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Stone Ground Rye Rolls with Caraway

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With warm weather, spring, and summer fast approaching, I’ve been so anxious to get outside and dust off my grill! But our weather has been less than ideal. It’s still just a bit too soon for me. The wind is just way too cold yet!

As I was dreaming of a big, juicy, all beef burger hot off the grill and dripping with melted cheese, I remembered last summer and how the one thing that spoiled a great burger always seemed to be the bun. No matter how great the burger is, if the bun fails, it will be an unpleasant experience.

Like everything else, from the houses we live in to our personal relationships, if the foundation isn’t good, you’ll end up with trouble.

How can you have a great burger when it’s placed on a wimpy bun that ends up soggy, flat, and falling apart, right?

So I decided to work on creating great, flavorful foundations that could hold up to anything you put on it. Something to build on and not a wet mess. This one was created especially for a particular sandwich that I made that I will share soon, but it would be a great base for a burger, too. It would be terrific for quite a LOT of different sandwiches, actually! 😉

Buns and rolls seem to be so limited at the store, so I decided to go for something with lots of flavor, yet not overpowering at the same time. Just one of the blocks and pieces of the house that will all fit and work together in the end!


rye roll ingrdnts


Anyways, I made a fantastic recipe for pulled beef, and thought, hey, wouldn’t rye rolls be wonderful with this?! So I set out to figure out a recipe to make them from scratch, and they really turned out good! I wanted a bit of a dark rye taste, but not too much, with just a touch of sweetness and a nice medium-hearty rye flavor!


rye roll liq temp 

I also didn’t want them to be overly hard like a true rye bread, but not too soft, either, or we’re right back to square one. So it took a lot of figuring and debating over what flours to blend and how much yeast to use.

I adapted several of my own recipes for breads and rolls, along with a few tips from the internet, too.  Like they say, “…cooking is an experience, but baking is a science”. You can’t just dump in whatever you want, and how much you think you need, and expect it to work, in other words.

I’m no expert, though, so yes, I crossed my fingers. 😉


rye roll dough shaggy


The bread dough was a wonderful color after mixing, and I had high hopes right from the start!


rye roll dough pre kneading


I transferred the dough to a floured counter to knead. It was already looking quite pretty!


rye roll dough kneaded


Then. The scary part. Placing it in the oiled bowl, turning it to coat, and waiting to see if it would rise….


rye roll dough pre-rise


Oh, it rose alright!  One of the best rises I’ve gotten in quite some time for breads and rolls!


rye roll dough risen


I then cut the dough into 8 pieces, pinched and rolled them into balls, placed them onto an oiled baking sheet, and turned them to coat so that they could (hopefully) rise again.

*I patted them down a little to see if they’d look like buns when finished, but next I will just leave them round.


rye rolls pre-rise


They rose ok, but if I hadn’t patted and pressed them down, I think they would’ve been taller for sure.


rye rolls main


But all’s well that ends well! They turned out gorgeous anyways!  I simply brushed them with a little egg white wash and sprinkled them with more caraway seeds just before baking, and I’d say that this science experiment was a definite, solid, “B+”! I’m only docking myself from an “A” for flattening them a little before the second rise, but overall – – a success!!! 😀

So if you find yourself frustrated with pathetic store-bought buns and rolls, you should give this recipe a try! It does take time, (rising time), but it isn’t difficult at all.

What do you have to lose? Like a very famous chef once said, “…bread ingredients are dirt cheap….and if you fail, try again.”

And besides, there’s nothing more wonderful than the smell of  fresh bread baking! 😉


Hope you give this recipe a try and have a fantastic day, all! 😀 



Stone Ground Rye Rolls with Caraway
Yield: 8 rolls

Stone Ground Rye Rolls with Caraway


  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup + 2 Tbl. stone ground rye flour
  • 1 Tbl. cocoa powder
  • 2 Tbl. caraway seeds
  • 2 1/2 tsp. instant yeast
  • 1 1/2 tsp. sea salt
  • 1 cup warm water
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons unsulphored molasses, warmed
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • 1/4 cup minus 1 tsp. beer, dark or your own personal favorite
  • 1 tsp. balsamic vinegar
  • 1 egg white beaten with 1 tsp. cold water
  • more caraway seeds if desired


  • Place flours, cocoa powder, caraway seeds, yeast, and sea salt in the bowl of a large stand mixer. Turn mixer to low and thoroughly mix dry ingredients.
  • In glass measuring pitcher, add warm water, molasses, canola oil, and beer, stir until well mixed, pour into dry ingredients. Fit dough hook onto mixer and beat until dough is rough and shaggy-looking. Remove hook, swipe off dough from hook, and add the little bit of dough to mixer bowl, and quickly scrape down sides of bowl a little.
  • Cover bowl with plastic wrap and let rest for 30 minutes. Remove plastic wrap and knead dough in stand mixer with dough hook until smooth, firm, and only slightly sticky, 6 to 8 minutes. Turn dough out onto a floured work surface and knead until smooth, just 1 to 2 more minutes.
  • Form dough into a ball, place dough into an oiled bowl, turn dough around several times in bowl to coat with oil. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap, set into a warm place, and let rise until almost double, about 1 hour. (*I do this in my oven with the light on.)
  • Spray 2 large baking sheets. Turn dough out onto a lightly oiled surface (I use a baking sheet), cut off pieces of dough and gently roll into balls making 8 balls, and place onto prepared baking sheets. Brush each lightly, but coating, with oil. Cover with sprayed plastic wrap loosely, but covering and sealing edges so that it doesn't dry out, and let rise again in a warm place until dough has risen a little, 60 to 90 minutes. (Adjust plastic wrap as needed to allow expansion.) *I do this in my oven with the light on. When soft again, remove rolls from oven, place racks in center of oven(s) and preheat to 350ºF.
  • While oven is preheating, brush rolls liberally with egg wash and sprinkle tops with caraways seeds if more seeds on top are desired.
  • Bake until rolls are golden brown and cooked through, about 20 minutes. Remove from baking sheets and cool on wire racks.
  • Serve with a meal, or split open and use for sandwiches, burgers and sliders.


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    Wednesday 4th of January 2023

    What does the balsamic vinegar do and when is it added. I couldn’t find it in your directions.

    Mary Steimle

    Friday 3rd of April 2020

    Kelly, these are wonderful. Made these for dinner - patty melts. The rye buns are delicious. They didn’t raise as high as store bought buns but we were not disappointed. You can taste every part of the patty melt - not just bread. The buns held up with the burger and fixings. Will definitely make these again. Posted a link to this recipe on Facebook.


    Saturday 11th of April 2015

    Hi, Charlie! :D And welcome! :D I'd love to try your recipe! If you'd like to share it over on my Facebook page, that would be wonderful! Then everyone else can try it, too! And don't worry! The pulled beef recipe is coming first thing Monday! :D You may want to hold off on making the rolls and make the beef, too! They really went extremely well together! :D Hope you have a wonderful day! :D ~Kelly


    Wednesday 8th of April 2015

    Hi Kelly! This is my first time on your site. I really like rye bread so am going to try your buns. Have you ever tried Winnipeg Rye Bread? It is a soft light rye bread that is so good! If you would like I can send you a recipe.

    Also you mentioned a pulled beef that you do. Would you want to share the recipe with me?

    I have subscribed to your site.

    Have a Joyful Day :~D Charlie

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