Grandma's Dinner Rolls Recipe (2024)




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My Grandma’s Dinner Rolls Recipe is practically fool-proof. It is the perfect dinner roll recipe for all your holiday meals.

Grandma's Dinner Rolls Recipe (1)

I call these Grandma’s Dinner Rolls Recipe because I follow my own Grandma’s handwritten recipe card to make them. In researching the ingredients, it seems like it was a popular recipe in the 1950’s. But to me this recipe belongs to my Grandma, so I am giving credit to her.

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Grandma's Dinner Rolls Recipe (2)

This dinner roll recipe calls for the simplest of ingredients: flour, yeast, sugar, salt, milk, eggs and butter. Using butter is a change I made, as the original did call for shortening, but I am not in the habit of using shortening.I also had to look up how to scald milk and found it can be done easily in the microwave. The reason behind scalding milk in baking is that the whey protein in milk can weaken gluten, causing the dough not to rise properly. Scalding deactivates the protein. (source: The Kitchn)

Grandma's Dinner Rolls Recipe (3)

With the butter, egg and sugar in the dough I guess these rolls could be considered a type of brioche dough. They are absolutely delicious and I look forward to making them each holiday season starting at Thanksgiving. Attention novice bakers! This dough can be made in a stand mixer and it is very easy to shape into rolls. As long as they rise properly, they bake perfectly. My daughter has started helping me make them. I think it’s cool to have her helping make her great Grandma’s rolls.

Grandma's Dinner Rolls Recipe (4)

Tips for Grandma’s Dinner Rolls Recipe:

  • You can make these rolls ahead of time. I published a separate recipe explaining the process of making and freezing the rolls HERE.
  • I use a digital thermometer like this one to make sure the scalded milk is the correct temperature (105 – 110 degrees F) before adding it to the yeast.
  • This dough browns quickly. It’s best to bake these rolls with your oven rack set to the lower middle part of your oven.

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Grandma's Dinner Rolls Recipe (5)

Grandma's Dinner Rolls Recipe (6)

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5 from 21 votes

Grandma's Dinner Rolls Recipe

My Grandma's Dinner Rolls Recipe is practically fool-proof. It is the perfect dinner roll recipe for all your holiday meals.

Course Side Dish

Cuisine American

Prep Time 2 hours hours 20 minutes minutes

Cook Time 18 minutes minutes

Total Time 2 hours hours 38 minutes minutes

Servings 32

Calories 60kcal

Author Foodtastic Mom


  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 packets active dry yeast
  • 2 cups milk scalded and cooled to between 105 and 110 degrees F
  • 1 stick (8 tbsp) unsalted butter
  • 2 large eggs
  • 6 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3 tsp salt


  • Place milk in a microwave-safe glass measuring cup. Microwave for 4 minutes. Place in refrigerator and allow to cool to between 105 - 110 degrees F.

  • Melt butter and set aside to cool.

  • In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook, combine the 6 cups of flour and salt.

  • Remove the milk from the refrigerator and whisk in the yeast and sugar. Allow to rest for 5 minutes.

  • Beat the 2 eggs into the melted butter. Add the yeast, sugar and milk mixture to the flour and salt and knead on low speed until dough begins to come together. Stop mixer and add the eggs and melted butter. Knead the dough, scraping down the sides of the bowl if necessary, for 6 minutes.

  • Remove the dough hook and bowl from the stand mixer. Cover the dough ball in the bowl loosely with a towel.

  • Place the dough bowl in a warm spot and allow to rise for about 60 minutes or until dough is doubled in size.

  • Gently push down on the dough to deflate. Place on clean counter and evenly divide dough into 8 log-shaped pieces, using a bench scraper or sharp knife.

  • Cut each of the eight dough logs into four equal pieces, giving you 32 rolls. Gently cup each roll in your hand to "plump" them up a bit in the center.

  • Place the rolls in well-greased baking dishes, spaced about 1/2-inch apart. Place dishes in a warm spot and cover loosely with a towel. Allow rolls to rise in baking dishes for 60 minutes more.

  • Bake at 375 degrees for 14 - 18 minutes. Watch closely in the last few minutes to make sure tops don't over brown.

  • Brush the tops of the rolls with melted butter when they come out of the oven. Serve warm.


Calories: 60kcal

More Thanksgiving Recipes:

  • Perfect Roast Turkey Breast
  • Sweet Potato Pumpkin Casserole
  • Perfect Cranberry Sauce




Reader Interactions


  1. Brian Jones says

    Grandma's Dinner Rolls Recipe (7)
    They look superb, the ingredients are similar to a Japanese egg-enriched dough I was playing around with a couple of weeks ago. I must make these!


    • foodtasticmom says

      Thank you so much Brian. And now I am intrigued by the Japanese dough you were using. Hopefully you’ll publish a recipe?!


  2. Julia says

    Grandma's Dinner Rolls Recipe (8)
    Jill, the rolls look amazing and the best part is that they can be made ahead and frozen! Thanks for the recipe 🙂


  3. Emily says

    Grandma's Dinner Rolls Recipe (9)
    I swear recipes from Grandma are always the best recipes. I have to try these rolls!


    • foodtasticmom says

      You do have to try them!


  4. Cliona Keane says

    Grandma's Dinner Rolls Recipe (10)
    These are the perfect accompaniment to any holiday dinner!


    • foodtasticmom says

      I agree! Thank you Cliona!


  5. Jacqueline Debono says

    Grandma's Dinner Rolls Recipe (11)
    These rolls look beautiful. I love the idea of serving homemade rolls at dinner or lunch. Really need to try this recipe! Going to pin for later!


    • foodtasticmom says

      Terrific. Thanks very much for the Pin!


    • foodtasticmom says

      I do hope you try the. Thanks Tina!


  6. Krista says

    I just found your website while looking for a way to use some outdated milk. We enjoyed these rolls, I had them mixed up before I realized that the overwhelming majority of your 5-star reviews for this recipe are from people that have NOT actually tried the recipe yet. I found this to be true on the other recipes I looked at here. I don’t consider “oh these look yummy, I’ll have to try them” a valid review and usually won’t try a recipe weighted with reviews of this type.


    • foodtasticmom says

      I am so glad you enjoyed these rolls! Since you are being honest with me, I’ll return the favor and tell you how the “game” of reviews works. Competition is stiff to get on page one of Google. Google favors recipes with lots of positive ratings (it’s just one of the criteria to help me get my recipe to the top and therefore actually seen by more people). I would much rather have all reviews that are honest, like yours, by people that have actually made my recipe. But, in order to get more of those, I have to go into Facebook groups with other bloggers. I write reviews for them and in exchange, they write reviews for me. That’s how it works and why you see so many reviews from people who haven’t actually made the recipe. Like I said, I MUCH prefer and wish for REAL REVIEWS! Thanks for trying my recipe and giving me real, honest feedback.


  7. Ryan 76 says

    Grandma's Dinner Rolls Recipe (13)
    Older person now trying to duplicate my Grandma’s rolls and found they didn’t rise enough, kneaded by hand for 6 plus minutes and put in a little larger pan. Are those two areas I need to sharpen up on?


    • foodtasticmom says

      I’m not an expert baker, but how new was your yeast? That could have been the problem. I usually knead these with my mixer, so not sure if the hand kneading affected anything. I think they do tend to rise higher in a smaller pan because they push together and have something to kind of grab onto. There are a lot of things that can go wrong in the baking process. Those are just some of my guesses. Hopefully they still tasted good and next time they’ll rise well for you!


  8. Elaine says

    I made them for Christmas when I couldn’t find my favourite old recipe, I now have a new favourite recipe that everyone loved. I’ll be making them again next week for a 50th birthday dinner. Perfect. Thank you


    • foodtasticmom says

      I’m so happy to hear this! Thanks for sharing Elaine. 🙂


  9. Jeff says

    Would the dough freeze well? Wondering if I can make that ahead of time and bake day of.


    • foodtasticmom says

      Yes. I actually have as separate recipe post for instructions on how to make these rolls ahead…
      You just make the rolls through shaping them into balls, freeze them on a baking sheet first, then place them in a freezer bag. Take them out of the freezer and allow them to rise/thaw for about 4 hours. I need to just combine the two posts.


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Grandma's Dinner Rolls Recipe (2024)


Why are my homemade dinner rolls dense? ›

The dough was under or over proofed. This is the most common reason for dense bread because it can be hard at first to determine when dough is ready to bake.

Why are my homemade dinner rolls dry? ›

Don't over-bake.

If you bake too long, they will dry out.

How can I make my bread fluffier instead of dense? ›

Potato Flakes or Potato Water

Starch helps the dough by trapping the gas from the yeast in the dough and makes the bubbles stronger. This helps the bread to rise and be lighter and fluffier. If you are boiling potatoes, you can use the unsalted water in place of the water in your bread recipe to help out the yeast.

What ingredient makes bread light and fluffy? ›

Adding sugar weakens the gluten structure, absorbs water, and eventually makes the bread lighter and softer. As a result, sugar improves the bread's taste, structure and texture. Yeast also eats up sugar to produce carbon dioxide, which raises the dough and makes bread fluffy.

What type of pan is best for baking rolls? ›

This trick helps create better-looking rolls. We have three reasons for baking rolls such as our Oatmeal Dinner Rolls or our Fluffy Dinner Rolls in the confined space of a cake pan versus individually on a baking sheet.

What happens if you add too much flour to dinner rolls? ›

It's a common mistake, especially for newer bakers. When there's too much flour and not enough liquid, the whole rising process is thrown off. The dryness of the dough will prevent the yeast or another rising agent from activating properly, leading to a stunted rise (or it may not rise at all).

Should rolls touch when baking? ›

Arrange the Dough For Baking

Arrange the rolls closer to each other, with enough room for them to expand into each other as they rise and bake. More traditional dinner rolls might be arranged on a baking sheet with lots of space in between so you get little orbs of golden brown goodness that don't touch.

What is the best flour for bread? ›

While bread flour is the best option, it can sometimes be used if you don't have bread flour. “Check the protein content,” advises Chef Jürgen, since it can vary from brand to brand, and an all-purpose flour that contains protein on the higher end of the range, 12 to 13 percent, will produce a better outcome.

Does letting bread rise longer make it fluffier? ›

Does Rising Bread Affect Its Texture? For a fluffy bread texture, the key is to let the bread rise long enough.

Why do my dinner rolls taste bland? ›

Salt adds flavor to bread. If none or too little is used in a recipe, the bread will lack the right flavor and taste "bland." If you reduce the amount of salt, try adding some dried herbs to increase the flavor. Too much yeast in bread will give bread an off-taste.

How to give homemade rolls more flavor? ›

I recommend using fine sea salt inside the dinner rolls, and I also love sprinkling flaky sea salt on top of the freshly baked and buttered rolls, for even more flavor.

Do you butter rolls before or after baking? ›

Butter basting: Rolls can be brushed with butter before, during, or after baking. While it doesn't brown the surface as much as egg wash will, it does promote browning and adds a lot of flavor.

How to get more yeast flavor in bread? ›

If you use more yeast, you'll get a stronger yeast flavor and aroma, but the rise times will be shorter. That means time won't do the gluten development for you in this scenario.

Why are my rolls not airy? ›

One of the most common reasons for dense bread is over or under-kneaded dough. Kneading your dough directly affects gas production, as it increases the rate that fermentation occurs. Without kneading, bread dough will take much longer to ferment fully.

How to make rolls rise higher? ›

On lowest oven temperature to preheat: Turn the oven to the lowest oven temperature for about 2 minutes. Then turn off the oven, open the door and add the dough (in a covered glass bowl). This will be a cozy spot for your dough to rise. Don't forget to turn off the oven!


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