Molasses adds a hint of sweetness to these fluffy whole wheat rolls.
- 1 cup warm water (105° to 110°)
- 4 teaspoons active dry yeast
- 1 teaspoon granulated sugar
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- ¼ cup firmly packed light brown sugar
- ¼ cup molasses
- 3 tablespoons honey
- 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
- 1 large egg
- 2½ teaspoons kosher salt, divided
- 2¼ cups whole wheat flour, divided
- 1 large egg white, lightly beaten
- 2 tablespoons old-fashioned oats
- 1 tablespoon chopped pumpkin seeds
- 1½ teaspoons sunflower seeds
- Spray a 12-inch cast-iron skillet with cooking spray.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine 1 cup warm water, yeast, and granulated sugar. Let stand until mixture is foamy, about 10 minutes.
- With mixer on medium speed, add all-purpose flour, brown sugar, molasses, honey, cocoa, butter, egg, and 2 teaspoons salt, beating until combined, about 2 minutes. Switch to the dough hook attachment. Add 1 cup wheat flour, and beat for 2 minutes. Add remaining 1¼ cups wheat flour, and beat until dough is smooth and pulls away from sides of bowl, about 2 minutes.
- Turn out dough onto a lightly floured surface, and knead until smooth and elastic, 4 to 5 times. Spray a large bowl with cooking spray. Place dough in bowl, turning to grease top. Cover and let stand in a warm, draft-free place (75°) until doubled in size, about 1½ hours.
- Turn out dough onto a lightly floured surface. Divide into 12 pieces, and shape into balls; place in prepared skillet. Brush with egg white. In a small bowl, stir together oats, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, and remaining ½ teaspoon salt. Sprinkle over rolls. Cover and let stand in a warm, draft-free place (75°) until puffed, about 1 hour.
- Preheat oven to 350°. Bake until golden brown, 20 to 22 minutes.
To Bake Ahead
1. Prepare recipe through step 5. Preheat oven to 275°. Bake until rolls just begin to change color and become firm, 25 to 28 minutes. Let cool completely. Transfer to a resealable plastic bag. Freeze for up to 1 month. Remove rolls from freezer 1 hour before baking.
2. Preheat oven to 400°. Place rolls in a 12-inch cast-iron skillet. Bake until golden brown, 10 to 12 minutes.