My Kids’ Favourite: Super Soft Bread Rolls for Lunch Boxes + burgers!

Clayton prefers these rolls over a sandwich in his school lunch box, so I make a batch each week, then cool, slice and freeze them and pull one out each morning when I pack his lunch. They’re also what we use for burger buns and breakfast sandwiches. 

Sometimes homemade rolls can have too firm of a crust to be easy for little mouths but these are soft and easy to manage. I use spelt flour for having a little more nutrition value than wheat, but you can equally use any gluten containing flour.

Lunch Box Bread Rolls

Print Recipe
Prep Time:20 mins
Cook Time:30 mins
Rise Time:1 hr
Total Time:1 hr 50 mins


  • 4 ½ cups Spelt Flour or wholewheat or white
  • 1 ¼ cups Warm Water
  • 1 tablespoon Dry Active Yeast
  • 3 tablespoons Olive Oil or butter
  • 1 teaspoon Sea Salt or any good flavorful salt
  • 2 tablespoons Molasses or honey or maple syrup


  • Start by adding the dry ingredients to a large bowl and mixing them together. Dollop in the sweetener and olive oil or butter. I tend to use molasses with brown flour for a richer flavour and extra nutrient density, and honey with white flour for a fluffier crowd pleaser at a gathering!
  • Add in the warm water a little at a time and mix until you have a loose ball of dough that roughly comes together and can be turned out of the bowl.
  • Pour it out and knead the dough for about 10 minutes, folding it over, rotating 45 degrees and folding over again. Rotate and fold, rotate and fold. You’ll see it begins to feel more elastic and stretchy after 5 to 10 minutes.
  • Take a sharp knife and divide the dough into 8 equally sized balls. You can do it by eye or weigh the dough and then divide by 8 and weigh out each ball.
  • Roll each one into a ball with your hand using the tension of a work surface to make a tight ball. Place them in a 10” skillet or any ovenproof dish that lets them sit taking only ⅔ of the room in the pan so they can rise.
  • Let them rise for 30 minutes to an hour or until they’re doubled in size. It's best to let them rise at a warm room temperature or somewhere warm like an oven on a proofing oven if your kitchen is cold.
  • Heat the oven to 170C/340F. Once you place the rolls in the oven, put a a small ovenproof dish of water under the rolls in the oven. This adds humidity and keeps the bread soft. Bake for 30-35 minutes until the rolls are brown and if you pop one out to test it's soft and fluffy and cooked.
  • Pull the rolls out and cover them with a cotton tea towel as they cool – again this helps keep the crust of the roll soft. When they are cool, remove them from the pan, slice and freeze.
  • You can freeze them wrapped in a cotton cloth, or sealed in a plastic freezer bag and eat them within the week.


  • Molasses has a stronger taste but makes delicious bread and I love it for the vitamins and minerals it contains. It’s a byproduct of the refining of sugar cane and has iron, selenium, magnesium, B6, and calcium. But maple is a good vegan option and honey is what I often use too. 
  • Butter can also be used in place of olive oil and makes a delicious roll if you eat dairy! 

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