Heidi's German Brötchen Recipe

When traveling to any part of Germany, at least one visit to a bakery is a must. Making these bread rolls fresh at home is the next best thing! 

Prep Time

2 hours 10 minutes

Bake Time

20 minutes

Total Time

2 hours 30 minutes


Makes 8 buns


  • 4 cups (520 grams) bread flour (or all-purpose), divided
  • 1 teaspoon (6 grams) salt
  • 2¼ teaspoons (7 grams) instant yeast
  • 1¼ cups (300 milliliters) lukewarm water
  • water in a spray bottle


  1. Put 3½ cups of the flour (455 grams) and the salt into the large bowl of an electric mixer.
  2. Stir the yeast into the warm water and pour the mixture over the flour.
  3. Using a dough hook, mix the wet and dry ingredients together slowly until the dough holds together, adding the remaining flour, one tablespoon at a time, as needed. Increase the speed and knead for 10 minutes until the dough is elastic and doesn’t stick to the side of the bowl.
  4. Remove the smooth dough from the bowl and knead it briefly by hand on a lightly floured surface. Oil the bowl and place dough back in the bowl. Cover the bowl with a kitchen towel and let the dough rest for 1 hour in a warm place.
  5. Deflate the dough by punching it down gently, but do not knead it again.
  6. Preheat the oven to 465°F (240 degrees C).
  7. Divide dough into 8 equal parts to form buns, approximately 3.5 ounces (100 grams) each. Place each piece of dough on a parchment paper-lined baking tray and score deeply, using a razor blade or sharp knife.
  8. Cover the rolls with a clean kitchen towel and let rise for ½ hour.
  9. Score the risen rolls deeply again and spray lightly with water. Bake in the preheated oven for 10 minutes.
  10. Lower the temperature to 410°F (210 degrees C) and spray the rolls with water again. Bake another 10 minutes.
  11. Remove when done and let them cool slightly. They can be eaten warm or at room temperature.


  • Weighing the flour is best. If you don't have a scale, be sure to fluff up the flour before spooning it into your measuring cup, then level the flour with the back of a knife.
  • Try spraying the rolls with salt water; add about 2 teaspoons salt to 2 tablespoons water.
  • Right after the rolls are first sprayed with water, sprinkle with different seeds, such as poppy seeds, chia seeds, sesame seeds, sunflower seeds, or pumpkin seeds. 
  • Try substituting whole wheat flour for the all-purpose flour.

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