When I was a kid, my favorite Thanksgiving item was the bread rolls. Heck, even as an adult, it's still one of my favorite sides. My sister and I always compare how many rolls we ate, seeing who indulged a bit more. Well, this year I'm going to skip the storebought rolls and making them from scratch. Call me ambitious or crazy but either way, I know these rosemary gruyere dinner rolls will be a hit. They're incredibly soft with the perfect hint of rosemary and a little salty goodness from the gruyere. I think I'm going to have to make rolls from scratch every year now. They're just too good!
Rosemary Gruyere Dinner Rolls
- 1 ¾ cup warm milk, 100-110 degrees F (440 ml)
- 2 ½ tsp active dry yeast
- 1 tsp sugar
- 4 ½ cups bread flour (726 grams)
- 2 tbsp granulated sugar (29 grams)
- 1 ½ tsp salt
- 1 large egg beaten
- ½ cup butter, melted (113 grams)
- 1 tbsp plus 1 tsp fresh rosemary chopped
- 1 ¼ cup grated gruyere (150 grams)
- 2 tbsp butter, melted (28 grams)
- ½ tsp sea salt
- Combine the milk with yeast and 1 tsp sugar and let sit for 5 minutes or until the yeast is activated and the mixture is foamy.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, add the flour, 2 tbsp sugar, 1 ½ tsp salt, beaten egg, and ½ cup melted butter. Add the yeast mixture and knead the dough until smooth, about 5-7 minutes. Add 1 tbsp chopped rosemary and the grated gruyere and knead for another minute or until well combined. Transfer the dough to a clean bowl, cover, and let rise for 1 hour in a warm area or until doubled in size.
- Grease a 9x13 baking pan.
- Punch down the dough and divide it into 18 equal portions. Roll each portion into a ball and arrange them in the prepared pan with 3 rows of 6 rolls. Cover the pan and proof for 30 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- Brush 2 tbsp melted butter on the tops of the rolls and sprinkle 1 tsp chopped rosemary and ½ tsp sea salt. Bake the rolls for 30-35 minutes or until the tops are browned. Remove from heat and let cool slightly. Serve warm.
**Helpful tips and common mistakes
So you're probably thinking that making dinner rolls from scratch seems like an unnecessary hassle. But let me tell you. There's a significant difference between storebought rolls filled with preservatives that have been sitting on the shelves for days compared to fresh out of the oven still warm rolls. Whether it's Thanksgiving or not, I will gladly make these rosemary gruyere dinner rolls for any meal.
To make the rolls, start by making the dough. We're going to use ingredients like milk, egg, and butter to add more flavor and fat to the dough. The result? Incredibly soft rolls.
When the dough is smooth, add the chopped rosemary and grated gruyere and knead for another minute or until the ingredients are well incorporated. This recipe is very adaptable so if you don't like rosemary or gruyere, omit it or swap it for something you do like! You can skip the herbs and cheese and make plain rolls or mix it up and use roasted garlic, caramelized onion bits, everything bagel spice mix, the world is your oyster!
Let the dough proof for one hour or until doubled in size. Then, punch down the dough and divide it into 18 rolls. I use a scale to measure out the rolls, making sure they are all the same size.
Arrange the rolls in 3 rows of 6 rolls in the greased baking pan. Don't worry if they're touching in the pan. In fact, I did a little experimenting and baked one set of rolls in a baking sheet, spacing them out and another set in a baking pan where they touching. The rolls that were spaced out were not as tender as the ones that were touching. Is the secret to great rolls? Perhaps.
Once the rolls have rested again, brush the tops with melted butter and sprinkle chopped rosemary and sea salt on top. The butter will help the rolls get golden brown so don't skip this step!
Bake the rolls until golden brown on top and let them cool slightly before serving.
When I pulled the rolls out of the baking pan and separated the rolls, I was dancing with glee. The texture was exactly what I wanted: soft and fluffy. The hints of rosemary and gruyere didn't overwhelm the bread and the sea salt on top added the perfect little salty crunch. I think these might be my most successful dinner rolls yet!
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