No knead cheese and bacon rolls

A delicious version of cheese and bacon (or ham) rolls where you’ll produce an entire batch for about the cost of two in the shops.

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The bread renaissance is still in full flight over here and this is the pinnacle. I use grated cheddar cheese and thick strips of ham (I buy it like that from the deli, you can get the cubes if you so wish) in equal quantities and learnt quickly to pile it on top of the bread – too little and it doesn’t produce the best result. I’ve made it with the beer no knead bread and the straight no knead variety.



No knead cheese and bacon rolls

  • 3 cups bread flour
  • 1 1/2 cups water (and a splash more)
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp dry yeast
  1. Mix it all together until a shaggy mess (don’t try and make it look pretty, just make sure it’s all combined) then cover and leave for 8 to 18 hours (I’ve left it as long as 24 and it still works a treat)
  2. Turn it out onto a floured bench and turn it in on itself about 8 times – as in look at the dough on the bench, bring the top of the dough to the middle, the bottom up to the middle, the sides into the middle and then do it again.
  3. Break the dough into as many rolls as you like – 8 big ones if you want to replicate those of certain bread chains, 12 if you want a more reasonable number and 18 if you want delicious 3 bite wonders.
  4. Shape them into nice round balls and place on a baking paper lined tray and cover loosely with either a damp tea-towel or glad wrap and set aside for 2 hours.
  5. Preheat your oven to 220C and mix together 220g grated cheddar cheese and shredded or cubed ham – I use this quantity over 18 rolls. I suspect you wouldn’t need so much if you’re doing big rolls
  6. Take a big pinch of the cheese and ham mix and press it into the tops of each of the rolls. Don’t worry about fall off, that makes the yummy crunchy bits around the base of the roll. And then, once you’ve done each roll, spread any left overs as you see fit.
  7. Bake in the oven for about 20-25 minutes. You want some darker charred bits, golden crunchy bits and melty goodness.

Go on, you know you want to.





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  • Denyse

    You make it look bloody fact I will give these a go! Next week with 2 hungry grand kids who love bread like their grandma!! D x

  • Looks delish and so easy, I am defiantly trying this one next time i have to bring something.

  • Making then RIGHT NOW. May be a little over excited.

    • And how’d it go!?!

      • Well, I am here again to check the recipe before I start a new batch… even Ms I would rather hide my lunch until they go mouldy in my bedroom had been taking them to school and eating. That’s a HUGE win right there.

  • penny

    OH my NIGELLA!
    just made those with two little boys … my waist line thanks you

  • jodie drescher

    How do you think batches of these unbaked would freeze?? I have been told dough only half risen freezes well so maybe not let it rest as long?? Would be great to pull out of the freezer and throw in the oven after school and on weekends to keeps the kids out of the pantry! Thoughts?

    • Hmmm, I’ve never even thought of freezing half risen bread doughs. I must say I have had very lack lustre experience “retarding” a dough over night and then bringing to room temperature and rising in any sort of acceptable timeframe so I would be nervous. Do you defrost then before baking? If so then I’d do them as rolls, defrost, let go through the second rise then top with the bacon and cheese.

  • These are awesome Kim! Too easy for the lunch boxes! I have a feeling my kidlets will just eat the tops off though and throw the rest away! Little buggars, Fi x

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