Thursday, January 27, 2011


Does anyone else remember when your favorite lunch item at school were those big huge puffy rolls that were served with almost every school lunch? Those were the days! Now it seems like kids are only served prepackaged, warm-up entrees and dinner rolls are a thing of the past.

This dinner roll recipe is the best of the best! They are as good as those rolls made by little lunchroom ladies in hair nets! Sometimes I wear an apron, but never a hair net, and my rolls turn out perfect even though I'm not a lunchroom lady!

This dough can be made in the bread machine, but they are pretty easy. (I'm just very wordy and tell you every single step here!) No Bread Machine Required.

This recipe shared at the Grocery Cart Challenge
SCHOOLHOUSE DINNER ROLLS (Bread Machine instructions)
1 1/3 cup very warm water (hot but no hurt)
1 packet of yeast (or 2 teaspoons)
1/4 cup white sugar

Instructions: Measure the water in a 2 cup measuring cup, add the sugar and yeast. Mix well and set a timer for 10 minutes. Let this get all foamy for 10 minutes and then dump in your bread machine pan.

Add 1/4 cup oil (vegetable, canola, or even olive oil is fine)

Next add 4 cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt.

Set you bread machine to the dough setting. (Mine takes 2 hours.)
When the dough setting is complete, proceed as below by forming rolls, etc.

In a 2-cup measuring cup (warmed with hot/warm water first), mix:

1 1/3 cup very warm water (hot but no hurt)
2 teaspoons yeast (1 packet)
1/4 cup white sugar

Mix well. Set a timer for 10 minutes for this mixture to "proof".

Add the 1/4 cup oil to the measuring cup of this "proofed" mixture.

In a large bowl, measure your flour. Add 1 teaspoon salt and mix very well.

Dump the liquids (proofed yeast/water/sugar & oil) on top of the flour/salt in the bowl. Stir well (I use a wooden spoon). When its too stiff to stir, start kneading in the bowl, twisting and pushing until the dough forms a ball.

This dough has plenty of oil in it so you won't have to add any more flour. You need to knead it for 7 minutes (set a timer).

I was able to pick up my dough and just squish it with my thumbs, stretching and pushing it for the full 7 minutes while I walked around and looked out the windows, etc. The dough will become noticably more "smooth."

After 7 minutes, form the dough into balls (a little bigger than golf balls) and place them in a greased/sprayed pan - so that they aren't touching (1/2 inch apart). I then sprayed my rolls with a little cooking spray (its 100% oil), covered them with a little bit of plastic wrap and put them in my oven with only the light on, and let them rise (approximately 45 minutes) (DON'T FORGET TO TAKE THEM OUT OF THERE BEFORE YOU PREHEAT YOUR OVEN).

When the rolls look all nice and puffy and touching each other... (showing some LOVE!), take these rising rolls out of the oven, and preheat your oven to 375 degrees. DO NOT PUT THE ROLLS IN THE OVEN UNTIL THE OVEN IS FINISHED PREHEATING.

Bake them app. 20 minutes or until they are golden brown.

NOTE: This recipe also makes excellent cinnamon rolls. Just roll out the dough, spread with butter/margarine, some brown sugar and cinnamon, Roll up, slice, place in greased/sprayed pan to rise and then bake and frost.

NOTE 2: Most recipes say you need to let the dough rise, then punch it down and form the rolls. But, over the weekend I tried making these rolls without this step and I couldn't tell a single difference. So, no use wasting time on this step. After the dough is kneaded, form the rolls, and only let them rise the one time prior to baking.


  1. Thank you! Loved these rolls as a kid. Didn't matter what was for lunch if these rolls were part of it.

  2. Let me know if you try this recipe. I think they are perfect! You are my very first poster! Thanks for making my day.

  3. How big should the rolls be, or how many does this recipe make? For those of us who remember the rolls, but from childhood, they seemed bigger....

  4. I remove the dough from the bread machine (it will be kind of puffy). I lay it on a floured surface (for me, usually a plate with flour on it), turn the dough over so that it has flour on all sides. I don't really push too much air out because I like them fluffy! I take a big knife and cut the big dough in half, then take each half and cut in half, and cut in half until the rolls are the size I like. They will double in size. I used one egg in the rolls I made last (posted recently) and it made about 18 rolls. Hmmm... how big? I would say about the size of a pool ball (shooting pool), approximately 3 inches across. Does that help? They get big and fluffy. Not as big as a hamburger bun, but nice size. I have also made them smaller to feed more people and they are great.

  5. I should have said that I keep cutting each section in half until they are the size I like (about 3 inches across).

  6. That's great info. 18 rolls. Thanks so much!



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