Perfect Dinner Rolls

Homemade dinner rolls fresh from the oven are so delicious. If you’ve never tried making your own, my dinner roll recipe is simple and low-fuss. Once you try it you’ll want freshly baked rolls every night.

dinner rolls in a basket on a black napkin

Yes, it’s easy to buy a package of rolls at the store but once you make your own rolls from scratch you might decide to skip the store-bought ones. I’m happy to tell you that homemade dinner rolls are not hard to make. Mostly they require some patience as you wait for them to rise. But once the scent of fresh-baked bread fills your kitchen you’ll be so glad you made your own and if you have a starter at home you’d like to use try making these Sourdough Dinner Rolls. I think you’ll enjoy them!

Tips Before You Make Dinner Rolls

These dinner rolls are made with yeast, which means the dough will need to rise a few times before you bake them. It’s helpful to have all of your ingredients and baking equipment ready to go before you start making your rolls. Here are some tips for getting started:

  • I like to use a stand mixer to make bread dough. The special attachments make it easy to mix and knead the dough.
  • You will need dry active yeast for this recipe. Make sure you check the expiration date because if it’s expired it won’t work right and your rolls might not rise.
  • You will need a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
  • Have a greased bowl and plastic wrap handy for holding the dough while it rises.
4 dinner rolls on a wire rack and one cut with butter on a black plate

How to Make Dinner Rolls from Scratch

First, you will need to activate the yeast. Just pour a 1/2 cup of lukewarm water into the bowl of the stand mixer and sprinkle the dry active yeast over the top. Leave it for five minutes and then stir to combine.

While you wait for the yeast, beat one large egg white until it holds small peaks. This incorporates a lot of air into the egg white which will help your rolls rise higher.

the yeast and water in mixing bowl adding the flour

Add sugar, salt and melted butter to the yeast mixture in the bowl. Using a flat beater, mix on speed 2. Add some of the flour and continue mixing until combined. Add the egg white and mix again.

Finally, add the remaining cups of flour and mix until the dough comes together. Let the dough rest for five minutes.

adding the egg white to the mixing bowl and the flour

Switch to the dough hook attachment and knead the dough until it’s smooth, soft and pulls away from the sides of the bowl. This usually takes about five minutes.

adding the remaining flour and kneading the dough

Transfer the dough to a lightly oiled bowl. Turn the dough in the bowl to coat it in the oil then and cover it with plastic wrap. Leave the dough to rise until it’s doubled in size, which will take one to two hours.

Once it’s doubled in size, punch the dough down and cover it with a clean kitchen towel for 10 minutes so it can rest.

the dough in a white bowl before and after rising

On a lightly floured surface, divide the dough into seven equal parts and shape each into your desired bun shape. Place the shaped rolls on the parchment-lined baking sheet. Space them at least two inches apart.

Cover the baking pan with a clean towel and let the rolls rise for 30 to 45 minutes in a warm and draft-free spot.

forming the dough into balls and placing on cookie sheet

While you wait for the dinner rolls to rise, preheat the oven. Place a pan in the bottom of your oven, once you place the rolls in the oven for baking add a cup of water to the pan.

The water will heat up and create steam as your rolls bake, which will give them a nice crust. Bake the rolls for about 20 minutes or until they are golden brown.

Can dinner rolls dough rise in the refrigerator?

If you don’t want to bake the rolls the same day you can refrigerate them after the first rise. They will keep well in the refrigerator for up to 48 hours.

When you are ready to bake them, take them out of the refrigerator and leave them to proof in a warm, draft-free area. Then bake them as instructed.

Can I freeze the Dinner Rolls dough?

Yes, you can freeze the dough after the first rise. I like to shape the dinner rolls and then place them on a baking sheet covered with plastic wrap. Place them in the freezer and once they are frozen transfer them to a freezer-safe container.

You can freeze the dough for up to six months. To thaw, leave them in the refrigerator overnight or leave them out at room temperature. Let them rise and then bake.

rolls in a basket and one cut on a black plate with butter and a knife

Why did my dough not rise?

There are several reasons why dough doesn’t rise:

  • If your yeast is expired it might be dead (inactive), which would cause your dough not to rise.
  • Make sure the water is lukewarm. Water that is too hot will kill the yeast. Water that is too cold may not activate it.
  • Make sure you use all-purpose flour for this recipe. If you use a different type of flour you might have issues with the dough.
  • The temperature of the room can impact the rise. It will take longer if the room is cold, so it might be that your dough needs more time to rise.

How long do homemade dinner rolls keep?

As long as you keep them tightly wrapped your homemade dinner rolls will keep for up to five days or so. Although, they’re so delicious warm from the oven they might not last longer than a day!

I hope you give this dinner roll recipe a try. They’re the best dinner rolls in my opinion! There is nothing better than a batch of fresh-baked rolls and they are perfect for holiday dinners, such as Thanksgiving or Christmas, or anytime you want homemade bread.

dinner rolls in a blue basket

More Buns & Rolls Recipes:

Perfect Dinner Rolls

Rosemary Molloy
There is nothing better than dinner rolls made from scratch. My homemade dinner roll recipe makes soft and fluffy dinner rolls with a beautiful crust.
5 from 2 votes
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Additional Time 3 hours
Total Time 3 hours 35 minutes
Course Yeast Breads
Cuisine American
Servings 7 rolls
Calories 176 kcal


  • 1 large egg white
  • 1/2 cup water (lukewarm – 105F / 40C) (116 grams)
  • 1 teaspoon active dry yeast
  • 1/2 tablespoon granulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon butter (melted cooled)
  • 2 1/4 cups all purpose flour (divided) (290 grams)


  • In a small bowl beat the egg white until small peaks appear, set aside.
  • In the bowl of the stand up mixer add the water and sprinkle on the yeast, let sit for 5 minutes then stir to combine.
  • Add the sugar, salt and melted butter start to mix with the flat beater on speed 2, then add 3/4 cup (97.5 grams) of flour and beat until combined, beat in the egg white until combined. Add the remaining flour and beat just to combine. Let rest 5 minutes.
  • Change to the dough hook attachment and knead for approximately 5 minutes or until soft and smooth and pulls away from the sides of the bowl.
  • Place the dough in a lightly greased bowl, rolling the dough lightly in the oil, cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let rise 1-2 hours or doubled in bulk.
  • Punch the dough down and let rest covered with a tea towel for 10 minutes.
  • Divide the dough into 6-7 equal portions, shape into desired bun shape and place on a parchment paper lined cookie sheet about 2 inches apart.
  • Cover with a clean tea towel and let rise in a warm draft free area for 30-45 minutes.
  • Pre-heat oven to 400F (200C) and place a pan at the bottom of the oven before placing the rolls in the oven to bake pour one cup of water into the pan, this will give the buns a nice crust.
  • Bake for approximately 20 minutes or until golden and baked through.


Serving: 1gCalories: 176kcalCarbohydrates: 32gProtein: 5gFat: 3gSaturated Fat: 1gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 31mgSodium: 178mgFiber: 1gSugar: 1g
Keyword dinner roll recipe, homemade dinner rolls
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