These Homemade Hot Dog Buns will take your barbecue to the next level! They are soft and fluffy and way better than store bought!
Ever since I snagged my Mom’s Homemade Buns recipe, I’ve been dreaming of all the things I can turn them into!
The dough is so perfectly soft and fluffy, and so easy to work with, that I knew it would be a perfect match for our favorite hot dogs.
Lately, I’ve found store bought hot dog buns just don’t live up to my expectations.
They’re dry and flavorless, and who knows how long they’ve been sitting on the store shelf!
With this hot dog bun recipe, you’ll never have to settle again, and your family will be begging you to make these for every barbecue.
There are a few different ways you can make these hot dog buns, depending on your level of patience. I wanted to crank out a batch of hot dog buns as quickly as I could, without sacrificing results.
So I tried using instant yeast and doing two quick rises, but I wasn’t completely satisfied with the results.
If you’re eating any buns or bread fresh out of the oven, you can sacrifice some rise time and still have an amazing product.
But if you want to enjoy them the next day, or a couple days later?
Longer rises will give you the fluffiest results that stay fluffy for a couple of days.
Here are the basics:
- Stir together some flour, yeast, sugar and salt — instant or quick yeast is required for this method. See my tips below for swapping in active dry yeast.
- Stir in the warm water and melted butter — this can easily be done with a spoon or whisk. Ensure your water is warm but not hot! We don’t want to kill the yeast.
- Gradually stir in the remaining flour until a soft dough forms. First, we’ll add in a few cups, and then we’ll add the last couple of cups in gradually, so that we are never past the point of having a nice soft dough. The most important thing when making yeast dough is not to add too much flour — we want our dough just past the point of being sticky. It will be incredibly soft and smooth.
- Let the dough rise in a quite warm place (I like to turn my oven on to preheat and leave it for 3-5 minutes before turning it off) for an hour and a half.
- Roll out your hot dog buns (I roll mine the same way I roll my regular buns, just longer and thinner — about 6″ by 1.5-2″) and place them on a parchment lined baking sheet 1″ apart — we want them to touch as they start to rise and bake so they will help lift each other up.
- Let your buns rise until doubled again — about 45-60 minutes.
- Bake until golden — if you want, you can brush the tops of your buns with an egg wash before baking (an egg, beaten with a bit of water), but I don’t bother as I find sometimes it can cause my buns to deflate somewhat. You can also brush with melted butter once they’re out of the oven.
You can definitely use active dry yeast in this recipe, but it will require a couple of swaps.
First, you’ll need to proof the yeast by dissolving it in warm water. Active dry yeast has larger granules so it needs to be completely dissolved before adding to your flour mixture.
To make this recipe using active dry yeast, you will follow this Homemade Buns recipe exactly, but reducing the sugar to 1/4 cup. Once your dough has risen in the bowl and you are ready to roll your hot dog buns, you will come back to finish the recipe here.
You can definitely use whole wheat flour for this recipe, and I do now all the time when I am making them for our family.
I prefer to first test a recipe with all purpose flour, to see how using whole wheat flour might change it, but we tend to eat mostly whole wheat breads.
You can start with 2-3 cups of whole wheat flour for a light whole wheat dinner roll, or use up to 100%.
When I make these for our family, I tend to stick with 50-75% whole wheat flour. I find adding even a bit of all purpose flour makes them fluffier than 100% whole wheat flour.
KEEP AT ROOM TEMPERATURE:
These buns will keep at room temperature in an airtight plastic bag for 4-5 days. I will warn you though — they’re so delicious fresh out of the oven that you might find they don’t last that long!
You will notice that after the second day they are not quite as fluffy and fresh-tasting, so I recommend making them as close to the day you want to serve them as possible, or reheating in a low oven (200-250 degrees F) just before serving.
HOW TO FREEZE BUNS AND BREAD:
We usually make a batch and freeze some of these for later, because it takes us a while to get through this many hot dog buns!
Let cool completely — I usually let mine sit for 4-6 hours on a wire rack on the counter. Place in an airtight plastic bag and freeze up to 3 months.
To thaw, place on a plate lined with paper towel to absorb any extra moisture and let sit at room temperature for an hour. You can also thaw at a low temperature in the microwave, just be careful not to make them too hot or they can dry out.
Obviously, plain old hot dogs come to mind, but you don’t have to stop there! Here are a few more options that we love these for:
- meatball subs, loaded with Italian meatballs and lots of cheese!
- Smoked sausages and peppers
- this insanely flavorful Italian Beef, just be sure to toast them first!
- Use them in a chili cheese dog casserole, knife and fork required!
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- 6-7 cups all purpose flour (you can sub in whole wheat) divided
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1 tablespoon instant or quick yeast
- 1 tablespoon salt
- 2 1/2 cups warm water (noticeably warm but not hot)
- 1/2 cup melted unsalted butter
- In a large bowl (the bowl of a stand mixer if you're using one), stir together 1 cup of flour, sugar, yeast and salt.
- Add water and butter and stir until combined.
- Add two more cups of flour and stir until combined.
- Place bowl in stand mixer, and gradually add remaining 3-4 cups flour, 1/2-1 cup at a time. As your dough gets closer to finishing, reduce the amount of flour you add at once so that you don't add too much. You can make this dough by hand as well — just stir in flour gradually until you can no longer use a spoon, then knead it in by hand, just until a soft and smooth dough forms. We want to stop adding flour when our dough is just past the sticky point.
- Cover and place dough in a warm spot for 1.5 hours or until doubled (I like to turn my oven on to preheat for a few minutes, then turn it off before placing my dough inside). Punch dough down.
- Uncover dough and divide into 4 even sections. Divide each section into 5 equal sections so you have 20 pieces. Keep remaining pieces covered to prevent drying out while you roll each bun. (For smaller hot dog buns, divide each section into 6 pieces, for a total of 24 buns)
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Roll each piece of dough into a smooth ball, pinching the seams in the back and rolling until smooth. Place ball on the counter and roll back and forth with both hands to make a cylinder that is roughly 5-6" by 1-1.5". For hot dog buns that are not as thick, press down to flatten slightly. Line up on baking sheets about 1-1.5" apart.
- Once your hot dog buns are all rolled, let rise for 45-60 minutes until doubled again.
- Bake at 400 degrees F for 15-20 minutes, until light golden brown. Optional: brush wth melted butter upon removing from the oven.
- Let cool to room temperature before slicing and serving.
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