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Braided Easter Bread

Yields4 ServingsPrep Time2 hrs 30 minsCook Time20 minsTotal Time2 hrs 50 mins

With Easter coming up, you'll want to have a festive meal. This rainbow braided Easter bread embedded with a dyed egg will be more then enough to celebrate.

Braided Easter Bread

 1 ¼ cups whole milk, warmed to about 95 degrees F.
  cup Colavita Extra Virgin Olive Oil
 Pinch of salt
 1 ½ tsp yeast
 2 eggs (at room temperature) beaten
 ½ cup sugar
 1 tbsp orange zest (from 1 large orange)
 4 ½ cups all-purpose flour (start with 4 cups and add as needed to make a soft, but not wet, dough)
 1 egg beaten with 1 tbsp water
 Dyed eggs
 Sprinkles (optional)

In a large mixer bowl combine the yeast, salt, eggs and sugar. Add the warm milk and olive oil and mix together.


Add 4 cups of the flour and mix with a dough hook (or by hand); adding small amounts of flour until you have a soft, slightly sticky dough. (You may not need all of it, or you may need a bit more, just add it until the dough is not “wet” anymore.)


Knead until smooth with either the dough hook or turn out onto a floured board and knead, keeping your hands coated in flour. Place in a lightly oiled bowl, cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled in size, about an hour to an hour and a half.


Once the dough has risen, punch it down and turn it onto a floured surface. Divide the dough into 16 even pieces.


Roll each piece to form about a ¾ inch rope 12 inches long, then taking two pieces, twist to form a braid, pinching the ends together. Loop into a circle, pinching the ends to close.


Place each braid on a cookie sheet lined with parchment (you will need two cookie sheets). Cover and let rise again; about another hour. (Can be prepared a day ahead to this point and kept, covered, in the refrigerator; remove an hour before cooking).


Prepare the oven to 350 degrees F (325 degrees if convection). Place the oven racks in the upper and lower third of the oven.


Brush each braid with the egg wash; sprinkle with sprinkles (if using) and nestle a colored egg in the center of the ring. Bake for 15 – 20 minutes or until golden brown, switching the cookie sheets halfway thought the baking time (not necessary if using convection).


Enjoy the bread with your egg; if soft-boiled, set the egg upright in the “hole” and with a sharp knife remove the top. Now you can scoop and dip the bread. If hard cooked, you can simply peel and enjoy or cut in half.

Nutrition Facts

Servings 4