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Funeral Rolls

Funeral Rolls taste AMAZING! They are an easy appetizer recipe to make and let me tell you they are nothing to mourn about. I was first introduced to these delicious Funeral Sandwiches many years ago when I taught at North Laurel High in London, KY. My co-worker made these for a teachers meeting and everyone gobbled them up!  She told me they are called Funeral Rolls because they were prepared for funeral “layouts” traditionally in the South.

Funeral Rolls

If you have ever been to a layout in the south you know that there is always delicious food at the meal. They are so easy to make and what I love is that can prepare them in advance and then bake them when you are ready. I made these for my family this year at Christmas and they loved them! They would make a fabulous appetizer for game day too!

Funeral Rolls are simply the best sandwich and so easy to make. My husband loves this appetizer!

We prefer our Funeral Rolls to be made with Kings Hawaiian Rolls.  Simply cut each roll in half, lengthwise and place bottom halves on the bottom of a 9×13 baking dish.  Then layer bottom of the rolls with the ham sand cheese slices and place the top half of the rolls back on.

In a bowl, mix together the melted butter, Worcestershire sauce, mustard, brown sugar and onion powder. Pour mixture over the tops of the sandwiches. Cover and marinade anywhere from 4-24 hours. Overnight works best!  This is why I love this recipe because you make them in advance and pull them out to bake later.

Funeral Rolls are simply the best sandwich and so easy to make. My husband loves this appetizer!

Trust me on this, once you try Funeral Rolls you will never look back.  This is the most requested recipe that I make from friends and family.  It is certainly nothing to mourn about. It is my hubby’s favorite appetizer.

Funeral Rolls

Funeral Rolls are nothing to mourn about. They are a delicious prep ahead sandwich that everyone loves. An easy appetizer to make for any party or tailgate.
Print Recipe
Prep Time:5 minutes
Cook Time:15 minutes
Total Time:20 minutes


  • 1 package King’s Hawaiian Rolls (or other brand of choice) - We prefer this brand - (12 ct).
  • 1 package Ham, sliced thin (1 lb)
  • 1 package Swiss or Provolone Cheese
  • ½ cup unsalted butter, melted
  • 3 TBSP Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 TBSP prepared mustard
  • 2 TBSP brown sugar
  • 1/4 tsp onion powder
  • 1 bottle optional - poppy seeds


  • Cut rolls in half, lengthwise and place bottom halves on the bottom of a baking pan. I like to use a bread knife and cut the entire package at one time.
  • Place your ham and then cheese on top of the bottom half of the rolls.
  • Add the tops to cover the ham and cheese.
  • In a small mixing bowl, Mix together the melted butter, Worcestershire sauce, mustard, brown sugar and onion powder. Pour sauce over sandwiches. Cover and marinade for 4-24 hours. I personally do mine overnight.
  • When ready to bake preheat oven to 350°.
  • Optional - sprinkle poppy seeds over the top and bake for 15 minutes uncovered or until your cheese is melted and buns are golden.


Serving: 2g | Calories: 684kcal | Carbohydrates: 44g | Protein: 26g | Fat: 45g | Saturated Fat: 23g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 13g | Cholesterol: 159mg | Sodium: 1284mg | Potassium: 365mg | Sugar: 17g | Vitamin A: 700IU | Vitamin C: 1.7mg | Calcium: 320mg | Iron: 2.9mg
Servings: 6 people
Calories: 684kcal
Author: Melissa Jennings
Cost: $8

Funeral Rolls are simply the best sandwich and so easy to make. My husband loves this appetizer!

Appetizer Recipes:

Salami Rolls (Gluten Free)

Bacon Cheddar Cheese Pull Aparts

Skyline Dip

Artichoke Dip

Garlic Lemon Wings

Hot and Spicy Chicken Tenders

Jalapeno Popper Dip (Low Fat ~ Weight Watchers)

Buffalo Chicken Dip Recipe

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      1. 5 stars
        So funny…I forgot all about these until the beginning of the month and was looking for the recipe since I had no idea what they were called…YA printing and I already had them pinned, du!!!!

    1. 3 stars
      thats funny because the brand kings hawaiian hada recipie on their page but it wasnt called funeral rolls

  1. 4 stars
    Tried this half Kaiser rolls other half Hawaiian rolls, half turkey/cheddar and other half ham/provolone, and no marinade and they came out great, I also have some in fridge to marinate to see which way is best.. yum yum thanks

  2. I’ve been looking for this recipe. I remembered that they were called Funeral Rolls, but not what goes in them! When I got to the recipe and saw North Laurel High School, I decided I had better save it and show it to my husband…he was in the first graduating class at North!

  3. For a nice make ahead then freeze option, hand shredded meat and cheese, pour the sauce over the meat and cheese, mix all in a bowl put spoonful in each roll that is pre sliced, then wrap each sandwich or several in a foil packet. You can grab a few at a time and put in the oven as guests arrive. Taste heavenly!

  4. I make these but with mustard instead of brown sugar, and onion flakes instead of powder. Lol we call them blue Moon rolls. That’s how often I make than, just bc I will make a ton and only get 1 🙁

  5. I want to make these for a potluck at work. Any suggestions on how I could keep them warm/reheat – since I will bake them before leaving for work? There would be almost 4 hours before being served at the potluck. Thank you in advance!

    1. They are also great reheated – do you have access to an over or a microwave? could you put them in a crockpot with foil to keep warm on low – just thinking out loud here.

  6. Do you eat these warm or can they be cool or at room temp? My boys are heading out on a road trip and I was thinking about making these for them and wrapping in foil.

  7. 5 stars
    My husband is extremely picky and does not normally eat ham. I made these last week and everyone loved them! My husband requested I make them again this week! They are AMAZING!!

    1. I was just about to make this but realized I don’t have worcestshire sauce! Do you have any substitutions or would it taste ok without it? 🙁

  8. 5 stars
    Soooo good! Ironically, a friend made these for my father-in-law’s funeral dinner. We actually crave them. Highly recommended! Thanks for the great recipe!

  9. I make the funeral sandwiches but they came out soggy why I baked them about 30 minutes and I pour off a lot or the butter sauce. Can y o u help me

  10. What keeps the bread from becoming a soggy mess? I have a husband who is very concerned about that, but I’d like to try these for Easter lunch.

    1. They aren’t soggy – they are delicious. My husband LOVES these. They would be perfect for Easter! Plus you can make them in advance and then just bake that day.

  11. They sound yummy, can’t wait to make them… Can you freeze them after they are baked??? If so, how would you freeze them???

    1. I have never tried because there are never any left 🙂 You could freeze before baking I would think for best results?

  12. 5 stars
    I’ve been wanting to try these for Book Club, but I like to try out a recipe first. I had a Groupon for Sam’s Club which included 2 dozen dinner rolls for free and $10 off a ham. It is just hubby and Me, so since we had all these ingredients, it was the perfect time to try this recipe out. They were delicious! We both loved them. I made mostly ham and Swiss cheese since we had so much of that, but I also had some honey turkey from the deli and a good Brie left over from company. So 4 of them I made with the turkey and Brie and added a slice of already cooked bacon I had in the house. Those were were even more delicious than the ham ones, and even though my hubby is a ham fan, he thought the turkey were the best too. I made these the night before and cookHappy Tuesday!e them exactly 15 minutes. We also had them again the next night and I cooked them the same amount of time. They were still delicious. I was not crazy about the rolls I used and know Hawaiian would be better as recipe states. Also, my rolls had a very rounded top so the sauce I poured on rolled right off so most was in the bottom. Nevertheless, they weren’t soggy, but were wet on the bottom which I thought was fine. It wasn’t mushy, and the roll stayed together even with a wet bottom. However, I really want to try these with pretzel buns, the miniature ones (sliders). Because they are firmer than Hawaiian rolls, I may try pouring the sauce on them, then the next morning flipping them over so the top soaks in the sauce and them back to original way before popping them in the oven. This recipe is a keeper! So good. PS I used Honey Dijon mustard.

  13. 5 stars
    I’ve made these for a tailgate today. I wanted to make them last night to marinate but ran out of time. I also only had enough ham for 1pan. So the 2nd one was roasted turkey. Then, I remembered that I had some pulled BBQ beef in the freezer. I added Swiss cheese to the ham, sharp Cheddar’s to the turkey, and sprinkled the BBQ with shredded cheddar. I thought the Worcestershire sauce would taste too good with the beef, so, I melted some butter, added some onion and some garlic powder plus a little parsley. They’re marinating now, ready to bake in a few hours. I’ll let you know how they go over with the crowd. They have to be heated on the grill when we reach the game, so this should be interesting. Thank you for the recipe!

  14. I have two different kinds of Hawaiian rolls at my local grocery store, one is like a dinner roll, the other a bun like a slider. which one would be best? I am having a jewelry party this weekend and plan on making them for the first time. I’m a little nervous about making something new for a gathering. I can’t believe the rolls won’t be soggy, especially if you marinade them overnight. I don’t think I will do that. I will make them ahead but possibly not put the sauce on until a few hours ahead. I hope they turn out!

    1. You use the bun that looks like a slider 🙂 I would suggest marinading them in the morning if you are concerned. They are YUMMY!

  15. I’m making these for a ladies meeting Thursday…. I am a lil concerned now after reading the comments of being soggy mushy??
    Also is it deli ham? TIA

  16. 5 stars
    I have a batch of these currently in the fridge, waiting for baking tomorrow, and the glaze is so good, I had to kick my kid out of the kitchen since he was literally trying to drink the stuff. Can’t wait until the guests try them!

  17. 5 stars
    I made these tonight and they were FABULOUS! I used an 8×8 square pan and sweet dinner rolls (a bit larger than King’s Hawaiian) so I was able to fit 9 in the pan. I used a bit less on all the marinade ingredients since I was using a smaller amount and it came out perfectly! Hubby gave them two thumbs up and said I could add them into the dinner rotation! Thanks, Melissa! 🙂

  18. 5 stars
    Love these! I use stone ground mustard. I never remember to marinate them so I place a teaspoon of the sauce on the bottom bun. Add the ham and cheese and put another teaspoon on the top bun. Then I drizzle the remaining sauce on top. Bake and enjoy.

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