Pistachio Rolls

I wanted to make cinnamon rolls…but not cinnamon rolls. So I made pistachio rolls instead.

I LIKE ANY KIND OF PISTACHIO DESSERT, so I knew I would love these.

They were pretty easy to make, they were so soft and fluffy and the flavour was amazing. If you like pistachio, you need to make these!

A close up of the pistachio rolls after pistachio spread and chopped pistachios were added on top.

Video Tutorial

Milk bread dough

Every time I make any kind of bread…cinnamon rolls, doughnuts, a bread loaf…I use a Japanese milk bread dough.


It’s my favourite kind of bread, it’s so soft and fluffy and easy to make.

So that’s the kind of bread we are going to make for these pistachio rolls.

The tangzhong

One of the main parts of a Japanese milk bread is a ‘tangzhong’.

This is just a paste that is made from flour and a liquid. To make it, I just heat some flour and milk together until it thickens. Then I mix this into my dough.


There is a scientific reason why it makes the bread softer and fluffier. I do not know what the exact reason is, but there is one.

Just trust me it makes the bread so much better.

So make sure not to skip the tangzhong, it is an extra step but it doesn’t take long and it is so worth it.

The pistachio rolls on a sheet of baking paper.

Ingredients for the dough

To make the dough, you only need a few simple ingredients. Here’s what you are going to need:

  • Bread flour – plain/all purpose flour can also be used BUT bread flour is better. I’ll talk more about this in the next section.
  • Granulated sugar
  • Milk powder – this is going to add extra flavour and softness. It is optional, but I recommend it.
  • Instant yeast
  • Eggs – we are going to use 1 whole egg and 1 egg yolk. The extra egg yolk is going to add richness to the bread.
  • Salt
  • The tangzhong 
  • Milk – whole milk is best to use. We want this to be warm, NOT HOT, just warm. So heat it in your microwave for about 30-60 seconds before using.
  • Unsalted butter
The ingredients needed to make the dough.

The bread flour

I used bread flour to make the bread dough. 

Bread flour is best to use when making bread…I think that’s why it is called bread flour.

Essentially, it has a higher protein content than plain/all purpose flour.

This extra protein gives your bread extra stability, which helps it rise more and hold its shape better in the oven. This gives you a fluffier bread.

So I recommend using bread flour but with that being said, regular plain/all purpose flour does absolutely work.

Your rolls might be a little less fluffy, but they will still taste amazing. So use whatever kind of flour you have.

The instant yeast

Whenever I am making anything that has yeast in it, I prefer to use instant yeast.

I just find it easier to use because I don’t need to activate it, I can just add it into my bowl with the rest of the ingredients.

However, I’ve heard that instant yeast is a little hard to find in some places, so active yeast could also be used.

If you are using active yeast though, you will need to activate it first.

To do this, just mix the yeast and the warm milk together, along with a tablespoon of the sugar.

Leave this aside for 10 minutes.

After 10 minutes, the mixture should look foamy. This means it is ready to use, you can now add it into your bowl with the rest of the ingredients.

The dough inside of a bowl, before being left to rise.
The dough inside of a bowl, after it had risen.

The filling

For the filling, I use pistachio spread.


That’s all. I guess I don’t really have much else to say about the filling. I just bought some pistachio spread and used that.

The one I use is from a brand called ‘Pisti’. You can get it from Costco or Amazon.

Or I guess you could find a recipe and make it. But that’s so much extra work, I say just buy it.

The pistachio rolls inside of a square tin, before being baked.
The pistachio rolls after being baked.

The finishing touches

Once my rolls had baked, I just drizzled some more pistachio spread over them and added some chopped up pistachios too.

I wanted to keep things simple, so that’s all I did.

HOWEVER I feel like a cream cheese icing would be soooooo good on these. So if you wanted to, add a cream cheese icing on top of them.

But then you can finally eat them. They taste best warm!

Here are some other recipes I’ve posted recently, you should try these too:

Pistachio Rolls

5.0 from 1 vote


  • For the tangzhong:
  • 20 g bread flour

  • 100 ml whole milk

  • For the dough:
  • 330 g bread flour

  • 60 g granulated sugar

  • 30 g milk powder

  • 8 g instant yeast

  • 1 egg

  • 1 egg yolk

  • 1 teaspoon salt

  • The tangzhong

  • 120 ml whole milk, warm (just heat this in your microwave for 30-60 seconds)

  • 60 g unsalted butter, softened

  • Extras:
  • A jar of pistachio spread

  • Some chopped pistachio, to sprinkle on top (optional)


  • For the tangzhong:
  • In a pot, add the bread flour and milk. Mix these together.
  • Place this pot onto medium heat, then heat this mixture whiles constantly stirring until it turns into a thick paste. This happens quickly so don't walk away, keep stirring.
  • Leave this mixture in your fridge to cool down for 10 minutes.
  • For the dough:
  • In a large bowl, add all the ingredients for the dough, except the butter. MAKE SURE to remember to add the tangzhong you just made.
  • Mix all this together until a dough forms, then add the softened butter and knead for 15 minutes. This is going to be a sticky dough, this is normal don't be alarmed.
  • Place this dough into a lightly greased bowl, cover and leave to rise in a warm place until doubled in size, this could take 1-2 hours.
  • Forming the rolls:
  • Once the dough has risen, roll it out on a floured surface. You want to roll it into a large rectangle that is about 1-1.5 cm thick.
  • Melt your pistachio spread and spread a thin layer of this over your dough.
  • Starting from the long end of the rectangle, tightly roll this dough up.
  • Cut this into 9 pieces, the best way to cut the dough is to use some floss, but a knife works too.
  • Place these into an 8 inch square cake tin.
  • Cover and leave these to rise in a warm place for about an hour, they should look fluffier and feel much softer after an hour.
  • Baking the rolls:
  • About 20 minutes before you are ready to bake your rolls, pre-heat your oven to 180c/350f.
  • Once your rolls have risen, bake them for around 30-35 minutes, or until golden brown on top.
  • Once baked, drizzle some melted pistachio spread over them, and sprinkle some chopped pistachio on top (or if you wanted to, you could make a cream cheese icing and add this on top).
  • Let them cool down for about 10 minutes, then they are done. Enjoy!


  1. Ramtin
    February 6, 2024 / 10:00 am

    Hey, quick question, how did you melt your pistachio spread. I also have the one from Costco but it’s really thick?

    Thank you!

    • Ash Baber
      February 6, 2024 / 10:44 am

      Just in my microwave, but it is still a little thick after melting. It doesn’t melt as much as other spreads do

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