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The Sourdough Discard Dinner Rolls recipe makes pillowy soft, luscious, and fluffy homemade rolls with that special sourdough tang. They have a special flavor & texture thanks to a healthy dose of sourdough starter.

Homemade rolls are so much better than store-bought. Plus, better for you without preservatives, etc. In my opinion, they’re best when served warm with butter alongside a heaping helping of cheesy pasta or for sliders. Also, try Cinnamon Raisin Sourdough Bread

Sourdough Discard Dinner Rolls.


For years, I was ‘scared’ to use yeast. The few times I tried it, the recipes didn’t work out. I enjoy cinnamon rolls so much that I wanted desperately to be able to make them so I was determined to master making bread and rolls with yeast. There are a few simple tips for working with yeast that I’ll outline below. As well, patience is important. The weather and/or temperature of your house will determine in part how quickly the dough rises.

Everyone should have a basic homemade yeast roll recipe. I hope you’ll save it and try this one. It is easy to make.

This recipe assumes you have a sourdough starter. As well, it uses the discard of your sourdough starter. 

If you don’t have a sourdough starter and don’t have a friend to give you one, you can make a starter using this recipe: How to Make Sourdough Starter. Another resource is Sourdough Starter with Atta, which is Indian whole wheat flour.

Sourdough Dinner Rolls on a cooling rack.


A sourdough starter is a fed and active sourdough starter, while the discard is an unfed and inactive sourdough starter. The starter is generally harvested 4-6 hours after a feeding when the sourdough host is bubbly and at its most active, discard is harvested when the sourdough host is hungry and before it’s fed again.

A starter that has at least doubled in size and is active can leaven bread, while a nearly inactive discard cannot. However, discard can be used in recipes with a secondary leavening agent, like baking soda, baking powder, or yeast. This recipe is a way to use the discard and not waste it.

Sourdough Dinner Roll process


  • Warm water. Warm water helps the yeast activate. Read your package of yeast to determine the best temperature for your product.
  • Active dry yeast. Yeast comes in packets and jars. If you buy the packets/envelopes of yeast, they are 0.4 oz or 2 ¼ teaspoons. Considering 1 tablespoon = 3 teaspoons, you will be fine with 1 packet. However, you may need to wait longer for the first rise. I have done both, and both are excellent, 1 tablespoon is a bit more fluffy.
  • Granulated sugar. Sugar helps activate the yeast.
  • Eggs. Get size large and they need to be at room temperature.
  • Butter, melted and cooled. This is important because if you add warm butter, it may be too hot and kill your yeast and/or curdle the eggs. Also, you can replace it with olive oil or any vegetable oil you like. Keep in mind the butter gives your rolls another level of richness. 
  • Sourdough discard. (in the morning, before I feed the starter, I discard 1 cup; this is what I use)
  • Salt.
  • Unbleached all-purpose flour. (You may need to add more, possibly up to an extra ½ cup. As well, weather affects bread making.)


  • Why do I have to use yeast for my sourdough rolls? Because we are making a quick bread, within the same day, the yeast helps give the bread a lift and be more fluffy. Also if your starter is young it helps as well. When I make sourdough bread, it is usually an overnight process and the yeast has time to develop from my starter to create the lift needed. However, don’t worry, these Sourdough Discard Dinner Rolls have a sourdough texture and taste.
  • The sourdough discard should be slightly bubbly on top, but no liquid or Hooch visible. 
  • This dinner roll has a soft crust. It is not baked in a Dutch oven or has moisture in the oven for the crust.
  • If you want, you can brush on an egg wash before baking. I chose not to because I like the fluffy, light texture of the bread with the body of sourdough. If you add egg wash, take 1 egg + 1 tablespoon of water. Beat with a fork and gently brush over the buns with a pastry brush before putting them in the oven.
  • One thing we noticed, they rewarm in the microwave for 20-25 seconds or air fryer at 350 degrees F for 2 to 3 minutes.
  • Enjoy Sourdough Discard Rolls as is, with butter or jam,  use as a sandwich, on a charcuterie board.
  • You can also freeze them. What I do is when I roll the dough into balls, I place them, not touching, on a parchment-lined cookie sheet and freeze them for 30 minutes. Then transfer to a freezer-safe bag. When thawing, place them in the fridge overnight, and in the morning place them in the baking dish on the counter while heating up the oven. (they should be completely thawed by then). Don’t keep it in the freezer for longer than 60 days.

Can I freeze yeast dough?

Yes. Read all the information about freezing yeast dough in this article I wrote: Freezing yeast bread dough.

Sourdough Discard Dinner Rolls.


Keep Sourdough Discard Rolls in a zippered bag or covered container in a cool dry place, and they’ll stay fresh for up to 5 days. Freeze baked and cooled rolls on a cookie sheet and then place them in a zippered bag with the date labeled on the outside. They’ll keep in the freezer indefinitely, but are best if used within 3 months. Let frozen rolls thaw at room temperature before serving.

fresh bread



  1. Naan
  2. Pizza Dough Cheesy Breadsticks
  3. Soft Fluffy Yeast Rolls
  4. Bacon Jalapeno Popper Cheesy Bread
  5. Brioche Dinner Rolls
  6. Foolproof Quick Dinner Rolls

As well, these Sourdough Discard Rolls make great sliders. Try my Baked Cheddar Roast Beef Sliders, Bacon Chicken Ranch Pull-Apart Sliders, and Hawaiian Rolls Strawberry Cheesecake Sliders.

Sourdough Discard Dinner Rolls.

Sourdough Discard Dinner Rolls

The Sourdough Discard Dinner Rolls recipe makes pillowy soft, luscious, and fluffy homemade rolls with that special sourdough tang. They have a special flavor & texture thanks to a healthy dose of sourdough starter.
Author: Paula
5 from 41 votes
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Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
1st rise 60 minutes 2nd rise 60 minutes: 2 hours
Total Time: 2 hours 30 minutes
Servings: 12 servings


  • ½ cup warm water Warm water helps the yeast to activate. Best temperature is around 95°F
  • 1 tablespoon active dry yeast The packets/envelopes, they are 0.4 oz or 2 ¼ teaspoons. Considering 1 tablespoon = 3 teaspoons you will be fine with 1 packet. However, you may need to leave it a bit longer for the first rise. I have done both, and both are excellent, 1 tablespoon is a bit more fluffy in my opinion.
  • 1 tablespoon granulated sugar sugar helps activate the yeast
  • 2 large eggs room temperature
  • 3 tablespoons butter, melted and cooled This is important because if you add warm butter, it may exceed 110°F & kill your yeast & curdle the eggs. If you forget, you can also replace it with olive oil or any vegetable oil. Keep in mind the butter gives your rolls another level of richness.
  • 1 cup sourdough discard Before I feed the starter, I discard 1 cup, this is what I use
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3 cups unbleached all-purpose flour depending where you are at, you may need to add an extra ½ cup


  • In a bowl of a stand-up mixer, pour the water, yeast and sugar. Slightly mix it and set aside for 4 to 5 minutes until it froth/foam up.
  • Add the eggs, cooled melted butter, salt, and the sourdough discard. Mix until combined.
  • Add half the flour. Mix until all incorporated.
  • Add the remaining flour. Mix until the ingredients are forming a ball. As soon as it forms a ball you will see it looks dry. Keep mixing until the dough separates from the side of the bowl, 2-3 minutes. the dough will look lumpy, not smooth like playdoh. It’s ok. The dough should be sticky, when you push with your fingers it feels cold and sticky but won’t leave residue on your fingers. If it leaves residue on your fingers add ¼ cup of flour.
  • *NOTE* If you want, but don’t have to, you can place the dough on a lightly floured surface and knead the dough for 2 to 3 minutes. I have done it, and even without doing this step I still have a light and fluffy roll.
  • Transfer the dough to an oiled bowl (I used a large mixing bowl and added approximately 1 tablespoon of olive oil). Turn the dough in it so the dough is coated in oil. Place a plastic wrap on top.
  • Let the dough rise in a warm, draft-free place for approximately 60 minutes. (I like to put mine in the microwave) until the dough has doubled.
  • Place the dough on a lightly floured surface. I used my silicone pastry mat from OXO Good Grip, and added about 1 tablespoon of flour.
  • Cut the dough into 12 equal pieces.
  • Roll them into a ball.
  • Place them into a buttered (gives the crust a better taste) 9 x 13 bakedish.
  • Cover with a dish towel and let it rise for 45 minutes in a warm, draft-free place. (Yep, back in the microwave!)
  • Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F.
  • Once the oven has reached the temperature, bake the buns for 20 to 22 minutes or until golden. internal temperature should be around 190 degrees F
  • Once it is out of the oven, let it cool. I personally like to take 1 tablespoon of cold butter, put it at the end of a fork and brush it all over the top.


Calories: 175kcal | Carbohydrates: 29g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 4g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.4g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Trans Fat: 0.1g | Cholesterol: 39mg | Sodium: 229mg | Potassium: 49mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 133IU | Vitamin C: 0.001mg | Calcium: 10mg | Iron: 2mg
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  1. 5 stars
    I made this recipe for the second time today and doubled it so that we would have extra to freeze. These rolls are so beautifully fluffy, and they will be our go-to from now on!

  2. 5 stars
    The BEST dinner rolls I have ever made! They turned out so soft and delicious! Now my hubby wont allow any other kind. Thank you so much!

  3. 5 stars
    I’m brand new to sourdough baking. I stumbled across this recipe to make some rolls for Christmas with some of my first discard…. I followed the recipe and I got amazing rolls!!!!! My family loves them. I was so nervous making them but this recipe was very new baker friendly! And just sooo delicious!!!!!

      1. Is it’s supposed to be 1/2 cup warm water or 1&1/2 cup water? The recipe listed is confusing

  4. I noticed too late unfortunately that while you list salt in the ingredients, no where in the instructions do you say when to add the salt. As a result, my dough was already in a ball rising when I noticed while putting away all my ingredients that I never put in the salt. Crossed my fingers that it wouldn’t make a huge difference but unfortunately it really did.

    The only way to save these rolls, which look nice, is make a flaky salted butter for spreading.

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