A plate with slices of nut roll.

Nut Roll Recipe

This nut roll recipe hails from an old family friend and is a Christmas staple. It only requires one rise, so it's easy to churn out a ton of nut roll!
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Prep 1 hour
Cook 40 minutes
resting time 4 hours 20 minutes
Total 6 hours
Servings 8 nut rolls
Calories 633 kcal
Author Michelle


For the Dough:

  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • ½ cup warm water
  • 2 ounces cake yeast or 3 packets (6¾ teaspoons) active dry yeast
  • 6 eggs
  • 16 ounces sour cream
  • 2 cups unsalted butter, melted and cooled
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 9 to 10 cups grams all-purpose flour

For the Filling:

  • 3 pounds walnuts finely ground
  • 3 cups granulated sugar
  • ¾ cup unsalted butter, melted and cooled
  • ¾ cup evaporated milk
  • ½ cup whole milk
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
US Customary - Metric


  1. Make the Dough: Dissolve 1 teaspoon sugar into the ½ cup warm water (if using fresh cake yeast, the water temperature should be between 90 to 95 degrees F; if using active dry yeast, the water temperature should be 120 to 130 degrees F). Crumble the fresh yeast or sprinkle the active dry yeast and stir to combine. Let sit for 5 to 10 minutes, or until foaming.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer using the paddle attachment, beat the eggs on medium speed until combined, about 1 minute. Add the sour cream, melted butter, sugar, vanilla, salt and the softened yeast. Mix on medium speed until smooth and well-combined, about 2 to 3 minutes. Switch to the dough hook, reduce the mixer speed to low, and add the flour a little at a time, until the dough does not feel sticky but is still soft and supple. Continue kneading until the dough does not stick to the sides of the bowl. Cover with a damp dish towel while you prepare the filling.
  3. Make the Filling: In a large bowl, combine all of the ingredients for the filling, stirring well to ensure that it is completely mixed and all of the ingredients are incorporated.
  4. Assemble the Nut Roll: Line four baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats. Divide the dough into eight pieces. On a clean work surface and one at a time, roll each piece out into a 9x14-inch rectangle, using flour if necessary to keep from sticking. Spread one-eighth of the filling to within ½-inch of the edges. With the long side in front of you, roll up gently and pinch the seams shut. Place on the prepared baking sheets, 2 rolls per sheet. Cover loosely with plastic wrap. Repeat with all eight pieces of dough. Place the baking sheets in a draft-free area and allow to rise for 3 hours (the rolls will puff and swell but will not look huge).
  5. Bake the Nut Roll: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Bake one pan at a time for 20 to 25 minutes, or until the tops are lightly browned. Cool completely before slicing. Wrap leftovers tightly in plastic wrap and store at room temperature for up to 1 week. The nut roll can be frozen by wrapping in plastic wrap, then again in foil, and stored in the freezer for up to 2 months. Thaw at room temperature.

Recipe Notes

Nutritional values are based on one nut roll

Nutrition Facts
Nut Roll Recipe
Amount Per Serving
Calories 633 Calories from Fat 828
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 92g 142%
Saturated Fat 59g 295%
Cholesterol 303mg 101%
Sodium 289mg 12%
Potassium 480mg 14%
Total Carbohydrates 220g 73%
Dietary Fiber 17g 68%
Sugars 110g
Protein 36g 72%
Vitamin A 52%
Vitamin C 3.9%
Calcium 24.4%
Iron 43.8%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.