Whole Wheat Pesto, Tomato and Mozzarella Rolls

Whole Wheat Pesto, Tomato and Mozzarella Rolls via @topwithcinnamon

Whole Wheat Pesto, Tomato and Mozzarella Rolls via @topwithcinnamon

Whole Wheat Pesto, Tomato and Mozzarella Rolls via @topwithcinnamon



– I used whole wheat bread flour for the dough, you can substitute this for regular bread flour, or all purpose flour. You may need all the flour, only 3 cups or somewhere inbetween – you only need enough for a smooth, soft dough.

– You can leave out the passata if you want, pesto rolls are just as awesome (although if you do, I’d recommend sprinkling on 1/2 cup of chopped black olives )

– To make the perfect place for dough to rise:

-While I make the bread dough, I put a ramekin 2/3 filled with water into the oven

-Then I preheat the oven to 120 degrees F (50 degrees C) (which is the lowest tempย Iย can get).

-Once the dough is made, I turn off the oven, put the dough inside and leave it to rise.

– If you cba to cut the dough into separate rolls, then just cut the rolled up dough in half, pinch the ends shut and bake on a cookie sheet for 30-40 minutes (a.k.a. make a stromboli)

Whole Wheat Pesto, Tomato and Mozzarella Rolls

3.67 from 3 votes
Print Pin


For the Bread Dough:

  • 2 1/2 tsp (a 1/4 oz packet) active dried yeast
  • 1 cup + 2 tbsp , (280 ml) water
  • 2 tbsp sugar
  • 2 tbsp oil
  • 3 to 4 cups , (400 to 530 g) whole wheat flour (see notes)
  • 1 tsp salt

For the Filling:

  • 1/2 cup (125 ml) pesto
  • 1/2 cup (125 ml) passata
  • a 4 oz , (110 g) ball of mozzarella, finely chopped


  • Combine the warm water, yeast and sugar in a large bowl. Stir in the oil, then half the flour. Mix in the rest of the flour, reserving 1/2 cup.
  • Sprinkle the 1/2 cup of flour onto a clean work surface. Tip the contents of the bowl out onto the floured work surface and knead for 5-10 minutes until it's smooth and you've kneaded in all the flour.
  • Lightly grease the bowl with some oil, put the dough into the bowl, cover with a clean dish towel. Leave in a warm place (see notes) to rise until doubled in size (around 1 hour).
  • Once risen, lightly sprinkle a work surface with some flour (you can use all purpose flour for this). Tip the dough out and roll it into a 28" by 12" rectangle (it'll be thin!).
Tried this recipe?Let me know how it went! Mention @izyhossack or tag #topwithcinnamon!


Spread with the passata, then the pesto, then scatter over the chopped mozzarella.


Starting at the long edge, tightly roll the dough up into a sausage shape.


Use a piece of thread / unflavoured dental floss, or a sharp knife to cut the dough into 2″ thick pieces. Place into a greased baking dish, or onto a lined cookie tray, 1/2″ apart (alternatively, grease a regular sized muffin tin and bake the rolls individually in that).


Cover with a clean dish towel and leave to rise again for 15-20 minutes while youย preheatย your oven to 350 degrees F.

Bake for 25-35 minutes until well risen and browned.

26 thoughts on “Whole Wheat Pesto, Tomato and Mozzarella Rolls”

  1. New reader here! I absolutely love your recipes and I can’t wait for more. Your pictures and gifs are delightful too! ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. These look absolutely delicious! I feel your pain about studying during break. I have spent the past few hours since I’ve gotten home whipping up homemade croissants (super labor intensive!), and peppermint hot cocoa. I really should be working on my history outline, but food blogging is much more enticing! I am currently working on making a croissant tutorial, and I want to use gifs. I was feeling pretty good about how they looked… Until I saw how utterly ah-mazing yours are. lakjdlf;kadsjlkajl;ksdjfas f back to the drawing board.

    • Thanks! haha, totally the same, I’ve just been cooking / baking pretty much for 5 hours!
      Omg that’s so weird, I’ve been doing a danish pastry dough tutorial with .gifs! great minds think alike ๐Ÿ˜‰
      The key is having someone else to take the photos for you hahaha ๐Ÿ˜€ have an awesome Christmas Erica! xx

      • Haha merry Christmas to you too! I will have to convince my mom to take my pictures for me. That would help make better gifs AND avoid all of the flour and sugar that is now embedded in my camera!

  3. Wow, those rolls look so soft and cheesy and delicious! I found out about your blog through Erica of Cannella Vita and have been a big fan ever since. Your photos are beautiful and I especially LOVE watching your step-by-step videos/gifs. I hope you have a chance to stop by my site!

    P.S. I am also a teen blogger ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. Everything about these rolls sounds amazing. It just doesn’t get much better than bread + herbs + tomato + cheese. (I love that thread/floss trick for cutting the doughโ€”it works so much better than smushing it with a knife!)

    I learned pretty quickly that a lens filter is my best friend, as it seems to be the one thing standing between me and the destruction of my lens. When I first started the blog, I borrowed a friend’s Nikon D100 to learn on. When I gave it back to her a few months later, I spent an entire day trying to clean all traces of flour out of the nooks and crannies. It’s amazing what will stick to those things!

    • haha pretty much the ultimate combo ๐Ÿ™‚ It totally is the best way, but I always fail at trying to explain how the heck to do the thread cutting thing, so I’ve given up on words and used a .gif instead.

      That is not a bad idea at all! Yeah, you really don’t realise how many crevices there are for things to stick to on cameras until you’ve tried food photography. My camera is still glittery – and it’s been like 2 weeks hah!

    • This made my day.

      Oh Ross :’)
      He literally can’t direct people successfully in moving things:
      Lift and sliiiide, LIFT and SLIDE.

  5. I couldn’t knead in the last half cup of dough (managed probably one-third of that?) and I wasn’t quite so able to roll out the dough so flat as you did! I just put them in the over with the pesto, passata and cheese. Hoping they’ll turn out fine!

    • Should be fine! the amount of flour you need for bread dough normally varies a bit because of different brands / types I think ๐Ÿ™‚

  6. This looks absolutely delicious and savory. I live in the US though. Can I used tomato paste as a substitute for the passata?

    • passata is basically just uncooked tomato sauce so either blend up a can or two of chopped tomatoes, or just use a cooked tomato sauce.

  7. i used instant yeast and halved th recipe and left mine to rise overnight in the turned off oven but now its flat and a little dry!! what should i do??

  8. Hi Izy, how would I vary the method to make the dough in a stand mixer using a dough attachment? (and is there any reason it shouldn’t work?) My naughty wrist is playing up and I don’t think I could knead for that long. I like your warm oven tip – it is getting cold in Australia! Thanks so much.

  9. 4 stars
    So I made this today cos I was just feeling a little itchy and this recipe ticked all the boxes. I thought I had whole wheat flour but turns out its whole wheat PASTRY flour – which really just makes a whole world of difference so I just stuck with reg AP flour instead. Anyway it came out pretty good! But I feel like the pesto was a tad heavy. Overall pretty good recipe, the bread rose quite well and all! (:

Comments are closed.