My sweetheart loves these tender vegan dinner rolls. He insists they are a must for any Winter holiday dinner. They are swoon-worthy topped with Homemade Vegan Butter.
The recipe was initially inspired by King Arthur Flour's Amish Dinner Rolls. I have perfected it over the years for our family with healthier, vegan ingredients.
🏆 Top tip
Use a shower cap to cover vegan dinner rolls while rising in a pan. It makes a bubble tent with air space for the dough to expand so nothing sticks to them while they rise.
📋 Healthy ingredients
These vegan dinner rolls are still made with mashed potatoes, just like the original King Arthur Flour recipe. It's an essential ingredient to make them extra soft and fluffy. But now, they are free of white sugar, eggs, butter, and cows' milk.
- Vegan Honey - Makes them sweet and golden. Maple syrup can be substituted.
- Raw cashews - Enrich the dough and take the place of cream or milk.
- Active dry yeast - I recommend Red Star traditional, but saf-instant is fine in cooler climates.
- Avocado oil - Clean neutral taste lets the salty-sweet flavor of the bread come through.
- Mashed potatoes - The secret to moist and soft vegan dinner rolls. Russet potatoes are best as they have the right moisture content.
- Salt - Fine-grain sea salt or pink Himalayan salt is preferred.
- Organic all-purpose flour - A must for light-textured, springy bread.
🍞 What do vegan dinner rolls taste like?
You may be thinking, sure those ingredients are healthier, but do how vegan dinner rolls taste? How is it possible to still have delicious, light-as-a-feather yeasted bread?
Well, substituting eggs and dairy products with carefully selected nutritious alternatives miraculously created the best pull-apart dinner roll yet.
Whether you choose vegan honey or maple syrup for these irresistible old-fashioned yeasted rolls, they will be pillowy, soft, and utterly delicious.
🔪 Divide rolls
This recipe makes a dozen pull-apart vegan dinner rolls all baked in a pan together. You can divide your unbaked rolls evenly for shaping by starting with a round disk of dough.
Turn the dough out onto the counter and flatten it gently into a circle. Then slice as if you were dividing a pie.
First, cut the pie shape in half and then in equal quarters. Finally, divide the quadrants into three sections. Now you have a dozen even pieces of dough to roll into balls.
Fit the balls of dough loosely into a glass baking pan. They will rise beautifully so their sides touch and yet keep their shape for when it's time to separate them at the dinner table.
Honey yeast rolls smell heavenly coming from the oven. Give them a squeeze, and they spring back. They have just the right amount of sweetness and are the ideal texture for spreading with your favorite topping or dunking in gravy.
👩🏻🍳 Left-over rolls
Pop them in the toaster, and the outside turns delicately crisp while the inside stays tender and moist. They're divine with a dollop of jam.
These golden vegan dinner rolls will disappear fast, but any unlikely leftover rolls also freeze and re-thaw well for future meals.
Isn't it nice to know you can have a more nutritious holiday dinner but don't have to miss out on these gorgeous gems?
👩🏻🍳 Expert tips
- Mashed potatoes - use cool or room temperature, preferably unseasoned, mashed potatoes. Reduce the salt in the recipe if using seasoned potatoes.
- Shape the dough into smooth round balls with a tight top before placing the rolls in the baking pan to rise.
- Baking dish - an 8 to 9-inch glass baking dish is ideal. Make sure the baking dish has sides that are 2 inches or higher.
- Rising - a large shower cap is helpful for covering rolls while they rise.
- Bake - rolls on the lower rack of the oven and finish them on the middle rack for even browning.
- Brown rolls by baking them to a deep golden color. They will still be soft and moist inside.
- Glossy tops - brush hot rolls with vegan butter and vegan honey if desired.
🥧 More Vegan Thanksgiving
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Pull-Apart Vegan Dinner Rolls
- 3 TB vegan honey or maple syrup
- 3 TB raw cashews
- ½ cup water
- 1 ¼ tsp. active dry bread yeast
- 3 TB avocado oil
- ½ cup unseasoned mashed potatoes
- 1 tsp. salt
- 2 ¼ cups all-purpose flour spooned and leveled, 292 grams
Make the dough
- Place ½ cup water, 3 TB vegan honey , and 3 TB raw cashews in a high-powered blender. Blend on high for 2 minutes or until lukewarm and the cashews are liquefied.
- Pour the mixture into the bowl of a stand mixer and sprinkle with 1 ¼ tsp. active dry bread yeast. Allow yeast 10 minutes to bloom.
- Add 3 TB avocado oil, ½ cup unseasoned mashed potatoes and 1 tsp. salt to the yeast and honey mixture. Attach a whisk attachment to a stand mixer and mix briefly on low speed. Remove whisk.
- Measure 2 ¼ cups all-purpose flour by spooning it into a cup and leveling it with a flat knife or use a scale to weigh the grams.
- Add all the flour and stir with a large spoon to moisten. Attach a dough hook to the mixer. Knead on medium speed for 5 minutes. I use the number 4 setting on my KitchenAid mixer.
- The dough will be very soft. If an excess sticks to the sides of the mixing bowl, you can sprinkle in a tablespoon or two of flour while mixing to bring the dough together.
- Coat the inside of a large bowl or dough-rising bucket with one teaspoon of oil. The dough will be very sticky. Scrape the dough off the mixer hook and use a spatula to transfer the dough to an oiled bowl.
- Cover the bowl or rising container and let the dough rise until more than doubled. A finger poke should leave a clear indent. Rise time can vary a lot depending on the temperature of the room. It can take anywhere from 75 minutes to an hour and 45 minutes.
Shape the rolls
- Grease an 8 or 9-inch square glass baking dish.
- Dust your hands with a small amount of flour. Gently deflate the dough and turn it out onto a floured countertop. Working lightly, shape the dough into a disc. Cut the dough into 12 equal pie-shaped pieces.
- Shape each piece of dough into a round ball by tucking the top part of the dough to the underside and pinching. The idea is to tighten the top of the dough and have a smooth round ball.
- Arrange shaped rolls in the oiled baking dish. Cover the dish with a dome lid that fits to seal out the air, or use a shower cap. Rolls will rise a lot. Leave them for 75 - 90 minutes until they are very puffy. They should more than double in size. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees before the rolls finish rising.
Bake the rolls
- Bake rolls on the lower rack of the oven for 10 minutes. Then move to the middle rack for another 15-20 minutes. Finished rolls will be deep golden brown. They will remain moist and soft inside at this color. If desired, brush warm rolls with a little vegan butter and vegan honey.
- Cool the dish of rolls on a rack and remove from the pan when cool enough to handle.
Store and use leftovers
- Rolls stay fresh for 2 days covered at room temperature. Leftovers are great toasted whole and split in half.
- Rolls also freeze, thaw, and reheat well for future meals. Keep rolls in the freezer wrapped individually, and in a covered container, for up to 3 months.