Hawaiian Bread or Rolls - thatrecipe.com
Beverages, Breads

Hawaiian Bread or Rolls

kids eating Hawaiian rollsOh those light incredibly fluffy slightly sweet little rolls! I adore them. And so does my son and his girlfriends. Here they are enjoying some with a few juice boxes after their Easter egg hunt. I think they would have been happy just having that for lunch. Meanwhile, their mothers and I wondered if we could find a recipe to make them.

I researched and found this one from La Petite Brioche that seemed to have positive reviews and simple ingredients. I even had everything on hand including just enough yeast and fresh pineapple that I threw in the juicer. So, I gave it a try. It was an EPIC FAILURE! Completely inedible, had to throw it out and waste the ingredients plus the hours and hours of rising time. I was angry and frustrated! Other people said it worked, but mine didn’t. GRRRR! Forget it! I give up.

But I really wanted this recipe to work. So, I took a time out and came back to the recipe a week or so later. I read all of the comments both on her page and her original source. And I think I figured out what went wrong. All yeast is not created equal. Quick check to BreadWorld.com confirmed my suspicions:

What is the difference between fast-rising yeast (RapidRise/Bread Machine Yeast) and Active Dry Yeast?
RapidRise and Bread Machine Yeast are different strains than Active Dry Yeast. RapidRise and Bread Machine Yeast are grown with a higher level of nutrients and are dried to lower moisture content. The particle size of RapidRise and Bread Machine Yeast are finely granulated to allow complete hydration of the yeast cells during the mixing process. The Active Dry Yeast larger particle size should be dissolved in water to achieve complete hydration prior to adding to the mixer. In addition, RapidRise and Bread Machine Yeast contain ascorbic acid resulting in increased loaf volumes.

Yup, I had used Active Dry Yeast. Head slap! So, I bought a can of pineapple juice and some Instant Dry Yeast (same as Rapid Rise per BreadWorld) and gave it another go. Sweet fluffy delicious redemption!

In the future I now know, Active Dry yeast has to be bloomed (put in liquid before adding to the dry ingredients). I actually bloomed the Instant Dry yeast. It might have been overkill, but I wasn’t taking any chances the second time around.

One word of warning, this dough is very soft, almost too soft to knead by hand. If you have a bread machine or dough hook I highly recommend using those in lieu of adding too much flour to make it kneadable by hand.

Hawaiian Bread or Rolls

Prep time2 hours
Cook time30 minutes
Total time2 hours, 30 minutes
Meal type Bread
Website La Petite Brioche
Hawaiian Rolls, aka Portuguese Sweet Bread, a light fluffy and slightly sweet bread recipe.


  • 1 1/2 cup pineapple juice
  • 2 1/4 ounce envelopes Instant or Rapid Rise yeast (approximately 2 tablespoons)
  • 3 Large eggs
  • 1/2 cup butter (melted)
  • 3/4 cups sugar
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 6-7 cups all purpose flour


Makes 3 loaves or 24 large rolls or 48 small rolls (the size sold in stores).


Heat pineapple juice until very warm (120-130 degrees F), stir in yeast and set aside. In a large bowl beat eggs with whisk attachment. Add melted butter, sugar, salt, ginger, vanilla and honey. When juice/yeast is foamy on top, add it to the egg mixture. Mix until blended.
Add 3 cups of flour and mix until blended. Switch to dough hook and gradually add remaining flour a cup at a time. Dough will be soft and slightly sticky. If it is wet add more flour a little at a time. Knead dough for 5 minutes.
Place dough into a greased bowl, cover with a towel and put in warm place to doubled in size (1 1/2 to 2 hours). Punch down dough. Shape into rolls or loaves and place in greased pan. Let rise until almost doubled in size (about an hour). Bake for 25-30 minutes at 350 degrees F.


Cherry Pineapple PunchI only made a half recipe (took about a tablespoon and a half of egg out to make it “half”) which left me with an almost full jar of pineapple juice. What to do with all of the extra juice? What to do? What to do? Kiddie Champagne! Ma’am calls it Cherry Pineapple Punch on the site, but it was Kiddie Champagne growing up. The woman knew how to sell stuff to me and my brother!


Until next time, happy eating!

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