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Oct 8, 2019

White Rye Sandwich Buns

These white rye sandwich buns are light and fluffy, and have a faint rye flavor. 

These white rye sandwich buns are light and fluffy, and have a faint rye flavor.

These white rye buns are great for deli-style sandwiches and burgers. They can also be shaped into rounds for delicious dinner rolls.

To enhance the flavor in these buns (as well as give you more flexibility), the second rise takes place in the refrigerator overnight, and up to 24 hours.

What is white rye flour?

White rye flour, like white wheat flour, is sifted twice to remove the bran and germ. It is light in color, and has a very mild rye flavor. 

Because white rye flour is very low in gluten, you can substitute some of the wheat flour in many recipes, such as quick breads and muffins, for very tender baked goods. I've used white rye flour in breads, such as this Caramelized onion bread with buckwheat and white rye, and this Whole wheat and rye sourdough bread

While I can find medium and dark rye flour in grocery stores, I've had to purchase white rye flour online from King Arthur Flour. You can also find it on Amazon. If you are a bread nerd, you won't regret adding a bag of this flour to your pantry. 

White rye sandwich buns with black sesame seeds

You can substitute medium rye flour in these buns for a slightly different, but still delicious, result. If you are a total bread nerd, you can run medium or dark rye through a fine mesh sieve and see if you can remove much of the bran (I've done this with whole wheat flour, but not with rye, so if you try it, let me know!). 

I topped these rolls with black sesame seeds, but poppy seeds, regular sesame seeds, or even Everything Bagel topping would work just as well. Of course, you could also leave them plain. 

White rye sandwich buns with black sesame seeds and egg wash

How to make these white rye buns:

On day one, you knead together all of the bread ingredients either by hand or machine. Next, you let it rise until it has doubled, about an hour. 

After that, you shape the buns, place them on a baking sheet, cover them with oiled plastic wrap, and place them in the refrigerator to rise for 8 to 24 hours. 

Finally, you remove the rolls from the refrigerator while the oven is preheating, brush them with an egg wash, sprinkle them with seeds, and bake them for about 35 minutes. 

P.S. Here's a great tip for whisking together an egg wash: Add a pinch of salt. It really helps break down the proteins in the eggs so that you don't have gloppy separated egg whites. 

White rye hamburger buns

This month the #BreadBakers are baking breads that can be made ahead and rested, either in the refrigerator or at room temperature, before baking. It's a great way to develop flavor.

If you are interested in learning more about making bread ahead with a slow rise, two of my favorite sources are Artisan Bread Every Day by Peter Reinhart, and Make Ahead Bread, by Donna Currie. Everything I've made from these books has been a success.

If you'd like to try another rye roll recipe, make sigteboller, Danish Salty Rolls. They're really good and you can use any kind of rye flour. 

White Rye Sandwich Buns

Yield: 8 buns
These white rye sandwich buns are light and fluffy, and have a faint rye flavor.


  • 1 cup (8 ounces) water
  • 2 1/4 teaspoons instant yeast
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 cup (4 1/2 ounces) white rye flour
  • 2 cups (9 ounces) bread flour 
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • Egg wash (1 large egg whisked together with a tablespoon of water and 1/8 teaspoon of salt)
  • Sesame or other seeds for sprinkling 


How to cook White Rye Sandwich Buns

  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the water, yeast, sugar, rye flour, bread flour, salt, and butter. Stir with a dough whisk or large wooden spoon to moisten the dough. 
  2. Knead with the dough hook for about 5 minutes, until the dough is smooth. 
  3. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let rise for about an hour, until doubled. 
  4. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. 
  5. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface and divide it into 8 equal pieces. 
  6. Form each piece into a ball, and then flatten each to a 4 inch disk. Place the disks on the parchment lined baking sheet and cover with oiled plastic wrap. 
  7. Place the baking sheet into the refrigerator overnight - up to 24 hours. 
  8. When ready to bake, remove the sheet pan from the refrigerator and heat the oven to 350 degrees F. 
  9. When the oven reaches 350 degrees, whisk together the egg wash ingredients. Brush the rolls with the egg wash and sprinkle with the seeds. 
  10. Bake the buns for 35 minutes, until they reach an internal temperature of 205 degrees F. 
  11. Cool the buns on a wire rack. 
Fat (grams)
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Nutritional info is an estimate based on the ingredient list, and may not be completely accurate.
bread, buns, rye, make-ahead
Created using The Recipes Generator
This recipe was adapted from Make Ahead Bread by Donna Currie.

White rye sandwich and hamburger buns

#BreadBakers is a group of bread loving bakers who get together once a month to bake bread with a common ingredient or theme. Follow our Pinterest board right here. Links are also updated each month on this home page.

We take turns hosting each month and choosing the theme/ingredient.

Would you like to comment?

  1. These are looking awesome Karen. Feel like grabbing one from the photograph.

  2. As always Karen, these look absolutely perfect. Thanks so much for hosting this month.

  3. Sheer perfection as usual. And I love rye bread, so definitely must try these out!

  4. As soon as I get my deep freezer sorted out (long story) I am going to order some white rye so I can try your buns, Karen. They look and sound delightful!

  5. Beautiful buns Karen, love the rotundity and the sesame adding so much colour and flavour. Bookmarked for sure. This month, I baked your recipe - Overnight No-Knead bread. Loved it very much. Its a keeper!

  6. These buns look so good, love sprinkle of seeds on top!

  7. Hi Karen, if I want to bake these amazing buns on the same day, how Long should I prove them in the refrigerator?
    I find your bakes awesome and inspiring.

    1. I would just let them rise at room temperature, and then bake them.


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