Cloverleaf Rolls are rich and buttery dinner rolls that are baked in a muffin tin. You can’t go wrong with these on your dinner table. They bake up soft and golden and delicious every time.
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Key to Success #1 – 105 to 110 degrees precisely
One of the biggest keys to wonderful fluffy rolls is activating the yeast and making it happy so that your rolls will rise.
The key to happy yeast is liquid that is between 105 and 110 degrees F.
I like to heat my milk in a glass measuring cup.
I usually use a 2-cup glass measuring cup and warm the milk in the microwave for maybe 30 seconds, maybe slightly more.
And I use a candy thermometer to test the temperature of the milk.
If you don’t have a thermometer, you can do a feel test.
The milk should feel slightly warmer than body temperature.
And be sure to stir the milk to make sure the milk is the same temperature all the way through.
You don’t want the yeast to find a cold spot or it won’t rise.
Key to Success #2 – Do Not Add Additional Flour
For the lightest and fluffiest Cloverleaf rolls, do not add more flour than what the recipe calls for.
Be sure to measure the flour and the milk precisely then just go with it.
The dough will be soft and a bit sticky after you add the melted butter and mix it in thoroughly.
You can just scrape the dough down into a ball at the bottom of the mixing bowl and let it rise.
After the initial rise, you’ll divide the dough into twelve equal pieces.
Again, the dough will be soft but don’t be tempted to add more flour.
Just grease your hands and continue dividing the dough then rolling each piece into three tiny balls.
Key to Success #3 – Three Balls in a Cup
I like to divide my dough into twelve pieces and put them into each muffin cup.
Then I look at each portion of dough to make sure they are all about equal in size.
I can pinch a little from this one or that one if I think they are not all even.
Then I take the dough from one cup at time and split it into three separate balls.
Then I set them side by side back into the cup of the muffin pan. The photo below shows how the dough balls look in the muffin pan.
I love my USA Pans Muffin Pan and I use it often. Nothing sticks to it and everything cooks so evenly in it.
After this, you’ll cover the muffin pan with greased plastic wrap then lay a clean, dry kitchen towel over it and set it in a warm place to rise.
You’ll want the rolls to rise for between 45 minutes and an hour.
The dough will look smooth and puffy. Very gently brush the rolls with melted butter before baking.
The Cloverleaf Rolls bake in only 10 to 12 minutes.
When they come out of the oven, they should be golden brown.
Brush the rolls with more melted butter then sprinkle with sea salt, if desired.
Save this Cloverleaf Rolls recipe to your favorite Dinner Rolls board!
- 1 packet active dry yeast
- 2 Tbsp granulated sugar, divided
- 1/2 cup milk, warmed to 105 to 110 degrees F
- 6 Tbsp butter, divided
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 large egg
- Stir 1 tablespoon of sugar into warmed milk then sprinkle yeast on top. Set aside for about 5 minutes until foamy.
- In bowl of stand mixer with dough hook attached, combine the remaining sugar, salt and flour. Turn mixer to low and slowly pour in the milk mixture. Add the egg. Mix on low until dough comes together, scraping down the bowl often.
- Continue mixing 5-6 minutes until dough is smooth.
- Add 4 tablespoons melted butter and continue mixing until all butter is absorbed. (Butter may slosh around at first so make sure mixer is on low speed.)
- Increase speed to medium and continue mixing until dough is smooth, at least 5 minutes
- Dough will be soft and elastic, do not add additional flour. With a spatula, form dough into a ball in the mixing bowl.
- Cover bowl with greased plastic wrap and set aside in a warm spot until dough has doubled in size, about 1-2 hours.
- Grease 12-cup muffin pan. Divide dough into 12 equal pieces. (Do not add additional flour.) Working with one portion of dough at a time, divide piece of dough into three separate pieces. Roll each piece into a tight ball then place all three dough balls into a single cup. Repeat with remaining dough.
- Cover muffin pan loosely with greased plastic wrap then a clean kitchen towel. Set aside in a warm place to rise until doubled in size, about 45 minutes to 1 hour. The dough will look puffy and will spring back when gently pressed down.
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Melt remaining 2 tablespoons of butter. Brush each roll lightly with butter, making sure not to deflate the rolls. Pour any remaining butter into each muffin cup.
- Bake 10-12 minutes, until rolls are golden brown. Brush with more butter and sprinkle with sea salt, if desired.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 12 Serving Size: 1 grams
Amount Per Serving: Unsaturated Fat: 0g