Photos by Constance Higley.
There’s absolutely no need to be intimidated by homemade yeast bread baking. Especially with a practically fool proof recipe like this one. I promise, it’s way easier than it probably seems!
I actually developed this recipe after testing tons of tweaks on dinner rolls for my Ultimate Dinner Roll Guide post here. I learned exactly what made dinner rolls fluffy or hard, tender or crusty, and compiled my favorite tweaks to create this recipe for Ultimate Dinner Rolls!
I hope you give this recipe a shot soon. If you’re still freaked out by working with yeast, there’s a free guide at the end of this post you can download to give yourself a confidence boost.
This recipe was originally published 10/2013 and recently updated with new photos, video, and more baking tips!
Dinner Roll Baking Tips
This recipe utilizes a short cut ingredient: instant yeast. For this recipe you can also use rapid rise or quick rise yeast. One of the 3 should be available at most grocery stores or you can buy my all time favorite yeast on Amazon. These types of yeast are specifically formulated to allow you to skip proofing (aka the step where you combine the yeast with warm liquid for 5 minutes). You can add instant yeast directly into the mix with all of the ingredients.
If you don’t have or can’t find instant yeast, you can easily use active dry yeast instead. Simply combine it with the warm water and milk called for in the recipe and allow it to proof for 5 minutes before adding into the bowl with the other ingredients.
Bread flour is used in this recipe, which should make sense simply by the name! Bread flour has a higher level of protein content than all-purpose flour, which helps to create tall dinner rolls with a nice chewy texture. If you don’t have bread flour, use the same amount of all-purpose flour. Your rolls may just be slightly shorter and less chewy.
Basically all yeast dough can be made ahead of time and baked off later on! For this recipe, I like to make the dough all the way through to rising once and shaping the rolls. Once the rolls are shaped, cover them and refrigerate for up to 24 hours. Bring to room temperature as the oven preheats before baking as the recipe directs. If the rolls haven’t doubled in size yet, allow to sit at room temperature until they do.
Refrigerating basically stunts the rise time and can actually allow more flavor to develop!
The rolls are best served the day they’re baked. However, you can easily reheat the rolls briefly in the oven or toaster oven at 300°F until warmed through to refresh.
I hope you make this recipe soon. Just check out what Tori said in her comment below, “I MADE THESE ROLLS FOR DINNER TONIGHT AND THEY WERE AMAZING.
Thank you!! Best recipe ever, so soft and fluffy. I love them. THANK YOU.”
How to make
Ultimate Dinner Rolls
Recipe By Tessa Arias, Handle the Heat
Yield: 15 rolls
1/4 cup lukewarm water
1 cup warm milk (100 to 110°F)
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and divided
2 whole eggs, lightly beaten
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons fine salt
2 1/4 teaspoons (1 packet) instant yeast
4 1/2 cups (572 grams) bread flour
Flake sea salt, for sprinkling
Combine the water, milk, 1 tablespoon of the melted butter, eggs, sugar, salt and yeast in the bowl of a stand mixer. Add 2 cups of the flour and stir with a wooden spoon until the dough forms a rough, shaggy mass. Attach the dough hook to the mixer, turn to medium-low speed, and gradually add the remaining flour, kneading until a mass of dough begins to forms. Continue kneading on medium-high speed for 4 to 5 minutes until a soft, smooth ball of dough is formed. The dough should feel elastic and slightly tacky to the touch.
Lightly spray a large clean bowl with cooking spray and place the dough in the bowl. Cover the bowl lightly with plastic wrap. Let rise for about 45 minutes to 1 hour at room temperature or until the dough is big, puffy, and about doubled in size.
Spray a 13×9-inch baking pan with cooking spray. Gently deflate the dough. Use a bench scraper, knife, or pizza wheel to divide the dough into 15 equal pieces. Shape each piece into a ball and place in the prepared pan. Brush with the remaining 1 tablespoon of melted butter and sprinkle with flake sea salt. Lightly cover the dough with plastic wrap and let the rolls rise for 30 minutes, or until about doubled in size.
Preheat the oven to 375°F.
Bake the rolls for 20 minutes, or until golden brown. Brush with remaining 1 tablespoon melted butter. Serve warm. Store leftovers in a plastic bag for up to 3 days.
Recipe by Tessa of Handle the Heat
Tessa is a professionally trained chef, cookbook author, and cookie queen. She loves to write about all things sweet, carb-y, and homemade. She's on a mission to make the world a more unapologetically DELICIOUS place. Tessa lives in Phoenix, Arizona.
Sabrina from Tennessee made this recipe and look how beautiful her rolls turned out! Thanks for sharing 🙂
If you’re interested in improving your bread baking skills, check out my FREE guide:
Photos by Constance Higley.