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Green Olive Rolls

These rolls…are a triumph. From someone who loves bread but has always been terrified of actually making it at home…I just kind of can’t believe it.

Yes, this recipe took time, but it wasn’t hard at all! And the result was the most amazing, flavorful, and fun rolls that made my husband swoon and me just kind of sit there in disbelief of the awesomeness.

Green Olive Gruyere Rolls

And the entire reason I made them…was baking bootcamp. A worthy installation of baking challenges from Joy the Baker that have officially made me never afraid of making yeasty bready things again!

I mean…Who wouldn’t want cheese and olives rolled up into a fluffy roll? You just have to have patience…

Green Olive Rolls

…and someone to supervise and take photos of you working with the dough…

Green Olive Rolls

You can definitely eat these rolls plain, they also go great with mustard…but with our last roll, we had the genius idea…why not make a ham sandwich with this?!?

Best Sandwich Ever

Green Olive Gruyere Rolls
Barely Adapted from Joy the Baker
Makes 8 large rolls


For the Starter:
    • 1 1/4 cups Unbleached Bread Flour
    • 1 teaspoon salt
    • 1/2 teaspoon instant yeast
    • 1/2 cup warm water
For the Dough:
    • all of the starter
    • 1 cup + 2 tablespoons to 1 1/4 cups lukewarm water
    • 1 teaspoon salt
    • 3 1/2 cups Unbleached Bread Flour
    • 1/2 teaspoon instant yeast
For the Filling:
  • 2 1/2 cups grated Gruyère cheese, or the grated/shredded cheese of your choice
  • 1 cup coarsely chopped green olives
  • 1 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper

Ideas for Filling Variations:

  • Pepperoni, mozzarella, olives (pizza rolls!)
  • Kalamata olives, feta, oregano, spinach (greek rolls!)
  • Cheddar and jalapeno (duh)


  1. To make the starter, mix the 1 1/4 cups flour, salt, yeast, and 1/2 cup water in a large measuring cup or small bowl. Mix till well combined; the starter will be very dry. Cover and let rest overnight at room temperature; it’ll become bubbly.
  2. To make the dough, combine the risen starter with the water, salt, flour, and yeast. Stir until thick and well combined in a bowl then dump onto a well floured work surface to knead by hand until soft and smooth, about 8 to 10 minutes.
  3. Place the dough in a lightly greased bowl, cover, and let it rise for 1 1/2 to 2 hours, until doubled in size.
  4. Gently deflate the dough, and pat and stretch it into a 3/4″-thick rectangle, about 9″ x 12″. Use your finger tips and hands to stretch out the dough. No rolling pin required. Sprinkle with the grated cheese and olives.
  5. Starting with a long side of the dough, roll it into a log, pinching the seam to seal. Place the log, seam-side down on a lightly floured surface.
  6. Gently cut the log into eight crosswise slices, for mini-breads; or simply cut the dough in half, for two normal-sized loaves. Place them on one (for two loaves) or two (for eight mini-loaves) lightly greased baking sheets or 9×13-inch pans, cut side up. Use your fingers to press the rolls down and spread them open a bit to more fully expose the cheese.
  7. Cover loosely with a clean kitchen towel and let it rise for 1 hour until it’s puffy but not necessarily doubled in size. Towards the end of the rising time, place a rack in the upper third of the oven and preheat the oven to 425°F.
  8. Lightly brush loaves with egg wash.
  9. Place in the oven to bake.
  10. Bake for 20 minutes (for the mini-loaves), or 35 minutes (for the full-sized loaves), or until the cheese is melted and the loaves are a very deep golden brown. Remove them from the oven, and cool on a rack.
  11. Slice into wedges and serve warm with mustard. Rolls will last, well wrapped at room temperature for up to 4 days. They are best reheated gently in the oven or toasted before serving.

Green Olive Rolls