Have you heard of Resurrection Rolls? These classic Easter Buns are a hands-on way to tell the Easter Story to kids – and they result in a tasty treat, too!
Easter Resurrection Rolls Recipe
Resurrection Rolls, or “Empty Tomb Rolls” are an Easter tradition in our house. Basically, they are a “stuffed sweet rolls” that upon baking appear to become empty – similar to how Jesus was placed in his tomb, then three days later the tomb was revealed to be empty.
I first made this recipe when I was working as a Children’s ministry director. It was a great hands-on way to explain the Easter Story to kids and the rolls were done just in time for the kids to head home, so they were able to excitedly open their rolls in front of their parents to reveal the “empty tomb.”
(I had pre-made the dough as that step is a bit more time consuming with kids.)
I’m going to walk you through each step of the recipe and how they relate to the traditional Easter Story. Of course, you can modify the story according to your own beliefs. The Bible passages that you may want to read before making this recipe or while they bake are Matthew 27:45-57 and John 3:16-17.
For this recipe, the marshmallow represents Jesus’ body.
The rolls represent the tomb.
Rolling the marshmallow in the butter and cinnamon-sugar represents the oils and embalming wraps that would have been used on Jesus’ body.
Wrapping the marshmallow in the tomb represents closing his body in the tomb.
Now, for some families, you can describe the baking time as the punishment of death that Jesus took for our sins – and of course, there is a similarity between the oven and “the underworld,” but I’ll leave that to your discretion.
Finally, when the rock in from of the tomb is rolled away and the tomb is opened (or the roll is opened) we discover that Jesus (or the marshmallow) isn’t there anymore.
Resurrection Roll Ingredients
For the dough:
- 1/2 cup warm milk
- 4 Tablespoon sugar
- 2 teaspoons yeast
- 3 Tablespoons butter, melted
- 1 egg
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Pinch salt
- 2 cups flour
For the filling:
- 8-16 large marshmallows
- 1/2 cup butter, melted
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 2 tablespoons cinnamon
Tip: you can swap out the from-scratch dough for two tubes of crescent dough.
Kitchen Tools You May Find Helpful
- Measuring cups and spoons
- Electric mixer
- Mixing bowl
- Sharp kitchen knife
- Small bowls
- Cookie sheet
How to Make Resurrection Rolls
In a large bowl, combine the warm milk, 1 Tablespoon of the sugar and active yeast. Let “proof” for 5 minutes, until frothy.
(If the mixture is not frothy, the yeast needs to be replaced.)
Using an electric mixer, beat in the butter, remaining sugar, egg and vanilla.
Add the salt and flour and mix until the dough forms a ball.
Remove the dough from the bowl and knead until smooth.
Grease the mixing bowl and place the dough back in to rise. Cover with plastic wrap and let sit for 1 hour, until doubled in size.
Meanwhile, combine sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl. Set aside.
Preheat oven to 350˚F
Roll out the dough to 1/2″ thickness and cut into 8 equal pieces. (For thinner buns, you can roll into 16 pieces.)
Roll marshmallows in melted butter, and then in cinnamon-sugar mixture. Place one coated marshmallow in the middle of one piece of dough, and roll the marshmallow until completely covered by the dough, pushing in sides as you go. Pinch seams on either end to seal each roll.
Place rolls on a cookie sheet, and bake at 350˚F for about 12 minutes.
Immediately after removing rolls from the oven, brush with remaining melted butter and then sprinkle with remaining cinnamon-sugar mixture. Serve warm.
Grab your free printable for our resurrection rolls recipe:
For the dough:
For the filling:
These resurrection rolls are a great Easter activity for kids and make a delicious snack, too!