Nothing compare to these soft and fluffy Homemade Rolls, and they’re so easy to make! We enjoy them all year round, and they freeze well too!

One thing is for sure, not all roll recipes are created equal! This one absolutely lives up to its name in making light and fluffy rolls that taste better than a bakery!

A homemade roll on a plate.

I think a lot of people get intimidated by homemade rolls, but follow the instructions below and you’ll see just how easy they are!  The only thing you need is time to allow the rolls to rise, but every other element is very fast and simple. I’ve included clear process photos and instructions so that even the most novice baker will succeed with this recipe!

 How to Make Homemade Rolls:

Proof the yeast. Combine warm water, yeast, sugar and stir–allow to rest for 5-10 minutes until foamy.  Then add it to a mixing bowl with remaining sugar, cup sugar, warm milk, butter, egg and salt. Blend mixture until combine. (If using instant yeast you can skip the “proofing” and just add everything to the bowl at once).

Yeast, water and sugar proofing in a bowl.

Add flour. While mixing on low speed, slowly add the flour, mixing until the dough is smooth and elastic, about 5 – 6 minutes. It’s very important that you don’t add too much flour. Watch for the dough to start pulling away from the sides of the bowl. The dough should be soft, and when touched with a clean finger, it should be just very slightly sticky.

Bread dough being kneaded in a stand mixer.

First Rise. Grease a large bowl with cooking spray and place the dough in the bottom of the bowl (turn it over once to coat all sides in cooking spray) Cover with plastic wrap. Allow to rise in a warm place for an hour.

Risen roll dough in a mixing bowl.

Roll Dough. Divide dough into two equal portions. Roll each dough ball out on a lightly floured surface into a large, thin rectangle about 1/4’’ thick. Use a pizza wheel or sharp knife to cut the dough, lengthwise, into two pieces. Then slice the dough into six strips across so you end up with 12 rectangles.

Rolled out bread dough cut into rectangles to shape dinner rolls.

Shape Rolls.  Roll each small rectangle up like a snail and place, open edge down, on a lightly greased or lined baking sheet. Repeat with the second portion of dough.

Rolled out dough shaped into homemade rolls.

Second Rise. Cover rolls loosely with plastic wrap and allow to rise again in a warm place until double in size, about 1 hour.

A sheet pan with risen dinner roll dough rolls ready to bake.

Bake. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Remove plastic wrap and bake rolls for 10 – 13 minutes until cooked and golden brown. Remove from oven and brush tops with butter.

Freshly baked rolls on a sheet pan.

Make Ahead Instructions:

Make the dough up to 1 day ahead of time. Put the roll dough in the refrigerator during one of two phases:

  1. After mixing: place kneaded dough in a very large, clean greased mixing bowl with an airtight lid and refrigerate for the first rise. The dough will rise slowly in the fridge, overnight, or over several hours.
  2. After you’ve formed them into rolls, for the second rise. Allow them to come to room temperature before baking.

Freezing Instructions:

To freeze baked rolls: Bake rolls as instructed and allow them to cool completely.  Place in a freezer-safe bag and store for up to three months.  When ready to eat, allow them to come to room temperature or pop one in the microwave for a few seconds, and serve warm.

To freeze roll dough: You can freeze the dough after kneading it in the mixing bowl. Allow it to come to room temperature before roll it out and shaping them into rolls. Proceed with recipe as instructed. Shaped roll dough can also be frozen. Place the shaped rolls in the freezer on a sheet pan for 30 minutes to “flash” freeze them. Then transfer them to a freezer safe bag or container and freeze for up to 3 months. When ready to bake, place them on a baking tray and allow them to thaw and rise overnight in the fridge, or at room temperature on the counter. Once they are thaw and have risen on the sheet pan, bake as directed.

Homemade rolls freeze really well and are great to have on hand. My kids love them at lunchtime as a sandwich or with some tunafish and pickles. My husband loves them as a side with dinner.

Storing Instructions:

Store dinner rolls at room temperature in an airtight container or ziplock bag.  They will stay fresh for 1-2 days. (I think they taste most fresh stored in the freezer and then re-heated for a few seconds in the microwave.)

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Recipe

A homemade roll on a plate.
Prep 2 hrs 30 mins
Cook 12 mins
Total 2 hrs 42 mins
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Ingredients
 
 

  • 1/3 cup warm water
  • 2 1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast
  • 1/3 cup + ¼ teaspoon granulated sugar
  • 1 1/3 cups milk , warmed
  • 5 Tablespoons salted butter , softened
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 4 – 4 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

Instructions
 

  • Proof Yeast: Combine warm water, yeast, and ¼ tsp sugar and stir–allow to rest for 5-10 minutes until foamy. (If using instant yeast, skip this step and add water and yeast to the mixing bowl with everything in step 2).
  • Mix Dough: Pour yeast mixture into the bowl of an electric stand mixer (or into a large bowl if you plan on kneading by hand). Add remaining ⅓ cup sugar, warm milk, butter, egg and salt. Mix until combined.
  • Knead: While mixing on low speed, slowly add the flour, mixing until the dough is smooth and elastic, about 5-6 minutes. You may not use all of the flour called for! The dough should be soft, very slightly sticky when touched with a clean finger. It should be pulling away from the sides of the mixer. 
  • First Rise: Grease a large bowl with cooking spray or a tiny bit of oil. Place the dough in the bottom of the bowl and turn it over once to coat all sides in oil (this helps keep it from drying out.) Cover the bowl with plastic wrap. Allow to rise in a warm place until double in size, about 1 hour.
  • Roll out: Divide dough into two equal portions. Roll each dough ball out on a lightly floured surface into a large rectangle about 1/4’’ thick.
  • Shape Rolls: Use a pizza cutter or sharp knife to cut the dough, lengthwise, into two pieces. Then slice the dough into six strips across so you end up with 12 small rectangles. Roll each small rectangle up like a snail and place, open edge down, on a lightly greased or lined baking sheet. Repeat with the second portion of dough.
  • Second Rise: Cover rolls loosely with plastic wrap and allow to rise again in a warm place until double in size, about 1 hour.
  • Bake: Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Remove plastic wrap and bake rolls for 10 – 13 minutes until cooked and very lightly golden brown. Remove from oven and brush tops with butter.

Notes

Make Ahead Instructions: Make the dough up to 1 day ahead of time. Put the roll dough in the refrigerator during one of two phases:
  1. After mixing: place kneaded dough in a very large, clean greased mixing bowl with an airtight lid and refrigerate for the first rise. The dough will rise slowly in the fridge, overnight, or over several hours.
  2. After you’ve formed them into rolls, for the second rise. Allow them to come to room temperature before baking.
Storing Instructions: Store dinner rolls at room temperature in an airtight container or ziplock bag.  They will stay fresh for 1-2 days, although I think they taste most fresh stored in the freezer.
Freeze Roll Dough: You can freeze the dough after kneading it in the mixing bowl. Allow it to come to room temperature before roll it out and shaping them into rolls. Proceed with recipe as instructed. Shaped roll dough can also be frozen. Place the shaped rolls in the freezer on a sheet pan for 30 minutes to “flash” freeze them. Then transfer them to a freezer safe bag or container and freeze for up to 3 months. When ready to bake, place them on a baking tray and allow them to thaw and rise overnight in the fridge, or at room temperature on the counter. Once they are thaw and have risen on the sheet pan, bake as directed.
Freeze Baked Rolls: Bake rolls as instructed and allow them to cool completely.  Place in a freezer-safe container and store for up to three months.  When ready to eat, allow them to come to room temperature or pop one in the microwave for a few seconds, and serve warm.
Homemade rolls freeze really well and are great to have on hand. My kids love them at lunchtime as a sandwich or with some tunafish and pickles. My husband loves them as a side with dinner.

Nutrition

Calories: 46kcalCarbohydrates: 4gFat: 3gSaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 14mgSodium: 150mgPotassium: 24mgSugar: 3gVitamin A: 110IUCalcium: 17mg

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Recipe adapted from Cooking Classy.

Have you tried this recipe?!

RATE and COMMENT below! I would love to hear your experience.

I originally shared this recipe August 2017. Updated with improved instructions November 2019.

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Lauren Allen

Welcome! I’m Lauren, a mom of four and lover of good food. Here you’ll find easy recipes and weeknight meal ideas made with real ingredients, with step-by-step photos and videos.

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Comments

  1. 5 stars
    These were a hit at the Thanksgiving table – especially with my one and five year olds. They came out beautifully fluffy and were the perfect compliment to all the other dishes.

  2. 5 stars
    Perfect for after Thanksgiving turkey Sammies AND dipping in clam chowder. So versatile and my family loves them!🙌🏻

  3. 5 stars
    These rolls are the best and so easy to make! After Thanksgiving dinner my step mom, who bakes bread all the time, asked for the recipe. 😊

  4. 5 stars
    These are the best rolls for any meal! Thanksgiving, Christmas or just a Tuesday dinner. My 5 year old helped me make them on Thanksgiving and loved rolling them up. Easy to follow recipe and always turn out every single time!

  5. I made these for Thanksgiving – and they turned out famously! My family just loved them. They were my favorite thing on my dinner plate!

  6. If the dough is really sticky, does that mean I did too much flour? Not enough flour? Not enough mixing?

  7. Just made these for Thanksgiving dinner at our American Legion tomorrow. I’ve made a lot of homemade rolls in the past but this was my first time rolling them this way. They’re not all uniform in size and shape but they are delicious!! This will definitely be my go to recipe for now on.

  8. Is it possible to make the rolls with almond milk or some plant based milk instead of cow milk?
    Thank you very much!

  9. 5 stars
    AWESOME. I have **always** struggled with making homemade rolls that have good taste and texture. These check both boxes! They closely resemble Texas Rhode house rolls (my all time favorite!!) When slathered in butter. 😁

    Definitely a new staple for holidays in our home!!

    1. 5 stars
      Super impressed with this recipe. I didn’t need more than the 4.5 cups of flour on my end, no alterations were needed. This was my first time making rolls and they turned out delicious–soft and puffy and just perfect with a bit of butter. I ended up with more dough than I expected, so I refrigerated half the rolls during the second proof and made them over the next two days, so I always had fresh rolls on hand. I’m gonna try adding some cheese and chives to the next batch and see how it goes!

  10. Made these today and they turned out fantastic. They were light and fluffy on the inside with just a slight crust on top. I was thrilled with the outcome. My dough was extremely wet so I used closer to 5 – 5 1/2 cups flour. I just kept adding flour until the dough was slightly sticky and not gluey. I was concerned they were going to turn out dry and inedible from all the flour I used. Not only were they not dry, they were soft and puffy and tasted delicious. Thank you so much for the great and easy recipe. I’ll definitely make them again going forward.

  11. I love this recipe! I always have to had at least an extra cup of flour though. I’m not sure why they always seem so wet if I follow the 4 1/2 cups of flour.

    Either way, I had flour till it can be handled decently and we love them!

  12. 5 stars
    These rolls are so delicious, my family cannot get enough! I love the fact that you can bake them and then freeze them. Just that little tip has made my life so much easier :). Thank you!

  13. 5 stars
    Delicious! Soft & great taste. I found it a very easy recipe. Followed it exactly. My rolls are bit misshapen but grand children won’t care.

  14. I am deff going to make these! These are Lion House Rolls and I’m so happy to have found a recipe similar to them!

  15. This is my go to recipe for rolls! It’s the best recipe out there and has worked every time and tastes amazing.

    Is there a way to turn this into a loaf bread? Because that would be amazing!

  16. I just love this recipe. Very easy to make and so soft even after putting it in the fridge
    Thanks Lauren for sharing your recipe

  17. Hi Lauren,
    I made your the best homemade rolls and it’s awesomely delicious. I already passed it to my friends and they love it too.
    By the way , I really like your mixer, so could you please let me know the brand of it. I appreciate it very much.
    Thanks Lauren
    Marris Reodica

  18. 5 stars
    These rolls are fantastic! They are so soft and light. After I froze a dozen cooked rolls, thawed, and microwaved to heat, they tasted like I just made them. I’m planning on cutting them larger to make hotdog rolls also. Thanks for a great recipe.

  19. 5 stars
    i had trouble rolling it evenly, but that’s on me. 🙂 they were delicious. they freeze well as dough, keep well in the fridge, and reheat well. definite keeper recipe. I’ll just probably shape them differently next time.

  20. 5 stars
    I made the rolls for Thanksgiving dinner. I never made rolls from scratch before. It was easy to follow and I watched the video.
    They turned out absolutely wonderful. The whole family love them. I’ll be keeping this recipe!

  21. 5 stars
    Made these rolls for Thanksgiving dinner, easy and delicious. First rise early afternoon, allowed second rise to go for about 2 hours, baked for dinner. Everyone loved them! Would definitely make again!

  22. 5 stars
    I love the simplicity of this recipe, with rolls that are delicious! My 4 y/o helped me make these for our Thanksgiving dinner, and loved rolling the rolls 🙂 I really appreciate the tips on making ahead and freezing! We made our rolls a couple days ahead, then took them out of the freezer the night before thanksgiving and they were ready to pop in the oven the next morning. This will definitely be a repeat recipe!

  23. 5 stars
    We made this week for thanksgiving. These are great. So soft and good and really easy to make. Thank you. I doubled the recipe and they are in the freezer!

  24. 5 stars
    These are the best tasting rolls I’ve ever made! Wow! These will be my go to that’s for sure! I’m freezing them for Thanksgiving next Thursday. As always Lauren… your recipes are awesome! Thank you!

  25. 5 stars
    Easy and delicious! They always come out light and fluffy! Lauren takes the guess work out of cooking and baking. Love her!

  26. I’ve been making rolls for years. These are the EASIEST and they really do turn out exactly as Lauren says! I watched the video, and now I just HAVE to have that mixing bowl! What is the brand and where can I get it?

  27. 5 stars
    I’ve just started making bread and really trying to cook and bake more at home. I found this recipe and decided to give it a try. My rule is to try a recipe exactly as written the first time, then make notes and tweak each time until I get it perfect for my family. Then I type it up and add it to my digital recipe box. I have to say, not only will I not be adjusting this recipe at all, these are absolutely the BEST ROLLS I’VE EVER EATEN! I’m a bread-lover, and my favorites are warm, soft, slightly chewy rolls that make me feel tingly inside. The search is over – make these rolls! I also wrapped the leftovers individually in parchment paper, then plastic wrap, then gallon freezer bags to freeze. I took them out a couple at a time, unwrapped them, and zapped them for about 20-30 seconds in the microwave and they were just as tasty. My only issue is that I’m going to have to invest in bigger pants. 🙂 Thanks for a perfect recipe!

  28. 5 stars
    I love your video!! Rolls/homemade bread have always been intimidating for me as I’ve never had much success. But following your video, step-by-step, the rolls turn out AMAZING! My family raved about them and already have plans for making them again this week. I think I’m going to make two batches so I can freeze one. Keep the videos coming. 🙂

  29. 5 stars
    What a wonderful recipe. I’ve been looking for a good dinner roll recipe for a while, and now I can stop looking. I used our breadmaker on dough setting to do the mixing and kneading. I also substituted one cup of whole wheat flour for one of the white. Baked on convection bake at 350F.

  30. 5 stars
    Hi! My neighbour made these. Delish! Was wondering what kind of “milk” I could substitute as our sons cannot use regular milk. Thank you!

  31. 5 stars
    This was my first time making rolls from scratch. The were delicious and turned out great. I made these on thanksgiving and several times since. This is my go to recipe now and I have been pleased every time.

  32. These are fabulous my husband labeled rolls 5.0 because I have tried so many. I even braved for thanksgiving with a large crowd-definitely scored!!!!

  33. 5 stars
    I made these yesterday for Thanksgiving. They’re so delicious. Soft and pillowy, and the flavor is just lovely. I don’t have a lot of experience working with enriched doughs but they came together pretty easily for me. I also like doing the roll up over trying to get the dough balled up for traditionally shaped rolls. This will definitely be my go-to recipe for making homemade dinner rolls.

  34. 5 stars
    These are amazing!!! I cooked Thanksgiving this year for the first time ever and these rolls are one of the best homemade rolls ever. It was such a simple recipe, I will definitely be keeping this and making them again in the future. Thank you!!

  35. 5 stars
    Super easy to make, I had to leave for work during 1st ride, came home after 3.5 hrs, and was able to jump right back in, and they came out beautifully.

  36. I’m struggling.. I attempted to knead by hand but it was too sticky so I added more (perhaps half cup more) flour. But worried they’re going to be rough and dry. Any tips? Now I wish I had a mixer.

    1. That’s exactly what you should have done. Depending on your location and humidity, the flour measurement will vary. Hope they turned out great!

  37. Hi,
    Love these dinner rolls!

    Wondering if the dough can also be used for cinnamon rolls? Instead of cutting them, put on toppings & roll…

    1. Depending on how high you are, you may add a Tbs or so extra. Mostly just pay attention to the consistency of the dough. as staated, you are looking for it to be slightly sticky but NOT so sticky that it sticks to a clean dry finger when touched.

    1. 5 stars
      This were so easy to make. I have them in the fridge rolled up after the first rise. Do I need to let them rise for an hour before baking tomorrow? Thank you

  38. 5 stars
    Wow dough was so elastic-y and these were so good. We used them for ham sandwiches with kids and what a hit! Wondering if this recipe would work with whole wheat? If so, recipe for life!

    1. I wouldn’t sub all the flour for whole wheat (maybe half!), because the whole wheat flour will make them more dense.

  39. 5 stars
    These were so easy and delicious. A big hit with the kids. I will be making these again. Thanks for the recipe.

    1. I used a bread machine today. I actually followed the above recipe. I made the yeast mix. Warmed my butter and milk, mixed it all together with egg. and poured all liquids into machine. I then added all the dry ingredients. As it was mixing in the machine I did have to add quite a bit more flour. It was still a soft dough. But it rolled out nice on a lightly floured surface.

    2. Use the machine on the dough cycle and when it’s done, take out the dough and proceed with the recipe. I do that a lot, for bread, rolls, etc.

  40. 5 stars
    These are the best rolls ever! They remind me of the ones my grandmother made for Sunday dinners. I made them recently for my family and every single one was gobbled up very quickly. Thank you for posting them.

  41. 5 stars
    This is a fool proof recipe! Easy to make always turns out great and I receive many compliments every time I make these rolls I love them!

  42. 5 stars
    Wow! What an awesome and easy roll recipe. I hosted Thanksgiving for the first time this year, and since most of the people coming were traveling around 3 hours, I was going to have to make everything hot for the meal. I was looking for a good yeast roll recipe and came across this one. I made these twice (once as a practice run), and both times, it worked beautifully. My aunt, who usually makes the rolls, said they were better than hers! A total hit! My only problem with the recipe was getting uniform sizes of the rolls. Rolling a perfect rectangle is more than difficult.

  43. 5 stars
    This Thanksgiving was my first time making homemade rolls and it was for our entire family of 30 people! I am not much of a baker, but this recipe was so easy to follow and my rolls turned out yummy!

  44. 5 stars
    Made these for my Thanksgiving and they were a HIT! So tasty and made my house smell amazing! I’ll be adding this to the menu for all holidays!

  45. 5 stars
    Hands down the BEST ever rolls in the world. Thank you so much for such an amazing recipe. Will make again and again and AGAIN!

  46. 5 stars
    Followed the directions to the letter. These were the most beautiful rolls I have ever made. Perfection! They rise a lot so make them small.

  47. 5 stars
    I have tried to make homemade rolls for 6 years in a row at Thanksgiving, with disappointing to devastating results every time. I said this was my last year to try. Enter your recipe… The very clear instructions (and photos, yay!) made all the difference. Perfect results! My husband ate 3 right out of the oven and he isn’t even a bread guy. These rolls are delicious enough for special occasions but easy enough for weeknight suppers (hallelujah for freezing instructions!). Thank you for finally helping me successfully bake my own bread! I now have the courage to try some of your other bread recipes, too.

  48. These rolls are wonderful. It is just the recipe I have been looking for and it is so easy. I measure my flour by weight using 120 g per cup. I find that I have to use 6 or more cups of flour measured by weight to obtain the slightly sticky dough. My rolls are light and fluffy, so I don’t think I am using too much flour. How are you measuring your flour?

  49. 5 stars
    WOW! another great recipe from your site. I’ve never made homemade bread, because I always thought it was so labor intensive – I was wrong! I will be baking these rolls more often now. Super easy, super soft and delicious – everyone loved them. Super yummy, the next day as well.

    Thank you,

    Liza

  50. 5 stars
    Your rolls are fabulous! I made them for Thanksgiving and it is now my favorite roll recipe. I doubled the batch so we would have plenty. I love the way they are rolled out-much more uniform than the crescent shape. Excellent!

  51. 5 stars
    The dough was very sticky and not easy to shape. Would that be because I didn’t use enough flour.The rolls were delicious but not shaped very good.

  52. Made these with whole grain wheat flour last night and they are amazing. The kids and the husband wanted them for breakfast. I doubt I will have leftovers to freeze, but appreciate that you’ve tested it (next time I’ll do a double batch).
    Lovely site, btw!
    Thank you!

    1. Thanks so much for sharing! I’m happy to hear your family loved them–and I love that you made them whole wheat!

  53. MY MOTHER IN LOW MADE THE BEST BREAD,DINNER ROLLS I HAVE EVER HAD I JUST WISH SHE WAS STILL WITH US. I HAVE BEEN TOLD THAT MY BREAD IS LIKE HERS

  54. 5 stars
    I made these for dinner when we had some guests staying with us and everyone raved! They were so EASY! I made them early and let them rise (for the first rise) in the fridge. I followed the directions exactly and they were perfectly light and fluffy. I also froze the leftovers and we have been enjoying them for weeks. I will definitely be making these for thanksgiving!