Nov 24, 2022
I tried five dinner roll brands from Aldi to Walmart – two were inedible and the best ‘pinch’ test wasn’t the winner
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DINNER rolls are perfect to go with your Thanksgiving feast as a complement to the main dish - but which brand is best?
The Sun tested a handful of them as last-minute shoppers will be looking to buy the baked bread for the holiday.7The Sun reviewed several already-prepared dinner rolls sold at major retailers
Dinner rolls can be enjoyed by dipping them into gravy with your Thanksgiving meal or with just butter.
We reviewed five already-prepared rolls from retailers including Aldi, Walmart and Trader Joe’s as part of our weekly series Bang for your buck.
They were judged on three categories including taste, appearance and overall value for the money.
For each one, the dinner rolls were given a score of one to 10, with 10 being the best.READ MORE ON TASTE TESTSCHICKEN WINNER I tasted 4 rotisserie chickens including Costco - there was a clear winnerSWEET TOOTH I tried four Pop-Tarts and store brands including Aldi, Walmart and Dollar Tree
Below’s how we ranked them. Keep in mind that prices can vary by location.5. Target 7Target was the most expensive and worst in terms of quality in our view
- Price per roll: 67 cents
- Total score: four out of 30
There are some good food finds at Target – but its rolls aren’t one of them.
They can be found under its Favorite Day brand for $3.99, which comes with six rolls.
This was the most expensive per serving at 67 cents.
Right off the bat when we did the pinch test, the rolls also felt hard plus there was a ton of flour on the bottom.Most read in MoneyMORE MONEY Exact dates Americans will receive direct payments from $200 to $1,050CASH IN Just hours until final monthly $4,194 payment paid out - find out if you get cashPOWER UP Urgent warning to check lottery tickets as $92.2million jackpot remains unclaimedSTATE OF MIND Your early 2000s Washington quarter could be worth $1,000
But worst of all, the outside was hard and the inside tasted stale.
Target got a one for taste, two for appearance and one for overall value.
Instead of its rolls, we recommend shoppers buying these five items at Target.4. Trader Joe’s 7This was another inedible option
- Price per roll: 50 cents
- Total score: seven out of 30
Unfortunately, Trader Joe’s wasn’t much better.
There was a lot of flour on the bottom and the inside tasted a little stale as well.
The only big difference was it wasn’t as hard as Target’s.
But still, it’s not an ideal option on the list.
Trader Joe’s sells a six-pack for 50 cents per roll – which was the second priciest amount on this list.
They got a two for taste, three for appearance and a two for value for money.
The Sun reached out to Trader Joe's and Target for comment.3. King’s Hawaiian 7It's easy to see why King's Hawaiian is popular – but still not the best on our list
- Price per roll: 41 cents
- Total score: 20 out of 30
If you haven’t tried them, odds are you have at least come across King’s Hawaiian rolls before at your local grocery store.
At Target, we found a pack of 12 of the name-brand product for $4.89, costing 41 cents per roll.
When compared to most of the others on the list, the King’s Hawaiian brand’s rolls are smaller in size.
The other thing that stands out is these are on the sweeter side and are much softer.
Hawaiian-style rolls aren’t for everyone and not ideal for certain types of meals but it’s easy to see why people want to supplement these with their meals.
The taste here got a seven, while the appearance and overall value for the money got a seven and six respectively.2. Aldi 7Aldi strikes again with its price-friendly options
- Price per roll: 21 cents
- Total score: 21 out of 30
As with the name brand above, Aldi sells Hawaiian-style rolls.
They were both quite similar in terms of softness and sweetness.
However, there’s one big difference that separates Aldi’s L'oven Fresh brand from King’s Hawaiian – and that’s the price.
King’s Hawaiian costs more than double per roll when compared to Aldi.
Plus, the dough in Aldi’s tasted a little fresher when compared to the popular brand.
In our eyes, Aldi is the winner for Hawaiian-style rolls.
We rate Aldi a seven for taste, a seven for appearance and a seven for the value of the money.1. Walmart 7If it's not on sale, pay the few extra cents for the Marketside brand
- Price per roll: 38 cents (sale)
- Total score: 25 out of 30.
Generally speaking, Walmart has the best option overall under its Marketside brand.
They are (just like Trader Joe’s) Ciabatta style rolls, which are described as flat Italian white bread that contains wheat flour, salt and water.
When doing the pinch test, the first thing we noticed was that it had a great balance between softness and dough quality.
While there was some flour, it wasn’t covered in it like Trader Joe’s and Target’s brands.
Most importantly, the taste lived up to the anticipation.
It got the top score on the list because there wasn't a lot of added sugar and they are much bigger compared to the other Hawaiian rolls.
The taste of Walmart’s also blows Trader Joe’s and Target’s out of the water.
Interestingly, they were on sale for 38 cents per roll, down from 54 cents.
But even if they weren’t, we still recommend paying a little more for Walmart’s and putting this on your Thanksgiving table.
Walmart got a nine for the taste, eight for the appearance and eight for the overall value.Bottom line 7If you prefer sweet and soft rolls go with Aldi but Walmart is the winner in our view
There are a few things on this list that are debatable options.
If you value soft and sweetness, King’s Hawaiian or Aldi’s brand will work.
But in our view, those types of rolls may be best suited to have with pulled pork or barbecued food.
If you are looking for a roll to butter up, go with Walmart’s.
For more related stories, a consumer expert reveals how to save hundreds with weeks to go until Christmas.Read More on The US SunTURKEY DAY When and how to watch Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade - see the iconic line-upWALMART BLOODBATH Walmart shooting victims pictured with teen among six 'killed by manager'
A mom changed where she shopped to cut her meat bill in half.
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Chicago Bulls shake up their lineup, putting pressure on Patrick Williams and Ayo Dosunmu to produce off the bench
A quarter of the way into the season, Billy Donovan felt the Chicago Bulls needed a change.
The coach pulled second-year guard Ayo Dosunmu and third-year power forward Patrick Williams out of the starting lineup against the Golden State Warriors on Friday, replacing them with veterans Alex Caruso and Javonte Green. It won’t necessarily be a permanent change, but it also wasn’t a one-time whim.
“It wasn’t really about Ayo or Patrick as much as, OK, we’ve got to shake some things up here a little bit,” Donovan said.
After a demoralizing road blowout to the Phoenix Suns on Wednesday, Donovan thought something needed to change. The locker room reflected a restless frustration as the Bulls slumped to 9-12. The starting lineup had fallen into a pattern of opening games flat, relying on the bench and second-half heroics to battle back into games.
Changing the lineup didn’t provide an immediate change in results for the Bulls, who lost to the Warriors 119-111 and fell to 2-3 on their six-game trip, which concludes Sunday against the Sacramento Kings. But Donovan felt the shift nevertheless steered the Bulls in a better direction.
“There just really wasn’t consistency there,” Donovan said. “There’s a pretty decent body of work for the number of games we played. I wanted to take a look at something different. It may be something that’s just not good. But at least I’ve thrown it out there and I’ve taken a look at it, because clearly over the first 20 games or so we’ve had this up-and-down roller coaster.”
For Donovan, however, pulling Dosunmu and Williams from the starting lineup comes at a slight price. The pair represents the youthful future of the team — especially Williams, who has been a focus of growing frustration for the fan base three years after he was drafted No. 4 in 2020.
Donovan has been blunt about the need for Williams to improve his aggressiveness, particularly around the rim on offense and defense. But despite modest scoring — 9.1 points per game — Williams has begun to slowly develop in recent weeks.
Williams said Donovan pulled him aside several days before the Warriors game, talking through the decision and gauging how Williams felt about moving to the secondary unit.
“I kind of expected it,” Williams said. “Obviously we haven’t been playing up to the level that we know we need to play to. I trust Billy, I trust the coaches. If it’s for winning, if you think it helped the team, I’m all for it.”
Added Donovan: “There’s always a level of prestige when starting. I get all that. But I also think those guys see a bigger picture. It’s not like I said to them, ‘Hey, listen, we’re moving you out of the starting lineup and you’re out of the rotation.’ I’m sure those guys in their heart of hearts want to start but I also think the team’s more important to them too.”
Donovan emphasized that he still views the role for Williams and Dosunmu as equally important whether they fit into the primary or secondary group — especially as he manages loads and rotations.
For instance, Donovan aims to limit Caruso to less than 30 minutes to prevent injuries because of the extreme physicality with which he plays defense. As a result, Dosunmu played only seven minutes less coming off the bench as he typically would as a starter.
“It is what it was,” Dosunmu said. “I’m pretty much still playing about the same time. It’s still all the same basketball when I’m out there.”
Williams said he’s unsure how long his move out of the starting lineup will last. But as he continues to field questions about his ability to live up to the lofty expectations set when he was drafted, Williams is trying to stay focused on the present.
In the second quarter against the Warriors, Williams said Donovan pulled him aside, delivering praise for his efforts to provide a two-way pop off the bench. For now, Williams said, that contribution will be his main focus.
“As a player, you can’t sit and think about things that you can’t control,” Williams said. “It’s just wasted energy. It’ll be my job to make sure I’m ready whenever my name is called. Everybody wants to start, everybody wants to play 48 minutes, but it’s about whatever is best for the team.”