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Make-Ahead Frozen Dinner Rolls

I guess you could say I have a fascination with yeast. My hobbies are baking bread and making my own beer and wine.

The finished dinner rolls, fresh out of the oven!

The finished dinner rolls, fresh out of the oven!

A Family Favorite

For many years, my mother (like so many others) cooked most of the food for our family gatherings. Over those years, there were many recipes that we came to enjoy as a family, and now that my mother is getting older, she is not able to make these favorites as often. One of those favorites is the dinner roll recipe presented here.

It has been a favorite with myself and my two sons for many years. There were several times that she would send the extras home with us, only to have my sons sit in the back seat of the car and eat them all during the drive home!

She liked this recipe because she could make these ahead of time when she had more time, and then take them out of the freezer the morning of our gathering, let them rise and bake them.

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So, when my mom told us that she was not going to make them as often, I realized it was time for me to learn the recipe so I could take over the tradition. Both of my sons agreed—and volunteered to help me test the results!

A half batch of rolls going in for baking.

A half batch of rolls going in for baking.


  • 5 1/2 to 6 1/2 cups unsifted flour
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 pkgs. active dry yeast
  • 1 1/4 cups water
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/3 cup margarine
  • 2 eggs, room temperature


  1. In a large bowl, thoroughly mix 2 cups of flour, the sugar, salt and yeast.
  2. In a saucepan, combine the water, milk and margarine.
  3. Heat the liquids over a low heat until very warm (120 to 130 degrees F). Note: the margarine does not need to melt.
  4. Gradually add the dry ingredients to the liquids while mixing at a medium speed with an electric mixer.
  5. When the ingredients are well mixed (~ 2 minutes), add the eggs and a 1/2 cup of flour.
  6. Continue mixing for another 2 minutes, while scraping the bowl to combine all ingredients.
  7. Stir in enough additional flour to make a soft dough.
  8. Turn this out onto a lightly floured area and knead until smooth and elastic (8 to 10 minutes).
  9. Cover and let rest for 20 minutes, then punch the dough down.
  10. Divide the dough down into individual rolls (about 4 dozen), and place on greased baking sheets.
  11. At this point, the rolls can be allowed to rise before baking (step 17), or they can be frozen for later use as described below.
  12. Cover with plastic wrap and aluminum foil, sealing the edges well.
  13. Freeze until firm, and then transfer to plastic bags.
  14. These can be placed in the freezer for up to 4 weeks.
  15. Remove the rolls from the freezer and place on a greased baking sheet.
  16. Cover, and let rise in a warm place until doubled (about 1 1/2 hours or more).
  17. Bake at 350 degrees F for 15 minutes.
A warm roll, just waiting for some butter!

A warm roll, just waiting for some butter!

Taste Testing

So far, my attempts at duplicating my mom's rolls have met with some success, but I realize that mine will never taste as good as hers! However, my sons are being very supportive of my efforts to keep trying, while they continue to judge the results. I think it will be a while before the agree that I don't have to practice making any more.

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