Gluten Free Butterhorn Rolls – Light and Fluffy

Gluten Free Butterhorn Rolls - the perfect rolls for Christmas, Thanksgiving , Easter or a special dinner party.

Can I tell you how long I’ve been trying to make these gluten-free butterhorn rolls like the ‘real’ gluten-full counterparts from my childhood?  Oh, roughly eight years.  They are a welcome addition to a holiday feast.  They do take some time, but you may find like I have that they become a family tradition you don’t want to skip.

I’d given up on these lovelies for a few years – but this Thanksgiving I thought I’d give it another try.  They were better, but still not worthy of their namesake.

This story doesn’t end there, obviously, or this would be a short and disappointing post {wink}.

gluten free flour for making gluten free rolls.

The changes to gluten-free flour blends have happened quickly it seems.  I give credit to the expanded market by all those who didn’t need to eat gluten-free that jumped on the train a few years ago for health reasons.

This recipe uses Cup4Cup, which I use in a lot of my cookie recipes. It also works well with King Arthur’s Gluten-Free cup for cup. These two brands I’ve found have the best results and I’ve tried DOZENS of gluten-free flours. These rolls were pleasantly close to the rolls I remember from my childhood!

Gluten-free products don’t require the usual kneading time of other bread.  The whole purpose of kneading is to activate the gluten in baked goods to help with texture.  This dough needs to be mixed well until smooth – taking about half the time of traditional kneading. We make these almost every Thanksgiving, just like we did when I was a kid. They’ve become a family tradition again, as so glad I was able to FINALLY make them successfully gluten-free.


Gluten-Free Butterhorns (Parker House Rolls)

A wonderful light and fluffy butterhorn dinner rosl.
Prep Time 45 minutes
Rise Time 1 hour
Servings 24
Author Carey Hall



  • Place water in a glass measuring cup (ensuring it is the correct temperature – 110 degrees). Sprinkle the yeast over the top of the water and allow to proof for about 15 minutes.  The yeast should bubble on the top and start to get thick and foamy.  This is an essential stage of ensuring light and fluffy rolls.  If your yeast doesn't do this, then you might not have fresh and active yeast OR your water might not be the correct temperature.
  • Meanwhile, place milk in a saucepan.  Scald the milk by heating it on medium heat until it bubbles a bit on the edges – don't burn the milk, but ensure it bubbles.  Add the shortening, the butter, salt, and the sugar to the milk, stirring, so everything melts together, and allow to cool.
  • In a stand mixer, fitted with the paddle attachment, place the cooled milk and 1 CUP of the flour. Mix on low until combined.  Add in the 3 eggs and the yeast mixture.  Mix on low until eggs are broken up and the dough is smooth again.  
  • Change your mixer to the dough hook.  Add in one cup of flour at a time allowing each cup to be incorporated by the dough hook.  The dough should come away from the sides then get sticky again – continue to add flour until you've reached 4 cups total.  If the dough is still very sticky, add in another 1/4 cup at a time until the dough pulls away from the sides.  (If you don't have a stand mixer, stir in 2 cups of the flour until as combined as you can get it.  Then turn out onto a floured surface and need additional flour in until you reach a total of 4 cups.)
  • Remove the bowl from your stand mixer.  Oil your hands and pull the dough out and form a nice ball with the dough.  Pour about 1 TBSP of oil into a clean mixing bowl and roll the dough in the oil.  Cover the bowl with a dish towel and allow to rise in a WARM place for 2 hrs.  After 1.5 hours, punch the dough down from the top and let it rise the last 30 minutes.
  • In the meantime, line 4 large baking sheets with parchment paper.
    Flour a work surface large enough that you can roll out the dough, approximately 18 inches in diameter when rolled out.
    Divide the dough in half.  Place one half of the dough in the center of the floured area.  Flour your rolling pin.  Roll the dough into a circle – starting in the middle and working out- until it is even and approximately 1/4 inch thick.
  • Brush the melted butter all over the surface of the rolled out dough. Cut the dough with the pizza cutter into 16 pieces, just like a pizza pie.  Usually, I start with cutting into 4 pieces, then 8, etc.
    Roll each slice of dough up starting from the outside working in towards the point.  Place it with the end tucked underneath the roll onto the baking sheet.  These rolls spread a small amount, so leave at least 3/4 inch between your rolls. 
  • Once all the rolls are on the baking sheets, baste again with melted butter.  Cover with dish towels and allow to rise again for about 45-60 minutes.
    Bake in a 400-degree oven for 10-12 minutes, until slightly golden on the details of the rolls.  You can let the rolls cool right on the baking sheets.
    Store these rolls well sealed.  You will want to serve them the day that you bake them; without preservatives, they won't stay fresh long.


4 – 5 large baking sheets will be needed.  A few towels to cover the rising dough and then the rolls will be required as well.  I use my stand mixer fitted with the dough hook.  If you do not have a stand mixer, a kneading mat or floured surface will be needed before you proof the dough.  You will need a pizza cutter, a basting brush and parchment paper.

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soft gluten free rolls - light and fluffy parker house rolls
Gluten-Free Butterhorn Rolls

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