This is our go-to easy Brioche Bread recipe. Learn how to make this traditional braided sweet bread then use it to make the best Brioche French Toast!

Loaf of Brioche bread on kitchen towel

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We love home-baked sweet bread recipes, from Pumpkin Bread to Soda Bread. If you are a fan of homemade bread, this Brioche loaf is a must-try!

What is Brioche Bread?

Brioche is a lightly sweet yeast bread enriched with eggs and butter which give it a tender crumb. Brioche bread originated in France.

A braided Brioche is as beautiful as it is delicious. It is our favorite for holidays like Easter Sunday along with other traditional Easter favorites like our Apricot Sweet Cheese Bread, Carrot Cake, and Hot Cross Buns.

Sliced center of soft brioche bread

Ingredients for Brioche

The key to making great brioche is to use room temperature ingredients. They incorporate better into the dough and will give the yeast a jump start.

  • Milk – 1%, 2% or whole milk
  • Yeast – active dry yeast (use platinum yeast for best rise)
  • 3 eggs – large, room temperature
  • Granulated sugar – use 1/2 cup for lightly sweet bread (use 1/4 cup for savory bread).
  • Unsalted butter – should be melted and cooled (not hot)
  • Salt – we use fine sea salt
  • Flour – all-purpose, or bread flour will work.
Ingredients for making yeast bread

Tips for Working with Yeast:

  • Yeast temperature – start with yeast that is at room temperature. If you keep yeast refrigerated, set it out for a bit before using. Platinum yeast offers the best rise. For 1 Tbsp yeast, you’ll need about 1 1/3 packets or 9 grams of active dry yeast.
  • Milk temperature – warm your milk to the ideal yeast proofing temperature of 100-115˚F on a thermometer. Don’t make it hotter or you will deactivate the yeast.
  • Dough not rising? Your room is probably too cold. Place the dough in a warm place to rise (100-110˚F). Preheat your oven to the lowest setting for 2 minutes then turn off and set your dough bowl over a towel in the warm oven and proof until doubled in volume (don’t forget to remove the towel). Also, try the microwave method we shared in our Easy Cinnamon Rolls Recipe.
  • Proof the yeast – be sure your yeast is bubbly and forms a foamy layer (takes about 10 minutes). If it does not proof or bubble up, do not proceed. You’ll need to get new un-expired yeast and start again.
Proofing yeast in a measuring cup

How to Make Brioche Bread

  1. In a large bowl, whisk together eggs, melted butter, and remaining sugar. Stir in the proofed yeast mixture.
  2. Add flour 1 cup at a time, stirring with each addition. Add last 1/2 cup of flour 1 Tablespoon at a time until dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl and isn’t sticking to clean fingertips.
  3. Knead (by hand or in a mixer with a dough hook) for 8-10 minutes then cover with plastic wrap and proof in a warm place until doubled in size (1 1/2 to 2 hours).
How to make dough for brioche step by step photos

How to Braid Bread (4 Strands)

This process is easy and if you’ve never made braided bread before, you will feel accomplished when you’re done. We found that 4 strands make a beautiful (and uncomplicated) braided bread.

  1. Cut dough into 4 equal pieces.
  2. Roll pieces into 18 to 20″ lengths and arrange vertically spaced out a few inches.
  3. Pinch the strips together at the top to seal. Cross the far right strip over its neighbor.
  4. Tuck the far left strip under its neighbor and over the next strip.
  5. Repeat until fully braided then pinch the ends together to keep them from unraveling.
Process for braiding bread with 4 strands

Pro Tip: Allow bread to cool completely on a wire rack before slicing into it to complete the cooking process. Otherwise, it will release steam and the crumb can become gummy and dense.

Braided Brioche Bread cooling on wire rack

Common Questions:

What is the difference between Brioche and Challah?

Challah bread is made with water instead of milk and oil instead of butter following dietary kosher laws. Brioche is made with milk and butter which form a rich and tender crumb.

Can I substitute milk?

Milk can be substituted with water if you are looking for a dairy free milk and butter can be substituted for oil.

Can I Make this in a loaf pan?

This recipe makes 1 large loaf, but can be divided in half and placed into 2 bread loaf pans.

How do I know when enough flour is added?

First, be sure to measure flour correctly. Add the last 1/2 cup of flour a little at a time until the dough is no longer sticking to the sides of the mixing bowl (if using a stand mixer, it will stick to the bottom of the bowl as it kneads on speed 2). It won’t stick to clean, dry fingertips.

What to do with Brioche Bread?

Brioche is great for sweet and savory meals. We love brioche buns for our famous burgers, but it’s also great for:

Soft center of brioche piece

How to Store Bread

  • Storing: Once the bread has cooled to room temperature, store covered in plastic wrap at room temperature for 3 to 4 days.
  • Freezing: Allow loaf to come to room temperature then cover in several layers of plastic wrap and freeze for 1 to 3 months. Freezing fresh bread the day it is baked will give you the best taste and texture when thawed.
  • Thawing: Thaw bread covered in the refrigerator overnight or at room temperature for 2-3 hours.
  • To Reheat: Place loaf uncovered in a 350˚F oven for 10 minutes, or heat individual slices in the toaster.
Baked and cooled loaf ready for storing

More Bread Recipes

There’s nothing that compares to the sweet aroma of home-baked bread wafting through your house. If you love this classic Brioche bread, then you won’t want to miss these popular recipes:

Classic Brioche Bread Recipe

4.99 from 51 votes
Author: Natasha Kravchuk
Brioche bread loaf on towel
Brioche is a lightly sweet yeast bread enriched with eggs and butter which give the bread a tender crumb. It’s wonderful for French Toast.
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Rising Time: 3 hours
Total Time: 3 hours 55 minutes

Ingredients 

Servings: 14 people (makes 1 large loaf)

For the Brioche Bread:

  • 3/4 cup warm milk, 1%, 2% or whole milk
  • 1 Tbsp active dry yeast, (platinum works best)
  • 3 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar, divided
  • 4 Tbsp unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled (plus more to grease pan and bowl)
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 4 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, measured correctly

For the Egg Wash:

  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp water
  • 1 tsp poppy seeds, optional

Instructions

Make the Brioche Dough:

  • In a measuring cup, stir together 3/4 cup warm milk (105-110˚F on a thermometer) with 1 tsp sugar. Stir in 1 Tbsp yeast and let it rest 10 minutes to proof the yeast (a foamy layer will form at the top to indicate yeast is active).
  • In a separate mixing bowl or the bowl of your stand mixer, combine 3 eggs, 4 Tbsp melted and cooled butter, 1/2 cup sugar and 1 tsp salt. Whisk together until blended then stir in proofed yeast mixture.
  • Using the dough hook attachment on speed 2, or a wooden spoon, add flour 1 cup at a time, allowing it to incorporate with each addition. Add the last 1/2 cup of flour 1 Tablespoon at a time until the dough is no longer sticking to the sides of the mixing bowl and does not stick to clean, dry fingertips. Continue to knead by hand or in a stand mixer for 8 -10 minutes.
  • Transfer dough to a large buttered bowl and turn to coat in butter. Cover with plastic wrap and let proof in a warm place (100-110˚F) for 1 1/2 to 2 hours or until doubled in volume.

Braid and Form Bread:

  • Turn dough out onto a clean surface and divide the dough into 4 equal pieces. Roll each piece into 18 to 20” lengths and arrange them side by side vertically. Pinch the 4 pieces together at the top.
  • To braid the Brioche: Cross the far right strip over its neighbor. Tuck the far left strip under its neighbor and over the next strip. Repeat this process until you finish the braid then pinch together the other end to seal and keep it from unraveling.
  • Butter a large baking sheet and place the braided bread on your buttered pan. Cover loosely with a kitchen towel and let rise in a warm place for 30 minutes or at room temperature for 1 hour, until visibly puffed.

Egg Wash and Bake:

  • In a separate dish, beat together 1 egg and 1 tsp water. Once the braid has puffed up, brush with egg wash and sprinkle on poppy seeds if using.
  • Bake in the center of a preheated oven at 375˚F for 25-28 minutes tor until top is golden brown. Cool to room temperature before slicing.

Nutrition Per Serving

231kcal Calories39g Carbs7g Protein5g Fat3g Saturated Fat1g Trans Fat56mg Cholesterol192mg Sodium89mg Potassium1g Fiber8g Sugar181IU Vitamin A1mg Vitamin C33mg Calcium2mg Iron
Nutrition Facts
Classic Brioche Bread Recipe
Amount per Serving
Calories
231
% Daily Value*
Fat
 
5
g
8
%
Saturated Fat
 
3
g
19
%
Trans Fat
 
1
g
Cholesterol
 
56
mg
19
%
Sodium
 
192
mg
8
%
Potassium
 
89
mg
3
%
Carbohydrates
 
39
g
13
%
Fiber
 
1
g
4
%
Sugar
 
8
g
9
%
Protein
 
7
g
14
%
Vitamin A
 
181
IU
4
%
Vitamin C
 
1
mg
1
%
Calcium
 
33
mg
3
%
Iron
 
2
mg
11
%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Course: Bread
Cuisine: French
Keyword: brioche, brioche bread recipe
Skill Level: Easy
Cost to Make: $
Calories: 231
Natasha's Kitchen Cookbook

Natasha Kravchuk

Welcome to my kitchen! I am Natasha, the creator behind Natasha's Kitchen (established in 2009), and I share family-friendly, authentic recipes. I am a New York Times Best-Selling cookbook author and a trusted video personality in the culinary world. My husband, Vadim, and I run this blog together, ensuring every recipe we share is thoroughly tested and approved. Our mission is to provide you with delicious, reliable recipes you can count on. Thanks for stopping by! I am so happy you are here.

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Recipe Rating




Comments

  • Irina
    April 11, 2024

    I love this recipe. Followed the recipe and everything turned out beautifully.

    Reply

  • MH
    February 23, 2024

    I cannot decide whether to make this brioche bread or the Portuguese bread. Could you help me decide. What’s the difference between them?

    Reply

    • Natashas Kitchen
      February 23, 2024

      Hi MH, I’m happy to help, both of these recipes are delicious choices, but they have distinct characteristics that may help you decide. The Portuguese bread is a little more rustic giving it a hearty texture that’s slight sweet with raisins, while the Brioche bread is French inspired with butter, eggs and milk resulting in a rich and tender texture. I would say it depends on your your preference and what you’re in the mood for. I would consider the occasion you are making this for and what you’re serving it with if anything.

      Reply

  • Pamela
    November 30, 2023

    Made it just now. All good except not fluffy. Could I add more butter and/or less flour?
    Or it is in the kneading? I used a standup mixer with dough hook. Had fun making it, Natasha! Thanks again!

    Reply

    • Natashas Kitchen
      December 1, 2023

      Hi Pamela, Be sure to measure by fluffing the flour first with a spoon then spoon it into a dry ingredient measuring cup and scrape off the top. If you push your measuring cup into a flour bin, you will get up to 25% too much flour. Also, do not tap the flour down in the measuring cup. I also have this pro tip in my recipe, I hope it helps: Allow bread to cool completely on a wire rack before slicing into it to complete the cooking process. Otherwise, it will release steam and the crumb can become gummy and dense.

      Reply

      • Pamela
        December 14, 2023

        Thanks for the tipbits! I think I could have let the second rise after braiding a bit longer and sliced it after it has been completely cooled. I will redo it soon and let you know the result!

        Reply

  • Lucy
    November 30, 2023

    This i Lucy again. Do you think less flour would make it fluffy?

    Reply

    • NatashasKitchen.com
      November 30, 2023

      I have not tested it with less flour.

      Reply

  • Lucy
    November 30, 2023

    I made this last night. Came out nice,looks just like the picture but it was not fluffy.

    Reply

    • Natashas Kitchen
      November 30, 2023

      I’m so glad you enjoyed it, Lucy! I hope you give it another try soon!

      Reply

      • Suki Genova
        April 8, 2024

        I just made this awesome brioche recipe! So fun to make and the rise in the dough was unbelievable….I made into two loves, though. This recipe is going into the rotation for sure!!!!

        Reply

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