Baker Bettie

How to Make Bierocks

A bierock, also known as a runza, is a soft yeast roll stuffed with ground meat, cabbage, and onions. This dish can be made by making homemade yeast dough or utilizing frozen dinner rolls. Pin it for Later »

Homemade bierocks lined up on a sheet pan

Bierock Recipe Overview

What is a Bierock (aka Runza)?

A bierock, also known as a runza, is a ground meat, cabbage, and onion filled yeast roll. Growing up in Kansas this was a common dish served in the area and it is also popular in Nebraska due to the population of German Mennonite.

Bierock can be made with or without cheese and are commonly served with mustard as a dipping sauce. The ground meat is traditionally beef, but other ground meats can also be used. It is also common to substitute the shredded cabbage for sauerkraut in a bierock.

Homemade bierock showing the filling

How to Make Bierock with Frozen Rolls

Traditional bierocks are made with a homemade soft yeast roll dough. Below you will find a full tutorial for how to make them from scratch. However, bierocks can also be made using a frozen yeast roll or some people even make them with store bought biscuit dough.

To make bierocks with frozen rolls, you must make sure that the frozen yeast rolls you have purchased are raw. Thaw the rolls completely according to the package instructions and proceed with the recipe starting with preparing the filling.

How to Make Bierock (Runza) from Scratch

To make bierocks from scratch you will make a soft yeast dough. I love using my master enriched dough recipe for these, which is also the same recipe for my soft dinner rolls. While the dough is rising, you will then make the meat filling for the bierocks.

Make the Bread Dough

  • STEP 1: Hydrate the yeast in the warm milk and set aside.
  • STEP 2: Mix the fat, sugar, salt, and eggs in a large mixing bowl.
  • STEP 3: Stir the eggs into the mixing bowl.
  • STEP 4: Stir the milk/yeast mixture into the mixing bowl.
  • STEP 5: Stir in the flour until it is all hydrated.
  • STEP 6: Knead the dough by hand or in a stand mixer with a dough attachment. Knead until your dough is smooth and elastic.
  • STEP 7: Cover the dough and allow it to rise until double in size.

Make the Beef & Cabbage Filling

  • STEP 8: Saute the onions and garlic in a large skillet or dutch oven until translucent and starting to get some color.
  • STEP 9: Add the ground beef and saute until cooked through.
  • STEP 10: Add the cabbage and salt to the pot. It will look like too much cabbage but it will wilt down considerably.
  • STEP 11: Allow the filling to cool for at least 10 minutes.

Assemble & Bake the Bierocks

  • STEP 12: Divide the yeast dough into 12 equal pieces.
  • STEP 13: Roll out a piece to 1/8″ thick and fill with meat (and cheese if using). Pull the edges of the bierock up and pinch to seal.
  • STEP 14: Cover the bierocks to rise while the oven preheats.
  • STEP 15: Bake until golden brown. Brush with melted butter when they come out of the oven.

Tips, Tricks, & Techniques

  • The yeast dough can be made up to 24 hours ahead of time. If you do this, put it in the refrigerator right after it has been kneaded. Take it out of the refrigerator when you start preparing the filling.
  • Start with the minimum amount of flour suggested for the yeast dough. It will likely need a little more, but begin kneading the dough for a bit of time before adding more. It will become less sticky as it is kneaded. This should be a very soft dough.
  • Bierocks freeze incredibly well. You can either freeze them raw, or freeze them fully cooked. I prefer to freeze cooked bierocks because they reheat perfectly.
Homemade bierock with a bite taken out showing it's filling

Bierock (Runza) Recipe

Yield: 12 Bierocks
Prep Time: 1 hour 45 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 2 hours 15 minutes

This is a recipe for how to make homemade bierocks (runza). This recipe includes a homemade yeast dough for the bierocks but it can be substituted with frozen rolls if you prefer. 


For the Dough

  • 1 cup (237 ml) whole milk (lower fat milk can be substituted)
  • 1 package (7 gr, or 2 1/2 tsp) active dry or quick rise yeast
  • 1/4 cup (49 gr) granulated sugar
  • 1/3 cup (73 gr) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
  • 1 1/4 tsp (6 gr) kosher salt or table salt
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • 4 - 4 1/2 cups (476 - 535 gr) all-purpose flour

For the Filling

  • 1 tbsp cooking oil of choice
  • 1 medium onion, small diced (about 1/2 cup)
  • 3-4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 pound (455 gr) ground beef (85-90% lean)
  • 4 cups of shredded green cabbage (about 10 oz)
  • 1 tsp salt (plus more to taste)
  • black pepper
  • 4 oz (112 gr) shredded cheese of choice (I like a sharp cheddar)


Make the Yeast Dough

  1. HYDRATE THE YEAST: Warm the milk to about 110-115 F (43-46 C). This can be done on the stove top or in the microwave. It should take about 30-45 seconds in the microwave. Make sure the milk is not too hot or it will kill the yeast. Sprinkle the yeast over the milk and stir it together.
  2. COMBINE THE FAT & SUGAR: In a large mixing bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer, stir together the cooled butter, sugar, and salt with a spoon or a rubber spatula.
  3. ADD THE EGGS: Stir in the eggs, one at a time, mixing until incorporated before adding the next.
  4. ADD THE MILK/YEAST: Stir in the milk/yeast mixture.
  5. ADD THE FLOUR: Stir in 4 cups of the flour until it is all hydrated. The dough will be shaggy at this point.
  6. KNEAD: This dough can be kneaded by hand or with the dough hook of a stand mixer. If kneading by hand, lightly flour a work surface and knead the dough for about 6-7 minutes, until it is smooth and elastic. The dough will be very sticky to start, but will become less sticky as it is kneaded. If kneading in the stand mixer, knead at medium/high speed for about 5 minutes, stopping about halfway through to scrape the bottom of the bowl. If needed, add more flour while kneading until you have a soft dough.
  7. FERMENT: Lightly spray the dough with oil and cover the bowl with a towel or plastic wrap. Let it ferment at room temperature until double in size. This will take about 30-45 minutes if you used quick rise yeast and 1-2 hours if active dry yeast was used. A warm spot will speed up the fermentation time.

Note: If you want to use frozen rolls instead of making your dough, defrost 12 of them completely according to the package instructions. 

Make the Bierock Filling

  1. COOK ONIONS: Heat your cooking oil in a large skillet or dutch oven over medium/high heat. Cook the diced onions and minced garlic for about 3 minutes, until the onions become translucent and are beginning to take on some color.
  1. COOK THE MEAT: Add the ground beef to the pot and cook, breaking up the meat with your spoon, until the meat is cooked through.
  2. ADD THE CABBAGE: Add the cabbage and 1 tsp salt to the pan. It will look like too much but it will wilt down considerably. Saute until the cabbage completely wilts down, about 3-4 more minutes.
  3. SEASON: Taste the mixture and add black pepper and more salt to taste. Allow the mixture to cool for at least 10 minutes before filling the bierocks.
  4. Assemble the BierocksDIVIDE THE DOUGH: Gently press down on the middle of the yeast dough to deflate it, and then turn it out onto a lightly floured work surface. Divide the dough into 12 even pieces. You can do this by eyeballing it or if you would like to weigh the pieces out they should be about 83-85 grams each.
  5. FILL THE BIEROCKS: Roll each piece of dough to about 1/8" thick. If using, place about 2 tbsp shredded cheese on the dough and then top with a generous 1/3 cup of filling. It may look like too much filling but the dough will stretch to close. Bring the corners of the dough up to the center and pinch to seal like a little purse. Place the filled bierocks on parchment lined baking sheets.
  6. PROOF THE BIEROCKS: Cover the prepared bierocks with plastic wrap or a clean kitchen towel and let rise for about 30 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350 F (177 C) .
  7. BAKE THE BIEROCKS: Uncover the bierocks and bake in a 350 F (177 C) oven for 30 minutes, until the bierocks are golden brown. If desired, brush the baked bierocks with melted butter. Serve with mustard or sauce of choice.


  • To Freeze Raw Bierocks: Place in the freezer on a sheet tray once the bierocks are filled. When frozen solid, transfer to a freezer ziplock bag and freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw at room temperature on a sheet pan. Cover the bierocks with plastic wrap while thawing. This should take about 2 hours. Bake as directed.
  • To Freeze Baked Bierocks: Allow to cool completely. Freeze in a freezer ziplock bag or wrap tightly in plastic wrap or foil. Freeze for up to 6 months. Reheat in a 325 F (162 C) oven for 20 minutes, until warmed through.

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Nutrition Information:

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 300

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39 comments on “How to Make Bierocks”

  1. Thanks for the recipe and detailed instructions. Made these yesterday and they could be the best thing ever! I bake alot, but bread is my nemesis. These worked perfectly.

  2. I’m so embarrassed!  I don’t know if I can even ask this….
    Ok…deep breath.  How do you pronounce these?  Is it Beer Rocks?  Which of course it does…but maybe it’s  Buyer Rocks?  Or maybe Rocks don’t have anything to do with it.
    I’m hopeless to try making these scrumptious looking beauties until I know how to say it.  But I think I’d love them.  Please help!

    • Hi Twyla! You are correct, it is “beer-rock!” Let me know if you make them and how they turn out!

      • These are REALLY wonderful!  I made the dough up last night and that helped a lot on time.  Once we got home this afternoon I set it out to warm up and assemble them.   Well, mine don’t look as beautiful as yours.  I have different sizes….I was clumsy and got some filling on the dough…but …they taste just fantastic!  Thanks for teaching me something new!  I’ll definitely be making these again!  

        Oh and we tried mustard on the first one…but nixed it after that because the flavor of the dough is special enough on its own.  Wonderful!

  3. When it comes to baking, I’m all about precision and your site is amazing!  Finally a place with tons of recipes that are detailed and answer every question I have.  And you have so many recipes to choose from.  Thank you!!!  
    My mom made these “cabbage buns” when I was growing up and your recipe is just the precision I need.  Only thing I did different was used 75% whole wheat flour 

  4. Can I use red cabbage?

  5. If I want to freeze raw bierocks, do I freeze them immediately after they are assembled or do I let it rise for 30 minutes before freezing them?

    • Hi Meldy, I prefer freezing them after they are baked and slightly under baking them. Then refresh in the oven at 325 until warmed through and browned. Freezing raw yeast dough can be tricky. If you want to try that, you need to avoid waking up the yeast too much or you risk killing it once frozen. Here’s what I would suggest. Make the dough with cool not warm water. After you have kneaded the dough let it rest for only about 10 minutes to relax the dough and then shape and fill them. Do not let the dough rise. Lay them on a sheet pan and freeze them flat and then you can transfer them to a ziplock once frozen. Pull them out of the freezer 24 hours before you want to serve them and put them on a parchment lined baking sheet covered with greased plastic wrap. Let them thaw in the refrigerator for about 20-22 hours. Then pull them out of the fridge to proof 2 hours before baking. Please note, I have not actually tested this with these. This is just my best estimate with what I know about how yeast dough works.

  6. I have made my grandmas and these using frozen Rhodes was a lot easier and quicker. But there was something missing from the recipe. Couldn’t put my finger on it, I had lost my grandmas cookbook and would have looked to see what it was.  But they were still good 

  7. This is a great recipe. I’ve made it a few times. I love that I can freeze some and warm them up for a quick dinner. Wonderful dough. You can be creative with the filling. Thank you!

  8. I have these in the oven as I type this, but I had extra filling so I made soft tacos for me and my wife. I added mushrooms to the filling and used pepper jack cheese. The filling is great by itself, but with the bread it should be better. Now, what else can I fill these with? Asada beef, pork chili verde, BBQ beef, caramelized onions and mushrooms? The opportunities are endless….

    • Hi Lance! I love all of your ideas of filling for these! Yes, they are super versatile. My husbands favorite is a cheesesteak filling! I hope you enjoyed them!

  9. Great recipe…. the dough was perfect…. and the filling is so easy to add seasonings to in whatever way to make it your own.  Great comfort food!!

  10. Oh wonderful! My grandmother used to make these. She called them pierogies, bierocks or German hamburgers. I used to be in awe of her when she was making these. Now my great neices and nephews can experience the same thing. Thanks so much for sharing this with us ❤️

  11. Thank You, we love Bierocks and tried your recipe yesterday. I doubled the recipe and made the dough in my kitchenaid. The dough is WONDERFUL! So easy to work with. The filling easily made the double recipe and was equally as wonderful. Was happy to share with family. Thank you again, this will be my go to recipe. A+

  12. Thanks for the recipe! I grew up eating and loving these. My dad used to say the more garlic the better. Yours was the only recipe I could find that had garlic. I knew it had to have the garlic and just needed the garlic ratio. My family cools the baked bierocks, line up on sheet pan, freeze, then transfer to ziplock bags for easy access. Best warmed in oven but microwave works in a pinch.

  13. I was wondering if I could deep fat these rolls like a doughnut and then fill them and sprinkle them with powdered sugar. I recently bought some at a large grocery store and they were called bierocks and they make them just once a year  near Ash Wednesday. They were filled 
    with cherry, lemon, white filling, apple.  Some were sprinkled with granulated sugar.

  14. It’s nice and fluffy. Thank you so muchhh.

  15. Made these last night. Dough was perfect even for a bread machine. Store was out of cabbage and sauerkraut. Filling changed to: Onions, diced (small) carrots, hamburger, and then a slight amount of sauce made from Irish curry – just enough to coat everything. Came out amazing

  16. I want to triple this recipe – anything special I need to do with the dough preparation?

  17. Wondering if I could make this dough in my bread maker? Anyone try this?

  18. I had never heard of these before, but I made them last night and they were sooooooo good! The recipe is very well written and they were much less complicated to make than I anticipated. Thank you so much for this recipe!

  19. This looks really delicious! So could you please give suggestions for what I could use instead of the meat in this recipe? (She says with tongue hanging out)

  20. I have made Bierocks multiple times over the years but this is the best recipe I’ve ever found. The filling is simple and delicious but I think the real secret is the dough. I’ve tried others, including the bought frozen rolls. This dough is so pliable and easy to work with that there is no reason to try any other. I doubled the recipe and ended up having a little dough left over so I used our favorite hot dogs that I had in the refrigerator and made Pigs in the Blanket stuffed w cheese. They were equally delicious. Thank you for sharing this recipe.

  21. Can these be reheated individually in the microwave? If so, how long?

  22. I’m making these as I type. Waiting for the Rhodes Frozen Rolls to thaw. I have bought cabbage 2x over the last few months and intended to do these, but tried something new. It was time to visit an old favorite. I add red pepper flakes to mine or use a little spicy sausage with the beef. I like heat!
    I brush mine with a little egg white to give them a shine and a light sprinkle of sea salt and then brush with butter when they come out. Waiting is the hardest part… ⏲️

  23. I love Bierocks. I use Pam’s bierock recipe and it turns out perfect.  I have extra cabbage and I wonder if I can make the ground beef/cabbage, cook it, and then freeze that til a later date when I will make the bierocks?  I have quite a few made ones in the freezer already and am out of space to make more.  

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