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Hawaiian Sweet Rolls.

Hawaiian Sweet Rolls

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  • Author: Cindy @mycountrytable
  • Prep Time: 3 hours
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Total Time: 3 hours 25 minutes
  • Yield: 15 rolls 1x
  • Category: Bread/Side dish
  • Method: Bake
  • Cuisine: American


These Hawaiian Sweet Rolls are so light an fluffy and literally melt in your mouth. Prep them the day before and bake the day of your next holiday gathering. Oh, and you might want to double the recipe!


Units Scale


  • 1 packet instant yeast
  • 1/2 cup warm milk, 110 degrees (use 2% or whole milk)
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar, divided
  • 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup pineapple juice, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3 3/4 cups all-purpose flour


  • 1 large egg
  • 2 tablespoons water


  • 1 tablespoon salted butter



  1. Proof the yeast: Add the yeast, milk and 1 tablespoon of the sugar to the large bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Mix on low speed for about 10 seconds just long enough to wet the yeast. Allow the mixture to sit for at least 5 minutes until it looks foamy/frothy and bubbly on top. This is called proofing the yeast…making sure it’s still good. If the yeast doesn’t bubble and foam up, after 10 minutes stop and discard it, and start over. This means one of three things…your milk wasn’t warm enough to activate the yeast, your milk was too hot and killed the yeast, or your yeast was expired. Stop and check the expiration date on your yeast.
  2. Make the dough: In the same bowl, add the remaining sugar, butter, eggs, and pineapple juice. Mix on medium speed for about 30 seconds and switch from the paddle attachment to the dough hook.  Add the salt and about 2 cups of the flour. Mix on low speed just until the flour is incorporated. Slowly add in the remaining flour, all but 1/2 cup. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, and turn the mixer to medium. Knead the dough for at least 5 minutes, until the dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl and is just slightly sticky or tacky. If the dough is too sticky, and sticks to the sides of the bowl, slowly add in more of the remaining flour, and keep kneading until you get a tacky dough that releases from the sides of the bowl and you can handle with your hands.
  3. First rise: Form the dough into a round disc and place it in a large greased bowl, turning it over once, to grease both sides. Cover the bowl with a towel, and place the bowl in a draft free warm area in your kitchen. Allow the dough to rise until doubled in size, 1 1/2 to 2 hours. Here’s what I do. I preheat my oven to 160 degrees and turn it off before starting my recipe, leaving the oven door slightly ajar. When I’m ready for the first rise, I place a towel over the bowl, place the bowl in my oven and leave the door ajar. I do make sure that the oven has cooled off enough. It should be lukewarm. 
  4. Form the dough balls: Punch down the dough with your fist or fingers to deflate it and get rid of air bubbles. Transfer the dough to a work surface, using very little flour as possible. Form the dough into a long piece and use a bench scraper to cut it into 15 equal pieces. I use a kitchen scale to weigh each piece, making sure they’re all about the same. Pick up each piece and gather it in the palm of your hand, pulling up the corners and pinching them together on top. Turn the ball over, seam side down on a flat surface and cup your hand over it, rolling it in a circular motion until it forms a perfect ball. Place the balls in a greased 9 x 13 baking dish, making 5 rows of 3.
  5. Second Rise: Place a thin linen towel over the dish and place it in a draft free place to rise until doubled in size. It will take 45 to 60 minutes for the second rise. During the last 15 minutes or so, preheat your oven to 375 degrees.
  6. Bake: Make the egg wash by whisking together the egg and water. Lightly brush the tops of the rolls with the egg wash, making sure to not deflate them. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes until they are golden brown on top and hollow sounding if you thump on the top of one. If they begin to brown too much on top during baking, place a foil tent over the top.  Remove from the oven and brush the rolls with butter. Allow the rolls to cool for 5 minutes before serving. See my notes in the post above for make ahead instructions.
  7. To keep rolls warm until the rest of your meal is ready, cover or wrap them in foil and place in a 200 degree oven.


  • These rolls will stay fresh for up to 3 days if placed in an airtight container. To reheat, cover or wrap them and place in a 300 degree oven for about 5 minutes, or wrap them and heat in a microwave for 15 to 20 seconds.