As the title promises, light and fluffy dinner rolls are a one bowl, one hour recipe that is simple enough for any home cook. Brush melted butter over the rolls before and after baking for a golden color and buttery flavor.
These classic dinner rolls have been a staple around our table since I first published them back in 2012 (!). With the holidays ahead and more of us possibly staying closer to home this year, I thought I’d give this very old blog post a bit of a dust off and refresh. These are all new photos, but this is the same well-loved recipe.
Check out the comments to hear from many fans of these rolls. And even if you’ve never made homemade dinner rolls, give this one a try. They are easy, and turn out great every time!
- Fast-Acting or “Instant” Yeast – This dough rises quickly and requires yeast labeled as Fast Acting, Instant, Quick-Rise, Bread Machine, or RapidRise. Do NOT use “Active Dry Yeast” for this recipe; it needs to be dissolved in water before using.
- Unsalted Butter – Butter shows up in this recipe in two places. Mix some softened butter into the dough and brush melted butter over the tops before and after cooking.
- Warm Water – Use water that is warm to the touch. Check the label on your brand of yeast for the recommended water temperature to get the best results.
- Sugar, Flour, Kosher Salt – Standard pantry ingredients for bread-baking.
How to Make Dinner Rolls Ahead
To make the dinner rolls ahead, bake them as written and allow them to cool completely. Cover tightly and store at room temperature for up to 24 hours.
To Reheat: To reheat the rolls place a piece of foil on a sheet pan. Add the rolls and brush them with some melted butter. Enclose the rolls tightly with foil, sealing the edges. Warm the rolls in foil in a 350°F / 177°C oven for about 15 minutes. Serve immediately.
To Freeze and Reheat Dinner Rolls (Updated November 2020)
To Freeze: After testing many different methods, I have found that the best way to prepare and freeze these dinner rolls is to bake them completely as directed. Allow them to cool and then freeze flat on a baking sheet until solid, 2 to 3 hours. Transfer to a freezer-safe bag and freeze for up to 3 months.
To Reheat: Take the rolls out of the freezer about 3 hours before baking and let fully defrost at room temperature. Place them on a sheet pan and cover tightly with foil. Bake, covered, in a 350°F / 177°C oven until warmed through, 20 to 25 minutes. Brush generously with melted butter.
More Easy Homemade Bread
1-Hour Light and Buttery Dinner Rolls
- Stand Mixer
- 9x13 Baking Dish
- 1 ½ cups Warm Water (110°F / 43°C)
- 1 Tbsp Instant or "Fast-Acting" Yeast
- 2 Tbsp Granulated Sugar
- 2 Tbsp Unsalted Butter, softened to room temperature (2 Tbsp = 28g)
- 4 cups All-Purpose Flour, divided (4 cups flour = 500g)
- 1 tsp Kosher Salt
- 3 Tbsp Unsalted Butter, melted (3 Tbsp = 40g)
- 1 tsp Sea Salt or Kosher Salt
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook, stir together warm water, yeast, and sugar. Let stand until creamy, about 5 minutes.
- Lightly grease a 9×13 baking pan.
- To the yeast mixture, add 2 Tbsp softened butter, 2 cups of flour, and salt (making sure that the salt is added on top of the flour and doesn't come in contact with the yeast until you begin mixing). Mix on low until the ingredients begin to come together.
- Add remaining 2 cups of flour and mix again on low until flour is fully incorporated.
- Increase the speed to medium and knead until the dough is smooth and elastic, about 5 minutes. (You will know it is ready when the dough starts to make a slapping sound as it hits the sides of the bowl.)
- Remove the bowl from the mixer and cover it with a dish towel. Let the dough rise in a warm place until doubled in volume, about 20 minutes. (Note: I like to turn on the oven's light and let the dough rise inside the oven. The light produces just enough heat to help the dough rise quickly.)
- Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and form it into an even ball.
- Using a serrated knife, cut the dough into quarters. Slice each quarter of dough into 6 even slices (you should have 24 even pieces of dough). With lightly floured hands, roll each piece of dough into a ball.
- Place rolled dough in even rows in prepared pan.
- Heat oven to 400°F / 200°C. Cover the rolls with a dish towel and put them near the warm oven to rise for 20 minutes.
- Lightly brush the rolls with half of the melted butter (reserve the other half).
- Bake until golden brown, 18 to 22 minutes.
- Immediately after removing the rolls from the oven, brush them with the remaining melted butter and sprinkle with salt.
- Flip the pan over to remove the rolls.
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