Cheesy-Pesto Lunch Box Rolls

  • I’ve got two little boys. Two VERY hungry little boys. You know the ones that follow you into the kitchen, ask for their lunch box on the way to daycare and seem to repeat “what else can I eat” 985 times a day? Yep, those kind.


    So quick, freezable snacks/lunch box favourites are a lifeline for me, and these delicious cheesy-pesto lunch box rolls fit the bill perfectly.

    I adore making these, they’re so quick, and the flavour options are endless. You can keep it simple with just cheese in the middle, or add some ham, maybe even a veg or two. The key is the delicious Barilla Pesto Genovese on the outside. The oil in the pesto makes the rolls lovely and soft, and the flavour makes sure every mouthful is delicious. My two would finish the whole tray in 5 minutes if I let them!


    Cheesy-Pesto Lunchbox Rolls

    These lunch box rolls are so delicious my boys would finish off a whole tray if I let them!

    Prep Time:
    Cook time:
    Servings: 12


    • Warm water: 1 cup
    • Dried yeast: 1 tablespoon
    • Salt: pinch
    • Honey: 2 tablespoons
    • Olive oil: 1 tablespoon
    • Plain flour: 3 cups
    • Cheddar cheese, cubed: 50g
    • Mozzarella cheese, cubed: 50g
    • Barilla iPesti alla GENOVESE (basil) pesto: 190g jar
    • Butter for greasing



    Step 1: Preheat oven to 180ºC and grease a 30cm x 15cm baking tin with butter. Then, stir the wet ingredients together and fold in the flour slowly, you may need a touch less or even a bit more. It's perfect when the dough is not too wet or dry. Cover with a tea towel and allow it to double in size, this takes about 30 minutes.


    Step 2: Once the dough has doubled in size, pop it on your floured bench and knead. Then, chop it into 12 equal sizes and shape into circles.


    Step 3: Now lay out your cheese and pop the pesto into its own bowl. Then start the process of making the rolls by pulling the dough apart, pop 3 - 4 pieces of cheese in the middle and shape them back in to rolls.


    Step 4: Now coat the dough in the pesto and lay them in the greased pan. Leave a little space between the rolls as they will expand. Put them into the oven to cook for 35 minutes or until they're brown and the cheese is starting to ooze out.


    Step 5: When they're done, allow them to cool on a wire rack for the lunch box, or go ahead and eat them warm from the oven - either way, they're great.


    PS: These rolls freeze perfectly! Put them into a freezer-safe container and take out a roll to put frozen into the lunch box. It will be perfect come recess time.


    Other irresistible ways with pesto: