Macedonian Dinner Rolls with Feta Cheese – Kifli

Macedonian Dinner Rolls with Feta Cheese are buttery, soft dinner rolls filled with feta cheese and topped with sesame seeds. They’re the perfect side for any dinner!

Kifli - Macedonian Cheese Rolls @diethood


So you wanna boast about your domesticated self? In our culture, this is where it starts – with Kifli (Кифли). This is the stuff wives-to-be are supposed to know! Yeah right! Smile The correct word is were – baby boomers changed all that – phewww – Thanks guys!

But, in all honesty, if you’re going to bake in a Macedonian household, then you better know how to make homemade bread first, then Kifli, then Maznik, and finally, the big star, Zelnik, which is a layered pastry dough stuffed with greens. Yep, all of that makes a good Macedonian housewife. Winking smile

Kifli - Macedonian Cheese Rolls @diethood

In time for big holidays, birthdays, Saint Patron Days, and so forth, Kifli, or Dinner Rolls with Sesame Seeds and Feta Cheese, are almost always the centerpiece on that table, or somewhere very near to it. What’s good about these rolls is that they are very versatile. You can stuff them with feta cheese, or even meat, have them plain, or dunk them in some homemade yogurt. They are enjoyed as a starter, with a salad, or as a dinner roll.

I prefer to snack on them… all day long. I think I ate one entire batch before they were finally done. Ana helped.

I have a total of nine different recipes for these. Everyone always has the “best” Kifli recipe – I just jot down their version and give it a go as soon as I get a moment. This particular one that I’m going to share with you is probably the easiest, and, in my opinion, the tastiest. The method of preparation may seem a bit off, but just follow the recipe and don’t question it. Smile In the end, you will have about 40 soft, delicious Kifli filled to the rim with feta cheese! Make sure to share with your family.

Kifli - Macedonian Cheese Rolls @diethood


5 from 1 vote
Kifli - Macedonian Cheese Rolls @diethood
Macedonian Dinner Rolls
Prep Time
1 hr 30 mins
Cook Time
15 mins
Total Time
2 hrs

Macedonian Dinner Rolls with Feta Cheese are buttery, soft dinner rolls filled with feta cheese and topped with sesame seeds. They're the perfect side for any dinner!

Course: Bread
Cuisine: Macedonian
Servings: 40
Calories: 148 kcal
Author: Katerina
  • • 2 cups lukewarm milk
  • • 1 package active dry yeast (I use Red Star)
  • • 6 teaspoons sugar
  • • 2 tablespoons flour
  • • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • • 2 teaspoons salt
  • • ½ cup vegetable oil
  • • 4 eggs , separated
  • • 6 cups flour
  • • 1 to 2 cups of crumbled feta cheese
  • • 1 stick of butter
  • • Sesame seeds
  1. • In a large, deep mixing bowl pour in lukewarm milk.
  2. • Stir in the sugar, 2 tablespoons of flour, and the yeast.
  3. • Let stand for ten minutes.
  4. • Add in the baking powder, salt, vegetable oil, egg whites, and 6 cups of flour.
  5. • Stir with a wooden spoon until the mixture is well incorporated, you may need to get your hands in there towards the end, then bring the dough to a lightly floured surface.
  6. • Knead the dough for 10 minutes.
  7. • Put the dough in a large bowl, cover it, and let it stand for one hour.
  8. • Preheat oven at 375.
  9. • Bring the dough back to your working area and knead it again for another 5 minutes. You want to make sure that all those air bubbles are out.
  10. • Form the dough into a log and cut it into 5 or 6 equal pieces.
  11. • Take one piece (cover the rest with a kitchen towel), and roll it out to a size as big as a medium pizza.
  12. • With a knife, cut the rolled out dough into 8 equal slices.
  13. • Place a tablespoon of cheese closer to the widest point of the slice.
  14. • Beginning at the widest point of the slice start rolling it towards the narrowest point.
  15. • Place the croissants on a lightly greased baking sheet.
  16. • Continue to do this with the rest of the dough.
  17. • In a small mixing bowl, whisk the 4 egg yolks.
  18. • Brush each croissant with the egg yolk.
  19. • Top each croissant with sesame seeds.
  20. • Put 4 or 5 small pieces of butter throughout the baking sheet.
  21. • Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, or until golden brown.
  22. • Cover with a kitchen towel while they are cooling.
  23. • Serve immediately or store in an airtight container; freeze for up to 3 months.
Recipe Notes

WW Freestyle SmartPoints: 6

Nutrition Facts
Macedonian Dinner Rolls
Amount Per Serving
Calories 148 Calories from Fat 63
% Daily Value*
Fat 7g11%
Saturated Fat 5g25%
Cholesterol 14mg5%
Sodium 110mg5%
Potassium 72mg2%
Carbohydrates 17g6%
Fiber 0g0%
Sugar 2g2%
Protein 3g6%
Vitamin A 120IU2%
Calcium 67mg7%
Iron 1mg6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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60 Responses
  1. John

    Can you please explain the need for using baking powder at the same time as using yeast?
    I don’t see the need or use of baking powder in this recipe…..or am i missing something??

  2. Michael Taylor


  3. Odessa Alexander

    I’ve made this twice now and each time the dough comes out really wet and sticky. I added a lot more flour than 6 cups but the dough gets a little tough to roll into a medium pizza. Is the dough supposed to be on the wet side?

  4. Alice

    I’ve made these loads upon loads of times. I’m half Macedonian, half Belgian(weird combo, right?) and my husband is 100% Macedonian(he came over from the old country about ten years ago). Now that’s it’s Christmas time, he wants them and I am happy to oblige. There’s only one problem. They didn’t have the little packets of yeast at the store so I got the jar. Do you know how many teaspoons/tablespoons of yeast it is?
    Вие и среќен Божиќ благодариме!

    1. HI Alice!! What a combo! Lucky girl! You must be gorgeous!!
      I am on your hubby’s side – Kifli are a must for Christmas. 😀

      I had to call my mom for this one because she uses the jars, only. 🙂 So, 1 package of yeast is exactly 2-1/4 teaspoons.

      Среќен Божиќ и За Многу Години! Голем поздрав до сите вас!

      1. Katherine

        Hi, how do I prevent from the bottom of the croissants to cook faster than the top? I have the oven set at 375 and the bottom gets brown faster and hard

        1. Hi! So sorry you’re having issues with this. I can’t wait for kifli to get done, but hard bottoms are a no-go! 😃
          Couple things could be happening… your oven may not heat evenly and the hot spots are affecting the kifli. Or the baking sheets you are using may be too thin. Hard to tell, but you can try to bake on a higher positioned rack, or I would start with placing the baking sheet on a lower positioned rack and then move it up to a higher position half-way through baking time.

    1. Hi Kate!

      SO happy to hear that you enjoyed them!!

      To answer your question;
      You can combine the feta with one egg; mix until it’s well incorporated and then sprinkle the feta cheese over the dough. That should do the trick. 🙂

  5. Biljana

    These look great and cant wait to try and make them. But I dont see in your directions where to use the 1 stick of butter….can you pls clarify?


  6. Sara

    I just found your recipe, and I am definitely going to make KIFLICE tomorrow. I have already made “Varazdinski klipcici”, which are similar to you version of kiflice. Thanks a lot! XO

      1. Sara

        Katerina, they are FANTASTIC! I made them today. We all love them! I do not need to mention that they are already gone. :)) Really excellent recipe. And, excellent blog. I am your new fan. :))

  7. Oh this is older post…i just saw it on the pinterest, like just now 😀 I wish i have 2-3 right now..ok maybe I would saddle with 5 haha
    Kifle with buttermilk were my breakfast almost every morning before school at the local bakery…and you did an amazing job!

  8. Even though I enjoycooking and sewing I am glad that the definition of what it means to be a good housewife has greatly expanded in the last 30 years!. 🙂 Your croissant are elegant! Thanks for sharing the recipe with the Hearth and Soul Hop.

  9. Oh these rolls look beautiful. Im slacking on my housewife skills so I guess I need to get in the kitchen, try my hand at these and catch up 🙂

  10. anna

    yay! my mum and tato came over to visit me and they made me a batch of kifli =) happiness defined =) my aussie/irish boyfriend cant get enough of them either!

  11. Wow! These croissants look perfect – browned just enough and the sesame seeds add a great texture I am sure. Definitely want to make these 🙂

  12. I love kifli! 🙂 But I’ve never had one with sesame seeds — only “regular”, with chocolate, or with lokum in them — so I will try your recipe for my first baking of kifli 🙂

  13. I love this 🙂 and same as you, where I come from this is a must to know LOL my recipe is a bit different LOL I’ll have to try your recipe, they look so perfect 🙂 thanks for sharing!

  14. I love sesame seeds on croissants! Yours look so good! I never had homemade croissants; summer is coming and I’ll definitely use my free time to try and make them!

    1. Yes, definitely. The dough is good for a few days in the freezer. Also, you can make these ahead and freeze them – they last for a long time in the freezer. Just store them in an airtight container.

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I'm a cookie-maker & picture-taker! For me, eating is a moment to share, an enjoyment, a passion. I hope you enjoy my recipes!
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