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Brown Buns

These made great sandwich buns. I slice them before freezing so they are ready to fill and wrap.

  • ½ cup butter, melted
  • ¼ cup oil
  • 2 cups warm milk
  • 2 cups warm water
  • 1 tablespoons salt
  • 2 tablespoons instant yeast
  • 2 cups quick oats
  • 8 cups flour (approx) - whole wheat or mixed
  1. Put liquids in large mixing bowl, or mixer with a kneading hook attachment, preferred.
  2. Add salt - do not forget this =), several cups of flour and then the yeast, stirring well.
  3. Add oats and continue adding flour (switch to dough hook attachment if using machine)
  4. Knead until dough holds together and is not too sticky when handled with greased or floured hands. ("ready dough" feels like a baby’s bottom)
  5. Allow dough to rise about 1 hour (in a large bowl), covered with a clean tea towel and plastic bag. (I keep re-using the same large bag – no perfumed bags, please)
  6. Keep away from drafts.
  7. Grease hands and, using a small amount of dough at a time, pinch off buns between index finger and thumb, curling index finger in. (I prefer my left hand for this so I can grab the pinched off bun with my right)
  8. Place buns on greased cookie sheets. Cover and let rise 1 hour.
  9. Bake at 400F, about 18 - 20 minutes.  Remove from sheet and cool on wire racks.
  10. Yield: 36 – 40 buns.
  11. This is a basic recipe guide. For example: you can use only water or only milk, and substitute with any grains you like; you can use half white/half whole wheat flour, add some flax seed, throw in some eggs etc. If you don’t have a large kitchenAid or such, I would suggest doing ½ or ¾ of the recipe to try by hand. Get out the strawberry jam and Havarti! 


  1. Yay! A BROWN bun recipe! Yikes...we have ONE day of rain this weekend...only one day to BAKE!!!! And there is so much to choose from....but this looks good for lunches so I am afraid that this NOW tops the baking list. Thanks Anneliese

  2. Hehe..I had to chuckle about 'a ready dough feels like a baby bottom'..often wondered how to describe a 'ready dough' and now I know! A friend of mine used to say the dough is ready when it squeaks.

  3. Ya know, I really admire cooks who make their own bread and buns. Me, I'm a little lazy when it comes to bread...

  4. Anneliese, these looks so good and the day is cool so I think I'll whip them up. They look so wonderful and your instructions are so nice and clear.

  5. This is Great,Annneliese, I finally get a brown bun recipe, that I know will be a good recipe. I just made a batch of white kringels (curly buns, my mom's recipe)for the Tomato soup ( your recipe)that I am serving tonight.
    Love this site and all the recipes that I have tried have come out great.
    Thanks again to all the ladies that share their.

  6. Lovely! I'm making my strawberry jam in a day or two. The berries are just starting. These would be lovely to have with it!

  7. I made these yesterday, followed the recipe exactly, and they didn't turn out great...didn't brown well. Is sugar missing intentionally? I have made buns for years, and have never had this problem, but there's always been at least a little sugar in the recipes.
    I love your site!

  8. Ruth ... I have used this basic recipe for many years, and when I use instant yeast, I generally don't put any sugar in.. I have not found a difference. However, I have found that flour and ovens can vary ... my daughters both live out of country and when I bake at their place I have to make adjustments. Some flour needs extra gluten, if you use another kind of yeast, you need sugar and I think it was when I forgot the salt - the buns did not want to brown properly... go figure.
    It really is hard to know what went wrong with your try.

  9. This is probably a dumb question, but is it whole wheat flour or white? I assume you mean white, but the recipe is for brown buns, so that might be WW. I've never seen a recipe with only ww though....thanks.


  10. Maxine ... yes it's ww flour ... all or part, whatever you like ... and the roles oats.

  11. Great buns. I made a batch last night so we'd have picnic buns 'at the ready' and I'm really pleased with this recipe. The oats give them extra fibre and yet they're still soft - great sandwich buns. I added 3 tbsp. ground flax and 2 tbsp. liquid honey.

  12. Should i use bread flour or regular flour? and can the recipe be halved successfully? Thanks in advance

  13. Tara, I've never used bread flour, but it would probably be fine. I use whole wheat or a mixture of whole wheat and unbleached (half and half)You can do half the recipe but it's basically the same amount of work. Maybe still use the same amount of yeast for half the recipe.

  14. Thanks a bunch! I will give it a try this week.

  15. I halved the recipe and got 24 buns, I wasn't expecting the dough to be as sticky as it was and had to flour my hands a bit. They turned out great. I used large rolled oats and will use small ones the next time. Going to try another recipe soon!

  16. Hi Tara,
    I really appreciate you telling me how you found the dough. When one is used to doing it, it is easy to forget how it was the first time. Flouring your hands is a good idea, you can also grease your hands with a tiny bit of oil.
    Have you tried the French Bread? You can use half multigrain flour if you like ... it is an easy recipe and you can do more with it too. (pizza buns, foccacia)

  17. Hi Annaliese,
    I will try other bread soon. I came accross a recipe that I can no longer find! If anyone can help it would be great. It was a white dough, that mentioned making it into sweet bread by dunking it into cream, then sugar (and possibly cinnamon) and that it goes great with coffee. I think it takes about 10-12 cups of flour. Please if anyone has it can you please give me the link or email it too
    I would really appreciate it! Oh and I have only half a dozen of the 24 buns from yesterday's batch, and we are a family of 5 LOL thx again!

  18. This has been the only brown bun recipe I have used since I found it. I have mixed it up with brown, rye, flax seed and whatever else is in the house. Thank you so much