Yeast Breads


  • 5 1/4 to 5 3/4 Cups Flour
  • 1 Package (2 1/4 Teaspoons) Active Dry Yeast
  • 1 1/4 Cup Milk
  • 1/2 Cup Butter, Margarine or Shortening
  • 1/3 Cup Sugar
  • 1 Teaspoon Salt
  • 2 Eggs
  • 2 Tablespoons Orange Zest
  • 1/4 Cup Orange Juice
  • 1 Cup Powdered Sugar
  • 1 Teaspoon Orange Zest
  • 1 to 2 Tablespoons Orange Juice


  • In a large mixing bowl, combine 2 cups flour and the yeast; set aside. In a saucepan, heat and stir the milk, butter, sugar, and salt just until warm (120 to 130 degrees) and butter almost melts. Add to flour mixture along with eggs. Beat with an electric mixer on low to medium speed for 30 seconds, scraping bowl constantly. Beat on high speed for 3 minutes. Using a wooden spoon, stir in the orange zest, orange juice, and as much of the remaining flour as you can.
  • Turn out dough onto a lightly floured surface. Knead in enough of the remaining flour to make a moderately soft dough that is smooth and elastic (3 to 5 minutes total.) Shape dough into a ball. Place dough in a lightly greased bowl, turning once to grease surface of the dough. Cover; let rise in a warm place until doubled in size (about 1 hour).
  • Punch down dough. Turn out onto a lightly floured surface. Divide in half. Cover at let rest 10 minutes. Meanwhile, lightly grease two baking sheets; set aside.
  • Roll each half of dough to a 12×7-inch rectangle. Cut each rectangle into twelve 7-inch strips. Tie each strip into a loose knot. Place knots 2 inches apart on prepared baking sheets. Cover and let rise in a warm place until nearly double in size (about 30 minutes.)
  • Bake at 400 degrees for 12 minutes or until golden. Immediately remove from baking sheets. Cool on wire racks.
  • In small bowl, stir together powdered sugar, 1 teaspoon orange zest and enough orange juice to make an icing of drizzling consistency. Drizzle over bowknots. Makes 24.

Recipe – Jean Hansen – From Better Homes and Gardens Test Kitchen Favorites