Morning Rolls

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Rolls, cobs, buns, stotties or even barm cakes… Whatever you call them, Scottish morning rolls are easy to make and even more delicious when freshly baked.

Scotch Morning Rolls recipe from Baking with Granny. Traditional recipe for Scottish morning rolls, perfect for breakfast.

I set myself a challenge this year to start baking some more savoury favourites. As tempting as it can be to bake endless sweet treats, there’s so many other [less-cavity-inducing] recipes out there that deserve as much attention as their cake & tray bake counterparts!

Our Scotch morning rolls recipe seemed like a great bake to get me started. Or should I say, cob recipe? Buns recipe? Baps recipe? Softie recipe? Stotty recipe? Or even barm cakes recipe…? Phew! Is there any other bake with so many regional variations to it name?! Whatever you call them, these bread rolls are a staple here in Scotland.

Scotch morning rolls recipe from Baking with Granny. Also known as cobs, buns, baps, barms...

Our Scotch morning rolls recipe seemed like a great bake to get me started. Or should I say, cob recipe? Buns recipe? Baps recipe? Softie recipe? Stotty recipe? Or even barm cakes recipe…? Phew! Is there any other bake with so many regional variations to it name?! Whatever you call them, these bread rolls are a staple here in Scotland.

You’ll find morning rolls in most every corner shop in Scotland on a Sunday morning. Understandably – they make the perfect breakfast roll when filled with bacon, egg, square sausage, black pudding, haggis, tattie scones…the options and combinations are endless! And there’s nothing better than a soft centered roll, with a slight chew to it, and a perfectly baked outer.

There is also the option of a well-fired morning roll. Not for me personally, but my husband and Papa insist they are the superior roll!

With shop bought Scottish morning rolls already being so great, why would you bother you make your own? Well, because you can! I’m a big believer in giving things a go at least once in a lifetime. With that in mind, I think everyone should give baking their own morning rolls a go.

Not to mention that you can’t get a fresher roll than one straight from your very own oven!

Scottish morning rolls recipe from Baking with Granny. Traditional bread rolls, perfect for breakfast.


Strong White Flour
Much like our Easy Bread recipe, for the most predictable dough a Strong Bread Flour is the recommended. This is due to the amount of protein (ie. gluten) in the flour, which gives the rolls a good structure and chew factor.
However if you don’t have any or can’t get your hands on some, Plain Flour is a decent alternative; you’ll just need to work the dough a little harder when kneading to activate what gluten is in the flour.
Oh, and you can of course use Wholemeal Flour, should you prefer to make this a wholemeal morning rolls recipe.

Lard or Vegetable Shortening
Adding some fat your your morning rolls is not entirely essential but it does add a little extra flavour and helps prevent your rolls going stale quite as quick. Either lard or vegetable shortening is fine but just be aware that using lard will deem your rolls unsuitable for vegetarians.

Fact-action Yeast
There was a time when you could buy various types of yeast but nowadays, Fast Action Yeast in 7g sachets is the most accessible. It also works brilliantly in many recipes but especially this stotty rolls recipe, as no extra measuring, or preparation is required to activate it.

When it comes to baking bread doughs, you don’t want your yeast getting ahead of itself. That’s where salt comes in! Salt retards the yeast and slows it down, giving the gluten in your flour time to strengthen and develop. It also adds to the flavour.
In terms of what kind of salt, I use a traditional table salt. You can however try experimenting with different kinds of salt, such as sea salt, or even flavoured salts.

Unlike salt, sugar has the opposite affect when added to a bread dough – it feeds the yeast! It might seem a bit contradictory to be feeding the yeast, whilst simultaneously retarding it but it’s all about balance. Sugar also enhances the flavour in our Scotch rolls, as well as helping with moisture retention.
In terms of what kind of sugar, I use a plain old caster sugar. There’s nothing to stop you from trying different kinds of sugars, such as a golden caster sugar, or even some less-refined sugars.

Milk & Water
For our dough to come together, moisture is needed. We use a combo of water and milk in this instance but if you don’t have milk, or perhaps just not enough, don’t worry; you can always just use water. Milk is preferable as it adds a degree of richness, due to it having more naturally occuring sugars, however it isn’t overly important what kind of milk you use (whole, semi-skimmed, skimmed…). You can even substitute your milk for dairy-free alternatives, such as Soya milk.

Stotty recipe from Baking with Granny. Traditional stotty rolls recipe from Scotland.

Granny's Top Tips

• If you are unable to get hold of vegetable shortening and don’t want to use lard, simply swap out for a block margarine. The water content will be a little higher in a margarine, however having tried and tested this recipe with margarine a number of times, I can confirm it works just fine as a substitute.

• When it comes to dividing the dough for your rolls, weigh your total dough after knocking it back. Use this total number and divide it by 8, then weigh out each dough ball individually. This will give you perfectly even morning rolls.

• Once baked, wrap your rolls in a clean tea towel. This keeps your rolls soft and prevents them from going stale. Morning rolls are always best enjoyed the day they are baked though.

• For well-fired morning rolls (ie. burnt on top – yes, really!) simply bake your rolls an extra 5-10 minutes, until you have your desired colour on top. Just be careful for your smoke detector going off when your take them out the oven!

Scotch Morning Rolls recipe from Baking with Granny. Traditional recipe for Scottish morning rolls, perfect for breakfast.

Morning Rolls

Rolls, cobs, buns, stotty or even barm cakes... Whatever you call them, Scottish morning rolls are easy to make and even more delicious when freshly baked.
4.91 from 10 votes
Course: Breakfast, Main Course, Side Dish
Cuisine: British, Irish, Scottish, Welsh
Prep Time: 3 hours
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Servings: 8



  • In a large bowl, rub the the flour and fat together, using your fingertips, until it resembles breadcrumbs. Add the yeast, salt & sugar, and stir through to combine.
  • In a small saucepan, warm the milk & water over a low heat. You want the liquids to be warm but not boiling. Add the warm liquids to the dry ingredients in the bowl and mix to make a sticky dough (you may need to use your hands).
  • Remove the dough from the bowl and knead on a well-floured surface, for around 10 minutes, until smooth and pliable.
  • Lightly grease a clean bowl, before placing your dough in it. Cover with a piece of greased clingfilm, or a damp tea-towel. Leave the dough into a draught-free place for 1-2 hours, or until it has doubled in size.
    **Alternatively you can let your dough prove overnight - see notes below for details.**
  • Prepare a large baking sheet, by very lightly greasing it before dusting with a generous amount of flour. Set aside.
  • Once your dough has doubled in size, knock it back (gently knead it for a moment to get the air back out of it). Then divide the dough into 8 pieces - you can eyeball this, or weigh your complete dough, divide that number by 8, then evenly weigh out each individual piece (this will give you more uniform rolls). Roll your pieces of dough between your hands to create ball shapes. Roll the dough into an little flour if desired (optional), before placing each ball onto your prepared baking sheet, leaving a little bit of space between each.
  • Loosely cover your rolls with a piece of greased cling film, or a damp tea-towel. Leave in a draught-free place for 1-2 hours, or until they have doubled in size. Once your rolls are about risen, pre-heat your oven to 230°c (210°c for fan assisted ovens, or Gas Mark 8).
  • Remove the cling film/tea towel and place your rolls into your pre-heated oven. Bake for 12-15 minutes, until golden on top.
  • Once baked, wrap your rolls into a clean tea towel and leave to cool on a wire rack before serving.


Overnight rise: If you want to do an overnight rise with your dough, simply follow steps 1-4 but instead of placing the dough into a draught-free place, pop it into your fridge. It will rise but it will be a much slower process and may not reach quite the same size as it would out the fridge.
The next morning, simply remove the dough from the fridge and allow it to warm up a little, before continuing to follow steps 5-10.
Well-fired rolls: To achieve well-fired rolls, simply bake your morning rolls for an additional 10-15 minutes, until you achieve the desired colour on top.
Tried this recipe?Tag @bakingwithgranny or use the hashtag #bakingwithgranny!
Scotch Morning Rolls recipe from Baking with Granny. Rolls, cobs, buns, stotties, barm cakes... Whatever you call them, Scottish morning rolls are easy to make and even more delicious when freshly baked.

17 Responses

  1. Hello
    Recipe sounds amazing, is it possible to do this recipe in a bread maker? My Panasonic bread maker offers a method where you put in your ingredients and let the machine do the hard work of mixing and kneading. Then you take out your finished dough, weigh and sort into rolls and bake. Sadly I can no longer knead dough due to arthritis.
    Sally Church

    1. Hi Sally! I don’t see any reason why this recipe wouldn’t work with a bread maker like you describe. I’m very much a knead-by-hand kind of girl but like yourself, Granny now has arthritis on her hands, so often struggles too – she uses a stand mixer with a dough hook for this very reason. Hope that helps and let me know how you get on!

  2. 5 stars
    This looks like a good recipe for softies, but how about a foolproof recipe for Aberdeen morning rolls, or rowies, or also called butteries? Thank you for the recipes for other things; they all look really good. Some day…

  3. 5 stars
    After rubbing the lard into the flour I made the dough in my stand mixer. Then placed in the oven with a bowl of hot water to help the dough to rise. Baked and stored in the freezer since there are too many for 2 of us. Defrosted beautifully.
    Thanks for the recipe. Weekend breakfast sorted ‍

  4. 5 stars
    Never been overly successful bread making but love this recipe! I used my Kenwood mixer to do the kneading for 10 minutes. The rolls looked really good and were tasty (although very slightly too salty – will reduce just a little next time). Will be making again really soon – thank you

  5. 5 stars
    Made the dough in my Panasonic, baked beautifully in oven as per recipe. Another completely reliable Baking with Granny success!

    1. 5 stars
      Hi Ian,
      Yes, you can freeze rolls and all types of bread that I have made. They are best before you freeze them on the day they are baked, but the difference is marginal. It is best to allow them to defrost naturally on a wooden bread board, but if you are in a hurry, use the microwave … full power, 15 secs ,,, turn over and a second 15 secs ..,. I do them one at a time and they will be quite warm. They are very slightly tougher having been frozen, but they still beat most shop bought rolls !

      I saw questions about using a bread machine. Unless you rub the lard into the flour before putting it into the machine, you could cut it into little pieces to aid the mixing and kneading in the machine. Personally, I would use a veg oil instead, which is easy on the machine and makes perfect rolls. My preference is Scottish Rapeseed Oil ! :)

      Also if using a machine, Put all the liquid in first and add the salt sugar and oil, but hold the yeast until you have added the flour, then sprinkle the yeast on top. This keeps the salt and yeast separate until the last minute, giving you a slightly quicker rise. :)

      All the best to bakers, your families eat the real deal, not half a chemistry lab !

      1. EDIT !
        You only use the bread machine to mix and knead the dough, and perhaps allow the first rise. Then remove it, knock it back, divide it and put it on your baking tray.
        Personally I remove it from the machine as soon as the mixing and kneading are complete and let it rise in a bowl. This allows me to set a loaf of bread going all the sooner ! :)
        II do as much baking as I need on a single day as this reduces all the otherwise wasted electricity heating up the oven !! Just my wee bit to reduce energy waste and help the planet. :)

  6. Hi just wondering if I can sub the milk for water or oil? My daughter is allergic to milk and she also reacts to the dairy free ones too!

  7. 5 stars
    Lovely soft rolls! I made this using a bread maker’s dough setting. The result was excellent – if a tad salty. I’d maybe use 1 1/2 tbsp of salt next time to counteract that.

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Hi! I'm Amy

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Hello, I’m Amy, the voice-behind and creator-of Baking with Granny.

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