Best Brioche Bread Recipe – How To Make Brioche Bread


If you like butter, you’ll live for this brioche bread. This recipe produces two loaves, each containing a whole stick of butter, so you can imagine how rich each chewy bite will be.

Brioche is a leavened dough that falls firmly into the enriched dough camp. Unlike simple lean doughs (think French bread or pita bread) which only need flour, yeast, water and salt, enriched dough also contains sugar, butter or oil, eggs and milk or cream. The added fat changes the behavior of the dough at each stage and results in a tender bite and a chewy crust.

What type of flour should I use? We opted for AP flour for this brioche recipe, but you can use bread flour or substitute half the flour for white whole wheat flour. The key thing to remember is that the texture of the brioche will change depending on the type of flour you use. Flour with a higher protein content will form more gluten, resulting in fluffier brioche bread. AP flour contains 11-12% protein, bread flour contains 12-13% protein, and whole wheat white flour contains 13-14% protein.

What type of yeast should I use? Active dry or instant yeast will both work in this case; because we bloom the yeast in the sponge portion of the dough, the type of dry yeast you use has no impact on the final product. The yeast needs to be alive to be effective, but you can get a packet full of dead yeast once in a while. To avoid starting your dough with dead yeast, pay close attention to the sponge cake to make sure it produces air pockets before proceeding. If the dough is flat and free of bubbles, start again with a new packet of yeast.

Can I make this dough by hand? Technically, yes, but the stand mixer will truly make your life 100 times easier for this recipe. Due to the large amount of mixing required to properly develop the gluten and the slow, gradual addition of butter, doing it by hand will result in a very long and arduous process. If you don’t have a stand mixer, but absolutely must have fresh brioche, try working with half a batch to get 1 loaf. Your arms will thank you!

This dough looks very wet and sticky! It’s a very soft dough! Enriched with lots of eggs and butter for that incredibly delicate crumb and greasy goodness, the dough will be quite sticky at first. This recipe uses large eggs measuring about 54 grams each. If your eggs are larger, only use 5 eggs to avoid too wet a batter! Stickiness is a characteristic of enriched dough, so trust the process and have the patience to let the gluten fully develop before adding the butter.

How do you know if the gluten has developed well? The pane test is a reliable way to check for the presence of gluten
development. To perform the test, take a small piece of dough and slowly stretch it in opposite directions: if the dough becomes thin enough to appear semi-transparent (like glass in a dirty window) before tearing, you’re there! You will have some desirable extra chewiness in the bread once your dough reaches this stage. The surface of the dough should be shiny, smooth and well moisturized. If your dough is having trouble coming away from the sides of the mixer, chances are you need to increase the speed of the mixer. Stay close to the blender! You may need to hold it in place while it dances across your countertop with vigorous shaking.

How should I add the butter? Slowly and with a lot of patience. The process of adding butter should take no less than 10 minutes. If you add the butter too quickly it will not “emulsify” into the batter and the result
in an oily shortcrust pastry. It still cooks quite well, but do it right, and your dough will look satisfyingly smooth, shiny, and plump. Like puff pastry, if your climate, kitchen, hands, or tools are particularly hot, the butter in the dough can separate and seep out. To combine warm temperatures, put the dough in the fridge for a few minutes when you feel it starting to get greasy.

Should I let the dough rest overnight? It’s yours! Generally, more time means more flavor when it comes to food. Besides making the dough easier to handle, letting it sit in the fridge overnight is essentially a slow fermentation that helps it develop a subtle depth of flavor. Because we already let some fermentation occur using the sponge mix, overnight proofing isn’t necessary if you’re looking to bake right away. Or, if you’re like me and love freshly baked bread, bake one loaf the same day and save the other half of the dough to bake the next day!

How do I know if my dough is too risen? Unfortunately, an end result that tastes like fermented, hoppy beer bread is the easiest way to tell if your bread dough has been left in its fermentation phase for too long. But of course, by then the bread is done and starting over is probably the last thing you want to do. Avoid scratching your hard work by paying special attention to the dough during the rising phase. Timing the dough is definitely helpful, but noting what the dough looks like is the most reliable way to tell if the dough has proven itself. Be sure to note where the dough is in the bowl before it begins to rest so you can have a clear idea of ​​where it should be when it has doubled in size. You can even mark the bowl with tape or a rubber band to track the progress of your baby dough.

Why do I need to shape with letter folding rollers? Of course you don’t have to, but I love shaping my softer loaves like this for an easy separating feature when baked: you won’t even need a knife to get a perfect slice of fluffy paradise. If you want to make rolls instead of loaves, try our Perfect Brioche Rolls recipe to get the shaping technique right.

Store leftovers in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3-4 days or in the fridge for 6-7 days. To freeze a whole loaf or slices, wrap the bun in plastic wrap and heavy-duty foil and store in a freezer bag for up to 3 months.

If you made this brioche, leave a comment below and tell us how you liked it! If you like bread, discover our sourdough bread recipe!

Editor’s note: The introduction to this recipe was updated on July 5, 2022 to include more information about the dish.

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Parker Feierbach

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