Mini Picnic Rolls

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Mini Picnic Rolls

star rating (15) rate this recipe »
Published prior to 2008

Ah, tuna salad, egg salad, ham and cheese, pulled pork… Can't decide what kind of sandwich to have? Have them all - just make sure you've made them on these tiny soft rolls, just a couple of big bites each.

2 2/3 cups (12 3/4 ounces) King Arthur Unbleached All- Purpose Flour
1/3 cup (1 5/8 ounces) cornmeal or 1/3 cup (2 1/4 ounces) semolina
2 teaspoons instant yeast OR 1 packet active dry yeast dissolved in 1 tablespoon warm water
3 tablespoons (1 1/4 ounces) sugar
1 1/4 teaspoons salt
4 tablespoons (2 ounces) butter
1/4 cup (1 1/4 ounces) Baker's Special Dry Milk OR nonfat dry milk
2 tablespoons (3/4 ounce) potato flour OR 1/4 cup (1/2 ounce) dried potato flakes
1 cup (8 ounces) water

MAKING THE DOUGH: Using your hands, an electric mixer, a food processor or bread machine, mix and knead together all of the ingredients to form a smooth, soft dough. Allow the dough to rise at room temperature, in a covered bowl, for 1 to 1 1/2 hours, till it's puffy and nearly doubled in bulk.

SHAPING THE ROLLS: Divide the dough into 24 more or less even pieces. If you have a scale, this is easy; just divide the dough in half, then each piece in half again, then again, so you have eight pieces. Divide each of those pieces into three pieces, making a total of 24. You can eyeball this (each piece will be about the size of a largish ping pong ball), but it's much easier if you have a scale; each piece will be about 1 1/8 ounces, or 32g.

Round each piece of dough into as smooth, symmetrical a ball as you can. A good way to do this is to first make the top of the dough as smooth as possible by pulling and stretching it downward all around the sides; this will result in a smooth top, and a tiny "topknot" at the bottom. Place the dough ball, topknot side down, on a clean surface (no flour, no oil). Cup your fingers into a claw-like cage (you'll look like someone imitating an angry cat), and using a quick, circular motion, roll the ball within this "cage" of your fingers, allowing your palm to gently touch the top. (Boy, is this ever easy to do, and hard to explain!) This will make the dough balls nice and round.

RISING: Place the rolls into a lightly greased 12-inch round pan; two 8- or 9-inch round cake pans; a 9 x 13-inch pan, or anything of similar size. The rolls should be no farther than 1 inch apart; you want them to touch as they bake, which will give them nice, soft sides. Cover the pan(s) with a proof cover or lightly greased plastic wrap, and allow the rolls to rise for about 1 hour; they'll be puffy, but not necessarily doubled in size.

BAKING: Bake the rolls in a preheated 350°F oven for 22 to 24 minutes, till they're golden brown. Remove them from the oven, and brush the tops with melted butter, if desired; this will give them a soft crust. Yield: 2 dozen 2" rolls.

Tip: For more substantial-sized "slider" buns (square or round), divide the dough into 12 pieces. If you have a scale, each piece will weigh about 2 3/8 ounces. Round the pieces into balls and place them into the lightly greased cups of a square muffin pan (or a standard muffin pan, for round buns). Allow the buns to rise, covered, for about 1 hour, until puffy but not necessarily doubled in size. Bake the buns for 22 to 24 minutes, until golden brown. Remove them from the oven and brush with melted butter, for a softer crust. By the way, we're very partial to using these rolls for pulled pork sandwiches.


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  • star rating 04/05/2015
  • Jan from Al
  • I made these rolls to go with our ham for Easter dinner. They were tasty and soft. I used to always make the Beautiful Burger Buns recipe but that recipe calls for an egg and my grandson is allergic to eggs, so it was nice to find a recipe for a good soft roll that we could all enjoy. Even my daughter, who doesn't usually eat bread, had one, and even took some leftovers home.
  • star rating 12/10/2014
  • Cyndy from Lawton, Oklahoma
  • Made these for a party and they were a huge success. This recipe is definitely a keeper. I was wondering however if I could make these with whole wheat flour? Cyndy
    I think you could substitute up to half the flour with either regular whole wheat flour or white whole wheat flour. I would recommend adding an additional tablespoon to tablespoon and a half of water, because the whole wheat flour will absorb more water. It is also helpful to let your dough sit for 30 minutes after mixing the ingredients but before kneading, to allow the bran in the whole wheat flour to fully hydrate. This will give you a more productive kneading process. For more tips give our Baker's Hotline a call at 855-371-2253. Barb@KAF
  • star rating 10/07/2014
  • nutcakes from KAF Community
  • This is exactly what I was searching for! A soft, plush bun that is egg free. This was super easy to put together, dough handles perfectly. They were just right, in larger format, for sloppy joes, with a slight sweetness, and we ate one hot from the oven plain they were so good. I might pull back on the sugar to try them for hamburger buns. This is going into regular rotation. note: I melted the butter absent directions.
  • star rating 06/26/2014
  • sharonmikefla from KAF Community
  • These are great! Followed directions, used my bread machine for the dough and they came out beautiful. They will become a regular in our home. Thanks KAF.
  • star rating 02/01/2014
  • Robin from Lubbock, tx
  • These are great!!! I live at 3500 feet and I did not adjust for altitude and they are perfect!!
  • star rating 10/04/2013
  • Martina from Michigan
  • I made sloppy joe for supper and did not have any buns to serve them on so I came across this recipe and decided to try it. What a good choice that was, I threw everything in my bread machine hit dough cycle and before I knew it I was separating the dough into buns. The dough is soft and beautiful to work with and the flavor is outstanding. Really complimented the sloppy joe. I will make this recipe many times again. Thanks so much k.a. as I continue to go to you whenever I need a recipe for something!
  • star rating 08/19/2013
  • perduebobgloria from KAF Community
  • This is the absolute recipe ever for dinner rolls/buns!! That said I would Luv to 1/2 the recipe, it's just for two people! Can you assist KAF?
  • star rating 07/08/2013
  • Linda from Alberta
  • these sound great. Haven't tried them yet. However, can you please clarify 'dried potato flakes'? We are in Canada and our brands are quite different with some products. We have discovered to our dismay that even Kraft products differ greatly from Canada to California. We have a product produced in USA that makes a dish of mashed potatoes. However when I tried using some of these dried (can't call them flakes - more like coarse crumbs) pieces in a bread recipe, it was a disaster. Would appreciate a brand name product (USA) to look for. We are in the USA for 4 - 5 months per year and stock up on our favorites that we cannot get in Canada.
    Both Bob's Red Mill and Idaho make a good potato flake. The Idaho brand is called "Spuds".-Jon
  • star rating 12/04/2011
  • deb1223 from KAF Community
  • Ok, they rose and baked nicely, although a bit too crumbly. I realized that I used another brand all-purpose flour - I am thinking that was the difference. I will try it again with bread flour or KA all-purpose. I did not make any changes to the recipe. I'm rating a four because they really turned out other than "user error"!
  • 12/03/2011
  • deb1223 from KAF Community
  • I can't yet rate these but am wondering what I may have done wrong. My dough is WAY too soft to form the rolls. Right now they are rising in the pan - I basically had to plop each in the pan. I didn't make any changes to the recipe....any thoughts? I'm curious as to how they will bake up and will let you know.....
    Did you make any substitutions to the recipe or did you make it exactly as written? Give us a call on the Baker's Hotline and we'll be happy to troubleshoot for you! ~Mel
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