Lauren Brennan

Tips for Better Rolls in a Snap!

Happy Holidays! With Thanksgiving only a few days away, I thought it necessary to talk about something at the dinner table that goes unnoticed the majority of the time: the humble roll. I love making fresh bread and rolls. A lot of my friends however hate it because it takes time, and they can never get their rolls just so. Well, lucky for you, I’m sharing my tips and tricks that make my rolls come out pillowy and soft every time. All these photos are based off of┬áthis Classic Dinner Rolls recipe. It’s a yummy and simple recipe and you should have all of the ingredients on hand. Love that!

Tip #1: Use warm liquids, some sort of food for the yeast and fresh yeast! Your recipe could call for warm water or milk or in this case a combination of both. If you don’t have a thermometer like me, you’ll want it to feel warm–like something a baby would be comfortable touching. To the warmer liquid, you’re going to want to add in some sort of food for the yeast {like sugar or honey} plus the yeast. Don’t forget to always double check the expiration date of that yeast!

Tip #2: Knead the dough, but not too much! For firmer pizza doughs, you’re going to want to to add in some flour and knead it for at least 5 minutes to create gluten. Gluten is what makes bread chewy and gives it texture. For moist and soft rolls or cinnamon rolls, you don’t want a whole lot of gluten, so you’re going to keep the dough slightly stickier and you’re going to knead it less. As you can see, this dough is sticking to my hands a little bit so you’ll need buttered hands to work with it. That’s a great sign!

Tip #3: Speaking of butter, use lots! This dinner roll recipe I used calls for you to divide the dough into small rounds, dip each in butter and place three per muffin tin. Don’t mind if I do! Butter makes everything better.

Tip #4: Don’t over bake! After your rolls have risen, you’re going to want to watch these like crazy–especially if you’re unfamiliar with the oven you’re working with! You want them to have color, yes, but there’s a fine line between golden brown and just straight up dry. If you happen to get a dry roll, see tip 3! There ain’t nothing butter can’t fix!

So, those are the very basics in a nutshell. If you follow these few steps, you’ll have fabulous rolls anytime of the year!

If you’d like to print this recipe or find other tips for rolls, click here.