12 Best Braided Yeast Breads to Twist Your Brain Around
Ever ooh and aah at a bakery window display of breads twisted into plump braids and baked to a glossy golden brown? Ever fantasize about making them yourself? Well, forming and baking braided breads is actually easier than you might think, once you get a feel for working with the dough. Here are a dozen braided or twisted yeast bread recipes that look as amazing as they taste.
Onion Poppy Seed Ring
"This was very tasty!" says Lilcat. "I cooked the onions beforehand and this was a mistake they disintegrated. I should have followed the directions and left uncooked. Flavorful, pretty, and easy to make."
This braided challah is topped with a homemade "everything" mix of sesame seeds, poppy seeds, dried onion, dried garlic, and kosher salt.
Honey Whole Wheat Challah
The whole wheat flour in this recipe makes the loaf denser than those made with all-purpose flour or bread flour. Lori says, "This bread was easy to make and very flexible in its rising time which is nice! The only tip I have is begin braiding in the middle of the loaf and braid out to each end (I find it easier to make a good looking loaf this way!) Thanks for adding a good whole wheat bread recipe that is pretty enough to grace any dinner table!"
"Traditional egg bread for the Jewish Sabbath. You can add 1 cup raisins or golden raisins to the dough just before shaping and then make the loafs into round braids for Rosh Hashanah." —Joan Callaway
Polish Egg Bread
If you're baking for a big crowd, give this recipe a try. Rich with milk, butter, sugar, and eggs, the recipe makes six loaves of braided bread. For a glossy brown finish, brush the braided loaves with an egg wash (1 egg beaten well with 1 teaspoon cold water) before baking.
Braided Bread with Pesto
Imagine the reaction when you bring this gorgeous bread to the table. Recipe creator Jones says, "This braided bread is beautiful and full of flavor. I've made it with several different fillings. It is crispy and flaky on the outside and filled with pesto on the inside."
A rich and eggy yeast dough is spread with a buttery, sugary cinnamon and walnut mixture, then rolled into logs, slashed open to reveal the filling, and braided together before baking. John Styles says, "Made this today and it turned out great. Twisting them was a bit of a challenge as the filling was a little wet and seemed to overload the dough. Cooking erased my worries, though. I made the cinnamon raisin ones and drizzled icing on them."
Hungarian Braided White Bread
A very simple egg-enriched yeast bread dough is divided into four ropes and braided to form an elegant loaf. Brush with egg wash and sprinkle with poppy seeds before baking.
"This is a fantastic way to use a bumper crop of squash! Taste and texture very similar to Hawaiian Bread. Love it!" —Meredith
Braided Easter Egg Bread
"This decorative Easter bread has whole eggs baked into it!" says recipe creator Marbalet. "Do not cook the whole eggs, as they will bake at the same time that the bread does. The eggs can also be dyed for extra color."
Nutella Brioche Star Recipe
Flavored with cardamom, this egg-enriched braided yeast bread can be topped with egg wash and sugar or a simple confectioners' sugar glaze. Stacy Baldridge says, "This reminded me of my wonderful semester abroad in Rovaniemi, Finland. When I opened up that jar of cardamom, it brought back so many good memories :) Best served warm with coffee, like the Finns do!"