Breads/ Recipes/ Yeast Breads

Walnut Potato Rolls with Honey Butter

If you’ve never had a warm potato roll right out of the oven you haven’t truly lived yet.

I say that one hundred percent certainty because eating a potato roll straight out of the oven is, hands down, one of life’s greatest pleasures. It’s better than chocolate cake, better than homemade ice cream and better than those delectable little licorice flavored taffys from Trader Joe’s.

Yep, I’m a bread girl all right.

I feel the need to pause here and let you all know that baking these rolls is a…..project. But you can do it! I know you can. Usually, I like to feature recipes that are easy and can be thrown together on a whim whenever a craving strikes.

Not this one!

While it’s not necessarily difficult, it involves a lot of time. And while I enjoy making recipes that are easy and fast, sometimes I really just like to get back to my baking roots and play in flour all day.

It’s one of those recipes that is perfect for a rainy Saturday afternoon. If you’ve never baked bread in your life, I feel very confident that you can make these and they will be the best rolls you’ve ever tasted. That’s why I love bread baking so much—-true, it takes time but the end result is very, very worth it. And your house will smell amazing! Bonus.

So…you wanna know what makes these rolls so flippin’ soft, fluffy and amazing? Mashed potatoes!

Hence, potato rolls.


If you never have tried a potato roll before, feel assured that the end result will taste nothing like a potato. If you didn’t know there were mashed potatoes in them, you would never in a bazillion years be able to tell. That’s the beauty of it! The potatoes just act as an extra starch to give the rolls an unbeatable fluffy lightness.

The toasted walnuts add a crunch! I used to get nut rolls all the time from a little bakery in Paris. They were always my favorite!

Something about these rolls reminds me of My Antonia or Laura Ingalls Wilder. I mean, I’m sure Ma used to use extra boiled potatoes from dinner to make bread the next day…don’t you think?

(don’t tell me otherwise)

The rolls themselves are slightly sweet and the perfect vehicle for creamy honey butter. Or just an ample amount of honey drizzled over top! If you’re looking for a hard, crusty French roll this definitely isn’t your animal. But if you’re looking for a soft roll to go with your Sunday dinner….bingo!

Two important things though:

1. Don’t use potato flakes (this goes for any situation in life…just don’t do it).

2. Don’t use leftover mashed potatoes that have already been junked up with cream cheese, butter, salt and pepper.

Make these soon! You won’t be sorry.

Walnut Potato Rolls with Honey Butter

makes about 30 rolls

adapted from The Food Network

Print this recipe!


1 large russet potato

2 eggs

1 package (1/4th ounce) dry yeast

1/4 cup warm water (about 100 degrees—bath tub temperature)

2/3 cup sugar

1 tsp salt

4 1/2 cups flour

3/4 cup walnuts

1 stick unsalted butter (+ 4 T for honey butter) , room temperature

2 T honey

1 egg + 1 T warm water for egg wash


Preheat oven to 350. Spread walnuts on a piece of tin foil and toast for 6-8 minutes (watch carefully!) until golden and fragrant. Remove from stove, roughly chop, and set aside.

Bring a large pot of water to a boil on the stove. Peel the potato, cut into uniform chunks and drop into the water to cook for about 20 minutes until tender. When cooked through (make sure by sticking a fork in a piece!), drain water and transfer potato chunks to a large bowl. Mash with a fork or potato masher.

Dissolve the yeast in the warm water. Add the eggs and 1/3 cup sugar to the mashed potatoes, followed by the yeast/water mixture. Mix well to combine.

Add two cups of the flour, salt and the toasted walnuts to the potato mixture and mix with a wooden spoon until a wet, shaggy dough forms. Place a dishcloth over the bowl and set the bowl in a warm spot (I use the top of the dryer) to rise for 1.5 hours.

Beat the softened butter and the remaining 1/3 cup sugar in a stand mixer until smooth and creamy. Add risen dough and continue to beat with your paddle attachment (or dough hook if you have one) adding the remaining 2 1/2 cups flour slowly until all the flour has been incorporated and the dough is pulling away from the sides of the bowl.

Keep mixing now on high for six more minutes until the dough isn’t sticky anymore (though it will still stick to the sides of the bowl).

Spray a large bowl with cooking spray and place the dough in. Cover and let rise for another hour until doubled in size.

Butter a 9 x 13 inch pan. Divide the dough into about thirty small balls and place in the dish. Cover and let rise (one last time!) for 45 minutes.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  After rising, brush rolls with an egg whisked with a tablespoon of warm water (this will make them super duper shiny!).

Bake for 35 minutes until golden.

To make honey butter, cream additional 4 T butter with 2 T honey until smooth (or just mash with a fork). Serve with warm rolls.


about 4 hours


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  • Molly @ RDexposed
    July 18, 2011 at 4:47 am

    Oh wow. Like wow. I can taste these already…. This may be my weekend project!

    Oh and I’ve heard of using potatoes in donuts, too!

  • Baking N Books
    July 18, 2011 at 4:48 am

    Ah – I seen your tweet the w/e about baking rolls – they didn’t disappoint 🙂

    Do you do yoga daily Jenna – even on vacay?

  • Brittany @ Itty Bits of Balance
    July 18, 2011 at 4:51 am

    Potato rolls!? I didn’t even know that such a creation was possible! THANK YOU

  • Nicole @ Making Good Choices
    July 18, 2011 at 4:51 am

    All homemade bread is worth the time in my book. These look delicious and perfect for a special dinner!

  • Janna
    July 18, 2011 at 4:52 am

    Well I would definitely love these because I even love that yellow potato sandwich bread haha

  • Lauren @ What Lauren Likes
    July 18, 2011 at 4:53 am

    Oh mah gosh! I am speechless! ( in a reallyreally good way) haha 🙂

  • Averie @ Love Veggies and Yoga
    July 18, 2011 at 5:01 am

    Jenna omg these look AMAZING!!!

    “If you didn’t know there were mashed potatoes in them, you would never in a bazillion years be able to tell. That’s the beauty of it! ” — I can believe you. Unlike some recipes that promise you’ll never be able to taste the kale in it or other sneaky ingredients, I believe you on the taters just making them fluffy.

    My grandma used to make rolls like this…and eating them out of the oven IS one of life’s greatest pleasures!

    And honey butter…swoon. 🙂


  • amy walters, aDESIGNdock
    July 18, 2011 at 5:02 am

    NEVER heard of these. Potato + Bread = The Best Rolls Ever
    Hmmm…I’m a carb-kinda girl myself. I’m amazed.

  • Brooke @ BittersweetBrooke
    July 18, 2011 at 5:06 am

    I have been so afraid to try yeast breads, not because they take awhile to make but because I’ve had this idea in my head that they are hard to make. But now I really really want to try these! Potatoes and bread, could there be anything better?

  • Kristin @ Iowa Girl Eats
    July 18, 2011 at 5:07 am

    Potato bread is my husband’s favorite thing in the world – if I’m feeling brave enough to work with yeast again anytime in the near future, I’ll be sure to make these for him! 🙂

  • Em
    July 18, 2011 at 5:07 am

    YUM! Not quite up for the challenge of bread baking (or any kind of baking) yet, but the pictures look delicious. Delicious. Delicious!

  • Blog is the New Black
    July 18, 2011 at 5:08 am


    EVerything about this recipe sounds amazing, esp the honey butter!

  • Lisa @ Sunny Seed Stories
    July 18, 2011 at 5:09 am

    Oh my goodness, potato + rolls + HONEY BUTTER! Perfection.

  • Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat
    July 18, 2011 at 5:09 am

    I agree with you wholeheartedly on the potato flakes. It just happens to be a rainy day here… maybe I should just stay home and make these!! 😉 Have a great day Jenna, and I love your new Twitter pic!

  • Caroline @ chocolate and carrots
    July 18, 2011 at 5:10 am

    You had me at honey butter…Yumm! 😉

  • Heather (Heather's Dish)
    July 18, 2011 at 5:12 am

    i completely agree…fresh bread from the oven is definitely one of life’s greatest pleasures! i haven’t made potato bread or rolls myself, but i remember what my mom’s used to taste like – pure heaven!

  • Hayley @ Hayley Daily
    July 18, 2011 at 5:20 am

    These look and sound OUT OF THIS WORLD. Wow!!

  • Gina @ Running to the Kitchen
    July 18, 2011 at 5:22 am

    Jenna- these are a thing of beauty! I want to rip one off the screen!

  • Liz
    July 18, 2011 at 5:24 am

    I starred this post right when I saw the first picture! I am already looking forward to trying them!

  • Lisa @ Dishes of Mrs. Fish
    July 18, 2011 at 5:27 am

    Oh my goodness. I don’t know what I love more these rolls or the honey butter!

  • Lauren at Keep It Sweet
    July 18, 2011 at 5:36 am

    Potato bread is SO good… these homemade rolls must be amazing!

  • jenna
    July 18, 2011 at 5:40 am

    omgosh!!! i can’t believe you just did this to us on a Monday morning!! we are all going to be stuck at work craving these amazing looking rolls!!! amazing!

  • Natalie S.
    July 18, 2011 at 5:40 am

    Those look absolutely delicious. I love potato bread!

  • Tasha @ Voracious Eats
    July 18, 2011 at 5:40 am

    I love potato rolls and I adore honey butter. In fact, I think the combination of honey + butter has to be one of the most magical creations of all time. Could there be anything more sumptuously decadent but so simple at the same time? I think not!

  • Cait's Plate
    July 18, 2011 at 5:50 am

    Oh my gosh – my boyfriend would FLIP for those (I’m feeling like this s a trending theme with my comments, haha).

    You never fail to leave me drooling all over myself day after day after day after day…

    Seriously though, I’m a huge fan of potato rolls and never would have thought to make them myself. Those look truly incredible.

  • Krystina (Organically Me)
    July 18, 2011 at 5:50 am

    As a kid, I used to LOVE potato bread. My grandma always bought it and it was a treat to have potato bread toast and sandwiches. I haven’t had it in years. These rolls look heavenly.

  • katie @KatieDid
    July 18, 2011 at 5:55 am

    ummm the picture of you holding a piece, showing off that flaky doughy inside makes me want to just die and run straight to california. These look SO GOOD!

  • Holly @ The Runny Egg
    July 18, 2011 at 5:59 am

    These look so buttery and delicious! I’m a total bread girl too.

  • kaila @ healthy helper!
    July 18, 2011 at 6:01 am

    Ok I pretty much died and went to heaven when I read the title of this post. 🙂

  • Kristin @ eat healthy. be happy. live well
    July 18, 2011 at 6:01 am

    YUM!! I’m such a bread girl too 🙂 I wonder if this recipe would work with gluten-free flour though…I might just give it a try!

  • Erin
    July 18, 2011 at 6:02 am

    Wow these look fantastic. I would love to make these on a rainy day, or any day that I have free time. It seems like I barely have time to sleep these days!

  • Julie H. of Spinach and Sprinkles
    July 18, 2011 at 6:08 am

    Better than all of those wonderful thinks like cake, taffy, OR homemade ice cream! NO WAY! ….Guess I’ll have to check it out for myself! 🙂
    Happy Monday Jenna!

  • Courtney
    July 18, 2011 at 6:15 am

    When does your cookbook hit shelves!?

  • Joelle (On A Pink Typewriter)
    July 18, 2011 at 6:42 am

    Those rolls looks amazeballs. I think that making rolls and making your own jam are the two ways you know you’ve really made it as a cook, like reaching the pinnacle that I equate my mom/grandma-cooking status.

  • Erika @ The Teenage Taste
    July 18, 2011 at 6:42 am

    Wow. These look truly amazing! So fluffy! 🙂

  • Sara
    July 18, 2011 at 6:46 am

    Looks amaaaaaze! Haha, I totally agree with your ‘no potato flakes’ rule. It’s just WRONG.

  • Estela @ Weekly Bite
    July 18, 2011 at 6:48 am

    There’s nothing better than fresh bread out of the oven!! These look AMAZING!!

  • R @ Learning As I Chop
    July 18, 2011 at 7:03 am

    I LOVE potato rolls. They just seem so decadent

  • Angela (Oh She Glows)
    July 18, 2011 at 7:03 am

    Oh man…the shot of you pulling the roll from the dish is gorgeous! Yum.

  • Kristen @ Popcorn on the Stove
    July 18, 2011 at 7:27 am

    I am such a fan of carbs. I think I could live on them. And a bread that has potatoes in it?? Yeah, I think I’m in Heaven. These look like they are definitely worth the effort. Can’t wait to try them!

  • Paige @ Running Around Normal
    July 18, 2011 at 7:45 am

    Oh my goodness! These sound lovely! I’m totally bookmarking this and bringing it up again when I have to cook for Thanksgiving 😀

  • Jen
    July 18, 2011 at 7:56 am

    I’ve never had a potato roll straight out of the oven, but I agree with you about warm bread…you can’t beat it! Actually, I don’t know if I’ve ever had a potato roll at all. But I loooove honey butter!

  • Trey Schruff
    July 18, 2011 at 8:02 am

    This makes my mouth water. I can’t wait to make these!

  • Jackie @ That Deep Breath
    July 18, 2011 at 8:08 am

    These look great, I’ve had potato bread (love) but never potato rolls!

  • Emily G.
    July 18, 2011 at 8:11 am

    My goodness – I am loving all of your recipes. You’re posting them more than I can make them! LOL!

    When I cook it’s normally for a small crowd – maybe 6-7. I know I could probably half the recipe, but do you think they could be frozen for future meals? And if so, would I need to cook them first and then freeze? I’m not inclined when it comes to the kitchen! lol

  • Urban Wife
    July 18, 2011 at 8:11 am

    Homemade bread is the best! Always worth a few hours of baking and waiting.

  • Amber K
    July 18, 2011 at 8:40 am

    AGH!! I miss gluten so much. Or even having the ability to eat xanthan gum for that matter. These look delicious!! Wow, yum.

  • Rachel @ The Avid Appetite
    July 18, 2011 at 8:43 am

    These look like pure perfection. Perhaps for a dinner party? Who doesn’t love golden, delicious rolls?

  • megan
    July 18, 2011 at 8:49 am

    Hey Jenna, have you ever considered donating what you cook/bake/experiment with to a local food bank? i doubt you put away 30 potato rolls this weekend =)

    • jenna
      July 18, 2011 at 8:52 am

      I actually did put away the 30 rolls this weekend! Whatever Adam and I don’t eat, I give away to friends and neighbors. They are always so thankful for a special treat and I love serving them in that way!

  • The Cilantropist
    July 18, 2011 at 8:49 am

    These sound amazing!!! I can imagine how fluffy they are, because I know my most favorite bagels are potato bagels.

    Oh, and I <3 laura ingalls wilder. I am *definitely sure Ma used potatoes to make bread. 😀

  • Maria
    July 18, 2011 at 8:54 am

    Potato rolls are my favorite! I have never made them with walnuts though. Great touch!

  • Lisa S
    July 18, 2011 at 9:03 am

    I’ve never been a big fan of homemade rolls…but I bet I could eat the whole pan of those!

  • Sarah @ Sarah's Modern Bites
    July 18, 2011 at 9:23 am

    Holy Rolls! These look divine!
    I just so happened to have started a steamy love affair with walnuts so this recipe is now book marked and will hopefully make an appearance at an upcoming dinner party…. would be an awesome Autumn dinner party treat 🙂 With Butterrrrrrrrr. Yum. Thanks Jenna!

  • Katie T
    July 18, 2011 at 9:41 am

    Hey Jenna,
    I’m a total lurker, but I just wanted to say that I’m a huge fan of your blog!! I read it every day, even though I often can’t make whatever drool-worthy dish you’ve created since I’m vegan. I was wondering with these if you thought they would work without the egg? They just look SO good, I’m dying to make a vegan version!!

  • Steph @ Running in the Kitchen
    July 18, 2011 at 9:42 am

    For the love….I have no words. Anything that is bready, light, fluffy and drizzled in honey automatically wins me over. Now I know what I’m going to do with my next lazy Sunday. Thank you, thank you!

  • Emily @ Life on Food
    July 18, 2011 at 9:53 am

    I guess I need to start living. I have made bread before but never potato bread. The honey butter sounds delicious with the walnuts baked in the bread. I hope the temperature cools down a bit next weekend so I can try it out.

  • Heather @ Get Healthy with Heather
    July 18, 2011 at 9:54 am

    I’ll take on your project! I love baking bread and these look so soft and fluffy. Perfecto!

  • Katrina
    July 18, 2011 at 10:09 am

    These sound dreamy. Yum!

  • Rebekah @ PDX Food Love
    July 18, 2011 at 10:38 am

    Love this idea. I never tend to make actual rolls at home… just biscuits or whole loaves. Guess this is the time to try!

  • Julie
    July 18, 2011 at 11:44 am

    I wonder if this would work if you used a sweet potato and some brown sugar. mmmm… experiment time??

  • French Heart
    July 18, 2011 at 12:09 pm

    Anything with ‘honey butter’ in the title has to be a good thing. A major dividend of home-made baked goods is a feeling of eternal wellbeing. I can remember walking into my parent’s home on Christmas to the fragrance and taste of homemade croissants. The care, love and effort Mom put into that never goes away.

    The She who makes everything delicious and beautiful is why ‘home’ is a magic word. 😉

  • Samantha Gagnon
    July 18, 2011 at 4:57 pm

    Hello Everyone, I love Jenna’s blog and have been following her for quite some time. She along with many others inspired me to start my own blog focusing on traveling, food, and yoga. Check it out


  • Maryea {Happy Healthy Mama}
    July 18, 2011 at 5:30 pm

    These look incredible. A total splurge, but worth it.

  • Maddie
    July 18, 2011 at 10:23 pm

    I have never even considered this combination of flavors, textures, ingredients…and it sounds AMAZING! Wondering if pecans would work as well…

  • Betty
    July 18, 2011 at 10:34 pm

    oh wow these look delicioous!!!

  • Dee
    July 19, 2011 at 6:20 am

    Yum, yum, yum! These look mouthwatering!

  • Taysa
    July 19, 2011 at 8:38 am

    I made these yesterday when I was home sick from work. They’re great! But they were more than done at around 20 minutes (I’m only a couple hundred feet above sea level).

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  • AKP (awellspicedlife)
    July 20, 2011 at 4:41 pm

    I made these this morning… and there are SERIOUSLY no words! I started around 7:30 and was totally wrapped up by noon… enjoying one hot out of the oven! They are so fluffy- and your directions were perfect! Not to be a season rusher, but I’m kind of excited about Thanksgiving- and making a double batch for my family! I could literally go on and on about these rolls….

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  • Rita Leonard
    July 23, 2011 at 12:24 am

    I made these tonight. They are just out of the oven. My goodness, my little apartment smells amazing. I didn’t fully read the directions before starting to bake these. I didn’t realize it would be 12 AM and still be waiting to get a sweet tasty bite of one of these. My husband followed me to the kitchen wanted a bite immediately. They taste great! With the honey butter even better. I should of really mashed the potatoes. I have big chunks in my mouth. Still very delicious! Thank you for sharing this recipe!

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  • Camilla
    August 24, 2011 at 1:24 am

    I’ve never made anything from yeast. In. My. Life. And these rolls, were too good to be true. As I am currently studying in France, and doing the whole tiny kitchen, eating petit écolier from the freezer thing 🙂 making bread isn’t all that feasible. But when I visited a family friend who happened to have a walnut tree, fresh honey and millions of potatoes in the garden, the recipe called my name. My fear of yeast notwithstanding. According to my test subjects, aged 7, 5 and 3 they were the best thing they had EVER tasted. And the French know their bread. So thanks for a great recipe! in a tiny town in Vienne they are getting gobbled up

  • Rita Leonard
    April 8, 2012 at 9:33 pm

    Made these again! 4th time and still a hit! Love them!

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    November 18, 2012 at 12:33 pm

    Delicious! Made a lighter variant (less sugar, less fat) with half white whole wheat flour but totally kept the spirit of the recipe. Not disappointed in the least. We’re using leftover rolls for some roast beef and cheddar sliders tonight. Yum–thanks!

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    November 14, 2013 at 1:05 pm

    Is the hydration in the recipe correct or a typo? 1/4 of a cup of water sounded like too little and the dough felt too dry so I added additional some water after the first rise…..I’m on the second rise now, so hopefully these turn out well.

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  • Lora
    October 27, 2014 at 11:20 am

    Love these rolls! Do you think they would turn out okay if I left out the nuts?