Sweet Potato Dinner Rolls with Honey Butter Glaze

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Sweet Potato Dinner Rolls with Honey-Butter Glaze–mixed and kneaded in a bread machine

These rolls are on our Thanksgiving menu…and I can’t wait!

The secret to their tenderness, Hawaiian-bread-like color, and lasting freshness, is the sweet potatoes. Don’t worry.  No one will ever guess it because you can’t taste the potatoes.

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Learn how to make perfectly round rolls here.

Make them into balls or go all fancy and make crescents.

sweet potato crescents storyboard (1 of 1)

The sticky sweetness of the honey butter glaze makes these rolls completely irresistible. However, I recommend glazing only those you think will be eaten straight out of the oven as they will become even stickier after sitting a few hours. Sugar attracts moisture. A quick pass of butter when hot out of the oven, or just plain naked still makes a scrumptious roll.

And one more thing. That dash of cinnamon called for in the recipe? It’s optional but I implore you to try it. Your tastebuds won’t be able to call it by name, but they will recognize something special. It all just goes together.

Poppy Seed Chicken Salad-18.jpg

Sweet Potato Crescent Rolls with Poppy Seed Chicken Salad

IF… you have any leftover rolls (preferably without the glaze), they make perfect little slider buns or containers for chicken/turkey salad or ham. Better make a bunch if that’s your plan because it’s easy to eat a whole pan of these without even realizing it.

Sweet Potato Dinner Rolls with Honey Butter Glaze
Recipe type: Bread (bread machine)
Serves: 16 rolls
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Light and fluffy dinner rolls made with sweet potatoes and baked with a honey-butter glaze. Great slider buns without glaze.
  • 1 egg
  • ½ cup mashed sweet potato (see notes)
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ¼ cup butter
  • ⅔ cup warm milk
  • Dash of cinnamon
  • 3 cups bread flour
  • 2 teaspoons bread machine or instant yeast
Honey Butter Glaze
  • 1 egg white, stirred with a fork
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  1. Add ingredients listed to bread machine pan in order listed.
  2. Run dough cycle.
  3. Remove dough from bread machine to floured surface.
  4. See below to form dough into shape of your choice. Cover with a tea towel.
  5. After rolls have almost doubled in size, brush with honey butter glaze, if using.
  6. Bake at 350 degrees F for 12-15 minutes or until rolls are golden brown.
  7. Remove from pan or cookie sheet to allow cooling. (If you leave them in the pan too long, they will get soggy on the bottom.)
To Make Balls
  1. Divide dough in half, then half again making four sections. Divide each of these sections into 4 pieces of dough which should leave you with 16 little doughballs. Form into round balls.
  2. Arrange balls into two round (or square) 8 or 9-inch greased pans.
  3. Cover rolls loosely with tea towel to rise.
To Make Crescents
  1. Divide dough in half and form each half into a ball. Roll to approximately 10 inches in diameter. Use a knife or pizza cutter to create 8 triangles (see picture). Roll each triangle starting from the wide end and finally, tucking small end under so it will not pop out when baked. Place on greased cookie sheet.
  2. Cover rolls loosely with tea towel to rise.
Honey Butter Glaze
  1. Combine all ingredients and brush carefully over each roll just before popping them in the preheated oven. Try not to let the glaze touch the cookie sheet.
Boil or bake fresh sweet potatoes, or reserve ½ cup portions from your leftover Thanksgiving sweet potato casserole as long as it hasn't been adulterated by extras like pineapple or other fruit. Just be sure the sweet potatoes are mashed to a silky smooth texture so they won't be recognized in the rolls.

Happy Thanksgiving! Paula
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{ 25 comments… read them below or add one }

Elly April 22, 2015 at 9:46 am

Hi Paula. Love ur homemade bread recipes. I tried several recipes including this n really satisfied. Do u have a recipe italian herb bread? Contains rosemary, thyme n parmesan? Thank u 🙂


Paula April 27, 2015 at 10:08 am

Hi Elly,
I do not have one like that. Will work on it. 🙂


Nike November 24, 2014 at 1:24 pm

Hi Paula,
Can I save the leftover glaze to use in 3 days? Doing a test run on these rolls today and will be making them again on Thansgiving.

Thank you!


Paula November 24, 2014 at 5:19 pm

I haven’t tried it but I would think so–as long as you keep it in a sealed container so it won’t dry out.


Torn February 16, 2013 at 11:02 am

This looks lovely!

I found this site about yams against sweet potatoes. Is it accurate, i would not want to buy the wrong stuff?



Paula February 17, 2013 at 5:34 pm

Hi Torn,
I’m afraid I don’t really know. I buy whatever is available in my local grocery store and it has always turned out just fine.


stacie January 21, 2013 at 3:08 pm

Made these rolls and really enjoyed them! I liked them best as a dinner roll. I made them in the morning so I skipped the glaze and warmed them up for dinner, so delicious!


Paula January 21, 2013 at 8:27 pm

Hi Stacie,
Thanks for taking the time to come back and give your opinion. This dough also makes wonderful cinnamon rolls. I just made some yesterday.


CommonSenseMom January 14, 2013 at 3:07 pm

I made these in the bread machine today (they are rising right now). The dough was very, very sticky. Is that how it turns out for you, Paula? I added an extra 1/2 cup of flour, and it was still very difficult to shape the rolls.


Paula January 15, 2013 at 9:53 am

Hi Common Sense,
Oh no. The dough should not be sticky. It should be VERY easy to handle. I wonder if you miscounted the cups of flour (I’ve done that), or….is it possible you mis-measured the liquid ingredients? Were your sweet potatoes runny? They should be the consistency of rather thick mashed potatoes. Anyway, you did the right thing by adding more flour but sounds like you should have added even more. Did you use bleached flour? If so, you must use more than if you use the bread flour called for in the recipe. This is a mystery and I’m not sure of the answer without watching you make them.


CommonSenseMom January 15, 2013 at 3:19 pm

I make bread in the machine several times a week at least, so I’m pretty familiar with the process. I think the liquid measuring was good. It is possible that I miscounted the flour. As I recall, I had to open a new bag, so maybe that was the problem. I do use bread flour. Also, I baked the sweet potato in foil, and it may have had a high moisture content (it seemed fairly juicy when I peeled it). Thanks for responding…I’ll try them again.


Paula January 16, 2013 at 9:28 am

I think your sweet potato should have been perfect. Perhaps it was the flour. Makes sense.


Peggy Helmick November 23, 2012 at 12:24 pm

I just saw the comment about how to make them if you don’t have a bread machine. I just used my Kitchen aid. I had to use approx. 1 extra cup of flour because the dough was very sticky. I then took the dough out of the bowl with floured hands kneaded a little more flour into the dough so it wouldn’t stick to my fingers, formed it into a dough ball, greased my bowl put the dough back in the bowl and turned it over so it would have the oil on both sides of the dough. I covered the bowl and let it set until it had probably doubled in size. I than punched it down and divided it like the recipe said. I put in in 2 cake pans, covered them with a tea towel and let them rise again till double in size. I then baked them as your recipe suggested and they turned out wonderful. Hope this helps with those who want to know how to do this without a bread machine.


Peggy Helmick November 23, 2012 at 12:14 pm

Paula, I wanted to tell you I made the Sweet Potato Rolls for Thanksgiving Dinner and they were a real hit. I didn’t put the glaze on them because I made them on Wed. Our daughter took one bite and said ” these are the best rolls I have ever eaten. I have to have this recipe.” I felt really good. I have been sick and on Chemo for 6 months and my family doesn’t ask me to help out much with things, but I wanted to try a little something so your rolls was what I chose to do. They turned out wonderful. I gave my bread machine away so I used my Kitchen aid to whip them up. Thanks for sending the recipe. Peggy


Melinda November 30, 2012 at 9:00 am

Paula, thanks for posting your experience for us. Did you follow the recipe exactly with your Kitchen Aid or did you have to add extra flour as Peggy did. Also did you sift your flour prior to measuring? Thanks and I pray that God blesses you with a speedy recovery.


Angel Kolb November 22, 2012 at 10:38 am

Making these now! Holy smokes, I made 1/2 buns and 1/2 croissants!). They are huge and absolutely fabulous!))


Rebecca November 22, 2012 at 10:05 am

I’d like to make these this weekend to have with lasagna! I’m wondering if they can be assembled ahead of time and baked just before dinner. If so, at what stage should they be refrigerated? Thanks!


Paula November 22, 2012 at 8:03 pm

I would recommend chilling them after you have formed them into rolls. You’ll need to allow an extra 1-2 hours (depending on the temperature of your room) for them to double before you bake them. Hope that helps.


Rebecca November 23, 2012 at 5:11 pm

Thanks! I’ll let you know how it goes – I’m making them tomorrow!


The Café Sucré Farine November 21, 2012 at 2:33 pm

Yum, Paula, I could probably eat a whole panful of these – quite delish looking! I need to come watch you up close make those round dough balls, mine don’t come out as perfect as yours!


Online RSA November 20, 2012 at 7:38 am

It’s looks delicious. Thanks for the post.


Stefanie November 19, 2012 at 2:08 pm

These sound delicious, but I don’t have a bread machine. Can they be made without it? If so, how? Thanks!


Paula November 19, 2012 at 5:16 pm

Yes, I am confident they could be made by hand or with a stand mixer but I have not actually done it myself so can’t give you specific instructions. You might google how to convert a bread machine recipe to get started.


Betty November 17, 2012 at 9:18 pm

These rolls are gorgeous, Paula! I’m not cooking for Thanksgiving, but I wouldn’t even need an occasion to make these. 🙂


Patricia Harper November 17, 2012 at 4:50 pm

Dinner Rolls


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