Uh-oh. The bread is burning. 

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Recipe: Make-Ahead Yeast Rolls 

Think of these as the make-ahead, stress-saving counterpart to traditional icebox rolls. We might be serving hearty roasts and casserole-happy sideboards, but there's always room for rolls at Christmas. 

Laurey W. Glenn

We’ve all been there. Maybe you were humoring Uncle Larry by listening to his exaggerated fly fishing tale (which you’ve heard before) or tending to a fussy grandchild, and like seeing your life flash before your eyes, you realize you’ve left the rolls in the oven. Now they are black on the bottom or perhaps the fossilized, carbonized remains of what was.

Accidents happen, especially when your house is full of relatives and you’re hosting your own version of Iron Chef before dinner is served. But if you’ve burned the rolls or cornbread, we have three contingency plans that will get you gracefully to dinner.

Burned Bottoms

You can salvage a roll or biscuit with a burnt underside fairly easily. Just take a butter knife and start scraping until the darker bits reveal a browner bottom. You can also grate them on a microplane for a faster method, but be careful not to file away into the interior of the rolls.

Beyond Burned Bottoms

If your rolls just aren’t presentable or even edible, toss and re-strategize. We always keep a pan of freezer rolls (Alexia is our favorite) that we can jazz up as to appear homemade. Just brush the rolls with melted herb butter or try sprinkling them with flaky sea salt.

WATCH: 5 Tasty Ways to Dress Up a Cornbread Mix—Without a Recipe

Cornbread Catastrophe

While a burnt skillet full of cornbread is a true tragedy, you can swiftly recover with the right emergency supplies. While we know some consider it a Southern sin against cooking, during the holidays, it doesn’t hurt to have a box of cornbread mix ready to deploy in crisis. Plus, you can easily add personal flair whether it’s greasing your cast iron skillet with lard or adding chopped jalapenos. We like Zatarain's Cornbread Mix because you add melted butter instead of vegetable oil.