In my house, pasta night is often unplanned. I turn to my stash of boxed spaghetti whenever I get home later than expected or am too tired to cook whatever I had intended. This also means I am not prepared to have sides. But then I learned how to transform store-bought dinner rolls—or leftover homemade ones—into last-minute garlic bread.
With this hack in your repertoire, you’re just minutes away from buttery garlic bread whenever the craving—or a spontaneous pasta night—strikes. Plus, this extra-easy recipe is designed to work with whatever you have on hand. Here’s how to make it.
The Ingredients You Need
The fat: If you’re making this shortcut recipe, chances are you didn’t set out butter to soften. That’s okay because all you need is melted butter, which seeps into the rolls and flavors every nook and cranny. Either salted or unsalted is fine; add a pinch of salt if using unsalted. No butter? Use olive oil instead.
The garlic: While freshly minced or grated garlic is preferred, you can use garlic powder in a pinch.
The herb: Use fresh parsley if you have it, and dried parsley or Italian seasoning if you don’t.
The cheese: Though it’s optional, a grating of Parmesan or some shredded mozzarella takes this garlic bread to a deliciously decadent place.
The Garlic Butter Formula
This formula is enough to flavor 6 large or 12 small dinner rolls—or heck, even a pack of burger buns! If you’re serving fewer people, it’s easy to cut the ingredients in half. To make the garlic butter, simply mix the following ingredients in a small bowl:
- 1/2 cup (1 stick) melted salted or unsalted butter
- 4 minced or grated cloves garlic or 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/4 cup finely chopped fresh parsley or 2 teaspoons dried parsley
- 1/4 cup grated Parmesan (optional)
- Salt and black pepper, to taste
How to Make Garlic Bread Dinner Rolls
Begin by arranging two racks to divide the oven into thirds and preheat it to 350°F. Line a baking sheet with foil for easy clean-up.
If you have leftover homemade or store-bought dinner rolls, slice them in half horizontally, brush both halves with the garlic butter, then bake on the lower rack until warm, 8 to 10 minutes. Transfer to the upper rack and broil until the edges of the rolls are toasty, 1 to 2 minutes.
If you’re starting with frozen dinner rolls, brush the garlic butter on top of the rolls and bake according to package directions. Then, broil them for 1 to 2 minutes until toasty.