Homemade Hawaiian Rolls Recipe

The ultimate sweet roll! Hawaiian Rolls are fluffy, sweet, and tropical fun – perfect for sliders. You’d never guess pineapple juice is the key ingredient!

Don’t have pineapple juice? Try My Sweet Dinner Rolls Recipe instead!

Freshly baked Hawaiian roll.

Sweet & Fluffy Hawaiian Rolls

Have you ever had a sweet and fluffy Hawaiian Rolls? Possibly you’ve have the kind sold at the supermarket, you know the ones that are super famous for their slider making prowess? They’re pretty great, I agree. But if you’ve never had a homemade Hawaiian Roll, you’re missing out!

These rolls do require yeast but I use quick yeast, which is great for beginners, or if you are short on time. I use quick yeast (aka Rapid Rise) pretty more often than not. It’s fairly foolproof!

What Are Hawaiian Rolls?

Hawaiian rolls are sweet, chewy, small round rolls that are infused with a little sugar and pineapple juice. They have a very subtle sweet flavor that makes these rolls unique. And topping a warm Hawaiian roll with butter and honey…well, there just isn’t much better1

Hawaiian rolls first came to popularity in Hawaii in the 1950’s, but the roots of these rolls can be traced back to Portugal by way of the Philippines. 

Recipe Ingredients

Hawaiian rolls are both sweet and fluffy, thanks to these fabulous ingredients. 

This is what you’ll need:

  • buttermilk
  • butter
  • pineapple juice
  • granulated sugar
  • kosher salt
  • eggs
  • instant yeast 
  • all purpose flour

Why is there Pineapple Juice in Hawaiian Rolls?

I know, you weren’t expecting pineapple juice in a bread recipe, and typically it’s not a common ingredients…but we’re making Hawaiian Rolls! The pineapple juice adds a sweetness with a bit of bite. It also makes these rolls extra fluffy and moist!

Don’t worry that the pineapple flavor will be overpowering. It’s actually quite subtle. I am actually not a huge pineapple fan, but the flavor isn’t strong, I promise.

A collage showing the stages of baking Hawaiian rolls

How to Make Hawaiian Rolls

Prep: In a microwave safe bowl combine the buttermilk and butter. Microwave in 25 second increments until the mixture is warmed (110°F – 120°F) and the butter is almost melted.

Combine: In the bowl of your stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment add in the buttermilk mixture, pineapple juice, sugar, salt, eggs, and yeast. Stir on low until combined. 

Mix: Add in 2 cups of flour and mix on medium speed for 1 minute. Gradually add in 2 1/2  more cups of flour, until a soft dough forms. Add more flour if necessary. 

Knead: Replace the paddle attachment with a dough hook and knead on medium speed until the dough forms a soft, smooth ball. 

Rise: Spray a clean bowl lightly with nonstick spray. Place the dough into the prepared bowl and cover with a clean towel. Place in a warm spot in your kitchen for 1 hour until the dough has risen and doubled in size.

Spray: Coat a 9×13 baking pan with nonstick spray. Set aside. 

Divide and Rise: Remove the dough from the bowl and divide into 15 equal portions. Form the dough into balls and place in the prepared pan. Cover again with the towel and allow the dough to rise for 30 minutes.

Preheat oven to 375°F.

Egg Wash: Whisk together the reserved egg and 1 teaspoon water. Lightly brush the tops of the rolls with the egg wash.

Bake: Bake for 20 minutes, or until golden brown.

Serve: Serve warm or at room temperature

Freshly baked Hawaiian roll on top of a tray of more Hawaiian rolls

Ideas for Using These Homemade Rolls

My absolute favorite use of Hawaiian rolls is for a BBQ pulled pork sandwich. Top it with your favorite slaw and serve with a pickle on the side and I am satisfied. Hawaiian rolls are great for any sandwich, really but I especially love how the sweetness and fluffiness pairs with anything BBQ. Brisket or ham would be great!

Hawaiian rolls make the perfect bun for sliders, too! These Chicken Parm Sliders would be fantastic with homemade rolls. Or even my Cheeseburger Sliders!

You can also just serve them up in a bread basket on the serving table at your next BBQ

They are also great on the side of any roasted meat or fresh salad. 

A Tray of freshly baked Hawaiian Rolls

How to Store These Rolls

Store your leftover Hawaiian rolls in an airtight container for up to 3 days. It’s best to leave them at room temperature and not to refrigerate them. Refrigerating them will increase the chance of them becoming stale more quickly. 

You could also freeze your leftover (or a whole batch for later use) Hawaiian rolls for up to 3 months. When you’re ready to have at ‘em -allow them to thaw to room temp and then reheat them for about 10mins in a 300 degree oven.

Looking For More Easy Yeast Recipes? Try These:

Print

Hawaiian Rolls Recipe

  • Author: Cookies & Cups
  • Prep Time Prep Time: 2 hours
  • Cook Time Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Total Time Total Time: 2 hours 20 minutes
  • Yield Yield: 15 rolls 1x
  • Category Category: Bread
  • Method Method: Oven
  • Cuisine Cuisine: American

Description:

The ultimate sweet roll! Hawaiian Rolls are fluffy, sweet, and tropical fun – perfect for sliders. You’d never guess pineapple juice is the key ingredient!


Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 1/4  cup butter, cubed
  • 1/2 cup pineapple juice
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 eggs, lightly whisked
  • 2 1/4 teaspoons instant yeast (1 packet)
  • 4 1/25 cups all purpose flour
  • Egg Wash: 1 egg + 1 teaspoon water

Instructions

In a microwave safe bowl combine the buttermilk and butter. Microwave in 25 second increments until the mixture is warmed (110°F – 120°F) and the butter is almost melted.

In the bowl of your stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment add in the buttermilk mixture, pineapple juice, sugar, salt, eggs, and yeast. Stir on low until combined. 

Add in 2 cups of flour and mix on medium speed for 1 minute. Gradually add in 2 1/2  more cups of flour, until a soft dough forms. Add more flour if necessary. 

Replace the paddle attachment with a dough hook and knead on medium speed until the dough forms a soft, smooth ball. 

Spray a clean bowl light;y with nonstick spray. Place the dough into the prepared bowl and cover with a clean towel. Place in a warm spot in your kitchen for 1 hour until the dough has risen and doubled in size.

Coat a 9×13 baking pan with nonstick spray. Set aside. 

Remove the dough from the bowl and divide into 15 equal portions. Form the dough into balls and place in the prepared pan. Cover again with the towel and allow the dough to rise for 30 minutes.

Preheat oven to 375°F.

Whisk together the reserved egg and 1 teaspoon water. Lightly brush the tops of the rolls with the egg wash.

Bake for 20 minutes, or until golden brown.

Serve warm or at room temperature.


Notes:

Store airtight for up to 3 days

Keywords:: homemade Hawaiian rolls, hawaiian rolls for sliders, homemade dinner rolls, easy dinner rolls recipe

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Hi! I’m Shelly and I’m an addict. Of the buttercream sort. I started this site a few years ago as a way to justify my sugary, buttery obsession with desserts. It has worked out well for me so far, because as it turns out you guys all love sugary, buttery desserts too! It feels good to know you're not alone, doesn’t it?

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Julie Schirck
August 17, 2020 9:53 am

These were FANTASTIC! Much better than the store bought version, they came out soft and fluffy. I did use bread flour instead since that is what i had more of and only needed the 4 1/2 cups. I will be using the remaining rolls for ham and cheese sliders at lunch today!

Monique
August 12, 2020 8:28 am

Thank you for this recipe. My dad used to bring home King’s all the time so takes me back to those times ❤️
The taste is so buttery and light! I think I may have gone a bit overboard with the flour coz it’s a little bit more dense that I how I would have wanted it. I probably ended up putting a little over 5cups of flour. Any tips for me to feel a little more confident with the texture of my dough so I don’t add too much?

Last edited 1 month ago by Monique
Kelly
August 9, 2020 1:59 pm

I Have made these rolls three times now! They taste just like they should for Hawaiian sweet rolls. I don’t have to buy the ones in the stores now. When I made my batch this weekend I forgot I had run out of powdered buttermilk so I took my unsweetened almond milk and added white vinegar and let it sit. Used that in placement of regular buttermilk. They still turned out just as great!!

Amy
August 7, 2020 1:42 pm

These are delicious! The texture is out of this world…I’m just hoping my 6 yr old doesn’t eat the whole darn pan before my husband gets home!

Sue in Kennesaw
July 4, 2020 4:59 pm

I just had to try these this Forth of July as I have pulled pork cooking. So disappointed in the taste. I have been baking since I was 15 and Im 70. A bit famous for my pistachio cream puffs so I know I did not omit an ingredient or follow your recipe to a tee….Very easy to put together. No issue in rising or second rise. Baked for a little under 20 minutes with a good egg wash. Zero taste. No sweetness, all you taste is flour. I first thought maybe I forgot the sugar. Nope added the sugar….The… Read more »

Amy
August 7, 2020 1:41 pm

I’m not sure where you went wrong. I just made these and thought they were fabulous. Maybe not as sweet as King’s but that’s something you could easily adjust to your tastes. But what do I know? I’m not famous for my pistachio cream puffs!

Carolyn S Cheeseman
June 27, 2020 7:52 pm

These were so good. So soft and incredibly flavorful. I had to stop my kids from literally eating the whole pan. I made a batch to bring somewhere and instantly knew I needed to throw together one more batch to keep here. And I’m SO GLAD I DID. Easy and foolproof. These will be on repeat here. Thanks Shelly.

Stacey
June 11, 2020 3:37 am

It looks so yummmyyyy! I’ve never tried Hawaiian rolls before. This looks so tasty that I can’t wait to make it right now!

Natalie
June 10, 2020 1:45 pm

I wanted to love these but they just tasted too “yeasty”. Is that even a word? The texture was good and they rose and browned nicely. I’m not sure how to change the too much yeastyness!! 🙂 We actually put them in the freezer and when pulling them back out we enjoyed them more – and I made some into croutons.

Amanda
June 2, 2020 12:41 pm

Hi! What should I do if I only have active yeast and not instant? Is it possible to activate it in the buttermilk ?

Amanda
June 2, 2020 4:30 pm
Reply to  Shelly

Thanks!

Beth
June 1, 2020 8:54 am

I saw these on Pinterest and had to come check out the post. I was shocked there weren’t any comments or 5stars, then I realized you just posted it!!! All that to say, these look amazing and I can’t wait to make them. We love these for so many things!

Shelly Hi! I’m Shelly and I’m an addict. Of the buttercream sort. I started this site a few years ago as a way to justify my sugary, buttery obsession with desserts. It has worked out well for me so far, because as it turns out you guys all love sugary, buttery desserts too! It feels good to know you're not alone, doesn’t it?

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