Simple All Purpose Breadmaker Dough

This dough recipe is so convenient since you probably already have these four ingredients on hand:

flour, sugar, salt, and bread machine yeast. (You will need a bread machine like this one that is large enough to hold four cups of flour.)

All-Purpose Dinner Roll


1 1/2 cups water
4 cups all-purpose flour or bread flour
2 tbsp sugar
2 tsp salt
2 tsp rapid rise/breadmaker yeast

This dough is a great go-to recipe I like to use when I am low on groceries and don't want to make a trip to the store. For me, it is sometimes easier to bake some type of bread at home than to lug everyone to the store and perhaps mess up a toddler's nap schedule. This is also a frugal recipe since it uses the cheapest type of flour and not much else.


Pour the water into the bread machine, followed by the flour, salt, and sugar. I sprinkle the salt and sugar around toward the outside so it won't come into contact with the yeast immediately. I think I read that tip somewhere. When using a bread machine, the yeast always gets added last. Make a well in the center of the flour about an inch and a half deep but not deep enough to strike water. Spoon the yeast into the hole.

Correctly arranged ingredients in the bread machine

Select the dough cycle and start the machine. You won't need to check the dough during the cycle like you would with a loaf of bread since this isn't quite as critical, and this dough looks different anyway. As long as you have measured the flour correctly, your dough should come out just right. Always pour or scoop your flour into a measuring cup and level off rather than scooping the flour out with the measuring cup. Scooping with the measuring cup could pack the flour down too much, causing you to end up with more flour than the recipe calls for. That said, this recipe is very forgiving, so stop obsessing. WALK AWAY FROM THE MACHINE! It will be fine...

Here's how the dough will look once the breadmaker beeps and tells you it's ready...

Dough in bread machine after dough cycle is complete.

Another plus about using your breadmaker's dough cycle for small baked items is that it takes less time than baking an actual loaf of bread. It takes over three hours to make a regular loaf of bread in the bread machine, but the "dough cycle" only takes about an hour and a half. It takes only a few additional minutes in the oven to bake breadsticks, hamburger buns, or dinner rolls after the dough cycle is done.

For dinner rolls:

Preheat the oven to 400 and sprinkle some flour on your work surface--I use a large cutting board. Divide the dough into 15 or 16 similarly sized balls. I rub my fingers in flour every so often to keep the dough from sticking. Arrange all of the dough balls on a foil-covered cookie sheet and bake for 15-20 minutes until slightly golden.

piece of dough ready to be formed into a ball

These rolls are fluffy and not too sweet. They are the perfect neutral white dinner rolls and so good with a little pat of butter. Even though they are simple to make, your guests will swoon at the smell of these freshly baked dinner rolls. Even my six-year-old son was overjoyed to find out I was baking fresh dinner rolls today! "Mom, remember the FIRST TIME we had dinner rolls!?" Um, no. Lol. But they are delicious!

Breadmachine Dough Cycle Dinner Rolls
Buttery Perfection!

I use this simple dough recipe for a lot of things, including hamburger buns or sandwich rolls, and it's sooo good!


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