Countdown to summer: Beautiful Burger Buns

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Ah, most beloved of buns…

Soft and golden, butter-brushed, seed besprinkled…

Open thy crust to receive a fat, juicy, grill-charred BURGER.

And ketchup. And relish, onions, a slice of orange cheese, maybe a dab of mayo.

Hold the yellow mustard, though. I’ll take mine dark and honey-sweet.

Are you feeling the (burger) love? Getting ready to break out the Weber?

Hope so. Memorial Day is less than 2 weeks away, and you know what that means:

Grill Season!

I’ve read piece after erudite piece about The Perfect Hamburger. Writers wax lyric over fat levels, grind, the addition of salt (vs. topical application), and just how thick is thick enough.

How you’re not supposed to squeeze the meat, just gently pat it. The correct way to get perfectly cross-hatched grill marks.

But very seldom do I read about the burger’s best friend: the bun.

I mean, what’s a hamburger without a bun – Atkins, right? It’s practically un-American to eat a burger bite by dainty bite with a knife and fork, rather than grabbing it in both hands and chowing down.

Yet so many of us settle for those wimpy (as opposed to Wimpy) tissue-paper buns, the ones that squish cardboard-thin under the weight of burger and cheese and condiments before finally collapsing to mush.

When you’ve made an 85% lean ground chuck burger (patted not squeezed, grilled not fried, with DelMonte ketchup, homemade pickle relish, caramelized onions, and a generous crumble of Maytag blue cheese) – why not enjoy a bun with an equally good pedigree?

Introducing Beautiful Burger Buns, the #1 bun at kingarthurflour.com – as voted by you, our chief critics.

Summer’s coming – let’s nail this recipe right now.

Place the following in a mixing bowl:

3/4 to 1 cup lukewarm water
2 tablespoons butter
1 large egg*
3 1/2 cups (14 3/4 ounces) King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
1/4 cup sugar
1 1/4 teaspoons salt
1 tablespoon instant yeast

*If you plan on topping your buns with seeds, use an additional egg – but only the yolk. Set the white aside to use as a glaze once the buns are shaped.

Why the range of water? Because flour is like a sponge; it absorbs moisture from the atmosphere. In summer, or in humid conditions, flour will be “wetter;” in winter, or in dry climates, it’ll be “drier.” Thus, if you’re baking in high humidity, start with 3/4 cup lukewarm water. If you’re in Arizona, or it’s a cold, dry January day in Maine, use the greater amount of water.

Not sure what to do? Start with the lower amount of water. It’s always easy to add more; impossible to add less!

Mix everything together until the dough is cohesive.

If you’re using a stand mixer, knead the dough for about 7 minutes at low-medium speed. You can also knead the dough by hand, for about 10 minutes. Or use your bread machine, set on the dough cycle, to bring it right through its first rise.

However you knead, when you’re done the dough should be soft, smooth, and stretchy; that’s the gluten at work.

See how it clings to the bowl? It should be just a touch sticky.

Place the dough in a lightly greased bowl, or 8-cup measure. I like to use the measure, as it allows me to see how much the dough has risen at a glance.

Let the dough rise until it’s just about doubled in bulk; this could take 2 hours or so, depending on the warmth of your kitchen, as well as its yeast friendliness.

“Yeast friendliness?” The more yeast bread you bake, the faster your dough will rise, due to the spread of wild yeast into your baking environment.

Gently deflate the dough, and divide it into 8 pieces.

This is most easily done with the help of a scale.

756 divided by 8? Looks like about 94g each.

And there you have it: 8 balls of dough, all roughly the same size.

Shape each piece of dough into a smooth ball.

See that crease? An imperfection now will only become more prominent as the dough rises.

Take the time to smooooth those balls by rolling them under your gently cupped fingers.

Ah, that’s better.

Space the balls on a parchment-lined or lightly greased baking sheet.

Flatten each until it’s about 3″ to 3 1/2″ wide.

Like this.

Cover the buns, and let them rise for about 1 hour. They’ll be puffy, but nowhere near doubled.

Towards the end of the rising time, preheat the oven to 375°F.

Brush the risen buns with melted butter.

Or, instead of butter, top them with seeds. Sesame or poppy are traditional; our Artisan Bread Topping is both colorful and tasty.

Remember the reserved egg white? Now’s the time to add 2 tablespoons cold water, and whisk the mixture to a froth. You’re going to paint it on the buns before sprinkling on seeds.

If you’re not using seeds, there’s no need to brush the buns with egg whites – unless you want them to be shiny. In which case, be my guest.

Gently brush the risen buns with egg white…

…and sprinkle with the seeds.

Bake the buns for 15 to 18 minutes, until golden.

Hey, how come there are two pans of buns in the oven? Because I made a double recipe. Yeah, they’re that good!

Remove the buns from the oven, and brush any unseeded ones with melted butter.

Can you brush butter on seeded buns? Sure, go for it. Butter is always welcome, in my book.

Not only does butter give the buns’ crust delicious flavor, it adds a satiny finish, too.

Look at that soft, creamy interior…

Shape the burgers – dig out the condiments – fire up the grill:

Summer’s here!

Now – how about slider buns, perfect for kids (and dieters)?

Divide the dough into 24 pieces, instead of 8. Round each piece into a ball.

Space the balls on two baking sheets, leaving room between them for rising.

Use the palm of your hand and your fingers to flatten each ball; they should be about 2 1/4″ in diameter. They’ll shrink back to a smaller size; wait 10 minutes, come back, and flatten them again.

Cover the pan, and let the buns rise for about 90 minutes, until they’re nice and puffy. Brush with melted butter, as the original recipe directs. Bake in a preheated 375°F oven for 12 to 15 minutes, until they’re a light golden brown. Remove them from the oven, and brush them with butter again.

Place on a rack to cool.

Here are the slider buns with a couple of eggs, for scale; they’re about 2 1/2″ to 3″ in diameter.

Read, bake, and review (please) our recipe for Beautiful Burger Buns.

Print just the recipe.

PJ Hamel
About

PJ Hamel was born in Wisconsin, grew up in New England, and graduated from Brown University. She was a journalist in Massachusetts and Maine before joining the King Arthur Flour Company in 1990, where she's been ever since. Author or co-author of three King Arthur ...

comments

  1. meganchromik

    I just made these on Sunday! They are so easy… and so delicious. If I could always have time to make burger buns, I would definitely make these instead of buying them. We just had more of them tonight with burgers. And I think tomorrow, I may toast them up and make chicken parm sandwiches on them.

    Reply
  2. gene22

    Suggestions for replacing the white flour with wheat?

    Gene, start with replacing half the white flour with ww; let the dough rest for 20 minutes before kneading, for the ww to start absorbing the liquid. If you like the 50/50 version, increase the ww next time. You could also simply use our recipe for Honey Wheat Rolls, shaping them into hamburger buns instead of dinner rolls… PJH

    Reply
  3. daphnewoman

    I’ve been baking these buns since I discovered your Baking Circle years ago. They are simply the BEST and easiest burger buns ever. I mix mine in the bread machine (Love that Zo!) and bake them in the oven. I made a batch last week! Yummy!

    Reply
  4. martibeth

    Without a doubt, these are the best burger buns ever (especially if you follow the original “Moomie’s” buns and add some minced onion and onion powder to the dough); however, P.J. I am sooooooooo disappointed in you – Delmonte Ketchup? Pulleeezze. Only Heinz Ketchup will do.

    Marti, I like the extra sugar in DelMonte – Heinz is too “healthy” for me! :) PJH

    Reply
  5. anitast49

    These buns are wonderful…but beware: once you make them you can never go back to a store bought bun again. I’ve made this recipe easily a hundred times over the past couple of years…always a winner. We use them for hamburgers of course and for sandwiches of all kinds (try a breakfast ham and egg sandwich on them!); they toast beautifully; they smell divine even after a day or two. I had to practice shaping them several times but once you have it down you’ll make them regularly. I do not brush them with butter and they bake up with a nice golden crust.

    I agree – I recently made these with pulled pork for a potluck, and never mind the pork, everyone wanted the recipe for the rolls! :) PJH

    Reply
  6. "Liz Davids"

    I made my own hamburger buns for the first time last night (before seeing this posting). I used a different KA recipe and they turned out well. I used my bread machine to knead the dough and just sprinkled salt on top. Next time I will try these because I like the addition of the egg in this recipe. My husband always complains when we go out to eat that all restaurants use the same generic bun. No complaints last night- thanks KA and PJ for great recipes and the best blog around.

    Just salt on top – I’ve never tried that, but I like the idea. Next time… thanks, Liz! PJH

    Reply
  7. Sandra Alicante

    I make rolls just like these and agree, they are yummy! My family also like them baked with cheese on top. BBQs are taken very seriously here too, often with sardines scenting the air even in the cooler months!

    Sandra, I envy you your fresh sardines! :) PJH

    Reply
  8. Cindy leigh

    My favorite bun recipe. I use honey instead of sugar, and add 3 tbsp of potato flakes. They’re awesome. My daughter likes them made as garlic knots. Roll into ropes and make a knot, and top with half melted butter, half EVOO, mixed with roasted garlic chopped up. You would think it would be an odd combo, but the balance between the sweet bun and the garlic and EVOO is really great.
    Darn this low carb diet!!

    Cindy, I’d forgotten about garlic knots – indeed, this dough is incredibly versatile, isn’t it? PJH

    Reply
  9. Karen

    These buns have become a staple at our house. We have not bought another bun from a store since. They are great! So much in fact I usually make a batch a week and there’s only 2 of us!

    Reply
  10. mnolet

    Well, now I know what I’m going to make with my new oven…

    Now only if we could get this rain to stop so I can use my grill for the burgers!

    -Matt@KAF

    Oh my gosh, Matt, no kidding! Also – those farmers need to get that spring wheat planted; this is really a serious situation out in wheat-growing country. Let’s get all this rain out of the way soon! PJH

    Reply
  11. ewa

    I was wondering if you could make extra and freeze some ? Did anybody try ? Thanks !

    Always an option. Just be sure to wrap tightly in plastic; then over-wrap in foil, to avoid freezer burn. Also, they’re best used within a month. Thaw in the fridge overnight, still wrapped; just before serving, reheat for 5 to 10 minutes, tented with foil, on your grill; or in a 350°F oven. Enjoy! PJH

    Reply
  12. SoupAddict Karen

    Definitely one of my faves. For some reason I’ll never quite understand, I like to scootch the buns close together in a square formation during the final rise so they meld together a bit. After baking, when you tear them apart, they have the white crumb showing on the edges (like bakery buns). Completely irrational.

    BTW, ewa, I freeze the extra dough (after the 1st rise) all the time. Divide dough into balls, wrap individually in cling wrap, then bag together. To use, remove what you need ahead of time (say, in the morning), thaw in the fridge, re-shape, 2nd rise, brush with butter, sprinkle-sprinkle, hokey pokey, turn self around, and into the oven they go. Fresh buns practically on command.

    Good tip, Karen – and, “…that’s what it’s all about!” :) PJH

    Reply
  13. lisisu

    I make these and freeze the left overs often. I do regular size and sliders. This recipe has also been great for hotdog buns. I flatten the eight pieces to rectangles and then roll up into tight logs for the second rise. I sometimes flatten and wrap the hot dogs into the dough for this rise and bake them right in. The kids love these.

    Reply
  14. eleyana

    This is my all time favorite burger bun recipe. I do use part white whole wheat. They freeze and thaw beautifully! Of course they have ruined store bought buns for us. Even if we didn’t have allergies to store bought ingredients, I would rather go without than buy them after having these buns. They are just perfect – not too light, not too heavy; the perfect complement to a fresh grilled burger. I had to blog about them last year they were so good. :D Even my mom, who tends to forgo a bun, finishes every last crumb of one of these. And my dad agrees that they are infinitely superior to store bought. Thanks for the GREAT recipe!

    And thanks to this recipe’s originator, “Moomie,” a long-time contributor to our original community, “back in the day…” PJH

    Reply
  15. Blakeley from Utah

    These look great! I was wondering if I could use the hamburger bun pan that I bought from you guys in this recipe?
    ABSOLUTELY! It will work very well. ~ MaryJane

    Just be aware the recipe makes 8 buns, the pan holds 6 – so you’d need to bake 2 on another pan. No biggie, right? :) PJH

    Reply
  16. kell

    This is great – I am going to try these — in fact, I have been wanting to have a “tosser” party (or otherwise known as sliders) with several types of mini burgers but wondered what I would do for buns — now I know! I am going to make mini buns!! Can’t wait!

    Reply
  17. LeeB

    We, too, love these buns! I also often add a bit of whole wheat or spelt with great results to the recipe. I love my hamburger (and hotdog) bun pans simply because they give me the right size bun for a juicy quarter pound grassfed local beef burger. I use the tupperware-type forms to shape the burgers and the KA bun pan for the buns and it all works together beautifully! Now if my tomatoes would just turn red in time for Memorial Day so we can get grillin’!

    Reply
  18. csrockwell

    These are the best rolls for hamburgers for sure. Or sandwiches. Or as a base for pulled pork or sloppy joes. Or just eating warm off the baking sheet. Or lightly buttered and toasted. Or…
    At least all this rain is conducive to baking!

    Reply
  19. Donna@NothingChocolate

    These look so perfect and so light. I’ll use this recipe as a guide when I bake bread again since my rolls are a bit on the heavy side. And the step-by-step visuals are welcomed! Thank you!

    Reply
  20. gaynellec

    They sound delicious but I have one question. Please tell a southern girl what “and a generous crumble of Maytag” means???

    Gaynelle, Maytag is a really nice Iowa blue cheese. Like most blue cheeses, it’s crumbly; So you just “crumble” a bit over your burger, for a “blue cheeseburger.” PJH

    Reply
  21. ted944

    Hi PJ — My wife was just told that she should not be having anything with cow dairy in it. Can i substitute margarine or butter flavored shortening or something else in this recipe? Thanks!

    Yes, substitute a full-fat margarine (not “lite” or “light”), and you should be just fine, Ted. :) PJH

    Reply
  22. kts

    These look wonderful. I have been curious though if there are any good bread/bun recipes that are yeast free. I have an allergy to yeast, but love bread. Any ideas?

    You can make so-called quick breads leavened with baking powder or baking soda. For savory versions ones you might enjoy with a burger, good examples are Savory Christmas Cheese Bread, Tender Potato Onion Bread, and Cabot Cheddar Soda Bread. While not the soft, tender texture of these buns – they’re more soft/crumbly – they’d defniitely taste good with a burger. Enjoy! PJH

    Reply
  23. chinchillalover

    Try a little sweet baby rays honey chipotle or vidalia onion and you a lip-smacking good burger(of course you cannot forget the caramelized onions.).

    Reply
  24. gbakerusa

    Some time back, you gave a formula for scaling a recipe. Since this recipe makes 8 buns — and your USA pan holds 6 — tell us how to scale the recipe to fit that pan!
    The quickest way to reduce the recipe is to reduce all ingredients by 1/4. That should give you sufficient dough for 6 buns. ~ MaryJane

    Reply
  25. M Davis from Indiana

    I have been making these buns for about eight years. WE LOVE THEM. They are so easy to make I put the dough in my Zo bread maker on the 45 minute setting and they come out perfect every time. The few rare times I have not made them everyone is so disappointed. I will even mix 1/2 of the flour with whole wheat and they are still delicious.

    Reply
  26. Dana

    I love these buns, and am a big fan of using nigella seeds (sometimes called onion seeds, though they’re not) with them.

    Reply
  27. photopiggy

    These look great! Do you think that I could omit the egg completely (egg allergy in our house) and still have success with this recipe? Or could I use something in place of the egg?

    You may omit the egg if you wish. Replace the egg with 2 Tablespoons of water. Frank @ KAF.

    Reply
  28. Patti

    Can I reduce the amount of sugar? We don’t like our yeast bread with to much of a sweet taste.

    Sure, leave it out entirely if you like, Patti – not a problem. Enjoy – PJH

    Reply
    1. Peter

      Hi PJH, I too would like to leave out sugar entirely. But isn’t sugar food for the yeast? So will the bun rise without sugar?

    2. Amy Trage

      You can omit the sugar if you need to, but the buns won’t have as nice of a color on them without it. ~Amy

  29. Kristen H.

    I just made these last night as slider buns and they were AMAZING! Definitely the best buns. We used the leftovers today for lunch as mini ham and cheese sandwiches, yumm!

    Reply
  30. bls

    Gee, all this serious talk about substituting ingredients. All I could think of was that it puts a whole new meaning to the words “You Can Have Great Buns By Summer!” as might be found on the front of a fitness magazine! :) Seriously, it’s a great recipe. You can’t beat homemade buns.

    Yes, many “buns” jokes have sprung to mind with this post, I’m sure; to my mind, anyway! And a fair number of substitution requests – must be the simplicity of the recipe, makes it appealing to everyone. And the more people want to make something, the more diet/heath tweaks are requested. All good… PJH

    Reply
  31. mike

    I actually will NOT eat hamburgers or hot dogs for that matter without a good roll. Which means I have not had very many burgers here in Nashville, TN home of the wimpiest rolls in the world. And as far as hot dog buns go, have to wait till I can get to Panama City Florida where the Publix stocks Martin’s potato rolls.

    Reply
  32. Carol S

    I just made these rolls this morning; they are fabulous and so easy. Definitely the perfect hamburger bun. Your step by step instructions with pictures make it so easy for the novice baker. Thank you and keep up the good work!!!

    Thanks, Carol – hope you have a cookout planned for tonight… Enjoy! PJH

    Reply
  33. cgilsdorf

    I made these today, but after removing them from the baking sheet, the bottoms seemed to be overly browned (although the tops were nice and golden). Does anyone know what this might have happened. Can’t wait to try this recipe again.

    Did you bake on a lower rack of the oven? Or use a dark pan? Either of those may have contributed to overly browned bottoms. To prevent the issue in future, “double pan” – nest two baking sheets together, which gives you a double layer of thickness to protect the buns’ bottoms from the heating element at the bottom of your oven. PJH

    Reply
  34. gaa

    After making these burger buns for the first time yesterday, I will never buy buns from the store again! These were outstanding. I following a suggestion given in another comment and substituted white whole wheat flour for half of the AP. I also used the Artisan Bread Topping. So easy and so delicious!! I assume I can use this recipe for hot dog buns too yes? Just shape the dough in oblong instead of round?
    Yes, you can definitely make hot dog buns with the recipe. Just make little torpedoes with the dough. Enjoy!
    ~MaryJane

    Reply
  35. hornpjh

    These buns are great and very sturdy for hamburgers and sandwiches. The recipe is similar to an old “icebox” dinner roll recipe that I was given by an elderly lady in my Church 30 years ago. I made up this dough recipe on Friday and after the first rise, I cut it in half and refrigerated the other half. We had 4 buns with hamburgers that night. Sunday night I took out of the fridge the other half and formed them into buns and allowed them to rise for about 2 hours and baked them. Wonderful!!!! So don’t be afraid to store the dough in the fridge for a few days and bake off what you need for fresh buns. And, leftover baked buns were great, too.Thanks for sharing your results. Love the idea of fresh buns for two days. ~ MaryJane

    Reply
  36. gaitedgirl

    I love potato hamburger buns. How could I turn this recipe into that? Should I use something similar to the ratio in the Parker House rolls recipe (part AP flour, part mashed potato flakes)? I’ve already told my husband that once we start grilling, these bad boys are making an appearance at our table!!

    How about just using the dough from a potato roll recipe, like the Parker House rolls, and shaping it into hamburger buns? Barring that, you could definitely substitute potato boiling water (water in which you’ve boiled potatoes) for the water in the recipe. Or, stir in 3 tablespoons potato flour. If you want to add mashed potatoes, you’d need to guess at the amount – should work, but I’m not sure how much you’d need to reduce the liquid by… PJH

    Reply
  37. john14596

    If I want 16 rolls, can I just double everything and mix well? Or do I have to cut the yeast down a little?

    Leave the yeast as is, John – no need to double. You may find your rising times a bit extended, but that’s good, since you’re having to shape and deal with double the number of rolls. PJH

    Reply
  38. AnneInWA

    I love these buns! I have been doubling the recipe and making both hamburger and hot dog buns. I was wondering though, do you think that after the first rise the dough would be freezable? I have 5 kids, and time is not on my side! I was just thinking if I took the time to make more batches and froze them I would have little dough balls ready for next time, or when my kids decide in the morning to make dinner hamburgers!

    Thanks PJ!

    Yes, I think this dough should freeze very well. I don’t like to freeze any yeast dough longer than a month or so, as I feel it starts to deteriorate; but with 5 kids, I’m guessing you’d use it up more quickly anyway, right? Enjoy – PJH

    Reply
  39. modwife

    I want to make these, but I only have active dry yeast (Fleischmans). Can I use that instead? If so, do I need to make any adjustments?

    Use the same amount of active dry yeast as the instant yeast called for in the recipe. Be sure to proof your active dry yeast (in 1/2 cup warm water from the recipe – some bakers like to use a pinch of sugar as well) and wait 10 minutes before you add the rest of the ingredients. Happy Baking! Irene @ KAF

    Reply
  40. nursebunny

    These are awesome!! My family went nuts over them and will never touch a store bought hamburger bun again. I was sooo excited to make these and they didn’t dissapoint. KAF is just the best. I would love to come to Vermont and visit (it’s on my bucket list :o)

    Reply
  41. "Just One Donna"

    I made these twice since you posted the recipe, using my bread machine. My family loved the buns and I will be making buns instead of buying going forward. I really appreciate the great recipes you share with us and love your flour as well. It took me a little practice to get the hang of forming the buns, but now I think I’ve got it! Btw, I wrote a blog post about the buns. http://www.justonedonna.com/2011/05/making-perfect-hamburger-buns.html

    Your shaping technique is terrific! Thanks for posting your blog for other customer/bakers to refer to! Irene @ KAF

    Reply
  42. lynna

    These are great! We made the most amazing burgers I’ve ever had the other day, with local grass-fed beef, homemade Worcestershire sauce (Emeril’s recipe, my favorite seasoning to mix in with the beef), sauteed Vidalias, beefsteak tomatoes, and the absolutely most drop-dead gorgeous burger buns I have seen in my life! The taste and texture were perfect too. I covered them with sesame seeds and brushed with melted butter once out of the oven. Husband insisted I make another batch to go with the leftover burgers the next day. The only problem was getting our mouths open wide enough to take a good bite, because the buns kept springing back! Actually, that’s a good thing too.

    Reply
  43. michebaking

    Hi,

    I am planning on using this recipe for my burger buns tomorrow. How do you use dry milk in this recipe? Would it make it better, softer, or more tender? In another hamburger KAF recipe, some members have substitute the water with dry milk and raved about the result. Can I also do this here or is this recipe so heavenly that one would not need to make this substitute.
    Thanks.

    You really don’t need the dry milk in this recipe – it’s pretty perfect just as is – but if you want to add 3 tablespoons instant dry milk, it will make the buns even more tender… PJH

    Reply
  44. Mai

    OMG! These are the best buns ever. I never thought I could make burger buns. I love the soft texture and hint of sweetness. My summer BBQs just got an upgrade.

    Reply
  45. cheechee

    Could this be that good…and this simple? I thought making these buns was a fairy tale. Easy, quick…and so yummy! Not enough words to describe how darn good they were. I can’t wait to have a burger event again, just so I can make the buns. Thanks all!

    Aren’t these terrific? A real win-win-win! Thanks for sharing your success- PJH

    Reply
  46. Susan (NY)

    I made these this past weekend. Delicious! However, my dough deflated when I brushed with the butter. They did not rise again to become a bun but we still ate them. Will make again – trial and error. Thanks KA – just LOVE, LOVE, LOVE ya!
    It sounds like your dough just proofed a little too long. Try shortening the rising time by about 15 minutes and see if that helps. ~Amy

    Reply
  47. ~eric

    Just awesome…….

    Once you make these home-made burger buns, you’ll wonder why you were ever satisfied with the store-bought version! Happy Baking! Irene @ KAF

    Reply
  48. jrmitch

    When I made these buns, they came out beautiful, but a little tough. I would like them to be more tender and a touch sweeter. I’m a novice baker, so any guidance you can offer is appreciated.
    There could be a number of reasons for the tough texture. First, there may be too much flour in your dough. You can learn more about measuring flour by volume here.
    Also be sure that you are kneading long enough and not under-proofing the dough. Please feel free to call our baker’s hotline should you have more questions. ~Amy

    Reply
  49. Joan

    Can substitute sourdough starter for the yeast?
    You can use 1 cup of starter to replace 1 cup of flour and 1/2 cup of liquid in the recipe. If you don’t use additional yeast, it will take significantly longer for the buns to rise, so be sure to plan for that. Happy baking! ~ MaryJane

    Reply
  50. Joan

    Mary Jane thanks for getting back to me so soon.I made these today,doubled the recipe,they were awesome.I just started me a sourdough starter last week so I’ll be trying it with these.I’ve baked off and on with yeast but really have started loving it.It’s my therapy!!!Seeing that dough rise up over the top is off the chain!
    Thanks from a happy Georgia girl<3

    Reply
  51. aprill46

    Can’t say enough good about these buns and the great multi-purpose dough from which they are made. This is exactly the same recipe my grandmother and our entire family has made for at least 60 years as “Ice Box Rolls.” We have enjoyed this dough, usually made in muffin pans as three-part cloverleaves for as long as anyone can remember. The dough keeps well in the refrigerator for 2-3 days in a greased, covered bowl if you want fresh, hot rolls or buns a couple of nights in a row. Grandma’s recipe called for double this amount, but I’d cut it down to this size years ago so that it would stir up in the bread machine. I’ve also subbed a wide variety of flours and whole grains for part of the flour with fine results.

    Reply
  52. Andrew

    “Be sure to proof your active dry yeast (in 1/2 cup warm water from the recipe”

    I really wish this had been mentioned somewhere on the original recipe page! I just followed the instructions and mixed everything together using active dry yeast and I’m waiting for it rise now. Are the buns ruined?
    Not at all Andrew. Active dry yeast likes to have a head-start in a warm water bath, but it will still work just fine in your recipe. You might see slightly longer rise times, that’s all. ~ MaryJane

    Reply
  53. novicebaker

    Hi,
    I tried this recipe and the buns were soft. However they did not brown on the top even after the mentioned time. I brushed the tops with butter. Please let me know what the problem might be here.
    Thanks for the recipe.

    Did you bake them in the upper third of the oven (or at least the upper half)? Usually, the closer to the top of the oven, the better the buns will brown on top. My only other thought would be if you let them rise quite a bit longer than the recipe instructions said; in that case, the yeast may have consumed so much of the starch/sugar in the dough that there was none left to brown… Call our bakers’ hotline if you’d like to discuss this further, OK? 802-649-3717. PJH

    Reply
    1. The Baker's Hotline

      I would actually suggest to use a non-diastatic or a malt syrup. Both contain sugars that will help increase the browning in your breads! Jon@KAF

  54. Rpheinze

    What do you cover them with after shaping them. I used plastic wrap and they all severely stuck to the plastic and ruined the shape. Help!

    I usually take a big, lightweight plastic cover, like the lid of a deli platter, and put it over them. If not that, then HEAVILY greased plastic wrap, laid on very, very gently… PJH

    Reply
  55. Rpheinze

    Thank you so much. I will do that next time. I reshaped them and let them rise again for 30 minutes without a cover, eggwashed and seeded and they are the most wonderful buns ever. The flavor was wonderful, I didn’t taste the sugar like I thought I might from some of the other comments. I will make these again and again. Can’t wait to make sliders for a party!

    Reply
  56. Kristen Yaun

    I made these twice, using yeast from 2 different packets. The dough was tough and tore easily both times, but I can tell the yeast is still alive in one batch and may have a fighting chance. Any reason for this?
    I don’t think the yeast is the problem. I have a feeling you may have too much flour in the dough–that can definitely make it tough. If you dip the cup directly into the flour to measure, you can end up with 20% more flour than you need in a recipe. We recommend measuring flour this way: http://www.kingarthurflour.com/recipe/measuring-flour.html. If your dough is tearing easily, that is usually a sign of an over-worked dough. Please give us a call on the Baker’s Hotline and we’ll be happy to help troubleshoot! ~Mel

    Reply
  57. Brenda Vincent

    I made this dough in the bread machine. SIMPLE! They were delicious. I can’t wait to make them for some pulled pork sandwiches!

    Reply
  58. sohn

    Fabulous buns and they went well with the burgers tonight! Thanks very much for such an easy recipe. We’ll never go back to store-bought buns again!!!

    “Never go back to store-bought again” – those magic words we love to hear… Thanks for sharing your success here. PJH

    Reply
  59. vvannatta

    I made these beautiful buns for our Memorial Day cookout and they are amazing! Finally a bun that brings something to the party. Add me to the list of “never going back”… I’ve only been baking bread for a couple of months but these were so easy, I baked like a pro! Thanks for the step by step instructions.

    This is one of the most popular recipes on our site – so glad you discovered it! PJH

    Reply
  60. mandygirl

    If I wanted to add cheese to the tops…would I use an egg wash or can I get away with butter and sprinkle cheese on top :-)
    I would go with egg wash for better sticking! Betsy@KAF

    Reply
  61. Starryeyed

    Wow, these are perfectly yummy! Super easy to make. My 1st and 2nd rises were a bit shorter than than listed probably because my kitchen is pretty warm and I bake a lot of bread. Just wondering is there a sourdough variation of this recipe? Thanks for the great recipe!

    No sourdough version – but that’s a great idea. You might try the dough from these Buttery Sourdough Buns, shaped into hamburger buns instead; the recipe was actually based on Beautiful Burger Buns. PJH

    Reply
  62. wingboy

    Whipped up a batch of these, scaled at 50 grams each, for pulled pork sliders on the 4th of July. Substituted WWW for 1/3 of the AP and they came out perfect!

    Ellen (AKA Moomie) sure came up with a good recipe!

    She sure did, WB – these burger buns are just about perfect, aren’t they? Definitely my standby for burger/dog buns. And a good candidate for subbing in some www, as you found. Hope you enjoyed everything about your Fourth – loved your FB post… :) PJH

    Reply
  63. "Momo "

    I made these last week and froze them. I’ll never buy commercial hamburger or hot dog buns again! These are so much better, and they don’t get all crumbly in the freezer like the commercial ones do! My husband just keeps raving about these as he had one every single day for lunch! I’ll be making more this afternoon, and enjoying the best buns we’ve ever eaten. Now I’m going to have a look at that sourdough bun recipe……..

    Reply
  64. wvcapt

    Fantastic buns. Made them in my outdoor grill on parchment paper on a pizza stone. Next time plan to use some whole wheat flower. I also plan to shape some into hot dog rolls and see how that will work. Thanks for the recipe.

    Reply
  65. jtee4short

    I’m a very inexperienced yeast bread baker and rely extensively on the blogs for guidance. With the excellent pictures and step by step instructions I haven’t had a flop yet! I made seven buns and one hot dog bun from this recipe and topped them with the “Everything” mixture. Fantastic, although the hot dog bun was about 2+ inches too long. I just cut one end off and toasted it this morning to go with my omelet. Yum!

    Thanks, that pleases us to no end. Our goal is to teach everyone to bake – and I’m especially keen on yeast breads. SO happy this blog format is working for you. Remember, practice, practice… even the “flops” will be tasty! Thanks for your feedback here – PJH

    Reply
  66. Dee4242

    Have always wanted to bake great yeast breads, and have tried a couple of times and bombed. After reading most of the reviews, I could hardly wait to try this again. Your photos and detail helped tremendously. Now all I can say is “wow, that was easy”. I made the burger buns with sesame seeds. Picture perfect, the texture is Light and airy, and tastes great. Thank you. I am off and running on my next bread making adventure now.

    Dee, SO glad to hear this blog helped launch you on what’s sure to be a happy journey into the world of yeast breads. Thanks for reporting back here – and enjoy! PJH

    Reply
  67. brown114

    made these yesterday….Oh My!! didn’t know burger buns could be so amazing!! took all my store bought buns and gave those to my chickens! No one in my family will ever be satisfied with store bought again…and they were so easy. They turned out extra fat (?) but incredible! thank you!

    Welcome to the Homemade Burger Bun Side – you’ll never serve store-bought again! Happy Baking! Irene @ KAF

    Reply
  68. "Momo "

    I watched a video of Jeffrey Hamelman shaping buns like these and am happy to say that I have mastered the technique. I want to share the recipe and video with a friend, but I can no longer find it; can you please point me to it? It is a masterpiece! Did I mention how much we love these buns? They don’t fall apart with saucy fillings like pulled pork barbecue! They hold up to the last bite. I do add diastatic malt to the recipe for added structure; I’m not sure that’s what does it, but whatever it is, I’ll never buy another bun unless I’m forced to. Thank you for this wonderful, magnificent recipe, and this whole site. I love learning from you all. Hugs!

    Reply
  69. JaneMcCallCooks

    Made these definitely beautiful buns yesterday. They are a big hit. The only change I made was to reduce the sugar to 2 Tbs since we prefer a less sweet hamburger bun. I used my bread to to the mixing and it worked perfectly. It produced nice soft, springy dough. My buns looked exactly like your pictures at all the stages. Amazing! My husband was totally impressed! He said it was the best bun he had ever had, and I totally agree. The buns are tender, but substantial – they hold up to a big, juicy burger with plenty of toppings. (Personally, I hate buns that collapse and get soggy.) I am going to make hot dog buns next time. Can hardly wait. Thanks King Arthur, for a great recipe!

    Sounds like you’re a natural! This recipe will absolutely make fine hot dog buns. Just follow the hot dog recipe for working with the dog. Best, Kim@KAF

    Reply
  70. Endang

    Hello PJ, I want to share one of my experience using your burger bun recipe. They are absolutely gorgeous and delicious! I love it very much and always using your burger recipe to make burger bun at home. My blog reader also love it. I’ve already tried so many recipes from this blog and all is great! This is my burger bun posting using your recipe, very beautiful right? ^_^
    http://www.justtryandtaste.com/2011/07/obsesi-roti-7-membuat-roti-burger.html

    Reply
  71. annwexler

    Am going to make these NOW. A question about the picture of the ingredients pre-mixing: is that the butter, melted, that’s been added? Maybe that’s the egg. (I guess my question is do you need to melt the butter before adding.) I saw margarine could be substituted for butter — what about a liquid vegetable oil? Thanks so much!
    You can use butter, margarine or oil. The butter doesn’t have to be melted, but does need to be soft to incorporate well. ~ MaryJane

    Reply
  72. Becky

    This has been my very favorite recipe ever! My family loves these rolls (I bake them all different sizes.) I have a granddaughter allergic to milk and dairy products and I substituted olive oil for the butter and now she can eat the rolls and no one can taste the difference. Thank you, Moomie!
    Hurray for Moomie! ~ MaryJane

    Reply
  73. Stacie

    Love these buns, but don’t always have time to make them, how would I double the recipe so I can freeze extras?
    Thanks!
    Absolutely! They freeze well for up to 3 months! ~ MaryJane

    Reply
  74. tabfanatic

    I made these this weekend and it was great! I felt like had conquered a baking Everest. Light but much more sturdy that store bought. Thanks KAF!!

    Reply
  75. Ashley

    I think these are amazing!!! But I was wondering if I wanted to do whole grain for a healthier bun would I do all whole grain or part? Is it possible with these buns or will it change them too much? Oh and they are good with garlic.

    Ashley, try substituting 1 cup whole wheat flour (preferably white whole wheat) for 1 cup of the AP flour. Let the dough rest for 20 minutes before kneading. If you like the result, you can increase the ww flour the next time you make the buns. Good luck! PJH

    Reply
  76. steveallennh

    I have tried several of the bun recipes, have decided I like this one the best and it is simple for me to do. I always weight the ingredients in grams and put everything in my Cuisinart mixer, using the dough hook and a rubber spatula, mix on 1 until everything comes together, then on 3 for 7 minutes for the kneading process, remove dough hook, cover dough with plastic wrap in mixing bowl. First rise generally 90 minutes, though yesterday it was so hot, it was only 30 minutes. Take dough out of mixer onto bamboo cutting board, divide into 8 pieces, round the pieces into a ball, place on muffin top cookie sheet. when raised put in preheated oven. When the buns come out of the oven, brush top of buns with butter. Cleanup is a breeze, dough hook, mixer bowl, rubber spatula and baking pan. The key to getting good buns is to let them rise sufficiently. I used Demerara sugar for a wonderful taste. Will also try the white whole wheat flour next time.
    Thanks so much for sharing your experiences. Community baking tips are the best! ~ MJ

    Reply
  77. ms

    Why do you flatten the slider version twice, with theb10 minute rest between?

    Simply to get them to the diameter I’m looking for. Usually when you’re flattening yeast dough, it shrinks back a bit. If you wait 10 minutes and flatten it again, it’ll be flatter (wider diameter) than it was the first time you flattened it. Remember, the more you pound on dough trying to flatten/stretch it, the more it’ll fight back. So pull and flatten gently, and as soon as it starts shrinking back – walk away. When you come back, it’ll cooperate! PJH

    Reply
  78. Ms

    Well I followed the twice flatten for the slider version and wow!
    Wonderful, buttery WOW!

    Great! Thanks for sharing your enthusiasm here – PJH

    Reply
  79. Cy

    I followed this recipe and it took only about 20 mins for it to rise. That quick? I’m afraid If I did anything wrong..

    Heat and humidity…..also make sure you’re not forgetting the salt. Salt helps keep the yeast “in check”. Betsy@KAF

    Reply
  80. Lisa

    Can these be made gluten free

    Unfortunately we have not tried this recipe with gluten free flour. It is very likely that an independent recipe will need to be used. I have heard that several of our customers have had success with making rolls using our hamburger pan and our gluten free bread mix/recipe.-Jon

    Reply
  81. Susan Williamson

    I just had to try these today for use with my new KA hamburger bun pan. I am so glad I did because they are fabulous!
    Since I don’t like to use white flour, I tweaked the recipe a bit by using two and one half cups sprouted wheat flour and one cup white whole wheat flour. I added some dry milk with one tablespoon vital wheat gluten, and then mixed in the organic six grain flakes along with a tsp garlic powder and a sprinkle of minced dried onion. The Zo mixed the dough well, although i kept watch as i needed to add a few more spoons of water during the knead cycle.
    I just joined the ‘never buy store-bought buns again’ club.
    I am so pleased you are now a tried and true member of the club! Elisabeth

    Reply
  82. gin914

    I love these buns, I have been making them for years. But I just received the King Arthur bun pan and used it with this recipe. I used the same baking time as always, and my buns were over done. If you have this pan, the baking time needs be be shortened a little. I hope this helps someone!
    True, true. Our USA Pans do speed up the bake time slightly and when you have a dough that is not lean, be a little careful. Elisabeth

    Reply
  83. Chandrika

    These buns look perfect for my sweet kid. I want to double the recipe and fill some cheese inside bun to make them stuffed buns. do I need to double the amount of yeast also?
    Oh, I know he will love you for it! Yes, double the yeast. Elisabeth

    Reply
  84. Karen George

    I live at 7200 feet & 1tblsp of yeast sounds like a lot to me for this recipe. At this altitude, I usually cut the yeast amount in half (i.e., Classic Sanwich Bread recipe).

    Is that a good idea for this recipe?

    Thanks!

    Reply
    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Yes, I would absolutely cut the yeast in half! Also, if you haven’t I would take a look at our high altitude baking page. It should have even more helpful hints and tips. Jon@KAF

  85. Cindy

    I just made these buns. I left out the butter topping, the egg white glaze, used just the egg in the recipe. I used 1 cup of whole wheat flour, the rest bread flour. I added 3 T of psyllium fiber, as I do to all of my bread recipes. I used my bread machine dough cycle, then shaped and rose and baked on cookie sheets. The buns are just…fabulous. Next time I make them, I will add more whole wheat flour, and keep track so that I know where the “stopping point” is regarding percentage of whole wheat vs. white. I want them to be soft and delicious, but also as nutritious as possible, and “white bread” doesn’t do it for me. Thank you for this recipe!

    Reply
    1. MaryJane Robbins

      Hi Cindy,
      It’s great that you are doing your own experiment with the recipe as a base. Rock on! ~ MJ

    2. Cindy

      I forgot to mention…I used 1 1/2 t of bread machine yeast. For my bread recipes that I make all the time, I am accustomed to using two t, and it is the same amount of flour as in this bun recipe. So I compromised.

      Tomorrow I am going to make another batch for the freezer. I am going to use 1 1/2 cups of wheat flour, see what happens.

      Did I mention…..use these for fish sandwiches (make your own tarter sauce from sweet pickle relish, some horseradish, a bit of Miracle Whip (or whatever else you want to use) and use frozen breaded fish (I know….fattening….but I keep the “sandwich size” frozen fish in the freezer for when we just need a quick lunch or a treat); fried egg/cheddar cheese sandwiches….what you might normally use bread for. After slicing in half, grill the insides on the pannini maker (my FAVORITE kitchen gadget after my bread machine)….possibilities are truly endless. I don’t know why I never thought about making buns before!

    3. The Baker's Hotline

      Once you cross that bridge to make your own burger buns, the whole world of sandwiches opens up – Happy Baking! Irene@KAF

  86. sohn

    The absolute best recipe for buns! I continue to make them, time after time. They’re great for burgers, sloppy joe’s, sandwiches, etc. So easy to make! Thank you!!!

    Reply
    1. PJ Hamel , post author

      You’re very welcome. This is the #1 recipe people visit on our site, so you’re not alone in your appreciation! PJH

  87. jm

    I made these today using only (white) whole wheat flour. I added 2 tablespoons of vital wheat gluten and otherwise followed the directions as written. The buns are absolutely perfect! A beautiful rise and so delicious!

    Reply
  88. Martin

    Hi,

    I’ve made the buns three times already and I loved them every time. But I have one question regarding the ingredients: Is the butter only used for brushing the buns or are the two tablespoons part of the dough?

    Thx,
    Martin

    Reply
    1. The Baker's Hotline

      The two tablespoons in this recipe is added to the dough! The topping is then brushed on the bun. Jon@KAF

  89. MNK

    Hi – I have made these buns several times and they always turn out great. How can I store them so that they don’t dry out the next day – my problem is that they tend to become a little dry (or drier) very quickly.

    I have put them in plastic tins, wrapped them in plastic bags, but no luck. Any suggestions? Many thanks!

    Reply
    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Unfortunately, fresh breads are always going to dry out to some degree when stored. You may want to try adding about 1 tsp of cake enhancer per cup of flour with an additional 1-2 tablespoons of water. The cake enhancer will help to hold onto moisture in the bread, so they should keep better. Jon@KAF

  90. Vanessa Cook

    These are the best buns ever, however, I am making them for the 3rd time and after kneading the dough it stiff and not sticky. What did I do wrong? Did I knead too long? I ended up adding a little extra water and flour to see if that would help and it didn’t.

    Reply
    1. Amy Trage

      Hi Vanessa! You may have too much flour in your dough. Be sure that if you’re measuring by volume, you’re not getting too heavy a cup of flour. Find more information about measuring flour here. ~Amy

  91. Matt

    Hi,
    I’m a newb. What does it mean when you say cover up you buns? I’m not sure how or what to cover with. Do they need to be covered in both risings?
    Cheers

    Reply
    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Grandma used a clean kitchen towel to cover the dough while rising, as well as covering shaped yeast rolls or burger buns. This prevents the top surface from drying out. We like to use plastic wrap as it traps the warmth of the dough/rolls to encourage the rise – and let’s face it, most of our towels are not as nice (lint free) as Grandma’s. Happy Baking! Irene@KAF

  92. Heather

    Just made these and they were absolutely fantastic!! They made the burger a million times better! No more store bought. The best part, it was a super easy recipe! Thanks!

    Reply
    1. The Baker's Hotline

      You can’t go back to a store bun once you have made a homemade version. Same goes for our recipe! Jon@KAF

  93. Christine

    Made these yesterday – they look and smell great (nice rise, but not as smooth as I’d like, but hey, I’m just learning to bake). I baked them for about 18 mins. total, not wanting to dry them out, but the tops never reached that beautiful golden color – they’re a tad pale. What went wrong?? Thanks!

    Reply
    1. The Baker's Hotline

      There could be several reasons why this happened Christine. Any change to the sugar or salt could have altered the browning. Also, did you make sure to brush the buns with butter before baking? The butter helps the buns to brown better (along with imparting a delicious flavor). Please feel free to call our Baker’s Hotline if you want to troubleshoot over the phone, we’d love to chat. Jon@KAF

  94. Christine

    Ah ha! I DIDn’t brush with butter first! Would I be able to “re-heat” them in a lower temp oven WITH the butter brushed on, just to make them look nicer???

    Reply
    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Absolutely, the melted butter really can go on at anytime, and reheating the buns certainly won’t hurt, so feel free to add it on whenever you like! Happy Baking! Jocelyn@KAF

  95. Carr

    These were heavenly! Made them for the first time yesterday – the recipe is easy to follow, the pictures were so helpful for a novice baker like me, and they turned out irresistibly scrumptious – the perfect blend of soft and fluffy and chewy. I’m from England, so I needed to convert measurements – for those in the same situation, you’ll need 30g butter, 200-240 mls water, 420g flour, and 50g sugar. I used active dry yeast, of which the equivalent is about 6g. As for “all-purpose flour”, I mixed proportionally 2/3 bread flour and 1/3 plain flour. Thank you sooo much for this recipe, I can’t wait to bake more!

    Reply
  96. Angela

    I love this recipe as written, but I love it even more since I adapted it to 100% home ground wheat four.

    I used hard red spring wheat that I weighed and then milled between fine and medium on my grain mill then I did an autolyse for about 30 minutes with the flour and water. I found that I needed about 1/3 cup more water than the AP flour recipe. After the autolyse I added all the remaining ingredients and kneaded the dough. The rest of the steps are the same, but it only required maybe 30 minutes for the second proof after shaping. I baked these in the USA Pans for burger buns that you sell. The texture of the crumb was just wonderful. No bricks here, just the perfect balance of lightness with a good substance to contain the sandwich filling.

    My daughter said they are even better than the white flour version.

    Reply
  97. gehk

    After shaping into balls I have topped them with HEAVILY greased parchment and another baking sheet. They don’t go up much and still retain their beautiful roundness. Also, I used 95 grams of dough for hamburger buns, haven’t made sliders yet.

    Reply
    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Thanks so much for your tips! We flattened our buns in a similar way at a bakery I worked for. Barb@KAF

  98. member-bsarchett

    I must say these are the best!! Made the dough in the bread machine so super easy. I don’t want to eat a store bought bun ever again! Thanks for the easy recipe!

    Reply
    1. The Baker's Hotline

      You can make this substitution, Cory, but the bread flour will absorb more liquid and will give you a chewier result. I would recommend adding 1 tablespoon extra liquid per each cup of bread flour substituted. Barb@KAF

  99. Phyllis

    I would love to make these ahead by par-baking and freezing for the equivalent of “Brown and Serve.” Any suggestions on par-baking time and temp? Final bake time and temp?

    Reply
    1. Susan Reid

      Phyllis: bake the buns for 12 to 13 minutes; they should be fully risen and set, but not very brown. Remove, cool to room temperature, wrap and freeze. To parbake, put in a preheated 350°F oven (no need to thaw first) for about 10 to 12 minutes, until they’re browned as much as you want them to be. Susan

    2. The Baker's Hotline

      For par-baking you want to be sure the buns are fully baked, but not yet fully browned. I would lower the baking temperature to 350 degrees and would aim for at least 190 degrees internal temperature. On the other end I would let the buns thaw and place in a 350 degree oven until browned. Generally this process is used with a crustier loaf, so this may cause the buns to be a bit drier or crustier. Brushing with butter before reheating may help with this. I don’t have exact times, but keep an eye out for color and internal temperature. Or you could freeze the fully baked buns and reheat wrapped in foil. Barb@Kaf

    3. Angela

      They freeze beautifully fully cooked. I actually slice and freeze every time I make them so I always have the on hand. I pop them in the toaster oven to thaw.

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