Chessy Pesto Pull-Apart Rolls

All the wonderful qualities of a fluffy, soft dinner roll, but with cheese inside and handmade pesto on top! You can use our Cheesy Pesto Pull Apart Rolls to make a festive wreath or Christmas tree, or you can just eat them as an appetizer or savory side dish straight out of the pan!

Chessy Pesto Pull-Apart Rolls

I’m cramming in one more Christmas recipe this year, one that has been on my mind for some time. These Pull-Apart Rolls with Cheesy Pesto Cheese are just like our everyday dinner rolls with a few tasty twists! These rolls, which can be made as a normal meal to enjoy any time of year, are a wonderful addition to any holiday table. They are stuffed with mozzarella cheese and topped with a simple and delicious homemade pesto!

What You’ll Need For This Recipe:

  • All-Purpose Flour – You may also use whole wheat flour or bread flour; both will function perfectly.
  • For this recipe, granulated white sugar works well.
  • While we utilize active yeast, you might use immediate to speed up the activation process.
  • Warm water, around 90 degrees, or briefly heated in the microwave, works best.
  • For this dish, I use salted butter, but you could use unsalted and simply add a little extra salt.
  • Just enough salt to taste.
  • A small amount of mozzarella cheese should be placed inside each roll, in between the rolls, and on top for the utmost cheesiness!

Pesto comes next! You could, of course, substitute your preferred store-bought pesto. However, since you’re here, I assume you’re also curious about a handmade recipe!

  • Only use fresh basil! However, if you can’t find fresh basil, you might substitute parsley for it in this pesto, which tastes just as good!
  • Although fresh garlic is best, you may also use minced garlic from a jar or even powder. For a conversion, see the recipe notes.
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil: This is the time to really bring out the best, just like you would with vinaigrettes or bruschetta!
  • My all-time favorite nut is hazelnut, which I like using in pesto. Naturally, you could also follow tradition and use pine nuts (which are more costly), however almonds and walnuts also work well.
  • Cheese Parmesan – A little amount!
  • Lemon juice has the ideal quantity of acidity.
  • Just enough salt to balance everything out.
Chessy Pesto Pull-Apart Rolls

How To Make Chessy Pesto Pull-Apart Rolls

Make Roll Dough

You have to prepare your roll dough first. The same goes for our homemade Hawaiian rolls or our standard dinner rolls. Add water and sugar to the yeast to activate it. To make a dough that is little sticky, add butter and flour.

Chessy Pesto Pull-Apart Rolls


Allow the adorable little dough to expand until it doubles in size. Your dough will be beautiful and soft and little sticky.

Chessy Pesto Pull-Apart Rolls

Make Pesto

Prepare your pesto by putting all the ingredients in a food processor or blender and mixing until the desired consistency is achieved, while your little beauty is rising.

Chessy Pesto Pull-Apart Rolls

Add Cheese and Shape Dough

This is the exciting part now! Divide the dough into twenty-one equal pieces (a kitchen scale will come in handy here!). then wrap the dough around each piece after adding some cheese to it.

This is when you can either get all festive and shape them into a giant gorgeous Christmas tree or into a pan for something for the rest of the year.

Chessy Pesto Pull-Apart Rolls

Let Rise Again

Allow the little balls to rise once more until you have a lovely, full tree—or any other shape you like!

Chessy Pesto Pull-Apart Rolls

Add Pesto and More Cheese

Now that the rolls are lightly brushed with egg wash, it’s time to add the cheese and pesto! For maximum cheesiness when the rolls are ripped apart, sprinkle cheese in between them and drizzle pesto over everything.

Chessy Pesto Pull-Apart Rolls

Recipe Tips

Do I need a Stand Mixer?

In a nutshell, no! Although using a kitchen aid or other stand mixer makes things much simpler, you may still combine everything by hand in this recipe. Additionally, to generally improve the state of your baking globe, sure. A decent stand mixer is required. You won’t be sorry you made this investment in your kitchen!

Weigh Your Ingredients

Weighing your ingredients is the greatest approach to guarantee precise and reliable results each and every time when baking. The most reliable method to obtain the most precise measurements for a recipe is to utilize weights, as there are several variables that might alter the amount of flour that you really get in a cup. We adore our tiny kitchen scale because of this. A very useful and reasonably priced small kitchen utensil for all your baking needs!

Weigh the Dough Balls

Speaking of weighing, weighing each small ball is the greatest method to guarantee that you’ll have lovely, even dough balls. For this tree design, each dough roll should weigh around 1.2 ounces (before the cheese!). This will yield 21 dough balls.

Always Shred Your Own Cheese

The most important piece of advice is to always shred your own cheese if you want the most melt-in-your-mouth results! This is due to the anti-clumping chemicals added to store-bought pre-shredded cheese, which keeps the cheese from melting as neatly as when it’s grated straight off a block.

Add Cheese Between Dough Balls

Sprinkle some cheese in between the dough balls for the ultimate cheesy pull. This may be done either before or after adding the pesto!

Chessy Pesto Pull-Apart Rolls

More Recipes You Might Like

Cheesy Pesto Pull-Apart Bread

All the wonderful qualities of a fluffy, soft dinner roll, but with cheese inside and handmade pesto on top! You can use our Cheesy Pesto Pull Apart Rolls to make a festive wreath or Christmas tree, or you can just eat them as an appetizer or savory side dish straight out of the pan!
Prep Time 2 hours
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 2 hours 20 minutes
Course Appetizer, sweet bread
Cuisine American
Servings 21



  • 2 1/4 teaspoons instant yeast 10 g
  • 1 cup warm water
  • 3 1/4 cup all purpose flour 415 g
  • 2 teaspoons white sugar
  • 2 tablespoons salted butter softened
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 2 cups mozzarella cheese 6.5 oz freshly shredded


  • 2 cups fresh basil without stems 1.5 oz, about a 3 oz package
  • 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese .5 oz
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1/3 cup hazelnuts lightly toasted 40 g or 1.4 oz
  • 1 teaspoon salt


  • Combine sugar and warm water in the bowl of a stand mixer and stir. Top with the yeast and let stand until bubbling, about ten minutes.
  • Add butter and mix on low speed with the dough hook. One cup of flour at a time, adding and mixing until all the flour is included and a moist, sticky dough forms.
  • Transfer dough to a clean surface that has been lightly floured. The dough has a hint of stickiness. Work into a ball after a few kneadings.
  • Place the ball into a big bowl that has been oiled (we like to use our misto for this) and then cover it with plastic wrap. Allow to rise until doubled, about 1 hour.
  • In the meantime, combine all of the pesto’s components in a food processor or blender. Until creamy, blend. If a looser consistency is what you’re after, add one tablespoon of water.
  • If you’re not shaping it into a tree or wreath, grease a big baking pan or a 9 x 13 baking dish. Put away.
  • Cut the dough into 21 equal-sized pieces, each weighing between 1.2 and 1.4 ounces, using a kitchen scale. Use this to form the shape of a tree or wreath; refer to the recipe notes if baking in a baking dish.
  • Using your palm, carefully spread each piece of dough open. Using your free hand, remove a little amount of cheese and place it in the middle of the dough. Pinch the dough closed by gently folding the edges up around the cheese. Place in pan or dish with seam side down, leaving about 1/2 inch between each to allow for rising. Continue with every dough ball. (For reference, view the photographs in the post.)
  • After gently covering with a fresh kitchen towel or linen, allow it to rise for an additional thirty minutes.
  • Set the oven’s temperature to 350.
  • Sprinkle some mozzarella cheese into the dough ball corners once they have risen once more. Apply a thick layer of pesto to the tops of the rolls and the corners using a silicone brush. Feel free to use as much pesto as you like—a minimum of 1/2 cup and a maximum of 1 cup.
  • Add the last of the mozzarella cheese to finish.
  • Bake the cheese for 20 minutes, or until it is browned and melted.
  • Present and savor!


There is around one nutritious value per every roll.
For the greatest melt-worthy cheese, shred it yourself!
  • Forming Christmas Tree: 21 dough balls will yield a decent-sized tree in this shape. 21 may also be used to make a circular wreath with two layers.
  • Baking Dish: To avoid the festive form, simply bake the rolls in your preferred 9 x 13 baking dish exactly like you would ordinary rolls, but with a larger ball size of around 2 to 2.4 oz, which will yield about 15 rolls.
  • Flour: This recipe can also be made with bread flour.
  • You may also use unsalted butter. Just give the dough a little extra salt.
  • Sugar: Two tablespoons of honey can also be used.
  • Pesto: You may also use any favorite store-bought pesto or homemade pesto that you have in your freezer. Use between 1/2 and 1 cup.
  • Hazelnuts: Walnuts or pine nuts can also be used.
  • We love using mozzarella cheese in this dish, but cheddar works just as well. It has the finest cheesy pull.
Keyword Cheesy Pesto Pull-Apart Bread

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