Recipe By Chef John
Published Oct 26th
Prep 25m Cook 20m Additional 2h 15m Ready In 3h
Servings 12 rolls Calories 272.3

Butterhorn dinner rolls date all the way back to colonial times, but I’ve streamlined the process to make this recipe easier for new and inexperienced bakers. These classic dinner rolls are light but rich, and slightly sweet. They’re perfect for special occasions or holiday dinners, alongside any main course.

Recipe Ingredients

  • 1 (.25 ounce) package active dry yeast
  • ¼ cup warm water
  • ½ cup unsalted butter
  • 1 cup milk
  • 3 tablespoons white sugar
  • 3 ¾ cups all-purpose flour, divided
  • 1 ½ teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • ¼ cup butter, melted

Cooking Directions

  1. 1 Sprinkle yeast onto warm water. Stir gently and let sit until foamy and frothy, 15 to 20 minutes.
  2. 2 While the yeast is proofing, place butter in a saucepan with milk and white sugar. Turn heat to medium and cook, stirring occasionally, until butter melts and sugar dissolves, 3 to 4 minutes.
  3. 3 Remove from the heat and pour into a large mixing bowl; let cool until just very warm to the touch and about 120 degrees F (49 degrees C), 2 to 3 minutes.
  4. 4 Add 3 cups flour, kosher salt, yeast mixture, and egg; mix gently with a spatula until it all comes together and forms a very thick and wet batter. Add remaining 3/4 cup flour and mix with your fingers, incorporating just the amount of flour you need, until dough comes together into a soft, sticky ball.
  5. 5 Cover and let rise until almost doubled in size, about 1 hour.
  6. 6 Transfer dough to a floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic, about 5 minutes.
  7. 7 Grease the bowl with butter. Place the dough back into the bowl, cover, and let rise for 30 minutes.
  8. 8 Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Line a baking sheet with a silicone liner (such as Silpat®).
  9. 9 Transfer dough back to a work surface and press it into a 1-inch thick circle. Flip over and continue pressing until circle is 1/2-inch thick; use a rolling pin if needed to achieve correct thickness. Use a pizza tool to cut dough into 12 equal wedges.
  10. 10 Starting at the larger end of one wedge, roll toward the point, stretching the ends of the dough out for the first few inches. Pinch and press the point into the dough to seal and place, seam-side down, on the prepared baking sheet. Repeat with remaining dough.
  11. 11 Let rolls sit until they puff up a little, 15 to 20 minutes.
  12. 12 Bake in the center of the preheated oven until cooked through and just starting to turn a light golden brown, 20 to 25 minutes.
  13. 13 Remove from the oven and immediately brush hot rolls with melted butter. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely, 15 to 20 minutes.

Nutrition Facts

  • Calories 272.3
  • Carbohydrate 34.2 g
  • Cholesterol 49.2 mg
  • Fat 12.7 g
  • Fiber 1.2 g
  • Protein 5.3 g
  • Saturated Fat 7.7 g
  • Sodium 278.5 mg

Chef's Notes

For rolls that aren't as sweet, you can dial back the sugar content. You can use 1 teaspoon fine salt in place of 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt; If you want lighter, airier rolls, let them proof up to 45 minutes just before baking, instead of just 15 to 20 minutes.
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