This recipe for copycat Hawaiian rolls is going to become a new family favorite. The slightly sweet, soft, and light roll is a favorite in our house, and I know will be in yours also. As a yeast roll, this isn't a fast recipe, but it is easy to make with simple steps and a great tutorial. You'll have these on your menu regularly as a sandwich roll or side to many of your favorite dishes!
Copycat Hawaiian Rolls Recipe
No grocery run is complete without a package of sweet rolls included, but why not make them at home from scratch instead? I love baking, and yeast rolls are a favorite, so following this recipe is a must. A slightly sweet but always soft and yeasty roll, the Hawaiian rolls recipe is a perfect addition to any meal and is a favorite in our house.
If you want to make some different breads to share with your family, you may love this easy soft potato bread recipe or even the homemade naan recipe. They are both simple, delicious, and a great aside to any of your favorite meals. Plus, if you are a beginner at making bread or using yeast, you will love these as easy to follow beginner recipes.
Why Do They Call it Hawaiian Bread?
The original King's Hawaiian rolls were originally created in Hilo, Hawaii. A combination of the Portuguese bread that is soft and sweet, and the always common pineapple juice of Hawaii, a classic roll was created. Since this particular brand and version originated in Hawaii, the name makes sense.
Others will say that because pineapples are known as a symbol of hospitality in Hawaii, the addition of the juice in this bread makes it even more Hawaiian in nature. A welcoming warm roll with just a hint of sweetness creates the ultimate delicious addition to any meal.
What Do You Eat With Hawaiian Rolls?
In our house, Hawaiian rolls are used with breakfast, lunch, dinner, or just alone as a snack. They are so delicious and tasty that they fit into any mealtime. Of course, I find they are best with a sweeter meal, but that isn't necessary. Below are a few of my favorite meals to serve these rolls alongside, but you might find they are great with others on your menu.
- Crispy Sticky Thai Chicken Wings
- Delicious Pickle Brine Chicken Breast Recipe
- Crispy Garlic Herb Chicken with Parmesan Cauliflower Rice
- 30-Minute Homemade Sloppy Joes Recipe
- The Best Ever Instant Pot Juicy Pork Tenderloin
- Best Instant Pot Pulled Pork with Homemade Spice Rub
I find they are perfect for making slider sandwiches with this curried coronation chicken salad or your favorite ham or turkey luncheon meat. You can even use these at holiday meals for a side. Of course, they are also perfect with any pork dish as they salty sweetness of pork and ham fits ideally with this sweet roll. As is traditional with the roasted pork at luau events.
Why Are Hawaiian Rolls Sweet?
The sweetness in these rolls is from a combination of granulated sugar, brown sugar, and pineapple juice. They are naturally sweet and while not a dessert, are a light yeast roll that has that hint of sweetness in every bite making them ideal for many dishes.
What are the Ingredients in Hawaiian Rolls?
- Granulated sugar
- All-Purpose flour
- Brown sugar
- Pineapple juice
- Unsalted butter
- Olive oil
How do You Make Hawaiian Sweet Rolls from Scratch
In a small bowl, combine the warm water, yeast, and granulated sugar and stir.Set aside for 10 minutes.
In a large bowl, add the all-purpose flour, brown sugar, salt, vanilla, egg, and pineapple juice.
Add the yeast mixture once bloomed.
Using a dough hook, knead the mixture until incorporated. If mixing by hand, you will combine and mix until the mixture forms a ball.
Add in the ½ cup of butter (room temperature), and knead with the dough hook for 10 minutes or until it is smooth. If doing so by hand, flour a clean surface and knead by hand until a smooth dough forms.
Coat a clean bowl with olive oil (1-2 tablespoons), and place the dough ball into the bowl.
Cover with a towel and let it rest in a warm place for one hour to rise.
Once risen, lightly dust a clean surface with flour, then turn out the dough and pat it down.
Cut the dough into 16 pieces.
Spray a baking dish with non-stick spray or lightly grease and set aside.
Roll the pieces into balls.
Place into the prepared baking dish and set aside to rise for 30 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 350°F.
In a small bowl whisk together one egg and 1 tablespoon water to create an egg wash.
Brush the tops of the rolls with egg wash, and bake for 20-25 minutes.
You may top with additional butter if desired after removing it from the oven.
Best served hot fresh from the oven.
Handy Kitchen Tools
When making these rolls, you may find that the items below come in handy and make the cooking process just a bit easier to manage. While not necessary, these additions to your kitchen make baking easier and are a good investment that can be used over and over again, not just for this particular recipe. Remember the investment in quality products means you will use them for years to come.
- Mixing bowls
- Wet measuring cups
- Dry measuring cups
- Stand mixer with dough hook
- Pastry brush
- Dough scraper
The Best Copycat Hawaiian Rolls Recipe
Follow this easy recipe to make your own copycat Hawaiian rolls. A delicious yeast roll with just enough sweetness to make it perfect for any meal or snack!
- ¼ cup water, warm
- 2 teaspoon active dry yeast
- 1 teaspoon granulated sugar
- 3 ½ cups all-purpose flour
- ⅓ cup packed brown sugar
- 1 ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 egg
- ¾ cup pineapple juice
- ½ cup unsalted butter, room temperature
- 2 tablespoon olive oil
Egg Wash Ingredients
- 1 egg
- 1 tablespoon water
- In a small bowl, combine the warm water, yeast, and granulated sugar and stir.Set aside for 10 minutes.
- In a large bowl, add the all purpose flour, brown sugar, salt, vanilla, egg, and pineapple juice.
- Add the yeast mixture once bloomed.
- Using a dough hook, knead the mixture until incorporated. If mixing by hand, you will combine and mix until the mixture forms a ball.
- Add in the ½ cup of butter (room temperature), and knead with the dough hook for 10 minutes or until it is smooth. If doing so by hand, flour a clean surface and knead by hand until a smooth dough forms.
- Coat a clean bowl with olive oil (1-2 tablespoons), and place the dough ball into the bowl.
- Cover with a towel and let it rest in a warm place for one hour to rise.
- Once risen, lightly dust a clean surface with flour, then turn out the dough and pat it down.
- Cut the dough into 16 pieces.
- Spray a baking dish with non-stick spray or lightly grease and set aside.
- Roll the pieces into balls and place into the prepared baking dish and set aside to rise for 30 minutes.
- Preheat the oven to 350°F.
- In a small bowl whisk together one egg and 1 tablespoon water to create an egg wash.
- Brush the tops of the rolls with egg wash, and bake for 20-25 minutes.
- You may top with additional butter if desired after removing from the oven.
Store in an airtight container at room temperature for 4-5 days.
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Amount Per Serving: Calories: 219Total Fat: 8gSaturated Fat: 4gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 4gCholesterol: 39mgSodium: 231mgCarbohydrates: 32gFiber: 1gSugar: 9gProtein: 4g
Is it really supposed to be only 1/4 cup of water?
I tried making these and they didn't rise at all 🙁
Hi - yes, it is 1/4 cup water with the first steps and later 3/4 cup pineapple juice.
If they did not rise, I would check to make sure your yeast is still in date.
Next time I’ll add 2 tbl spoons of yeast. My yeast was new from Publix.
Hardly a rise. 😢
Is the pineapple juice necessary? I looked online and the ones in the store didn’t show pineapple juice. I have a pineapple allergy and the boyfriend has a potato allergy.
For the best flavor, pineapple juice is a good choice, however, you could use orange juice for the citrus element if that is okay.