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Soft Sourdough Rolls

Soft Sourdough Rolls
Skip the store bought rolls when you are grilling. These rolls are the perfect balance of sourdough flavor in a light and soft roll!
Yield 12 rolls



  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, cut into chunks
  • 4 cups bread flour (divided)
  • 1 cup Sourdough Starter
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 (0.25oz) package (7g) or 2 1/4 teaspoons Platinum Yeast
  • 2 teaspoons table salt
  • Egg wash: beat together 1 egg + 1 tsp water (optional, for topping)
  • Sesame seeds (optional, for topping)


  • In a small microwave safe bowl or liquid measuring cup, combine the milk and butter. Microwave on high for about 1 minute, until the mixture is warm to the touch (about 120-130°F). The butter does not need to melt completely, but it should be soft. Transfer the milk and butter to the bowl of your stand mixer.
  • To the butter and milk mixture, add 1 cup of bread flour, sourdough starter, egg, honey, yeast, and salt. Using the paddle attachment, beat for 2 – 3 minutes on medium speed, until the mixture is very smooth.
  • Switch to the dough hook and gradually add the remaining bread flour while mixing on the lowest speed. Continue to mix until the dough comes together and forms a smooth ball, approximately 4 – 5 minutes.
  • Transfer the dough to a lightly oiled bowl, turning to coat each side with oil. Cover and let rise until the dough almost doubled and the imprint of two fingers remains.
  • Punch down the dough and divide into 12 equal portions. Shape into rolls (round, oval, etc.) and place on baking sheets lined with parchment paper or silicone mats. Cover and let rise until puffy, about 30 minutes.
  • While the rolls rise, preheat the oven to 400°F.
  • Optional: before baking, brush the rolls with egg wash (1 egg beaten with about 1 teaspoon of water) and sprinkle with sesame seeds. Slash with a sharp knife, if desired.
  • Bake the rolls for 15 – 17 minutes, until golden on top and hollow sounding when tapped lightly. Let the rolls cool on the pan for 10 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.


Unlike a lot of sourdough recipes that require that you use a “fed” sourdough starter, this one will work just fine if you just pull the starter right out of the fridge. In fact, it uses 1 cup of starter, which is just the amount you need to discard when feeding your starter.
Recipe by Jen Schall.

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Review & Comments

Patricia Powell | Reply

5 stars
CAN YOU HAVE THIS A LITTLE SWEETER AND STILL RISE & BAKE GOOD. The recipe was easy to follow and made more than the 12 rolls. Great flavor and rose extra well. Thanks, Pat

Red Star Yeast | Reply

Hi Patricia,

You can certainly double the honey and you will still get a good rise.

Happy Baking!

Mary Allen | Reply

5 stars
I have made these several times with unfed and fed starter, they are so soft and delicious . I use my bread machine to mix and then transfer to a bowl to rise.

Sue | Reply

So this recipe uses a packet of yeast in addition to the cold sourdough starter. Is the yeast intended to give lift to the final product, or just to get proofing started until the sourdough starter can kick in adding lift and the sourdough flavor to it?

Red Star Yeast | Reply

Hi Sue – the yeast will help with the rise throughout the process and during the oven spring.
Happy baking!

Larry | Reply

In this recipe can the Platinum Yeast be substituted for Red Star Active Dry Yeast

Red Star Yeast | Reply

Hi Larry – Yes it can! Keep an eye on the dough as rise times may vary.
Happy baking!

Annabelle | Reply

4 stars
Made these rolls/buns yesterday and the resulting product was great; soft, cushiony, and very tasty. I used my own Sourdough Starter, which I’ve been nursing for ~2years, and it worked well. Also added about 2 tsps. of “Everything Topping” to the dough and on top of the rolls after applying the Egg Wash. Baked for 16 min. and cooled as directed. Thanks for sharing this recipe; will keep it in my baking library.

Sadie | Reply

5 stars
Great rolls. Crumb is soft, dense and chewy. I added 1/8 tsp citric acid to enhance the sourdough flavor. Scalded the milk, then added the butter and let the mixture cool to 120°. Dough was smooth, soft, a bit slack and slightly tacky. Made 8 large rolls using about 130 grams of dough for each roll. Brushed the tops with egg wash and sprinkled with a Za-atar mix. Delicious!!

Jane | Reply

5 stars
These came out great and super easy to make!

Jeannie | Reply

Can the sour dough yeast be used without the sour dough starter to make soft rolls? Will the taste have a slight sour dough taste? If so, please post a recipe. Thank you.

Red Star Yeast | Reply

Hi Jeannie,
The Platinum Instant Sourdough Yeast will give any non-sourdough yeast recipe a sourdough flavor – simply substitute one packet of the Platinum Instant Sourdough Yeast for one packet of dry yeast in the recipe. It is not meant to be used in a traditional sourdough recipe that uses a starter. You can also find recipes here:
Happy baking!

Patti | Reply

5 stars
This is a great recipe for my sourdough starter, I used it for roll and hamburger buns, so soft.

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