Butter Rolls

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Psalm 105:4   Look to the LORD and his strength; seek his face always.

Nora Sons Cyree 1885-1970


When my husband was a little boy he and his brother and sister spent a good bit of time with their grandparents.  When the kids had been particularly good, (which according to legend, wasn’t very often) their Granny would make these butter rolls.  Lee’s granny has been gone quite awhile, but we have been able to recreate these butter rolls fairly close to hers.   They really aren’t “rolls” as one thinks of a bread roll.  They are more like a sweet side dish for breakfast or a special treat anytime.  They are so rich that a little bit goes a long way, but between the butter and the sugar – what’s not to like?!!!


Granny’s Butter Rolls


2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup shortening
1/2 cup water
3/4 cup butter, softened
1/4 cup white sugar


2 cups milk
2/3 cup white sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Granny made this in her cast iron skillet, but a lightly greased 7”x11” or 8”x8” baking pan will also work.

In a large bowl, mix together flour and salt. Cut shortening in thoroughly with a pastry blender until mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Stir in water and press dough together with your hands. Roll out pastry into a large rectangle. Spread the butter evenly over the pastry, then sprinkle on 1/4 cup sugar.

Roll up the dough jelly roll style and pinch to seal. Cut into 12 even slices.

Place the rolls in the prepared pan.

In a small saucepan, heat milk, 2/3 cup sugar and vanilla until mixture begins to bubble. Pour milk mixture over rolls.

Bake in preheated oven until brown, about 30 to 40 minutes.

Yields 12 servings. 

If you like butter, you’ll love these simple but delicious butter rolls. They’re baked in a sweet milk sauce.  Just the thing for a crowning touch to any meal.


Did you know?  According to “Wine and Food Books” measuring spoons with well rounded bottoms are the most accurate.  Avoid the ones that are extremely shallow; they can be off by almost 50 percent!

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2 thoughts on “Butter Rolls”

  1. Catherine…Growing up we had to make a lot of trips to east Tennessee to visit my mother’s family. The trip seemed long and hard at the time, but jumping on the feather bed and eating Aunt Zelma’s butter rolls were the two things that made the whole trip worthwhile! None of us ever learned how to make them and my mouth has watered just thinking about them over the years. Thank you for this recipe!!

    • Oh Susan this is so cool to know you have good memories about Butter Rolls too! Lee’s granny would sometimes just take the roll and cut it in thirds (instead 12 little rolls) and put in the pan with all the milk/sugar mixture. He said then it would come out more like a pudding type dessert. We have tried it both ways and any way we do it the taste is rich, creamy, and delicious! Please let me know if you make these and if they match your memory! Happy cooking!


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