French Onion Rolls in Basket

These French Onion Rolls are fluffy on the outside and filled with sweet, caramelized onions and melty gruyere cheese on the inside. They are reminiscent of a classic french onion soup and each bite is packed with flavor. 

French Onion Rolls in Basket

The beauty of this recipe is that makes enough to share with your neighbors or to make sure everyone gets at least one roll at the dinner table. I always think of holiday family gatherings when I make any kind of roll. I grew up baking with my mom and I really believe that homemade is best. Especially when it comes to something like dinner rolls. These French Onion Rolls are a fun take on a classic dinner roll and I love that each roll comes with a surprise in the middle.

French Onion Rolls Plated and in Pan

This post is sponsored by Fleischmann’s® Yeast. In this recipe, I used Fleischmann’s® RapidRise® Instant Yeast and I like that you don’t have to activate the yeast in warm water to use it. If this is your first foray into baking with yeast, I’m so happy to introduce you to Fleischmann’s® RapidRise® Instant Yeast. Using it makes baking with yeast almost foolproof!

Ingredients for French Onion Roll Dough


I love french onion soup in the fall. It evokes a sense of coziness immediately. However, when it comes to this time of the year, I find myself longing to bake all the things. These French Onion Rolls are filled with delicious, melty caramelized onions. Caramelized onions are great because they don’t require very many ingredients, they just require a bit of time. I like to put on a show or podcast while I make them. I thinly slice my onions from root to tip and find this makes for the most uniform slices. The trick to caramelized onions is really just patience. It takes a while to go from translucent to golden, but as soon as it starts to turn color, be sure to keep a close eye on your onions, as they’ll go from perfect to burnt if you don’t.

Onions Before Caramelization
Caramelized Onions


When I think of melty cheese, gruyere is the first cheese to come to mind. It has a really high water-to-oil ratio which means that it melts evenly rather than getting oily. That’s what makes it the ultimate cheese to stuff your French Onion Rolls with.

Forming French Onion Rolls


  1. Make the dough by mixing the flour, granulated sugar, yeast, and kosher salt then mix in warm milk and butter. Next mix in the egg and egg yolks and mix until everything has been incorporated. Now time to knead your dough until it’s smooth. Transfer the dough to a bowl that has been oiled and cover it with a kitchen towel so it can rise for around 40 minutes. 
  2. Caramelize your onions by melting butter and oil in a pan set over medium heat. Add your onions and season with salt. Stir to coat in the butter and add a tablespoon or two of water to the pan before covering it for 15 minutes. Remove the lid and cook the onions for 25 to 45 minutes, stirring often, or until golden brown and caramelized. 
  3. To assemble your rolls, divide the dough into 15 equal pieces. Roll out one portion of dough into a flattened round and place ½ tablespoon of caramelized onion and ½ tablespoon of grated gruyere in the middle. Pull the ends into the middle and pinch them together to close. Place the ball in the pan and repeat with the remaining pieces. Once all balls have been filled, cover the pan with a kitchen towel and let it proof until doubled in size. 
  4. Brush the tops with an egg wash, sprinkle with the remaining cheese, top with a fresh sprig of thyme, and bake for 28 to 30 minutes.
Pre-baked French Onion Rolls

Looking for more recipes? Here are a few more of my favorites:

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French Onion Roll Plated
French Onion Roll Open


  • There’s a wide range in the cooking time for your onions, and that’s because it’ll vary based on how hot your stovetop is, what kind of pan you have, and even your onions will vary cook times. Be sure to stir every so often to avoid burning your onions. 
  • If your fingers are sticking to the dough, you can just lightly grease them with some olive oil and it’ll be stick-free!
  • Be sure you’re rising the dough in a warm place near your oven. As we get into cooler months, you want to make sure you’re rising the dough in a non-drafty part of your home.
  • These rolls are best stored in a resealable plastic bag at room temperature. 
  • To rewarm them, wrap them in foil in a 200 degrees F oven for 10 minutes. You can serve them with softened butter or drizzle them with more melted butter before serving. 
  • If you don’t have flakey sea salt, you can top them with a pinch of kosher salt.
  • If you don’t have instant yeast, you can use active dry yeast by adding the active dry yeast to the warm milk (don’t add the butter yet). Allow it to bloom and activate and get all foamy, for about 10 minutes, then mix in the melted butter. 
  • If you’re not using the package of instant yeast and instead have a jar, you’ll be using 14 grams total of instant yeast. (Each envelope weighs 7 grams.) 
  • To make these ahead, you can make the dough the night before and let it rise in the fridge overnight. The following morning, divide and assemble the rolls, let them rise, and bake. 
  • And be sure to wrap the bowl tightly with plastic wrap if letting it rise in the fridge overnight or else the dough could form a crust. These are best on the day of.
Open French Onion Roll
French Onion Rolls in Pan