Appalachian Pepperoni Rolls

Balls of soft, doughy, pepperoni & cheesy goodness. A great party food, definitely a crowd pleaser. Also easy to make! If you only learn one thing about Appalachia, it’s that we invented the pepperoni roll. You’re welcome, Earth.

I’ve lived in West Virginia since I was 14. Before that, I lived in eastern Ohio. Before that, North Carolina. …But the very south-eastern part, so I guess that doesn’t count as Appalachia. 

Living in a military household meant we moved a lot. So there were other places–most of which I was too young to remember. In the end, though, I’ve basically lived my whole life in Appalachia. 

So I grew up with pepperoni rolls. Pepperoni rolls were in my house and at my school. They’re sold in every grocery store, convenient store, and gas station. You can get them individually or by the dozen. Pepperoni rolls are a staple in this part of the country, though everyone makes them differently.

When something is so ingrained in your culture, you can’t imagine a life without it. So imagine my surprise when, upon attending college, I met people who had never even heard of a pepperoni roll, yet alone tasted one.

But thanks to the Internet, they’re catching on! People from all over the world are finding pepperoni roll recipes and running with them. So I thought I might insert my two cents into this conversation.

If you ask anyone from Appalachia what the best pepperoni roll recipe is, they’ll probably tell you their mother/grandmother makes the best kind. Because, let’s face it, homemade is always best. I’m not an exception to this. In fact, I almost refuse to eat rolls bought from a store. They’re dry and nasty and they don’t have NEARLY enough cheese. They’re also usually made with a sweet roll recipe and I hate that. Savory over sweet any day. I also greatly dislike those sticks of pepperoni. I’ll take the slices, thanks. (You’ll probably see people in the comments disagreeing. As I said, everyone has their own idea of what the perfect pepperoni roll is.)

I’ve had hundreds of pepperoni rolls in my lifetime…and they’re all a disappointment when compared to my mom’s. Except my high school’s. Somehow, the cooks there got it pretty perfectly. And similar to Mom’s, I guess, because when my husband tried hers he said, “I haven’t had a roll this good since high school.” 

(Note: I have not been able to find a homemade dough recipe that I like. They’re either too sweet, don’t rise enough, or too dry. This is why I use frozen dough. I hate that I have to, but it’s the best I can get until I find the perfect recipe. Grandmother bread cuts it close, though! Still not quite it. It gets the consistency right, but it’s missing something in taste.)

Homemade Appalachian Pepperoni Rolls --- Balls of soft, doughy, pepperoni & cheesy goodness. A great party food, definitely a crowd pleaser. Also easy to make! If you only learn one thing about Appalachia, it's that we invented the pepperoni roll. You're welcome, Earth. || via diybudgetgirl.com #westvirginia #appalachia #pepperoni #rolls #west #virginia #food #recipes #baking

Appalachian Pepperoni Rolls

  • 2 packages of pepperoni (any kind works, but go with the rounds, not the sticks)
  • 2 packages shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1 package frozen bread dough (the kind that come shaped as tubes)
  • optional: any pizza topping you want–you don’t have to stop at pepperoni and cheese!

Step 01: Once you’ve thawed the dough, tear off chunks and flatten them into little rounds. Top with cheese (LOTS of cheese) and add pepperoni.

Step 02: Fold the edges up over the pepperoni. Lay the rolls down on a prepared baking sheet. Cover them and let them rise in a warm place for about an hour. While they’re rising, preheat your oven to 350°F.

Step 03: Bake for 15 minutes, or until the tops are just barely browning.

Step 04: You could wait for them to cool, but I usually can’t. They’re worth the pain, so dig in!

Homemade Appalachian Pepperoni Rolls --- Balls of soft, doughy, pepperoni & cheesy goodness. A great party food, definitely a crowd pleaser. Also easy to make! If you only learn one thing about Appalachia, it's that we invented the pepperoni roll. You're welcome, Earth. || via diybudgetgirl.com #westvirginia #appalachia #pepperoni #rolls #west #virginia #food #recipes #baking

Homemade Appalachian Pepperoni Rolls --- Balls of soft, doughy, pepperoni & cheesy goodness. A great party food, definitely a crowd pleaser. Also easy to make! If you only learn one thing about Appalachia, it's that we invented the pepperoni roll. You're welcome, Earth. || via diybudgetgirl.com #westvirginia #appalachia #pepperoni #rolls #west #virginia #food #recipes #baking

I LOVE having warm homemade pizza sauce around to dip them in. Yum.

ETA: In trying to decide which category this belonged under, I asked Zach, “Should I put it under ‘Snacks’?” His response was, “I do not SNACK on pepperoni rolls. I DINE on them.”

Hahaha!

Appalachian Pepperoni Rolls
Serves 12
Balls of soft, doughy, pepperoni & cheese goodness. If you only know one thing about Appalachia, it should be that we invented the pepperoni roll. You're welcome, Earth.
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Prep Time
1 hr 30 min
Cook Time
15 min
Total Time
1 hr 45 min
Prep Time
1 hr 30 min
Cook Time
15 min
Total Time
1 hr 45 min
Ingredients
  1. 2 packages of pepperoni (any kind works, but go with the rounds, not the sticks)
  2. 2 packages shredded mozzarella cheese
  3. 1 package frozen bread dough (the kind that come shaped as tubes)
  4. optional: any pizza topping you want--you don't have to stop at pepperoni and cheese
Instructions
  1. Once you've thawed the dough, tear off chunks and flatten them into little rounds. Top with cheese (LOTS of cheese) and add pepperoni.
  2. Fold the edges up over the pepperoni and lay them on a prepared baking sheet. Cover them and let them rise in a warm place for about an hour. While they're rising, preheat your oven to 350°F.
  3. Bake for 15 minutes, or until the tops are just barely browning.
  4. You could wait for them to cool, but I usually can't. They're worth the pain, so dig in!
Budget Girl http://www.diybudgetgirl.com/
chelsey2
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7 comments

  1. Leslie says:

    I love anything that has to do with pizza’s. Yummy! I’m stopping by from the blog hop & I’m a new follower through Bloglovin. I’d love if you stopped by to say hi, if you have time that is. I hope your having a great evening!

  2. Stephanie @ Sustaining the Powers says:

    Hi Chelsey,
    I’m stopping by from the Retro Re-pin Party and wanted to let you know that I’ll be featuring these at this week’s party on Sustaining the Powers. It will be going live on Tuesday at 8pm ET. I’ve never had a pepperoni roll before, but I am a sucker when it comes to anything involving bread and cheese. I have a batch of my homemade pizza dough defrosting in the fridge so I can make these tomorrow. I can’t wait!
    -Stephanie

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