My mom’s no-knead “fairy” crescent rolls are the lightest and fluffiest white dinner rolls, and couldn’t be easier to prepare!

easy no-knead fairy crescent rolls in a bread basket

Everyone needs an easy and delicious go-to roll recipe, one that pairs well with everything from a holiday roasted turkey to a simple weeknight soup. These rolls meet those requirements, and then some!

These rolls have been handed down from my mom, and our family has been enjoying these little pillows of heaven for as long as I can remember. They’re so buttery and delicious, and best of all, these rolls are as easy as homemade gets. No-knead means the dough comes together in a bowl in just a few minutes! So fuss-free.

inside of easy no-knead fairy crescent rolls in a bread basket

Why you’ll love these crescent rolls

In case I haven’t convinced you yet, here’s why you need to try these rolls:

  • Buttery, rich and slightly sweet flavor
  • Light and fluffy texture
  • No mixer or kneading required
  • Pretty crescent shape
  • Not just easy, but practically foolproof too!

fairy roll ingredients

Ingredients you’ll need

So let’s get baking, shall we?

  • All-purpose flour
  • Butter
  • Active-dry yeast
  • Egg
  • Sugar
  • Salt
  • Baking powder
  • Water

baking tip:Why use yeast + baking powder?

Though not very common, this recipe calls for both yeast and baking powder to leaven the rolls. The baking powder helps give a quicker and higher rise than yeast alone. It also slightly improves the texture, resulting in a light and tender crumb.

mixing fairy roll dough
risen fairy roll dough, in a ball on floured counter

cutting, rolling and putting crescent rolls on a sheet pan

How to make easy no-knead crescent rolls

  1. Mix dough. Let warm water and yeast sit for 5 minutes, then mix with butter, sugar and egg. Stir in flour, salt and baking powder. Mixture will be shaggy.
  2. Let rise. Cover and set bowl in a warm place to rise for about 1 hour till about doubled. Gently punch down dough, then work with your hands to shape into a ball.
  3. Roll, cut and shape. Divide dough in half, and roll one portion out on a lightly floured surface to about 12 inches across. Cut into 12 equal sized pizza-shaped pieces. Starting at the wider end, roll the dough up and place on a lined sheet pan, tucking the pointy end on the bottom. Repeat with remaining half of the dough. You should have 24 rolls.
  4. Let rise again. Cover shaped rolls loosely with greased plastic wrap or a towel and let rise for about 30 minutes while you preheat the oven to 375°F.
  5. Bake. Bake rolls until golden brown and puffed, about 20 minutes.
  6. Rub with butter. As soon as rolls come out of the oven, brush with melted butter. These rolls are best enjoyed warm!

fairy crescent rolls baked on a pan

Tips for these crescent rolls

  • 24 may seem like a lot of rolls (my Mom’s recipe actually made 2 sheet pan, 48 rolls total!), but these are not large rolls and many guests may want more than 1 with their meal. Leftovers can be frozen and reheated to enjoy later.
  • If you would like to cut recipe in half, most ingredients will halve just fine, but use 1 egg yolk and 2 tablespoons sugar.
  • My favorite yeast to use for bread baking is Red Star Platinum Yeast.
  • I prefer to use a dough whisk to mix dough in a large bowl. You can also use a large spoon or spatula (a wire whisk may be helpful in combining wet ingredients).
  • I like to let dough rise in my oven. Heat the oven to its lowest setting for a few minutes, then turn it off. Place the covered dough on the center rack and close the door. More rising tips can be found here.
  • You can brush rolls with melted butter using a pastry brush, but I always instead take a stick of butter, unwrap it partly and rub the butter all over the rolls. It’s how my mom did it too.
  • Looking to make these rolls ahead of time? See my tip for 4 ways to prepare rolls in advance.

closeup of easy no-knead fairy crescent rolls in a bread basket

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This recipe was originally published November 2014.

Easy No-Knead Fairy Rolls

The lightest and fluffiest white dinner rolls couldn't be easier to prepare!
closeup of easy no-knead fairy crescent rolls in a bread basket
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5 from 1 vote

Ingredients

  • 1 cup warm water (237 ml)
  • 2 ¼ teaspoons active dry yeast (1 envelope)
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter , melted and cooled (1 stick, 113 grams)
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar (66 grams)
  • 1 large egg
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour (480 grams)
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • Additional butter , for brushing

Instructions

  • Combine the water and yeast and allow to sit for five minutes.
  • In a large bowl, combine the yeast mixture, butter, sugar and egg. Add the flour, baking powder, and salt and stir with a wooden spoon until just combined and comes together into a ball.
  • Cover with a towel and allow to rise in a warm place for 30 minutes.
  • Split the ball of dough into two equal pieces and put one half back in the bowl. Roll out the other half on a floured surface to about 12 inches in diameter.
  • Cut into 12 equal triangles. Starting with the fat end, roll up each triangle and place in a buttered baking pan. Repeat with the other half of dough.
  • Cover the baking pan with a towel and let rise for an additional 20-30 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 375°F.
  • Bake rolls until golden brown, about 20 minutes. Remove from the oven and then immediately brush with butter.
  • Rolls will keep in an airtight container for up to 3 days.

Nutrition

Calories: 127kcal, Carbohydrates: 19g, Protein: 3g, Fat: 4g, Saturated Fat: 3g, Cholesterol: 17mg, Sodium: 101mg, Potassium: 44mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 3g, Vitamin A: 128IU, Calcium: 9mg, Iron: 1mg
Have you tried this recipe?I’d love to hear about it! Leave a review below or take a photo and tag it on Instagram @completelydelicious with #completelydelicious.