Freshly baked Hawaiian Rolls are a bite of bread that just can’t be beat. Soft, fluffy, and slightly sweet rolls are baked to perfection in just under half an hour. Plus, making the dough is so much easier than you may think! Present a batch of these rolls on your dinner table and watch them disappear.
I’m sure we’re all too familiar with the packaged Hawaiian Rolls you can buy at the grocery store, right? I’ll be the first to admit that they’re definitely not half bad!
However, those little factory made rolls just can’t compare to the real deal. They’re not quite as soft, sweet, or fluffy as these rolls you can easily make from scratch. Plus, you get the bragging rights of “yes, they’re homemade!”
There’s a not-so-secret ingredient in the dough that gives these rolls their sweet flavor and Hawaiian title. Can you guess it? Pineapple juice!
And no, these rolls will not have a tropical pineapple flavor to them. The juice is masterfully mixed with a handful of other ingredients so that when it’s baked, it yields a natural sweetness to the dough without standing out too much.
I love making Hawaiian Rolls pretty much whenever I have an excuse to. Easter, Christmas, dinner parties with friends… You name it! Every occasion is made more delicious with the addition of freshly baked Hawaiian Rolls. Oh, and you must not forget the butter. Buttering up one of these warm, fresh out of the oven rolls is pure bliss.
How to Make Hawaiian Rolls
- Start with the liquid ingredients. Add half a cup of milk, pineapple juice, and honey to a small pot. Whisk to combine and heat on low, stirring continuously stirring. Once this mixture reaches 120°F, remove the pot from the heat.
- Make another mixture. In a bowl for your mixer, add the flour, yeast, and salt. Whisk to combine. Add in the brown sugar, egg, apple cider vinegar and vanilla and mix with a dough hook on low speed until combined.
- Combine the mixtures. Slowly add the warm butter mixture to the stand mixer bowl. Mix on low until the mixture begins to pull away from the bowl. Stop and scrape as needed.
- Form the dough. Increase the speed of your mixer to medium. Mix for about 6-7 minutes until the dough is smooth.
- Let it rest. Remove the dough from the bowl and place it on a floured surface. Gently cover it with a cloth and let it rest for just about 10 minutes.
- Form the rolls. Split the dough into 18 pieces. Roll each piece into a smooth ball. Place the prepared dough balls into a greased baking dish and loosely cover them with plastic wrap. Let them rise for about an hour until they’ve doubled in size.
- Bake. Brush the tops of the rolls with egg wash. Bake at 350°F for about 20-30 minutes. After the first 10 minutes of baking, rotate the pan.
- Butter and serve. Melt the remaining butter and brush the baked rolls with it. Serve immediately and enjoy!
Can I make Hawaiian Rolls ahead of time?
Here’s the deal – these rolls are best served the same day they’re made. That’s when they’re the softest and fluffiest. If you do need to make them ahead, only do so by 1 day and try to serve them within the same 24 hour time period.
Why is my dough not forming a ball?
Before you remove the dough from the stand mixer, it should be elastic and sticky. However, it still might not form a solid ball. That’s okay! And if you notice that it’s too sticky, simply add 2 extra TBSP of flour to the dough.
How to Use Hawaiian Rolls
Aside from enjoying these freshly baked rolls slathered with butter, we also love using them to make these easy recipes.
- Meatball Sliders
- Baked Ham and Cheese Sliders
- Cheesy Turkey Sliders with Cranberry
- Apple Butter Pulled Pork Sliders
Enjoy more of my favorite homemade bread recipes!
- No Knead Sourdough Bread
- Parker House Rolls
- The Very Best Brioche Bread
- Homemade English Muffins
- Garlic Rosemary Focaccia
Get the Recipe: Hawaiian Rolls Recipe
- 5 ¼ cups AP Flour plus extra for work surface
- 2 packs of fast acting yeast, rapid rise 4 ½ tsp
- 2 ½ tsp kosher salt
- 6 TBSP unsalted butter
- ½ cup whole milk
- 1 cup pineapple juice
- 1/3 cup honey
- 2 TBSP brown sugar
- 1 egg, room temperature
- 1 tsp apple cider vinegar
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 TBSP whole milk
- 1 egg, room temperature
- 2 TBSP unsalted butter, melted
- 1 9×13 baking dish
- In a small pot add the butter ½ cup milk, pineapple juice and honey then whisk to combine. Heat this mixture on low until it reaches 120 degrees, stirring continuously (it should not come to any boil, just warmed enough for all the items to combine and the butter to melt). Once it is 120 degrees, remove from heat and set aside.
- In a bowl for the mixer add the flour, yeast and salt and mix to combine with a whisk. Add the brown sugar, egg, apple cider vinegar and vanilla to the bowl and mix with a dough hook on low speed until combined.
- Gradually add the warm butter mixture. Continue to mix on low for 2 minutes until the mixture begins to pull away from the bowl. Scrape the sides of the bowl if needed to make sure everything is incorporated.
- Increase speed to medium and mix for about 6-7 minutes until the dough is elastic and smooth. The dough will be sticky, and elastic yet might not form a solid ball. If needed add 2 extra TBSP of flour if the dough is too sticky during mixing.
- Remove the dough from the mixing bowl onto a lightly floured surface. Cover with a cloth and let rest for 10 minutes.
- Spray a 10×17 pan with cooking spray and set aside.
- Split the dough ball into 18 even pieces that weigh about 2.5 ounces (about 73.93 ml) each.
- On the lightly floured work surface roll each piece of dough into smooth balls
- Place the dough balls into the greased pan. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and let proof in a warm area for 40 to 60 minutes until they double in size.
- Once the dough balls have doubled, Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
- Mix the egg wash topping and brush the tops of the rolls.
- Bake for 20-30 minutes or until golden brown and shiny, rotating after about 10 minutes in the oven.
- Once the rolls are cooked, Melt the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter. Remove the rolls from the oven and brush with the melted butter.
- Serve immediately. Optional garnish of Maldon sea salt flakes is a great enhancement!