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Easter Egg Bread

I've made this Easter treat for 20 years! Colored hard-cooked eggs baked in the dough give this sweet bread such a festive look. Leave them out and it can be enjoyed anytime of year. My husband especially enjoys this bread with baked ham. —Heather Durante, Wellsburg, West Virginia
  • Total Time
    Prep: 55 min. + rising Bake: 25 min. + cooling
  • Makes
    1 loaf (16 slices)


  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 packages (1/4 ounce each) active dry yeast
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons ground cardamom
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 6 to 6-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1-1/2 cups whole milk
  • 6 tablespoons butter, cubed
  • 4 large eggs, room temperature, divided use
  • 3 to 6 hard-boiled large eggs, unpeeled
  • Assorted food coloring
  • Canola oil
  • 2 tablespoons water


  • In a large bowl, mix sugar, yeast, cardamom, salt and 2 cups flour. In a small saucepan, heat milk and butter to 120°-130°. Add to dry ingredients; beat on medium speed 2 minutes. Add 3 eggs; beat on high 2 minutes. Stir in enough remaining flour to form a soft dough (dough will be sticky).
  • Turn dough onto a floured surface; knead until smooth and elastic, 6-8 minutes. Place in a greased bowl, turning once to grease the top. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 45 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, dye hard-boiled eggs with food coloring following package directions. Let stand until completely dry.
  • Punch down dough. Turn onto a lightly floured surface; divide into thirds. Roll each portion into a 24-in. rope. Place ropes on a greased baking sheet and braid. Bring ends together to form a ring. Pinch ends to seal. Lightly coat dyed eggs with oil; arrange on braid, tucking them carefully between ropes.
  • Cover with a kitchen towel; let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 20 minutes. Preheat oven to 375°.
  • In a bowl, whisk remaining egg and water; gently brush over dough, avoiding eggs. Bake until golden brown, 25-30 minutes. Remove from pan to a wire rack to cool. Refrigerate leftovers.
Nutrition Facts
1 slice: 281 calories, 8g fat (4g saturated fat), 107mg cholesterol, 231mg sodium, 44g carbohydrate (8g sugars, 1g fiber), 9g protein.
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  • Alexandra
    Apr 15, 2020

    Excellent recipe! Made it last Sunday for Easter brunch and it was hit! It’s also very pretty!

  • danielleylee
    Apr 2, 2018

    I made this bread for Easter yesterday. It is absolutely gorgeous. I have rave reviews, everyone loved it. I highly recommend this recipe. We did have some leftover, I cannot wait to make french toast casserole with the leftovers.

  • Sue Zappa
    Mar 26, 2018

    If I could give this bread 10 stars, I would! I made half a recipe of the dough in my bread machine & formed it into a braid just to try it before making it for Easter. Wow! THE most delicious bread I've ever had! I know my family is going to love it. Will be making it frequently during the year. This is too good to enjoy only at Easter!

  • KristineChayes
    Mar 25, 2018

    I made this last year and it was very good, but I prefer my family recipe, which my mother made, and now me, for the past fifty years - it is more moist, plus we always colored and used raw eggs to bake encircled by the sweet yeast dough. There are many versions, very similar, and all are special Easter treats!

  • PAbdow
    Mar 25, 2018

    can I make the Easter Egg Bread Gluten free by using the Gluten Free flour 1 - 1 ?

  • Jordyce
    Mar 4, 2018

    No comment left

  • kredhead
    Sep 3, 2017

    I had to search my memory going way back to remember what exactly was that delicious and beautiful bread my Nana used to make. She called it La Luna (the moon). As a young girl I remember watching her tucking my colored Easter eggs into a sweet dough. When she passed away, alas there were no written recipes. My search began & I have learned much about this special, symbolic bread which is made by many cultures. I have made this Easter bread for a few years now, it is a connection to my past and a tradition in my family that would have been lost. I was so thrilled to find a good recipe right here on TOH. With vanilla or cardamom, it's delicious. Its not Easter without it!

  • Jellybug
    Apr 29, 2017

    I made this beautiful bread and it was a hit at our Easter dinner. Sweet and delicious!

  • lildebcupcake
    Mar 26, 2016

    We've been making this for the past five years...mine is going into the oven right now! My college-aged daughters still look forward to having this beautiful and tasty bread at Easter.

  • cindiak
    Mar 24, 2016

    Not only does this taste good, the presentation is so pretty. I find that it tastes best the same day it is made.