This is my favorite basic roll dough recipe. Quick, easy, and made with staple ingredients are important requirements when baking from scratch. If baking your own breads with yeast from scratch has you scared and running, this easy recipe is life changing. I’ll let you in on all of my tips in putting together this recipe to ensure success in the details below.
The scariest thing about making bread are all those directions. Don’t be intimidated, I’ve added some good short videos and articles to my directions to help you develop your skills. If you’ve made bread a million times, then do like me, just read over the ingredient list and put it together your way.
Best Thanksgiving Dinner Rolls
I use this recipe for my Thanksgiving dinner rolls because I can start them after the turkey goes in the oven, and then bake them while the turkey rests and the final preparations for dinner are being completed. My family loves the warm rolls and they are always fluffy and tasty.
I will confess, that there was one Thanksgiving, years ago, when I cheated and purchased rolls from the grocery story. It was then I realized what a fixture my dinner rolls were for my family. There hasn’t been a Thanksgiving that goes by where that story isn’t brought up. This recipe is a part of our traditional holiday meals.
Perfect for Sweets
Once you get through making the dough you're halfway to any number of recipes that start with a basic roll dough. Like my Triple Maple Cinnamon Bun recipe that I will be uploading in another blog soon.
Why use Maple Syrup?
Yeast needs sugar to create the carbon dioxide gas to help the dough rise. I swap out sugar for maple syrup whenever I can. I like to feel good about the food I put on my table and I try to know it's roots. Since we produce the maple syrup ourselves, I naturally feel good about serving it on my table and using it in my recipes.
I typically use the Very Dark Strong Taste/Baking maple syrup grade in this recipe. I always have a bottle of this grade ready to go in my fridge so its quick for me to grab and go. However, any grade you have on hand will get the job done.
Dinner Roll with Maple Syrup Recipe6 to 7 cups all purpose flour
1 Tbsp. Salt
2 yeast packages
1/4 cup warm water
1/4 cup butter
1/3 cup and 1 squirt of maple syrup
1 3/4 cup milk
- I proof my yeast and I never add it to the dry ingredients, I don’t care what the directions state. Grab a coffee cup and eyeball a 1/4 cup of water. I give it a quick zap in the microwave for 20 seconds. You’re shooting for around 100 degrees. I just feel the water. Whatever it takes to get to a quarter cup, more or less, of warmer than tepid water. Add the yeast packages and a squirt of maple syrup for a starter. Stir and let this set while you prepare the next steps. When its ready you should have a full cup of bubbly yeast. If not, then I advise you start over.
- I use a glass quart measuring cup for this step. Add the milk, the maple syrup, and salt. With the half stick of butter, cut it the long way twice, and simply cube it up into the mixture. Microwave this mixture for 2 minutes. Stir, and if the butter isn’t completely melted, give it another zap in the microwave for 30 seconds.
- Using a large mixing bowl, add 3 cups of flour. Then add the milk mixture, and stir to combine. Add the yeast mixture next, and mix to combine. I use a small spatula to get every bit of the yeast out of the coffee cup. Add the 2 eggs and mix. The mixture should be more of a slurry at this point.
- Continue adding the flour 1 cup at a time, until it is difficult to stir. At this point roll it out onto a floured countertop to knead.
- I love to hand knead bread dough. I never use my hand mixer for this step. I like the warm, soft feel of the dough. Kneading is an easy technique that I find calming. If you haven't done this before it is a talent that is easy to learn. If you’ve never needed dough before here’s a good two minute video. Eight minutes usually gets a good ball of dough that is ready to rest. You want to avoid over or under kneading, and there are lots of ways to tell if you’ve kneaded your dough sufficiently.
- Cover with a clean towel and let your dough rise in a warm place for about an hour. The dough ball will double in size.
- Punch the dough down and let it rest for 10 minutes.
- Grease a glass baking dish or use your favorite baking stone dish. You’ll want to have sides on the dish to keep your rolls together as they rise. Grease your hands a tad and break off a golf ball size of dough. I form a ball shape by wrapping the ends around to the bottom, and sealing the little balls underneath. I found this video on shaping rolls that does it kind of like I do. Remember to turn down the volume as the music is horrible and I don't roll my balls like he does, but to each his own. Space the rolls in your baking dish with some room for the second rise.
- Cover with a clean towel, and let your dough rise in a warm place for about 40 minutes.
- Bake in a 350 degree oven for 30 minutes.
- I like to brush melted butter on the rolls when they come out of the oven so they are soft on the outside.
- Pull apart and serve.
You can plan on several dozen rolls from this recipe, depending on how large or small you make your rolls. Sometimes, I don’t need as many rolls and I simply grab a bread pan and form some of the dough into a loaf of bread. Another great plan is pulling a double header and making a loaf of bread and Triple Maple Cinnamon Buns. Be sure to let me know how it works out for you.