Save on Pinterest

Sweet Braided Loaves

“This recipe was handed down from my grandmother. I make it for my family every year for Easter morning.” —Diane Turner, Brunswick, Ohio
  • Total Time
    Prep: 45 min. + rising Bake: 25 min. + cooling
  • Makes
    2 loaves (12 slices each)


  • 1 package (1/4 ounce) active dry yeast
  • 1/4 cup warm water (110° to 115°)
  • 1 cup warm 2% milk (110° to 115°)
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 5-1/2 to 6 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup golden raisins
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 2 tablespoons sliced almonds


  • In a large bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water. Add the milk, sugar, butter, eggs, salt and 3 cups flour; beat until smooth. Stir in enough remaining flour to form a soft dough. Stir in raisins.
  • Turn onto a floured surface; knead until smooth and elastic, about 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 1 hour.
  • Punch dough down. Turn onto a lightly floured surface; divide dough into six portions. Shape each into a 12-in. rope. Place three ropes on a greased baking sheet and braid; pinch ends to seal and tuck under. Repeat with remaining ropes. Cover and let rise until doubled, about 45 minutes.
  • Brush with egg; sprinkle with almonds. Bake at 350° for 25-30 minutes or until golden brown. Cool on wire racks.
Nutrition Facts
1 slice: 194 calories, 6g fat (3g saturated fat), 46mg cholesterol, 93mg sodium, 32g carbohydrate (9g sugars, 1g fiber), 5g protein. Diabetic Exchanges: 2 starch, 1/2 fat.
Every editorial product is independently selected, though we may be compensated or receive an affiliate commission if you buy something through our links.

Recommended Video


Click stars to rate
Average Rating:
  • seasons4
    Dec 13, 2020

    I have made this recipe for many years and serve it on Christmas morning. My family loves it! I make the dough in the bread machine and it turns out perfect. This year, I used dried currants instead of raisins. The loaves freeze well, making it easy to pull out & serve on Christmas morning.

  • shawnba
    Mar 30, 2018

    I have made this several times since I found the recipe. It has become my go to yeast bread for just about everything. I do use half bread flour, and half AP flour, but otherwise no adjustments. Happy baking!!3/29/18 response to CamillaB: bread flour creates a sturdier structure than AP flour. It’s a little more dense and slightly more chewy than what you get when you use all AP flour. I also think that the tighter structure helps it hold its moisture longer. I find that mixing the flours gives me the best of both worlds. A roll that is tender and holds it’s moisture

  • CamilaB
    Mar 9, 2016

    I've made this bread twice. The first time exactly as described (not the almonds/raisins, just plain bread), and I found it lacking flavor (sugar and salt), it was not exceptional at all. However, it is a great, amazing texture. Today I decided to try it again with some changes: used SALTED butter, 3/4 cup sugar, and a "very good" 1/2 tsp salt (regular salt). Then I had the best bread. Now it is 5 stars! I get three big braided breads, Both times I brushed sugar/cinnamon water on top of them. Baking time is accurate. Another good suggestion, if you want to try: use the water and/or milk with a hint of cinnamon (stick or powder, I boiled water with cinnamon stick and let it cool down to reach the right temperature to dissolve yeast). I have seen recipes suggesting cardamom, but I have not tested this flavor yet, I find it too intense. If someone tested with it, I would love to hear from you!I would like to know from user Shawnba: I felt very tempted today to use 1/2 & 1/2 AP and Bread flour, but would like to know from you first - what difference did you see in the texture? I appreciate your attention! Thank you!

  • ashandjan
    Aug 29, 2013

    No comment left

  • royalviking
    Mar 8, 2011

    Every 3 weeks, I make something for the "Muffins and More" snack program at our oldest daughter's school. I decided this would be a fun recipe to try, but nuts are not allowed for allergy reasons. Instead, I added a bit of cinnamon to the dough and then sprinkled a liberal coating of cinnamon-sugar on after the egg wash. It was fantastic! This is a versatile recipe to suit tastes and I look forward to making it as written for just our family. Fruit would be a nice addition to this as well for another idea. Such a pretty and tasty treat that is impressive to look at and taste.

  • norwichcity
    Jan 20, 2011

    oh so good, added more almonds to top,love it

  • mjmolinari
    May 14, 2010

    I left out the raisins, added some anise oil. the family all loved it!

  • bettyric1993
    Apr 28, 2009

    No comment left

  • binitha
    Mar 20, 2009

    No comment left

  • rougeux
    Feb 19, 2009

    This lovely loaf was a hit with my family. It is slightly sweet and oh so tender!