Sunday, January 6, 2013

Honey Dinner Rolls

I made these rolls for a big family gathering with help from my boyfriend and my 11-year-old cousin (she especially liked punching down the dough!).  The recipe is somewhat of a time investment because the first rise is two hours, but the results are seriously worth it because these are some of the best dinner rolls I've made.  The honey lends a subtle sweetness and the rolls are soft with a light texture.  The butter-honey glaze on top is delicious, although the rolls didn't get as brown in the oven as I would have liked - next time, I'd bake these on the top rack in the oven and hopefully get more browning.  Word of warning - the dough is pretty sticky, so make this with a stand mixer if you don't want sticky hands.

Honey Dinner Rolls (adapted from averie cooks, original recipe here)

1 cup warm water
2-1/4 tsp active dry yeast
1 large egg
1/4 cup honey
3 T oil
1/2 tsp kosher salt
3-3/4 to 4 cups all purpose flour

For the topping:
2 T butter, melted
2 T honey

1. Whisk together the warm water and yeast.  Let stand 10 minutes and make sure the yeast is bubbling (if not, start over with new yeast).
2. Add to the yeast mixture the egg, honey, oil, and salt.  Whisk until well combined.  Add 3 cups of flour and beat until a loose dough forms.  If using a stand mixer, attach the dough hook and bean in the remaining flour 1/4 cup at a time.  Or, do the same by hand using a rubber spatula and then your hands.  Add enough flour to make a soft, somewhat sticky dough.  Knead for a few minutes, until elastic and uniform in texture.
3. Spray a bowl with oil, and then place the dough in the bowl.  Cover with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm area until doubled, 2 hours.
4. Punch down the dough and knead for a minute or so.  Let rest 10 minutes.
5. Lightly grease a cookie sheet.  Pull off small balls of dough and create surface tension on the surface by stretching the dough over itself, tucking it under, and pinching it off at the bottom of the ball.  Place the dough balls on the prepared cookie sheet, almost but not quite touching.  You can make the rolls larger or smaller depending on what you prefer - I made lots of small rolls.
6. Lightly cover the baking sheet with a clean kitchen towel and let rise for 30 minutes.
7. While the dough rises, place one of the oven racks on the top slot in the oven and preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
8. Mix together the melted butter and honey.  If it's not liquid enough to easily spread onto the rolls, microwave for a few seconds to melt the honey more.  Brush the honey-butter mixture over the risen rolls.  Bake 12-15 minutes until the bottoms are browned and the rolls are cooked through.

Tim and Mia working on the rolls.


  1. Those look delicious Sara! I think people get intimidated with yeast, simply because of the rising time, but most of the time it's not much hands on time and the results are amazing!

  2. These look great! Much better than the store-bought dinner rolls!