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Pesto Dinner Rolls

  • Author: Erin Clarkson
  • Prep Time: 1 hour
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Total Time: 3 hours
  • Yield: 12 Servings 1x
  • Category: Bread
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American


Pesto dinner rolls are super soft and an easy dinner roll recipe to make. They have a soft pesto dough, and are finished with pesto and parmesan cheese. These cheesy dinner rolls are a super delicious twist on a regular dinner roll recipe!




  • 25g bread flour
  • 120g whole milk 

Pesto Dough

  • 180g whole milk, cold
  • 20g sugar
  • 6g (2 tsp) instant yeast
  • 25g milk powder
  • 5 g (1 1/2 tsp) kosher salt
  • 1 egg
  • 360g bread flour
  • A few turns of black pepper
  • 70g Filippo Berio Classic Pesto

To finish

  • 20g Filippo Berio Classic Pesto
  • 20g Olive Oil (I used Filippo Berio Original)
  • Freshly grated parmesan cheese to finish



  1. Combine the milk and bread flour in a medium saucepan. Place over medium heat and cook, stirring continuously, until the mixture thickens into a paste. Remove from heat and transfer to the bowl of a stand mixer.


  1. Add the cold milk to the Tangzhong and mix to combine, checking with your finger that it is not hotter than lukewarm (the cold milk should cool the hot tangzhong enough). Add the sugar, yeast, milk powder, salt, egg, flour, black pepper, and Filippo Berio Classic Pesto. Transfer to the mixer and fit with the dough hook.
  2. Mix the dough on medium speed until it is smooth and elastic and clearing the sides of the bowl, about 12-15 minutes. Don’t freak out, as it is sticky - if you have made it by weight you will be fine. Set a timer and walk away from the mixer if you need. If after that time it really isn’t coming together and you’re worried, add flour a teaspoon at a time just until the dough just comes together.
  3. Turn the dough out onto a lightly oiled or floured surface and shape into a ball. Grease a medium bowl with oil and place the dough into the bowl. Turn to coat in the oil. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and leave in a warm place until doubled in size, approximately 90 minutes.
  4. Grease and line a 9”x13” (20cmx30cm) pan or a quarter sheet pan with parchment paper. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Weigh the dough, then divide into 12 buns. 
  5. Working with one piece of dough at a time, flatten out the piece of dough, then tuck up into a ball, then turn the ball seam side down and roll into a tight ball by cupping your hand to create a 'claw' shape, using the tension from the counter to roll the dough tightly. Place to the side and cover lightly with plastic wrap. Repeat with the remaining pieces of dough, grouping the balls together on your counter with a little space between them so they don't touch.
  6. Leave the buns to rest for 10 minutes, then give them a quick roll to tighten them back up.
  7. Arrange the dough balls in the pan, spacing them apart evenly. Lightly cover the pan with plastic wrap or a lid, and leave to rise again in a warm place, about 90 minutes. 
  8. You want the buns to puff up and double in size, and when you press lightly on one, it should leave a small indentation that doesn’t quite spring back. Remember that rising time depends on your environment so go by how the dough is looking, rather than a rising time.
  9. Toward the end of the rising process, preheat the oven to 360°f /185°c. Brush the rolls with a little whole milk. 
  10. Bake the rolls for 25-30 minutes, until golden brown. If you like you can also take the internal temperature, which should read at 190°f / 90°c (this is an additional measure of doneness). 
  11. While the buns are baking, combine the Filippo Berio Classic Pesto and oil in a small bowl. 
  12. Remove the buns from the oven, allow to stand for 5 minutes, then brush all over with the pesto mixture. Sprinkle with flaky sea salt and freshly grated parmesan cheese.
  13. Serve while warm or leave to cool. Store leftovers in an airtight container.

Keywords: Dinner rolls, Pesto, bread rolls