Scottish Breakfast Buns (Baps)

These lovely, plump, pillowy rolls are the breakfast bun of choice in Scotland.  I have memories of my grandmother extolling the virtues of baps, and my mother baking them.  If you are a morning person, you might even have a batch of these ready and warm from the oven by the time your family rises.  It would make a delicious start to the day.Baps are a soft, fine-crumbed roll, with a crisp crust.  In “The Breakfast Book”, Marion Cunningham describes them as “a friendlier roll you’ll never meet”.  They are easy to make and relatively quick too; you only need one rise before baking.  Traditionally, baps are made with lard, but I chose butter this time.  I will certainly use lard for the next batch I make, and change up the flour proportions to include some oat flour.

Typically dusted with flour, baps should be just golden brown when they come from the oven.  Serve them immediately, when they’re at their best, and use any leftovers, toasted, for sandwiches.  I’m thinking that these would be the perfect platform for a breakfast sandwich of egg, bacon, and cheese.  Maybe this weekend…

I found the recipe I used here at a lovely British blog.  I altered it only slightly and I am very happy with the results.  Give these a try and see if you don’t agree.  Marmalade and a cup of strong tea make a very good accompaniment to a very friendly breakfast roll.  Enjoy!

Scottish Breakfast Buns (Baps)

A soft, pillowy roll, dusted with flour and baked to a crisp golden brown.  The best roll for breakfast and sandwiches. 

Course Breakfast, Lunch, Snack
Cuisine British, Canadian, Scottish
Prep Time 50 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Servings 8 rolls
Author Adapted from "Lavender and Lovage" blog


  • 12 ounces bread flour
  • 4 ounces whole wheat flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 2 ounces unsalted butter (half a stick)
  • 1 1/4 cups a combination of milk and water, slightly warmed (300 ml, or half a pint)
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 envelope active, dry yeast


  1. In a large mixing bowl, combine the flours and salt.  Rub in the butter until it is incorporated and no large chunks are visible.  Add the sugar and yeast to the warmed liquid mixture and whisk to blend.  Let stand until foamy. 

  2. Pour the yeast mixture into the flour and mix until a rough dough is formed.  Turn out onto a floured work surface and knead the dough until it is smooth, elastic, and not sticky, about 8 to 10 minutes. 

  3. Portion the dough into 8 to 12 pieces, forming smooth round balls.  Set on a parchment-lined baking sheet.  Press down on the top of each roll to flatten somewhat, then dust with flour.  Cover loosely with plastic wrap and allow to rise until doubled, about 35-40 minutes.

  4. Towards the end of the rising time preheat the oven to 390°F.  Dust the tops of the rolls again lightly with flour, and place in the hot oven.  Bake for 17 to 20 minutes, or until just lightly golden brown.  They should sound hollow when tapped on the bottom.  Remove to a rack to cool somewhat before serving with butter and jam.  Leftovers can be stored tightly wrapped, for a day or two, or frozen.

Recipe Notes

I found this recipe at a most delightful British blog called Lavender and Lovage.  I have gently adapted it and will most certainly be baking these again.