Lion House Rolls

The Lion House Rolls are my favorite rolls HANDS DOWN! If you aren’t familiar with the Lion House, it is a restaurant in Utah that is known for its food and especially its rolls. They are so moist and the texture is amazing. Last time I was visiting my sister Shelly in Utah she made these.

My sister has five boys so I love being around her house full of teenage boys because it’s a little glimpse in the future for me. Her boys are good boys full of energy (and hormones) always headed to a game or practice for one of their sports. She is constantly cooking and feeding them hearty food trying to satisfy their raging appetites. I laughed when I saw a tray of sandwiches in the fridge. She makes a tray, a whole tray, of huge sandwiches for them to “snack” on throughout the day. What I learned is that my food bill is going to be huge in 10 years!

I know Thanksgiving should be all about the turkey, but for me it’s all about the rolls. I’m a sucker for a warm homemade roll with butter slathered all over it. These Lion House rolls are legendary…for a reason.

Lion House Rolls

Yield: 2 to 2 1/2 dozen

Ingredients

  • 2 cups warm water
  • 2/3 cup instant nonfat dry milk
  • 2 Tablespoons dry yeast (2 packages)
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/3 cup butter (5 1/3 tablespoons)
  • 1 egg
  • 5-5 1/2 cups all purpose flour (bread flour can be used if you have it on hand and will make for a lighter roll)

Instructions

  1. In the large bowl of an electric mixer, combine the water and the milk powder and stir so the milk dissolves.
  2. Add the yeast to this mixture while water and milk is still warm. I let the yeast proof (dissolve and start to react) for a couple of minutes then add the sugar, salt, butter, egg and 2 cups of the flour. Mix on low speed of mixer until ingredients are wet, then turn to medium speed and mix for 2 minutes. Stop the mixer and add 2 more cups of flour (now 4 cups total added so far) then mix on low speed until the ingredients are wet, then turn mixer on medium speed and mix for 2 minutes. The dough will be getting stiff and you may need to remove the bowl from the mixer and mix in the remaining flour by hand (mine is still wet here).
  3. Add approximately 1/2- 1 cup of flour and mix again. (This can be done by hand or mixer). The dough should be soft, not overly sticky, and not stiff. (It is not necessary to use the entire 5 1/2 cups of flour). Scrape the dough off the sides of the bowl and pour approximately on tablespoon of vegetable oil all around the sides of the bowl. Turn the dough over in the bowl so it is covered with the oil. (This helps prevent the dough from drying out.) Cover with a kitchen towel or plastic wrap and allow to rise in a warm place until double in size.
  4. Sprinkle a cutting board or counter with flour and put the dough on the flour. You want to put enough flour on the dough so that it is workable and not sticky.
  5. You can roll these into crescent rolls or do it the traditional Lion House way. Here is a video showing how to roll them the Lion House way. Roll into a rectangle about 1/4 inch thick and brush with melted butter. I probably use 1/4 cup melted butter brushed on here.
  6. You want to cut the rectangle into smaller rectangles that are 2"X4" (a little smaller than a dollar bill). If you make and "L" with your thumb and pointer finger that will show you how wide and tall to cut your rectangles.
  7. Then you roll them (or flip them like in the video) and place them on a greased (or parchment lined) baking pans with the end of the roll resting on the pan. Cover again with a kitchen towel so they don't dry out as they rise. Clear as mud?
  8. Let rise in a warm place until the rolls are double in size (approx. 1-1 1/2 hours). Bake in a 375-degree oven for 15-20 minutes or until they are browned to your satisfaction. Brush with melted butter while hot. Yields 2 to 2 1/2 dozen rolls.

Notes

Source: KSL.com and the Lion House Cookbook

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Speak Your Mind

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Comments

  1. Hi there, Is it OK with you if I feature these as part of my Copycat Club (monthly on the 7th of every month). Read more on my blog.

    Thanks! TIa @ Buttercreambarbie

  2. @Tia,
    Of course! Feature them…they are the best!
    Christy

  3. Lion house rolls are my absolute favorite!!

  4. I LOVE Lion House rolls! Planning on making them for Thanksgiving dinner :)

  5. have i told you that i think you are amazing. and you make me hungry :)

  6. New to your blog and love it! I also love this roll recipe. I even have a roll recipe that I like even better (if that can be possible)on my blog. It is the Dinner Crescent recipe, oh..yum! Feel free to visit my blog http://www.dealstomeals.blogspot.com Also, I would LOVE to do a giveaway on your blog and give away a free membership to our website Deals to Meals. Our service helps people save money on groceries (without using coupons–who has time for those!), stock up their food storage and plans their weekly menu around those sale items each week. I would also love to give you a free membership as well and let you see how much money you can save. Email me at [email protected] and I will send you more information.

    Thanks and great blog!

    Shandra
    http://www.dealstomeals.com

  7. These look terrific, but I’m confused about something. I watched the video on shaping the rolls and the baker repeated twice “make sure the butter is on the inside” as if the dough had been spread with butter before flipping. Is that part of your recipe too? Or was it just because on the video, she was using a mix and the mix calls for a butter wash but homemade does not?

  8. @Kristina,
    The recipe I had did not call for a butter wash but I always do that anyway so I changed the directions to add one. Thanks for the catch!
    Christy

  9. These look very tasty. I am always impressed by pastries they just seem so difficult to make. You should share this recipe over at http://www.dishfolio.com

  10. I love Lion House rolls! Thanks for the recipe. I LOVE your blog. I’ve become a daily reader. Thanks for all of the great recipes and keep it up! :)

  11. This comment has been removed by the author.

  12. I love Lion House Rolls!! Delicious and way worth the time it takes to make them. Your picture is making me really wish I was eating one of these right now!

  13. So do you not proof the yeast, you just dump it all in

  14. You actually do not have to proof it but if it makes you feel better you can combine the water and milk with the yeast in a large bowl and let sit 5 minutes.

  15. No No~ I love that you can dump it all in!

  16. We love these rolls!

    http://ldsmomtomany.blogspot.com/

  17. Have you ever frozen these? Would you freeze before letting them rise or after baking them?
    Cindy

  18. @[email protected]
    I haven’t froze these rolls but on Mommy’s Kitchen she gives instructions on how.If you want to freeze these you can do it after the dough has risen once and you have shaped the dough and placed them on the pan.

    Here are her instructions from (http://www.mommyskitchen.net/2010/05/legendary-lion-house-rolls-potluck.html)
    “How to freeze rolls: After shaping the rolls place them 2 inches apart on a waxed paper-lined baking sheet. Place the rolls in the freezer and freeze until firm. When the rolls are firm, transfer to a large zip lock freezer bag. Date and freeze for up to 4 weeks.

    To use freezer rolls: Arrange frozen rolls 2 inches apart on baking sheets coated with nonstick cooking spray or covered with parchment paper. Cover rolls with plastic wrap coated with baking spray. Place in a warm place and let the rolls rise until doubled in size. Bake at 375 degrees for 15-20 minutes or until golden brown. Brush with additional butter while hot.”

  19. do you have to let the rolls sit in a warm place to double in size twice? I see it on your blog written twice…let sit once after you get it into a ball and cover with plastic..and then again let sit once they are rolled up…is this correct?

  20. @Jessica,
    Yes, you let them rise twice. Twice the fluffiness!

  21. What other shapes can be made??? I have never made rolls. . These look wonderful and so easy. Thanks

  22. Just made these for our Easter dinner tomorrow. OMG! So fluffy and yummy=D

  23. @bakerbabe,
    You can make any shape you want really. You can just form them in a ball but you lose the buttery layers that way. Or you can divide the dough into smaller circles and cut them like a pizza and roll it like a crescent.

    @Heather,
    Aren’t they the best?!!

  24. Okay, I have a dumb question but I’m a rookie to using my kitchen aid mixer as well as to making rolls so here goes nothing: What attachment should I be using to make these? I know another recipe I tried specifically mentioned using the dough hook but I wasn’t sure if that is standard protocol when working with dough or what. Any help you could offer would be much appreciated!

  25. @MDtripmom,
    You are right some recipes say switch to the dough hook after you add the second 2 cups (4 cups total flour). I never switch from the paddle attachment. I don’t think it’s necessary since the dough isn’t overly thick at that point.

  26. I made these for Easter and omg… sooooo good. I’ve never heard of Lion House, but these rolls made me want to go there. The dough was simple, easy, and they turned out great!

    I ate 5 rolls… and still wanted more. That’s how great these rolls are!

  27. Okay so, I am a newbie to the roll-making world and this is only the third thing I’ve made with my Kitchenaid. They TASTED amazing…but they were not light and flaky. They were actually quite dense. I followed the directions EXACTLY. Any ideas what I might have done wrong?

    THANK YOU!
    Rachel @ wearethenaslunds.com

  28. @Rachel,
    Yep. These definitely are not light and flaky. They melt in your mouth but have a texture you can sink your teeth into. I’ve had them turn out dense and rock hard once but I think my yeast was bad…

  29. Hey. So I just found you and I want to say you are making me so hungry. And quick question. Can I please steal all you recipes?? Lol I want to make all of it. I have a list a mile long for when I go to the store. I can’t wait. Thanks I now have you bookmarked so I can use your recipes. Thanks so much.

  30. What can I use to mix the dough with if I don’t have a stand mixer? I look forward to making these for Thanksgiving! Thanks!!

    • You can just knead it by hand with your big muscles. LOL. Really, you can. Mix the beginning part with a hand mixer and when it gets too thick start kneading by hand.

  31. How long would you say you let it rise both the first and second time? Making these tomorrow for thanksgiving and didn’t know if I should start the process today since we are eating at 12. Would hate to run out of time due to rising time or have to wake up super early to start them! Haha! Thanks!

    • Sorry. Hope it’s not too late. About an hour to an hour an and half for each rise time. Make sure you let them rise in a warm place!

  32. Just wanted to say this recipe is EXCELLENT, A huge success for our Thanksgiving family gathering today. I made 24 and ALL were eaten, I did change from the veggie/ shortening oil to Olive oil, the taste was the same, but healthier for you… I was requested by many people to make these for our Christmas family get together… Also to a previous poster that asked about proofing, TRUST ME when I say there’s NO NEED for proofing..

  33. Made these this past weekend and man! they were tasty! My hubby loved them and had like 7 with our already filling dinner. I was getting nervous making them because for some reason I had to use almost a full extra cup of flour to get the dough to all come together and stop being so dang sticky. I worried they might be too tough or dense, but they were heavenly! Not sure why so much more was needed, but I’ll oh well. This will definitely be a frequently made recipe at our house! Thanks so much!

  34. Hope this reaches you; I want to know what kind of yeast- there is the regular, and quick rise types
    and I usually use the bread machine to do roll dough. Thank you.

  35. Christy I saw these on Pinterest and just had to run by to swoon over them. Absolutely beautiful roll.s

  36. Can you use milk in this recipe instead of milk powder? Thanks.

    • Christy {The Girl Who Ate Everything} says:

      I would say no but I’ve never tried it. This recipe has been around for ages so I don’t dare alter it.

  37. Would these rolls freeze well & if so for how long? I am hosting Thanksgiving for 22 adults who love carbs and i am not sure i would be able to make them all the day before and day of! Thanks!!

    • Christy {The Girl Who Ate Everything} says:

      Ashley, I haven’t tried freezing them but others have done it. Most rolls and bread can be frozen for a long time. Two weeks at least.

  38. Hi! I’m excited to make these for Thanksgiving! A couple quick questions: Do you brush the butter on before/after you cut the rolls? Or does it matter? I assume before because when I watched the video it didn’t show it. Also, do you put butter on top of the rolls to help them brown at all? Or is there enough butter in the recipe to help it brown up nicely? Thanks for the recipe and tips!

    • Christy {The Girl Who Ate Everything} says:

      I brush butter on before I cut the rolls. It’s probably easier that way. I put butter on them after they’ve baked. They brown up nicely so it’s not necessary to do it before.

  39. I’m not getting anywhere near the same amount of flour as your recipe calls for. So I need to know, do you measure your flour by scooping the measuring cup and leveling? Or do you use a separate cup or scoop to lightly fill the measuring cup before you level it?

    I’m super excited for these to work. Thanks!

    • Christy {The Girl Who Ate Everything} says:

      I try not to scoop it but loosely fill the cup. Just add flour until it becomes manageable and not sticky.

  40. Hi, Can this be right; 2 tablespoons of yeast? Seems like an allot to me.
    Thanks, Phil

  41. Donna Ramirez says:

    Sounds wonderful, but a little confused. I’m pretty sure a packet of yeast only has 2 1/4 teaspoons of yeast in it, so two packets would have 4 1/2 teaspoons, which is definitely not 2 tablespoons, which is 6 teaspoons. What gives? I don’t want to mess these up!

    • Christy {The Girl Who Ate Everything} says:

      Donna,
      You’re totally right. It’s always confused me too. Their official recipe says both as well: http://studio5.ksl.com/?nid=126&sid=13337385
      In my experience, it’s better to error on the side of more yeast. I always use 2 packets but to have that extra 1 1/2 teaspoons of yeast to make a full 2 Tablespoons would only make them better. Good luck.

  42. Oh my gosh I cannot wait to try these and the chicken and spinach stuffed shells for dinner tonight! I hope they look half as good as yours and taste at least the same! Thank you for these recipes and I can’t wait to try more!!
    Katy
    earningourstripes.org