How to Make Soft & Tender Dinner Rolls
Makes 12 rolls
What You Need
1 tablespoon active-dry yeast
1/2 cup (4 oz) warm water
1/2 cup (4 oz) milk (whole, 2%, or skim)
1 large egg
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon salt
3 cups (15 oz) all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon butter
Standing mixer or a mixing bowl, if making rolls by hand
Bench scraper or sharp knife
9×13 baking dish
- Combine the ingredients for the dough: In the bowl of a standing mixer (or a large bowl, if mixing by hand), stir the yeast into the warm water and let it sit until dissolved. In a separate bowl, whisk together the milk, egg, oil, sugar, and salt. Add this to the yeast mixture and stir until combined. Add all the flour and stir until it forms a shaggy dough.
- Knead the dough: Knead at low speed, or by hand against the counter, for 8-10 minutes, until smooth but slightly tacky. It should spring back when poked.
- Let the dough rise: Cover the mixing bowl and let the dough rise in a warm spot until doubled in bulk, about an hour.
- Shape the rolls: Dust your work surface with a little flour and turn the risen dough out on top. Divide the dough into 12 pieces with a bench scraper. To shape into rolls, tuck the edges underneath to form a plump little package, then roll the dough against the counter or between your palms until round.
? Read more about this technique: How to Shape Dinner Rolls.
- Heat the oven and let the rolls rise: Line a 9×13 pan with parchment and spray with nonstick coating. Arrange the rolls inside the pan spaced a little apart. Let the rolls rise until they look pillowy and fill the pan roughly 30-40 minutes.
While the rolls are rising, pre-heat the oven to 375°F.
- Brush the rolls with butter. Melt the butter and brush it over the risen dinner rolls. This helps the tops to brown and keeps the crust soft.
- Bake the rolls: Bake the rolls until golden, 15-18 minutes.
Lift the rolls from the pan using the parchment and let the rolls cool on a wire rack until cool enough to handle. They are best if eaten within a day or two, but will keep in an airtight container on the counter for up to a week. Rolls can also be frozen for up to 3 months and reheated in a warm oven (See Recipe Note).
Whole Wheat Rolls: Substitute 1/2-1 cup of the all-purpose flour with whole wheat flour and prepare the recipe as usual. The texture of the rolls will be a bit more dense, but still very delicious.
Doubling the Recipe: Double all of the ingredients except for the yeast. To make even more rolls, it’s best to prepare separate batches as the dough becomes too cumbersome to work with easily.
Baking Rolls on a Sheet Pan: These rolls can also be backed on a sheet pan if you’d prefer not to have the tear-away edges. Line a sheet pan with parchment or non-stick liner and space the rolls a few inches apart.
Freezing Dinner Rolls: Dinner rolls can be made and frozen for up to 3 months.