Brioche Burger or Slider Buns

Why is it that we are expected to paint our own houses, build our own decks, do our own taxes and yet people are floored when I actually make something like burger buns from scratch? They don’t call for blueprints and hardware and lumber from Home Depot – only flour, water, eggs and yeast. Easy. I can’t build a deck, but I can make a bun.

And isn’t that the true meaning of convenience? Not the availability of Wonder Bread buns at 7-11 24 hours a day, but the ability to make your own, from scratch, in about the same amount of time it takes to get in the car and drive to the store. (Minus rising time, of course, but you’re not actually doing anything at that point anyway, so it really shouldn’t count.)

If you have burgers on the agenda over the next couple months, and I know you do, try mixing up a batch of these instead of those crusty generic Kaiser buns that make far too much of a mess anyway. Making them is fun. It’s not difficult. And your burgers will be the best dressed ones at the party. (Even when it’s not a party.)

In other news: the bean book finally squeezed through its final round of edits! Sue and I have spent approximately a thousand hours over the past 48 on speaker phone marking up the manuscript with red pen and sticky notes. It’s sealed up in a box and leaning on the front door, even if the (presumably overworked) FedEx guy never showed to pick it up today. Maybe tomorrow.

burger buns
burger buns

Brioche Burger or Slider Buns

Recipe link


June 23, 2011


1 cup warm water

1/4 cup milk

2 Tbsp. sugar

2 tsp. active dry yeast

1 large egg

3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1 tsp. salt

3 Tbsp. butter

additional egg, for brushing, and/or sesame seeds (optional)


1In a small bowl or measuring cup, stir together the water, milk, sugar and yeast. Let it stand for about 5 minutes, until it's foamy. (If it doesn't foam, the yeast is kaput - get some fresh yeast and try again!) Crack the egg into it and beat it a little with a fork to break it up.

2Meanwhile stir together the flour and salt; add the butter and blend it in with a pastry blender, whisk or your fingers, rubbing it until it's crumbly, as if you were making pastry. Add the yeast mixture and stir until you have a soft dough; beat it with a dough hook in your stand mixer or knead it on a lightly floured countertop until it's nice and smooth; 5-10 minutes. It will be stickier than regular dough; resist the urge to add too much flour. Leave it tacky.

3Place the ball of dough back into the bowl, cover it with a tea towel and let it sit for an hour or so, until doubled.

4Divide the dough into 8-10 pieces (or 20 if you want wee slider buns), shape them into balls, place them a couple inches apart on a baking sheet that has been sprayed with nonstick spray or lined with parchment or a silicone mat, cover loosely with plastic wrap and let rise for another hour.

5Preheat the oven to 400ºF. Brush the buns with a little beaten egg if you like, and sprinkle them with sesame seeds.

6 Bake for 10-15 minutes (a bit longer if you made larger buns) until golden.


About Julie

24 comments on “Brioche Burger or Slider Buns

  1. Jenn
    June 24, 2011 at 7:20 am

    Would this work for hot dog or smokie buns or would the buns be too soft? We’ve got an Edworthy Park bbq/picnic on the agenda this weekend and due to the number of folks and minature size of our bbq, only long skinny items are on the menu.

  2. angela
    June 24, 2011 at 9:00 am

    is it really as easy as it sounds? i’ve always been intimidated by baking with yeast so i used my breadmaker to make odd shaped/dense loaves.

  3. Erica B.
    June 24, 2011 at 9:06 am

    Nice buns! 😉 (sorry couldn’t resist)

  4. Vivian
    June 24, 2011 at 9:10 am

    Jenn, I have used this recipe for regular hot dogs and it came out fine (no “squishier” than the buns sold in the store, for sure). Maybe for smokies you could give the cut bun surfaces a quick garlic butter “mop” and toast them which makes them a little sturdier. As to your BBQ grill space…you could still do burgers, just make them little squares to maximize the space. Square mini-burgers…cute! Julie, I agree, anything made at home is far superior…and just as fast really AND you KNOW what’s in it! MUST make that devine bacon jam today!

  5. Jan @ Family Bites
    June 24, 2011 at 9:55 am

    I so hear you on this one. We make most of our own breads all the time, including buns, and people are so shocked by it. Congrats on the book – I can’t wait to see it.

  6. Holly
    June 24, 2011 at 10:36 am

    Cheers to you an Sue on the book; its gonna be awesome!!

  7. Laurie from Burnaby
    June 24, 2011 at 11:51 am

    Congrats on the Bean Book. Having had 2 books published, I know about the frantic days and nights getting them in. I can’t wait until your book comes out. :)

    These buns look great, but yeast doughs never rise for me. :(

  8. Donna
    June 24, 2011 at 12:21 pm

    Yes, homemade baking is an Art anyone with motivation can do. It just takes time and practice. the rewards are tasty. Mind you, being able to make brownies or chocolate chip cookies any time you want them can be a broadening experience.
    Must try these buns..

  9. CathyH
    June 24, 2011 at 5:46 pm

    These look amazing!
    And for that cold……3 pieces of crystallized ginger in a teacup, ginger tea poured over. Drink the tea and then eat the ginger. Burns, but is highly effective.
    And by the way, my potato condo is growing!!!!! Seed potaotoes from the potluck. YAY!

  10. CathyH
    June 24, 2011 at 5:47 pm

    That would be potatoes. Yes, I can spell.

  11. Lisa
    June 24, 2011 at 6:59 pm

    I’m totally having burgers on brioche buns with bacon jam this weekend… Can’t wait!

  12. Erin
    June 25, 2011 at 9:27 pm

    Just finished our brioche burgers. BEST BURGER BUNS EVER!!!!!! Thanks for another recipe that makes me look super-impressive in front of my friends and family:) I will be having an egg brioche-wich tomorrow for breakfst for sure. Eat your heart out McMuffin! Thanks Julie!!

  13. Cheryl
    June 26, 2011 at 11:25 am

    I’ve got a pork shoulder in the oven for pulled pork tonight. And I was already thinking that it would be easier to make buns than drive to buy some! These are going to be perfect!

  14. suchalab
    June 26, 2011 at 5:36 pm

    these turned out exactly like your photograph, I was impressed and so was everybody else. They were great with homemade burgers and bacon jam!

    Julie, how much leeway in this brioche recipe to use different flours, say some whole wheat or my just purchased quinoa flour(which I really have no idea what to do with!) Thanks

  15. hypnoid
    June 27, 2011 at 10:24 pm

    We made burgers tonight, and baked our own buns for them. Just used our regular pizza dough technique, with a bit of whole wheat flour and some yogurt added. They came out less spherical and more flat, but delicious.

  16. hypnoid
    June 27, 2011 at 10:25 pm

    Bonus, the pizza-dough buns were oven-ready in 20 min or so. Minimal raising time…

  17. Cheryl
    June 28, 2011 at 11:01 am

    This recipe inspired me to make a batch. soo good!! I added sun dried tomatoes and fresh thyme from my garden.

  18. Georgia Pellegrini
    June 29, 2011 at 2:50 pm

    These look so elegant and beautiful. I’m looking forward to your book!

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