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Butter Rolls – European Recipe

I have been experimenting with different recipes for yeast raised baked goods, such as crescents, breads and rolls.  Some are quite simple and others are more sophisticated, but they all are so heavenly delicious, hence so worth the preparation effort.

Today, I will share my latest recipe for delicious butter rolls, so rich and buttery, and as all yeast raised baked goods, they are at their prime taste right after baking, while still slightly warm….but never served when still HOT.

Yeast raised baked goods need cooling off time before serving, to retain their best texture and flavor.

The picture above shows you how high the rolls rise before being ready to be baked.  They come up very close to the top of the baking pan.  At this point you baste the tops with milk, cream, or egg wash, then bake them.

This recipe yields 12 butter rolls.

Butter Rolls – European Recipe

Butter Rolls – European Recipe


  • 4 cups all-purpose flour ( 500 g)
  • 1/2 cup sugar (100 g)
  • 1/2 tsp. salt (3 g)
  • 3 tsp. Instant yeast (10 g)
  • 5 Tbs. unsalted soft butter (70 g)
  • 1/2 cup + 2 Tbs. whole milk (150 ml) room temperature
  • 2 eggs, room temperature
  • 2 egg yolks, room temperature
  • 1/2 tsp. Vanilla extract
  • Zest of 1/2 lemon


  1. In a large mixing bowl gently whisk flour, sugar, salt and yeast, to combine all dry ingredients
  2. In a medium bowl mix eggs, egg yolks, vanilla extract, milk and lemon zest. Whisk to froth up the eggs and to combine all wet ingredients.
  3. Gradually combine wet and dry ingredients, mixing gently with a spoon, or on slow speed in a mixer.
  4. Once a ball of dough is formed, smother the soft butter over the dough and work it in with your hands or in a mixer for about 10-15 minutes, until a smooth and soft dough is formed.
  5. Gently press down the dough ball in the bowl, cover it with a plastic wrap or a tea towel, and let it rise in a warm place for 60-90 minutes (Mine rose within 75 minutes and doubled in bulk , in a pre-warmed (then turned off) oven to 100 degree F, 30 degrees C).
  6. Remove the risen dough onto a lightly floured work area, and fold it over few times (4-6 times), to deflate it slightly. Form into a 12 inch long log, and cut into 12 even discs. Using your hands, form each disc into a nice round ball.
  7. Line a 9 x 13 baking sheet with parchment paper, grease it lightly, and place 3 rolls across (seam down) and 4 rolls lengthwise to fill the pan, leaving some space in between rolls to allow for expansion during baking.
  8. Cover with a tea towel, place it in a warm place (I used my pre-warmed oven as above) and let rise until the rolls come up toward the top rim of the baking pan.
  9. If rising in the oven, remove from the oven and set aside. Uncover and brush the tops with milk, heavy cream, or egg wash (I used heavy cream which I had on hand. Milk will make the crust lighter than mine, and egg wash will make it much darker)
  10. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (180 C) and bake on a middle rack for 20-25 minutes.
  11. Remove and cool in a pan for 5 minutes, brushing the tops with melted butter, or rolling a cold stick of butter over the hot roll tops to make them softer and shimmery.
  12. Remove from pan and cool for another 15 minutes on a cooling rack, before serving.


Please note I did NOT proof the yeast, since I used INSTANT not active or fresh yeast. If you use fresh yeast, you would need about 25 g, and if active then still 10 g, but you would have to proof both with little bit of sugar and water or milk, until frothy, before adding to the other wet ingredients.

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