A hamburger is nothing without having a good old-fashioned hamburger bun to put all of your meat and toppings into it. You won’t believe it’s possible to make this kind of bread that makes any hamburger taste even better. When you can make it yourself, this recipe will change your mind before you ever buy those store-bought buns ever again.
All of the fuss going to the store to make a decent burger is often more of a hassle if you have store-bought buns. That’s why it just makes sense if you like cooking your burger to perfection. Why would you want to buy a premade patty? Sadly they sell these too, but it wouldn’t be recommended if you eat these kinds of overly processed meats very often. Therefore, freshly cooked hamburgers paired with fresh bread buns just make sense.
Before you start to get cold feet, it is possible to make savory buns from scratch and as good as you get at a fancy restaurant. The best part is that these will cost you a fraction of the cost to make your own. If you have a stand mixer with bread and dough hooks, this makes the mixing part easier. Aside from that, here’s what you’ll need:
- 1 cups milk (whole milk)
- 8 tablespoons butter or 1 stick (unsalted)
- 4 teaspoons yeast (instant active)
- 4 cups flour (all-purpose)
- 5 tablespoons sugar
- 1 tablespoon kosher salt
- 1 egg (beaten with 1 teaspoon water added)
- Sesame seeds (an option for topping)
Mixing your dough
Start with a small saucepan that is warmed on your stovetop over medium heat. Pour your milk and slice your stick of butter into pieces as the milk starts to warm. Use a wooden stirring spoon to keep the milk from burning. What you want is to melt the butter totally for 7 minutes. Place your saucepan to the side and let it cool down to reach 105-115F degrees.
You can use a digital thermometer to check the temperature of your milk. When it reaches no more than 105 degrees, add your yeast and stir until it’s totally dissolved. All you need to do at this point is let it sit for 10 minutes. Get your stand mixer ready and fitted with dough hooks. Now all you do is add your flour, sugar, and salt and mix this on low for 30 seconds. This helps to break up any lumps.
After half a minute has passed, you now add the milk and yeast mixture for a total of 1 minute. After this, you can increase the mixer speed to medium-low. This will now begin to knead your dough until it gets nice and smooth. This will take about 4 or 5 minutes and is the reason a stand mixer is best to use so you aren’t hand-kneading for 10 minutes… After this, you can remove the dough from the bowl and set it aside.
You can also clean out your mixing bowl and oil it so that the inside will keep your dough from sticking. It should be elastic and shiny like velvet, and it also needs to be covered with plastic wrap instead of a damp towel and placed in the warmest spot in your kitchen. Let it sit for no more than 1-hour so it can double in size. The warmer the spot you find will allow the dough to rise faster.
You’ll need a baking sheet that is lined with parchment paper. The best kind of parchment paper is silicone coated so your bread doesn’t stick when they’re baked. Now you ready your tabletop counter to form your buns. Scatter a light dusting of flour where you’re going to place your dough. Using a wooden rolling pin, roll out your dough into a 10-inch by 7-inch rectangle shape. Don’t worry if the dough is getting thin, it will rise again.
Use a measuring ruler to divide the dough into 2-inch squares. Now when these are cut out, you can transfer the dough onto the baking tray and evenly space them and allow for them to rise. This also needs to be covered with plastic wrap and sitting in a warm spot in your kitchen. It can take as long as 30 minutes yet this can take longer if your kitchen is not that warm. You can now preheat your oven to 400F degrees.
Going back to your buns, they should have risen once again and need to have the plastic wrap taken off them. This is when you can take your egg and water mixture and coat the top half of each bun. If you like sesame seeds on your bun, this is when you add them before baking your buns. The baking tray is then placed into your oven on the medium rack and allowed to bake for 14-16 minutes.
If you have a digital thermometer, the center of your bread buns should read 190F degrees and they should have a golden brown color. You now transfer your buns to cooling racks and let them cool off until you use them. Slice the bread down the middle and use them as your hamburger buns. This recipe is enough to make you a total of 12 buns and will remain fresh for 2 or 3 days if they last that long.