Breads/ Recipes/ Yeast Breads

buttercrust rolls

You know what goes perfectly with heavenly mush?

Great grandma’s buttercrust rolls!

Think parker house rolls but a little less sweet. Basically, the perfect all-purpose white dinner roll. Crunchy, buttery outside and soft doughy inside.

Life is just so much better when bread is involved, isn’t it?

If you’ll look at the recipe above, you’ll see great grandma used two “cakes” yeast. Well, since cakes of yeast aren’t as readily available today as they were five decades ago, I did some math to figure out two cakes of yeast = 4.5 tsp of instant fresh yeast….or about two 1/4th oz packets. I would still measure it out in teaspoons though rather than just dumping in two packets of yeast just to be sure.

If your dough is sticky, you’re doing something right!!! Sometimes the stickiest of doughs produce the best breads. Great grandma made a note on the back of the card that this dough also makes great pull-apart cinnamon bread so I’ll have to try that next time. I definitely added in more flour than the recipe originally called for (I probably used 5 1/2 cups rather than 4 1/2 cups) but still had great results.

If for no other reason, bake these so your house will smell AMAZING! Chocolate chip cookies are one thing, but to me, there’s nothing quite like the scent of bread baking in the oven.

I can think of about a million and one recipes that these would go great with.

Crock Pot Lentil Sweet Potato Soup

Broccoli, Cheese and Potato Soup

Classic Split Pea Soup

Curried Butternut and Red Lentil Soup

Kale and White Bean Soup

Or, if you’re like me, you eat them the second they come out of the oven and pretty much burn your tongue off in the process. For the rest of the day you’ll have a tongue that feels like you ate a zillion sour patch kids but you don’t even care because that first homemade roll, all glossy golden brown and soft on the inside, was totally and completely worth it.

Buttercrust Rolls

makes about 19 rolls

Print this recipe!


4 1/2 tsp dry active yeast

1/4 cup warm water

1 1/4 cup buttermilk

1/3 cup sugar

1 stick butter, softened

2 eggs

1.5 tsp salt

1/2 tsp baking soda

4 1/2- 5 1/2 cups flour

1 egg yolk + 1 tbsp warm water for wash


Dissolve the yeast in the water and let sit for five minutes, until foamy. While the yeast is resting, very carefully scald the buttermilk (just heat on medium/low heat until there are bubbles around the sides of the pot) and add the butter, stirring so the butter melts completely. Take off the heat and add the sugar. Let cool for 5-10 minutes.

In a large bowl, mix together the flour, baking soda and salt. “Hide” the salt at the bottom of the flour then pour in the yeast, followed by the semi-cooled buttermilk and the eggs. Knead by hand or with an electric mixer until smooth and elastic, about six minutes. Add more flour if the dough seems really sticky, but keep in mind that this is a sticky and soft dough by nature. I think I added an extra 3/4 cup flour while my mixer was running on low.

Spray another bowl with cooking spray and place the dough ball at the bottom. Cover with a dish cloth and let rise in a warm spot for an hour, or until doubled in size.

Preheat oven to 375.

Punch down dough on a floured surface and divide into 2-oz balls (use a food scale if you have one and if not, just do golf ball sized balls). Make knots out of the dough (see photo above) and place on a lined baking sheet.

Brush each knot with egg yolk and water and bake for 20-25 minutes until golden brown.


2 hours




You Might Also Like

  • Lys
    November 3, 2011 at 4:04 am

    Aw, I love that there’s a “very good,” note at the top right hand corner of the recipe card. So cute!

    These look absolutely divine. I love hot bread out of the oven, and these little rolls look perfect to sneak a snack, especially because no one will notice if one (or two) is missing! Trying to do that with a loaf of artisan bread…not so much. I tried to “hide” a ripped off corner with a napkin, but was immediately called out on it!

  • Lauren @ What Lauren Likes
    November 3, 2011 at 4:08 am

    I love this! They look perfect πŸ™‚

  • Khushboo
    November 3, 2011 at 4:22 am

    Yummm…is it bad I am imagining these stuffed with cheese?!

  • Averie @ Love Veggies and Yoga
    November 3, 2011 at 4:23 am

    The rolls look great and I love her note in the margin “very good”. That’s so cute.

    Perfect plate in the last shot to go with the rolls. I love it…I swear my grandma had plates kind of like that one!

  • Lindsay @ biking before bed
    November 3, 2011 at 4:24 am

    Homemade baked bread is definitely a tradition that I feel is becoming lost. My grandma always made fresh rolls and bread too. Thanks for bringing back the fresh rolls! I hope our generation will take the challenge and start making more doughs from scratch. The burned tongue is a necessary side effect:)

  • Katrina
    November 3, 2011 at 4:27 am

    These sound awesome! The title itself is a winner.

  • Molly @ RDexposed
    November 3, 2011 at 4:41 am

    She has a very technical rating system-I like it! I love homemade rolls/biscuits. The canned stuff annoys the crap out of me!

  • Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat
    November 3, 2011 at 4:45 am

    Mmm ….. these sound so tasty! I love the smell of freshly baked rolls. My mum always tells me a story about how she and her friends were on a road trip many moons ago, and they stopped at a bakery to pick up some rolls as car snacks. She says the rolls were so freshly baked, and they ate them so quickly, that she figures the yeast was still rising inside their bellies!
    Great recipe Jenna!

  • Gina @ Running to the Kitchen
    November 3, 2011 at 4:51 am

    I love her little note next to it that says “very good” πŸ™‚ These are adorable and I’m sure just as delicious!

  • katie @KatieDid
    November 3, 2011 at 4:58 am

    uhhhhg these look amazing. I can only imagine how flaky and doughy these are!!!

  • Heather (Heather's Dish)
    November 3, 2011 at 5:00 am

    i agree, fresh bread just really can’t be beat! these look delicious and so cute πŸ™‚

  • amy walters, aDESIGNdock
    November 3, 2011 at 5:12 am

    Oh these looks…incredible. If I started on these, I am not sure I could stop!

  • Cat @Breakfast to Bed
    November 3, 2011 at 5:12 am

    My MawMaw made a very very similar roll, she used to put flaked salt on top. So heartwarming.

  • Amanda
    November 3, 2011 at 5:17 am

    I completely agree – there is just nothing like the smell of fresh bread. It’s heavenly.

    Even though this recipe makes 19 rolls, I’d bet money they wouldn’t last more than a day or two in my house (and it’s just me and my husband, plus our dog). Fresh bread is just so good!

  • Jen
    November 3, 2011 at 5:24 am

    I like the “very good” note as well – great marker of a recipe to use. Are they ‘crusty’ (hard) on the outside though? Any tips on keeping them from getting hard after a day or so?

  • Caitlin
    November 3, 2011 at 6:03 am

    I love that you have taken on this project! There’s nothing better than a handwritten, yellow from age recipe card. So far, it appears that your great grandmother could COOK! πŸ™‚ The rolls look delicious!

  • kathleen @ the daily crumb
    November 3, 2011 at 6:04 am

    fresh out of the oven bread, with a pat of butter, is one of my favorite things in life. these rolls look heavenly!

    did you use the bread attachment on your kitchenaid? i haven’t worked up the courage to try that out yet!

  • Katie @ cookiesandkimchi
    November 3, 2011 at 6:07 am

    I just want to say I love this recent project you’ve taken up! I have a long winter break from school and plan to use it learning all of my grandma’s recipes. Great job so far!

  • Samantha
    November 3, 2011 at 6:17 am

    I LOVE fresh bread! LOVE IT ! I think I may have to try this, even though I’m terrified of yeast.

  • Cait's Plate
    November 3, 2011 at 6:22 am

    I completely agree – life really IS just better with a little (or a lot) of bread in it. And fresh bread baking in the oven is just one of the best, most comforting smells ever. Have you ever read “How to Bake a Perfect Life”? If not, I highly recommend it as a quick/fun/light read that you will COMPLETELY relate to!

  • Leslie Means @ Her View From Home
    November 3, 2011 at 6:40 am

    My co-worker and I are obviously NOT working very hard…checking out your tasty rolls!! These look fantastic!! Thanks for the early morning break! πŸ™‚

  • Estela @ Weekly Bite
    November 3, 2011 at 6:48 am

    I love rolls like these! So buttery and delicious!

  • sarah k @ the pajama chef
    November 3, 2011 at 6:57 am

    fresh bread is so good! yum!

  • Jessica @ the Learning Curve
    November 3, 2011 at 7:01 am

    These look amazing! Baking bread is truly an art… and I think more of us need to get into it! I can only imagine how good these must smell as they bake. πŸ™‚

  • Mai
    November 3, 2011 at 7:14 am

    The rolls look beautiful! And making my mouth water…

  • Emily
    November 3, 2011 at 7:22 am

    Mmm, I can smell the bread-y goodness from here! You have such a fun project going on right now, I love it!

  • Cassie @ Bake Your Day
    November 3, 2011 at 7:43 am

    You have to trust those old recipe cards that are labeled “very good.” I have a few of those too and they are no-fail recipes. These are beautiful rolls!

  • Gillian G. @ When Bread Is Broken
    November 3, 2011 at 7:47 am

    They look lovely!! I love the (very good) your great grandmother wrote on her card πŸ™‚

  • jenna
    November 3, 2011 at 7:58 am

    i love these they are so cute!!

  • Andrea @ The Skinny Chronicles
    November 3, 2011 at 8:02 am

    I feel better just looking at these rolls. It’s almost like I can smell them through the monitor.

  • Imwaytoobusy
    November 3, 2011 at 8:02 am

    One stick of butter? These have to be good! πŸ˜‰ These grandma recipes will never get old.

  • Annalise
    November 3, 2011 at 8:04 am

    These look divine, perfect for the upcoming holidays!

  • Joelle (On A Pink Typewriter)
    November 3, 2011 at 8:12 am

    There is nothing like old fashioned recipes, especially for baking. These look great for stews!

  • samah
    November 3, 2011 at 8:14 am

    You did a great job with these roll, very yummy, thanks for sharing.

  • Jaime
    November 3, 2011 at 8:25 am

    Oh, Jenna! I haven’t commented recently, but I ADORE this new project of yours! My grandmother’s recipes are some of my most treasured possessions!

    I love the (very good) after the receipe title- my grandmothers always wrote comments like that on the cards, and my mom has started to do so as well!

    These rolls look divine- and I am going to give them a try for Thanksgiving dinner- Christmas as well!

  • deva @ deva by definition
    November 3, 2011 at 8:53 am

    I imagine these would be delicious dunked in some marinara sauce.

  • Heather
    November 3, 2011 at 9:11 am

    Yum, must make those for this weekend!

  • Kelly @ Laughter, Strength, and Food
    November 3, 2011 at 9:37 am

    I am pretty much a carb queen so thanks for another bread recipe! I can’t wait to try these!

  • Lauren from Lauren's Latest
    November 3, 2011 at 9:45 am

    Fresh rolls and soup is such a perfect meal for Fall! Love these cute rolls! They look perfect!

  • Priyanka
    November 3, 2011 at 10:00 am

    They really seem to be ‘very good’. They look so beautiful πŸ™‚

  • Rachel
    November 3, 2011 at 10:11 am

    I love your project! Inherited recipes are the best and these rolls are so classic! I acutally have a similar project going myself with my grandmother’s recipes. I’m not being nearly as vigilent as you are with posting them though.

  • Krystina (Organically Me)
    November 3, 2011 at 10:18 am

    The buttery, brown crust on these is making me swoon. Lovely!

  • Kiran @
    November 3, 2011 at 10:32 am

    Mmmmm.. I love fresh rolls with soups. Heck, I could just smoother it with anything and call it a day.

  • Meme
    November 3, 2011 at 10:53 am

    Those look soo good! I love the way bread baking makes my house smell

  • Jessica @ How Sweet
    November 3, 2011 at 11:23 am

    uh, not only were we on the same page, but we both included a 4 picture collage!! what is going on?!?! lol, love it. yours sound much better because i’d rather eat anything BUTTER CRUSTED. omg.

  • christine @ oatmeal in my bowl
    November 3, 2011 at 11:53 am

    I totally miss the 3×5 recipe cards. Fortunately, my mom has the family recipe book being passed down to me. Can’t wait to recreate all the yummy foods I remember from growing up.

    Speaking of… I need to hit up my aunt to see if she is still creating a family recipe book. Such a great idea.

  • Moni'sMeals
    November 3, 2011 at 1:10 pm

    Fresh bread…nothing beats it! So cute these are. πŸ™‚

  • Lizzie
    November 3, 2011 at 1:40 pm

    My! You have hot buns! πŸ˜‰

    Hee hee hee…

    Seriously, I love this project. I’m glad you’re not healthifying it. πŸ˜‰

  • Jesse
    November 3, 2011 at 1:43 pm

    I love fresh baked bread and baking bread … but I don’t do it often enough. Yesterday I made some very tasty buttermilk biscuits, they turned out very good and looked/tasted like Grands Biscuits πŸ™‚

  • Michelle P.
    November 3, 2011 at 2:26 pm

    Sounds delish! I’m going to try these this weekend!

  • Mikaela Cowles
    November 3, 2011 at 4:17 pm

    Oh man. Well, I think you first had me at the word “butter.” Doesn’t everything taste better with butter? It’s so cool that these are from your grandma. What a treasure you have. How long do they last or can you freeze them?

  • danellesdish
    November 3, 2011 at 4:28 pm

    How nice to have something in your grandma’s hand writing. I love family recipes and cannot wait to try this one.

  • Jess@atasteofconfidence
    November 3, 2011 at 4:30 pm

    I’m going through my grandma’s recipes now, too…and they remind me so much of those. Especially with the little notes like “very good.” πŸ™‚

  • laura
    November 3, 2011 at 4:40 pm

    these rolls look incredibly delicious, i love the shine on them. i want one, in my belly.

  • Hilliary@HappilyEverHealthy
    November 3, 2011 at 4:46 pm

    yum! these look delicious!

  • Christi's Chirps
    November 3, 2011 at 7:59 pm

    These little rolls look amazing! I’m sure they are as delicious as they are beautiful! I’ll have to try this recipe soon!

    Your blog is fabulous and your photography is outstanding!

    Thanks for sharing!


  • Have a wonderful weekend! « My Pretty Pennies
    November 4, 2011 at 2:31 pm

    […] rolls I want to make […]

  • Rachel
    November 4, 2011 at 5:06 pm

    Ohmigoodness, your great grandmother’s recipe card looks almost identical to my Grandma’s recipe cards! Their penmanship is very similar. Fond memories.

  • Vanessa @ Project Zen
    November 5, 2011 at 4:53 am

    Your grandmother writes like mine in her recipes!

    These almost remind me of garlic knots….will give them a try someday!

  • Laura
    November 8, 2011 at 10:33 am

    These are more than ‘very good’! As an avid dough fan – a bad day goes to great after kneeding some dough – this dough was a beauty between the fingers.

    My notes are below:
    – Doubled the recipe for more bun-sized rolls (I was taking these to a Bible study)
    – My eggs were at room temperature
    – I only used the 4 1/2 c. flour
    – Baking time was closer to 15-18 minutes with a pan rotation with about 5 minutes left to avoid burning.

  • Jessica
    November 9, 2011 at 8:28 pm

    Omg. Seriously. They sound perfect.

    Okay, so I apologize for the random question, but the recipe says to mix the flour, baking soda and salt. Then it says to “hide” the salt atthe bottom of the flour. So do I not actually mix it all together? I really want to make these, and I don’t want to mess them up! (I read all the precious comments before asking, and I didn’t see anyone asking. Sorry if it’s a silly question!


  • Kate
    November 10, 2011 at 7:45 pm

    I have been dying to make these rolls since the day you posted about them, and tonight I did! (My first ever attempt at homemade rolls!) They were sooo good, everything I had anticipated and more! They were the perfect pairing with my zucchini quinoa lasagna πŸ™‚ Thank you so much for the great recipe! I love reading your blog every day and am excited to try out more of your recipes!

  • Holly
    November 14, 2011 at 2:16 pm

    I don’t know a lot about freezing doughs/ingredients, so I’ll ask.

    Can this dough be made in advance and frozen?

    If so, do you have any tips on how to thaw it and then use it?


  • Taper Week is Upon Me « RUST BELT RUNNER
    November 15, 2011 at 1:04 am

    […] Less running this week means more time for cooking! Monday night I made Jenna’s buttercrust rolls with whole wheat flour. My belly was bursting afterwards because I basically had rolls for dinner. No shame […]

  • Need some Thanksgiving Ideas? | 6 in the Morningside
    November 15, 2011 at 4:17 pm

    […] Buttercrust Rolls […]

  • Prestashop Templates
    November 15, 2011 at 9:23 pm

    Super Website…

    […] that is the end of this article. Here you’ll find some sites that we think you’ll appreciate, just click the links over[…]…

  • Carlin
    November 16, 2011 at 4:28 pm

    So, do you write about running too? I tried to find entries about the “run” part of your food blog, but couldn’t find anything. Just curious. Beautiful blog with lovely photos and delicious looking recipes!

    • jenna
      November 16, 2011 at 6:06 pm

      Haha no, I don’t write about running. I used to (when I ran) but then I stopped running and instead of changing the name of this blog, I decided to think of the “run” part to mean more of being generally active in life.

  • Thankfulness & a Delicious Success | Elizabeth Skene
    November 26, 2011 at 8:25 am

    […] Things we made: Turkey – a 24 apple brine, then butterflied, rubbed with butter & cooked for two hours GravyΒ –Β  flavored with drippings after the turkey cooked Dressing – with homemade cornbread & toasted pecans Cranberry sauce Buttermilk rollsΒ  […]

  • Crock Pot Beef and Butternut Squash Stew
    October 22, 2012 at 3:25 am

    […] I can’t really think of a more comforting meal for a cold, rainy night then beef stew with a crusty roll dunked in. But yeah…it proved to be quite challenging to make a bowl of brown globs look as […]

  • Brianne
    November 17, 2012 at 7:09 pm

    Made these tonight to “test” before making them for Thanksgiving dinner. Great recipe and delicious, delicious rolls. My apartment smells amazing. The husband loved them. I can’t wait to make a double batch for the holiday. Thank you for the great recipes.

  • Jessica
    November 23, 2012 at 2:10 pm

    Thanks so much for this great recipe!! One quick question. The directions read, “…mix together the flour, baking soda and salt. β€œHide” the salt at the bottom of the flour then pour in the yeast…” So if we mix it with the flour and baking soda, how do we hide it? Should we just mix the flour and baking soda (not the salt?) and then just hide the salt at the bottom?

    I made these rolls last Thanksgiving, and they were delicious! I’m making again now, and in doing so, remembered having this question last year. I’m not sure what I did last year! I wish I would have written it down. :-\ Thanks again!!

  • Sallyanne
    January 31, 2013 at 9:16 pm

    I made these today, and OHMYGOODNESS!! Amazing!! Just curious though I have a little extra dough (I didn’t want to bake 2 trays) so how do you do the cinnamon pull apart recipe option? πŸ™‚

  • Taper Week is Upon Me
    January 5, 2014 at 3:33 pm

    […] Less running this week means more time for cooking! Monday night I made Jenna’s buttercrust rolls with whole wheat flour. My belly was bursting afterwards because I basically had rolls for dinner. No shame […]

  • Slow-Cooker Apple Butter Yeast Rolls | A Spicy Perspective
    February 4, 2014 at 7:32 am

    […] Buttercrust Rolls ~ Eat Live Run […]