This comforting dinner roll recipe with brown butter is so perfect to whip up for your friends and/or family. It pairs great with any dish, or even on its own. I love the smell of them baking up in my oven, and this recipe is such a good one to have in your back pocket.
Why you’ll love this dinner roll recipe:
30-Minutes Prep: Making your own homemade bread doesn’t need to be complicated. This recipe can be prepped in 30-minutes. The rest of the time is spent letting the dough rise and baking
Versatile: Add in (or on top) herbs to make your own twist on this dinner roll recipe
Healthier: By making your own bread you know exactly what’s going in it. There are no preservatives here!
Yeast: There are two main types of yeast that you’ll find at your store – active dry or instant rise (or sometimes called quick rise or rapid rise). Both types will work but require different instructions to activate them. Active dry dissolves in warm water and with sugar in order for it to “bloom”. Instant rise yeast doesn’t need to be proofed in warm water and can be added directly into your recipe which is what I used for this recipe. Whichever you have or choose, just make sure you activate it properly if you need to.
Brown Butter: Brown butter is made by cooking unsalted butter long enough to turn the milk solids brown while cooking out any water present in the butter. It makes it have that nutty or toasty taste which is more intense than regular butter flavor. However, you can also use regular butter or plant-based butter instead.
How do you make dinner rolls?
1. In a medium-sized pot place ½ cup of butter, stirring constantly over high heat. In a few minutes, the butter will foam up, cooking off any water content.
2. Continue stirring, waiting for it to foam up a second time. After it foams the second time, the butter will begin to change color from golden to amber to chestnut red to brown.
3. Once it contains mainly dark brown color, immediately transfer to a heat-safe container, and allow to cool.
4. Grease a large bowl with 1 – 1 ½ tbsp of vegetable oil. Set aside.
5. In a large bowl, mix together flour, sugar, yeast, and salt. Create a well in the middle of the bowl. Set aside.
6. In a medium-size pot, combine milk, water, and brown butter. Heat over medium/high heat until it reaches 120-125F on a thermometer.
7. Pour the heated milk mixture into the well in the large bowl. Stir with a wooden spoon until combined.
8. Add the egg, and knead the mixture for a couple of minutes to form a dough.
9. Transfer the dough to a lightly floured surface, kneading well for 5-10 minutes to make a soft dough.
10. Round the dough and place it into the large-greased bowl. Cover with a tea towel or cloth and set in a warm place to rise for 1 hour, until doubled in size. This may depend on your environment.
11. Grease a 9×13 inch pan or casserole dish with butter. Set aside.
12. Once the dough has doubled in size, remove the bowl onto a lightly floured surface. Gently flatten the dough and create a 8×10 inch rectangle.
13. Using a knife or dough cutter, divide the dough into 12 pieces.
14. With each piece of dough, pinch an edge with your fingers, folding it into the center. Continue this and continually rotate to make a bun. Afterward, pinch the entire bottom with your fingers to seal.
15. Arrange all of the formed buns into the greased pan. Cover with a tea towel or cloth and set in a warm place for 40 minutes – 1hour or until doubled in size. This may depend on your environment.
16. Preheat the oven to 400F.
17. Whisk together 1 egg & 2 tbsp milk. Set aside.
18. Melt the second amount of brown butter. Set aside.
19. Once the bread rolls are proofed, brush the tops with the egg & milk mixture.
20. Bake for 18 minutes, until golden.
21. Immediately out of the oven, brush the brown butter over the dinner rolls, getting into all creases. Sprinkle flaky salt on top.
22. Set on a wire rack and allow to cool for 30 minutes.
Expert Tips & FAQ:
Vegan Substitutes: Replace brown butter with vegan butter and replace milk with plant-based milk. The only issue here is the egg brush. I recommend using egg for the golden brown color, but you can just brush with plant-based milk as well.
Can I make more than dinner rolls? Yes! Have fun with it. Make free-standing buns for sandwiches, mix in spices or cheeses, the choices and options are endless.
Serving: Serve dinner rolls with a variety of butter, jams, or meals!
Storage: Store in an airtight container at room temperature for 2-3 days. Store in an airtight container or bag for 2-3 months in the freezer. Reheat in the microwave OR at 350F in the oven for 10 minutes. Brush with milk after removing from oven.
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