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Parker House Rolls

Prep Time:

110 mins.

Cook Time:

15 mins.


16 rolls

Special meals deserve fresh dinner rolls! Make the dough ahead and freeze for when you need it. Originally created by an inspired 19th-century chef at Boston’s historic Parker House Hotel, these rolls become extra light and airy when baked with Swans Down® Cake Flour. Serve them hot at the dinner table or use for sandwiches or sliders.


  • 8 fluid ounces milk, room temperature
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 2 large egg yolks
  • 1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon dry active yeast
  • 4 cups Swan’s Down® Cake Flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 4 ounces (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened, divided
  • 1 ounce (2 tablespoons) unsalted butter, cold and cut into 16 equal pieces


  1. MIX milk, sugar, yolks and yeast to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook. In a separate bowl, mix together flour and salt. Add flour mix to milk mixture. Mix on medium speed until incorporated. Add 3 ounces softened butter. Continue mixing until the butter is fully incorporated. Raise the mixer speed to high and continue to mix until the dough is smooth and elastic and pulls away from the side of the bowl, about 5 to 10 minutes.
  2. PLACE the dough in an oiled bowl and cover with plastic. Let rest in a warm place for an hour or until doubled in volume.
  3. PREHEAT oven to 400℉ and line a baking sheet with parchment.
  4. TURN dough out onto a floured surface. Shape into a log and cut into 16 equal pieces.
  5. ROLL out each piece into a 3-inch circle, place a piece of cold butter in the center and fold in half to form a half circle. Place on prepared sheet pan. Cover with plastic wrap and let proof until doubled in size, about half an hour.
  6. UNCOVER and brush with the remaining 1 ounce of softened butter. Bake for 10 to 15 minutes or until golden brown.
    • Kitchen Tip
    • If making ahead: Freeze them before they rise. Just roll out dough, cut into rounds, place in a pie dish, cover with plastic wrap and aluminum foil and freeze.
    • When ready to bake, thaw the dough in a warm place (up to 110℉) free of drafts for 1-2 hours, or covered in refrigerator overnight. Or, an alternate quick-thaw and rise method: Heat oven to lowest setting for 5 minutes, then turn oven off. Place panned, basted rolls in oven to thaw and rise (1-2 hours).
    • Let thawed dough rise until double in size (2-3 hours).
    • Bake according to recipe.