Soft and Fluffy Dinner Rolls (100% whole wheat)

These 100% whole wheat dinner rolls are fluffy, stay soft for days, and make excellent sandwiches!

Before I get to the recipe, go check out Rachel Cooks for a little interview about what my typical day is like! Plus there are embarrassing pictures of my kitchen. Surely you want to see those! ;)

Continuing on with healthier Thanksgiving recipes, I give you the gift of fluffy dinner rolls! For me, no holiday meal is complete without dinner rolls. I have to admit that I really love the frozen ones you can bake in the oven, but homemade and whole wheat is always better, right?

I can’t tell you how many 100% whole wheat recipes I tried before finding a good one. I even tried 50% whole wheat and couldn’t find a really amazing recipe. But these?! 100% and so ridiculously fluffy and tasty! They could also be called Miracles of Fluff. Because they are. :D I’m so happy I found this recipe on An Oregon Cottage!

The best 100% whole wheat dinner rolls ever  – so incredibly soft and fluffy!  |

One of the best parts about this recipe is that the rolls stay soft for longer than just a few hours after baking. The rolls that other recipes produce are usually great out of the oven, but later that night, they’re crumbly and not that appetizing. I don’t know what it is about this recipe, but these always stay soft for days after making them!

My favorite way of enjoying these dinner rolls is with honey. Just a little is enough. These rolls are already slightly sweetened with honey, but they’re not that sweet. Totally acceptable for sandwiches!

Soft and Fluffy Dinner Rolls – 100% whole wheat and ridiculously delicious! |

Got leftover Turkey? Put it in here and rejoice. :D

I’ve also made these into cinnamon buns. That recipe is coming soon! There’s dulce de leche involved. And it’s pretty naughty. But hey, it’s still whole grain!

I’ve halved the recipe before but I always regret it. Since the rolls stay good for so long, there’s no need to halve it. And you can always pop them in the fridge and reheat in the microwave, if needed! You could also freeze half of the dough and make them into cinnamon buns later, which I highly recommend doing. They’ll no doubt be the fluffiest 100% whole grain cinnamon rolls you ever have. :D

By the way, I’ve tried these with whole spelt flour and that didn’t work out. If you adjusted the liquid, it’d work, but none of the formulas for converting whole to spelt recipes have worked for me. Not yet, anyway!

These 100% whole wheat dinner rolls are fluffy, stay soft for days, and make excellent sandwiches!

Soft and Fluffy Dinner Rolls (100% whole wheat)

Rated 4.9 by 18 readers
Soft and Fluffy Dinner Rolls (100% whole wheat)
  • Prep Time:
  • Cook Time:
  • Ready in:
  • Yield: 24 rolls


  • 2 tablespoons active dry yeast
  • 1/2 cup warm water
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened + additional butter for brushing on top
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 1 tablespoon vital wheat gluten
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 4 1/2 to 5 cups whole wheat flour


  1. In a small bowl, dissolve the yeast in the 1/2 cup of warm water. Set this aside.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter and honey until well combined.
  3. Add the eggs, buttermilk, and yeasty water and beat until well combined.
  4. Add in the vital wheat gluten and the salt and switch to the dough hook.
  5. Add in 2 cups of the flour and mix.
  6. Then add in enough flour so that the dough just comes together. Depending on the day, you may need a bit of extra flour. I've had to add up to an extra cup!
  7. Knead for only 2 minutes.
  8. Once the dough is no longer tacky, cover the top of the bowl with plastic wrap and let the dough rise in a warm place for 1 hour. I like to turn the oven to the lowest setting for 1 minute, then turn it off and let the dough rise in there.
  9. Turn the dough out onto a slightly floured surface and knead it a few times, then let the dough rest for 3 minutes.
  10. Divide the dough into 24 balls and place these in a buttered 13" x 9" baking pan (the pieces will touch).
  11. Let the rolls rise for 1 hour.
  12. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
  13. Bake the rolls for 13 – 25 minutes or until golden brown. It's very important not to overbake the rolls!
  14. Remove from the oven, rub some butter over the top of the rolls, and serve immediately or let cool completely and then cover and store at room temperature for up to 3 days. Anything past that, I'd stick them in the fridge (to prevent mold).

Adapted from Soft 100% Whole Wheat Dinner Rolls from An Oregon Cottage

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127 comments on “Soft and Fluffy Dinner Rolls (100% whole wheat)” — Add one!

  • Vivia says
    October 16, 2016 @ 3:48 pm

    Hi, I just wanted to say these are incredible!! Thank you so much for posting the recipe. I normally exclusively bake gluten free & pack in as much fiber as possible, but my daughter has been swapping her pack lunch sandwiches for the worst refined white bread you can imagine. Whats the point of making optimally nutritious buns if she can’t stand the taste… These buns seem to be the answer, she loved them! :D
    I didn’t have all the ingredients at hand, so used coconut oil instead of butter & coconut milk/lemon juice instead of muttermilk, nutritional yeast instead of vital gluten. They still turned out so light & fluffy… I couldn’t resiste trying them too (paying for it now) Delicious! Thank you :)

    • Erin replies to Vivia
      October 16, 2016 @ 9:34 pm

      You mean she swaps it at school? Haha. That sounds like something I would’ve liked to do. ;) The nutritional yeast sub is interesting! I’ll have to try that, too. I’m so happy that you both enjoyed them and I hope you feel better soon! Thanks a bunch for your comment. :)

  • Diana says
    September 7, 2016 @ 10:23 pm

    Hi. I see your bread so fluffy and soft. I have make whole wheat bread but it looks so different because it is very very heavy an has literaly the whole grain. The flour that you use has the bran??? Or is it unprocesed flour but without the bran???

    • Erin replies to Diana
      September 7, 2016 @ 11:06 pm

      I use literally the whole grain. I even mill it myself sometimes and it’s never a problem in this recipe! This recipe really just is special. Other whole grain dinner rolls I’ve tried have been very heavy and dense like you mentioned. I think you should try these. :)

      • Diana replies to Erin
        September 13, 2016 @ 2:37 am

        Hi again. It is realy great! Thank you for shering… I love love love this bread!

        • Erin replies to Diana
          September 14, 2016 @ 12:00 pm

          Woohoo! I’m so happy to hear that. Thanks for letting me know how it went!

  • Alisa says
    April 4, 2016 @ 12:37 pm

    I made these rolls and after putting them in the oven, they collapsed. I used whole milk and I didn’t use vital wheat. Can you tell me what went wrong and what brand name wheat flour do you use. And I also used Rapid Rise Yeast.

    • Erin replies to Alisa
      April 4, 2016 @ 12:45 pm

      I use Bob’s Red Mill but all the brands I’ve tried in these have worked. I’ve had bread collapse, too and know how frustrating that is! Did you shorten the rising time according to the Rapid Rise Yeast packet instructions? If dough rises too long, it collapses. So if you used that yeast without shortening the rising time, then that explains why it collapsed. There are some other ideas in this thread. I hope your next try will go better. :)

  • Beverly B.
    April 3, 2016 @ 1:22 am

    I am soooooo happy that you shared this recipe! I make breads frequently, and this recipe is now my favorite for honey wheat rolls! I would love to try your favorite roll recipe for honey white rolls, if you have one. Thank you so much for sharing!

    • Erin replies to Beverly B.
      April 4, 2016 @ 12:38 pm

      I’m thrilled that you enjoyed them so much! I don’t have a favorite recipe for honey white rolls but here’s my favorite dinner roll recipe. They’re so perfectly fluffy. :) Thanks for your feedback!

  • Carla
    July 20, 2015 @ 10:29 pm

    Just wanted to thank you for the recipe…we made these and loved them! I didn’t even have vital wheat gluten and ran out of milk (oops!), so I had to use 1/2 cup milk and 1/2 cup water…they still turned out great! Kids and adults thought they were awesome! :)

    • Erin replies to Carla
      July 21, 2015 @ 8:58 am

      Haha. I love that they worked with half milk and half water and without vital wheat gluten! I’m so happy that everyone enjoyed them. Thanks a ton for your feedback! :)

  • Mae
    February 6, 2015 @ 5:35 pm

    These were amazing! I just wanted to say that for anyone reading this blog. Seriously, make them. You won’t be disappointed.

    • Erin replies to Mae
      February 6, 2015 @ 9:13 pm

      Thanks for the nice feedback. :) I’m really happy that you liked them so much!

  • teresa says
    January 24, 2015 @ 10:46 pm

    Hi, I’ve never made rolls before but would like to try this recipe. I’ve heard a lot in the media about gluten and its getting a pretty bad rep. Can you make these rolls without the wheat gluten? Is this the same gluten that the media is trying to steer everyone away from? Just curious. Thanks Teresa

    • Erin replies to teresa
      January 24, 2015 @ 11:27 pm

      Hi, Teresa! You can leave out the vital wheat gluten but it’d be a little pointless since there’s gluten in all-purpose flour, whole wheat flour, and most other types of grains. People who have gluten sensitivities definitely shouldn’t ever eat gluten, but for those of us who don’t have any issues with gluten, there’s no need to avoid it (see this article and this one – be sure to read both pages of the second one!) If you want to leave out the vital wheat gluten just because you don’t have it, the rolls will still work. :)

  • Daisy says
    December 23, 2014 @ 5:49 am

    Could I make the dough using my bread machine?

    • Erin replies to Daisy
      December 23, 2014 @ 8:58 pm

      I haven’t tried but I’m pretty sure that’d work!

  • chhaya says
    December 19, 2014 @ 8:03 am

    Sorry i post my question again as i just seen ur reply after putting another post.. sorry once again…. Got ur reply and i will try with water and butter milk.. Thanks..

    • Erin replies to chhaya
      December 19, 2014 @ 11:19 am

      No problem! I’ll just delete it. I hope you’ll enjoy the rolls! :)

  • chhaya says
    December 18, 2014 @ 9:03 am

    Hi, Can I use milk instead of water or butter milk?

    • Erin replies to chhaya
      December 18, 2014 @ 9:23 pm

      The yeast is proofed in the water and I’m not so sure about letting yeast proof in milk. I’d recommend sticking with water, just to be safe. And if you don’t have buttermilk, add a tablespoon of lemon juice or vinegar to a 1-cup measuring cup, fill it up with milk, let it sit for 5 minutes and then you have buttermilk. I hope that’ll work for you!

  • vanessa says
    December 16, 2014 @ 3:17 pm

    hello, do you think I could freeze these rolls?

    • Erin replies to vanessa
      December 16, 2014 @ 8:55 pm

      Hi! Yes, I think that’d be fine but I’m not positive as I haven’t tried it. Hope you’ll like them!


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