Potato Burger Buns

These delicious buns are worth the time they take to make because you can freeze the extras
3 hours Total Time
50 minutes to prep
1 hour 45 minutes to rise
20 minutes to bake
5 minutes to cool
12 servings
This recipe is from America's Test Kitchen book Bread Illustrated. I highly recommend this book if you want to learn more about making bread from scratch. The original recipe made 9 buns, but I have adjusted it to make 12 rolls, which is no more effort. The rolls freeze well and there is less waste of eggs and potatoes when I scale the recipe up. This is probably not the best recipe to start with if you are new to bread making because it is a bit more work than the average recipe. It is not difficult, but getting the potatoes and potato water adds extra steps and time.
I have listed the flour by weight, because it is best to use a scale when baking. If you don't have a scale, measure the flour by scooping in to the flour and leveling off the cup with a knife. Do not forget to get the potato water before draining the potatoes, because the starch in the water is useful in this recipe. It is important to make sure the potatoes are mashed properly, otherwise you might get lumps of potatoes in the rolls. The 2 eggs need to be beaten together, then divided. You need 1 1/2 eggs for the dough, and 1/2 egg for the egg wash. It is important to use bread flour here and not regular all purpose flour.



  • Gather and prep ingredients. Start with the potatoes and then get the other ingredients measured while potatoes are cooking.
    Step 0
  • Add potatoes to a saucepan. Add enough water to cover the potatoes completely, but not much higher. Bring the water to a boil.
    Step 1
  • Once the water reaches a boil, reduce heat to a simmer over medium-low. Cook until potatoes are fully cooked, about 8-10 minutes.
    Step 2
  • Before draining the potatoes, pour 1/2 cup of the potato water into a glass measuring cup. Measure carefully and pour off any extra because you don't want too much water in the dough.
    Step 3
  • Drain the potatoes and return them to the saucepan. Cook over low heat for about 1 minute shaking the pan to remove any moisture from the potatoes.
    Step 4
  • Put the potatoes through a ricer, or mash completely with a potato masher. It is important to make sure there are no lumps or pieces of potatoes that remain. Mash it as smooth as possible.
    Step 5
  • Measure 1 1/2" cups of potatoes. Pack it firmly. If you have a scale, the potatoes will weigh about 12 ounces.
    Step 6
  • Transfer potatoes to small bowl and add butter. Stir until the butter is melted and you have a smooth mixture.
    Step 7
  • Combine flour, sugar, yeast, and salt in the bowl of a stand mixer.
    Step 8
  • Lightly beat the eggs in a small bowl (but a bigger bowl than I have pictured.) Take out 2 tablespoons from the bowl of beaten eggs and put in a second small bowl. One bowl will have about 3/4 of the egg, and the 2 tablespoons will be about 1/4 of the egg.
    Step 9
  • Add 1 teaspoon of water and a pinch of salt to the 2 tablespoons (smaller bowl) of egg. This will be used later to brush the rolls. Cover this bowl and store in refrigerator until needed.
    Step 10
  • Add the potato butter mixture to the stand mixer bowl. Add the dough hook to the mixer. Stir the potato into the flour on lowest setting until potatoes are somewhat mixed in. It will still be lumpy.
    Step 11
  • Add the beaten egg (from the bowl with most of the eggs) to stand mixer bowl. Add the reserved 1/2 cup of potato water to the mixer bowl.
    Step 12
  • Turn mixer on to low speed and mix for 8-10 minutes until a smooth but sticky dough forms.
    Step 13
  • Turn dough out on to counter and roll into a smooth ball. Place dough in a lightly greased bowl and cover with plastic.
    Step 14
  • Let rise for 30-40 minutes, until doubled in size.
    Step 15
  • Turn dough out on to clean lightly floured countertop. Pat dough into roughly a 9 by 12" rectangle.
    Step 16
  • Cut the dough into 12 equal sized pieces around 3" square each.
    Step 17
  • Shape each square into a round of dough. Place the dough on the counter and cup your hand above it. Roll the dough by circling your hand until the dough forms a nice smooth ball of dough. Keep the other dough pieces covered while shaping so it does not dry out. When all balls are formed, covered with plastic and let rest 15 minutes.
    Step 18
  • Place parchment paper on 2 baking sheets. After resting dough, place 6 rounds on each sheet, spacing evenly. Gently pat the balls into 3 1/2" rounds. Cover the sheets lightly with plastic. Let rise 30-40 minutes until doubled in size. While buns are rising, preheat the oven to 425°. Arrange the racks to middle and middle-upper positions.
    Step 19
  • Stir the reserved egg mixture again. Brush the egg mixture over the buns lightly.
    Step 20
  • If using sesame seeds, sprinkle over the buns.
    Step 21
  • Bake in the oven for 15-18 minutes. Halfway through (after 8 minutes) rotate each pan and switch the racks the pans are on for even baking.
    Step 22
  • When buns are browned, remove from oven. Cool on pan for 5 minutes.
    Step 23
  • Serve warm or cold. The buns may be wrapped and frozen.
    Step 24

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