Potato Dinner Rolls

If you're not already making mashed potatoes for your meal, roast or boil one large (12 ounce) russet potato to use in this recipe.

I usually make this recipe with unseasoned mashed potatoes that haven't been mixed with butter or dairy, but have also made them with leftover seasoned mashed potatoes. With seasoned mashed potatoes, you may end up needing to use a little extra flour.

  • Prep time: 20 minutes
  • Cook time: 25 minutes
  • Inactive rising time: 2 hours
  • Yield: 16 to 20 rolls


For the rolls:

  • 1/2 cup water, room temperature
  • 2 1/4 teaspoon (1 packet) active-dry or instant yeast
  • 1 teaspoon plus 1/3 cup sugar, divided
  • 1 cup mashed potatoes
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 6 tablespoons regular salted butter, melted and cooled
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons minced fresh rosemary leaves
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 4 1/2 to 5 cups all-purpose flour

For honey butter topping:

  • 1/4 cup regular salted butter, room temperature
  • 2 tablespoon honey


1 Proof the yeast: In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the water, the yeast, and 1 teaspoon of the sugar. Set aside for about 5 minutes, or until the mixture looks bubbly. If the mixture doesn't start to bubble, then your yeast has likely expired and it's best to start over with new yeast.

2 Mix the dough: Add the remaining sugar, mashed potatoes, milk, butter, eggs, rosemary, and salt to the bowl with the yeast mixture and stir with a spatula until smooth. Add 4 1/2 cups of the flour and mix until you form a shaggy dough.

3 Knead the dough: With a dough hook attachment (or on the counter, if kneading by hand) knead on medium-low for 5 to 7 minutes until the dough is smooth, forms a ball around the dough hook, and pulls away from the sides of the bowl (it's fine if the dough sticks to the bottom of the bowl). If the dough is still sticking to the sides after few minutes of kneading, add in a little more flour 2 tablespoons at a time.

4 Let the dough rise: Place the dough in a lightly greased bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and place somewhere warm for about 1 hour, or until the dough doubles in size.

5 Shape the dough into rolls: Line a 13x9-inch baking pan with parchment paper and lightly grease. Turn the dough the out onto lightly floured surface and cut into 16 to 20 equal pieces. Roll the dough into small balls, and place seam side down in the baking dish.

Balled Potato Roll Dough on Baking Sheet

6 Cover and let the rolls rise until puffed and nearly doubled in size, about 1 hour. About 15 minutes before the rolls are ready, heat the oven to 350F.

7 Bake for the rolls for 20 to 25 minutes, or until the rolls are golden brown on top and register 200F on the inside when tested with an instant-read thermometer.

8 Brush the rolls with honey butter: In a small dish, mix together 1/4 cup room temperature butter and 2 tablespoons honey until smooth. Brush tops of baked rolls with mixture, then sprinkle with salt. Allow to cool slightly before serving.

Hand Using Butter Brush on Potato Rolls

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  • Triza

    Cant wait to try them. Looks easy to make.

  • MG

    I know I commented on this last year, but have to sing your praises again for this recipe. These rolls are exceptional. As predicted, they were required for Thanksgiving. Actually, I had to make two batches to ensure there were leftovers (which are equally delicious). Thank you so much for creating a family tradition!


  • Ron

    I’ve made the potato bread recipe and it turned out excellent. I would like to make these for Thanksgiving and was wondering if I could cut back on the sugar amount?

    • Emma Christensen

      Hi, Ron! Yes, I think you could cut back the sugar. I’d at least use a little sugar to proof the yeast, and then add additional sugar to taste. I also like less-sweet rolls, so I’d personally probably go for 2 tablespoons or so.

      • Ron

        Thank you for your suggestions I will give them a try. The potato bread loaves that I baked came out excellent and I will definitely be baking them again. I think that this bread would make great French Toast.

  • Monica

    Could I bake them and then freeze them until they are ready to be used? If so, what would the cook time be?


    • Emma Christensen

      Hi, Monica! Absolutely! Wrap the rolls well in foil and freeze for up to a month. When you’re ready to serve, loosen the foil to allow air to circulate. Place them on a baking sheet in their open foil packets and heat in a 300ºF oven for about 10 minutes. If you like, brush with melted butter.

  • Sofia

    Thanks for sharing this recipe. Looks really easy and so good! I’ll try it soon!

  • Jean

    Can this be cooked in loaves?

    • Emma Christensen

      Hi, Jean! Emma here, managing editor for Simply Recipes! We haven’t tested this as loaves, but I don’t see why it wouldn’t work. I’d recommend splitting the dough in half, forming two loaves, and baking in 8-inch pans. Let us know how it works out!

  • Hydra

    Wow, these are delicious. We had some mashed potatoes in the fridge that needed to be used, so these were perfect for that. The flavor was amazing. And I loved the crust on the outside – it was just great. Thank you!

  • Peggy Higday

    Thank you Emma for your response. I was able to move it to my desktop. Will let you know how they turn .out.

  • Pamela

    I absolutely love rolls. Making these for the first time today and can’t wait to try them. However, my 9 yr old son is a type 1 diabetic and has to carb count everything. We have gotten pretty good at making homemade foods he can enjoy. Would you or anyone else have an idea about how many carbs there might be per roll?

  • MG

    These rolls were amazing! My family loved them and they are now required for Thanksgiving. (We didn’t make the honey butter.) Thanks for the recipe!


  • Donna Simpson

    Just wanted you to know that my rolls were excellent! I didn’t have your answer about step 2 until after the rolls were done. I did use the dough hook instead of hand mixing. Next time I will hand mix. Also, your advice on step 3 is very helpful.
    Thank you. Next time I may make cinnamon rolls out of the dough!

    • Emma Christensen

      Oh, great! I’m so happy to hear the rolls turned out well. And I LOVE the idea of using the dough for cinnamon rolls!

  • Donna Simpson

    Thank you for your response. I went ahead and continued with the process and they rose fine.
    So my next question, how many rolls did you fit in 9 x 13 pan. I could only fit twelve. I ended up with 27 rolls so I hope mine aren’t too small.
    The other clarifications…
    Step 2, do you use the dough hook on stand mixer when adding the flour?
    Step 3, what if the dough balls up before the 5 minutes. Do you keep mixing? Can you under or over mix the dough? I assume this is the kneading step, right?

    • Emma Christensen

      Hi, Donna! I’m so glad that your rolls ended up rising after all. Phew! It does sound like your rolls might be a little smaller than intended. They will likely cook a little more quickly, so keep an eye on how quickly they brown.

      In Step 2, my preference (speaking as Simply Recipe’s editor!) is to mix the initial dough by hand with a stiff spoon or spatula until you form a shaggy dough, then switch to the dough hook for the kneading step. After baking bread for years, I’ve found that this helpful for making sure all the flour (and other ingredients) are mixed into the dough. This said, if you prefer to do it all with a dough hook, that’s fine!

      In Step 3, if the dough is smooth and holds its ball-shape without puddling back into the bowl, then it should be good to go. (If it puddles back, then it’s under-kneaded and you should continue.) Some mixers are more powerful than others, so kneading might be faster! Five minutes is a good rule of thumb most of the time and won’t result in over-kneading; mixing for more than 7 minutes can result in over-kneading.

      Hope this helps! Enjoy the rolls!

  • Donna Simpson

    I purchased the packets of Fleischmann’s rapid rise instant yeast yesterday. I warmed my potato water in proofing oven (100)) degrees) for 20 minutes. I added the yeast potato water and 1 teaspoon of sugar. After 10 minutes it’s barely starting to foam. Should I start over with regular water?

    • Elise Bauer

      Hi Donna, check the expiration date on the package. Even though you recently purchased it, the packets may have come from an old lot. You could try again with plain, room temperature water. If it still doesn’t work, the yeast might be bad. Or maybe not. Yeast sometimes ends up working well even if it doesn’t bubble up as it should in the proofing stage.

    • Christine

      It is my understanding that rapid rise yeast needs to be proofed in water/milk 120 – 130 degrees f.

  • Donna Simpson

    I was wondering if I can use the potato water in place of the water?

    • Emma Christensen

      Hi, Donna! Sure, you could definitely use potato water here, and I bet the rolls would be all the better for it!

  • Laila

    I made these for Christmas and they turned out perfectly. Only exception for next time is I think I prefer not to add honey to the butter. I didn’t really care for the sweetness to the roll and occasionally, I’ll opt to leave the rosemary out as well. Otherwise, they rose perfectly and were beautiful. Also made turkey sandwiches with these rolls. Delicious!

  • Casey

    could you make these with all purpose gluten free flour?

    • Megan Keno

      Casey, I have not tried this recipe with gluten free flour, so I can not attest to the results if you try. It may be worth a shot, if you are familiar with the tips and tricks required of gluten free baking. I’m sorry I can’t be of more help. Please let us know if you try this and how it turns out.

  • Denise Kennedy

    Could you do an overnight rise in the refrigerator?

    • Emma Christensen

      Denise, yes, you could certainly do that! I haven’t tried it with this exact recipe, but I often do overnight fridge rises with my dinner rolls and I have no doubt this recipe would do just as well!

  • Jb

    Could these be frozen at some point so they are made ahead?

    • Megan Keno

      Hi JB, YES they can be frozen! Freeze them after they are formed into dough balls. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper so they don’t stick to the pan. and place them about an inch apart between rolls so they don’t stick. Once frozen you can store them in a freezer safe bag until you are ready to use them.
      Once they thaw, this will allow them to do their second rise, and you can bake them. We hope you enjoy them!

  • Reenee

    This looks great- can the dough be frozen before baking?

    • Megan Keno

      Hi Reenee, Yes! You can freeze these. Once you form them into dough balls, place them on a parchment lined baking sheet with about 1″ in between them and freeze them. Once frozen you can store them in a freezer safe plastic bag until ready to use.

  • Jn

    Would the dough worked if it’s mixed in a bread maker using dough function?
    If yes, do I jus put all ingredients at one go?

    • Megan Keno

      Hi Jn. I have not tried to make this in a bread machine, so I’m not sure if it is feasible. If you do try, please report back on your findings, I would be very interested to hear!