Bread Machine Easter Bread Recipe - slightly sweetened dough made in the bread machine and then shaped into a traditional Italian Easter Bread Recipe stuffed with dyed eggs. Let me help you take the fear out of working with yeast and show you how to use your bread machine to create a new family tradition this spring.
While Easter bread may be an Italian family tradition, I'm sure my grandmother never thought to make the dough using a bread machine.
Which is what I did for my bread machine Easter bread recipe this year. Two years ago I used frozen bread dough to make my Individual Italian Easter Bread Rings so I thought how could I make it even easier?
And that's when I thought of using my bread machine to make the dough!
Easter Bread Glaze
Some Easter breads do not have a glaze. However, I prefer a glaze on top of the bread. This glaze is flavored with almond extract but you can use vanilla extract if you prefer.
What is the Meaning of Easter Bread?
Easter bread is full of meaning. It starts with using yeast as the leavening agent to symbolize the Christ’s resurrection from the tomb.
When Easter Bread is shaped into a wreath it symbolizes the crown of thorns worn by Jesus at the crucifixion. Other breads that are shaped into a braid represent the three elements of the Holy Trinity.
Placing eggs in the center of the bread braids, represents rebirth and Christ rising from the dead.
Helpful Kitchen Tools
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- Bread Machine
- Parchment Baking Sheets
- Easter Egg Dying Kit
- Large baking tray with flat edge - this is a great type of pan to use to help you easily slide the bread off without having to lift.
Exact measurements are listed below in the recipe card. Make sure you scroll down to print and save the recipe for later!
- Warm Milk – heat the milk in the microwave in 30 second intervals until it reaches 100 to 105 degrees.
- Oil – I used vegetable oil.
- Egg and egg whites – this keeps the dough from getting dense.
- Sugar – this is a slightly sweet dough recipe.
- Salt – for flavor.
- Yeast – no need to worry about proofing yeast for this recipe!
- Hard boiled eggs - you'll need at least 4 or 5 hard boiled eggs depending on how long the loaf of bread is. I used 4 eggs for my loaf, but probably could have fit an extra egg in at the bottom. I do not bake the bread with the eggs like a traditional Easter bread recipe. If you do that, you'll need to use raw colored eggs.
For the Glaze:
- Powdered Sugar
- Almond Extract - if you don't like the flavor of almond extract, you can substitute vanilla extract.
Baking Tip: Remember the bread does not bake in the bread machine. We're only using the dough setting.
Step 1: Prepare the Dough in the Bread Machine
When preparing dough in a bread machine it's very important to add the ingredients exactly as listed in the recipe. Check the instructions for your bread machine. You do not need to proof the yeast either.
Add the warm milk, oil, beaten egg and egg whites along with the sugar to the bottom of the bread machine. Next add the flour, salt and then the yeast. Turn the bread machine on to the dough setting, press start and go do something else. It's that easy!
Step 2: Remove the Dough from the Bread Machine
Your bread machine should beep when the dough is finished.
Remove the dough from the bread machine onto a lightly floured surface. Knead the dough just a few times to get it into the shape of a large round ball. It's so beautiful and easy to work with!
Step 3: How to Form the Easter Braid
Divide the dough into three pieces. Then form each piece into a long ropes and start braiding them. Make sure you tuck both ends under when the braid is done.
Step 4: Allow the Bread to Rise
Now, this is my personal tip for making any Easter bread recipe. In the years past I always hated how the egg dye would bleed while the bread baked.
So a few years ago I started using “temporary eggs” or aluminum foil to place in the bread while the dough rises. Cover the dough with a clean dish cloth and allow it to rise for another hour or until it's doubled in size.
Step 5: Dye the Easter Eggs
While the bread is rising, dye the hard boiled eggs. I used a traditional box of egg dye, but you can dye your eggs naturally if you prefer.
Step 6: Brush the Bread with an Egg Wash
After the dough has doubled in size, brush the loaf with an egg wash of one beaten egg and 2 teaspoons water.
Step 7: Baking Instructions
Bake in a preheated 350°F degree oven for 25 to 30 minutes or until golden brown.
Step 8: Add the Easter Eggs
Gently remove the aluminum foil from the baked loaf of bread and gently add the dyed eggs into the spaces where the aluminum foil was.
Step 9: Prepare the Glaze
Combine the ingredients for the glaze together in a small bowl. Drizzle the glaze on top of the baked bread trying not to get it on the eggs.
Step 10: Add the Sprinkles
Since the glaze dries quickly, add the sprinkles pretty quickly.
Place the bread on a platter and decorate it if you want. It's a tradition in our family to have the bread on display. I'll set the kitchen table and use the bread as my centerpiece for our Easter Sunday brunch after church.
Tried this recipe? Let me know in the comments and don't forget to rate it!
FREQUENTLY ASKED RECIPE QUESTIONS
Yes, you can use regular all-purpose flour in the bread machine.
Most bread machines dough cycle is 40 minutes to 1 hour.
Ready for more great recipes? Try these other Easter Family Favorites:
- Italian Easter Bread – A Family Tradition – this is the recipe I’ve made for years.
- Easter Bread Recipes – a great collection of different recipes for all the different cultures.
- Individual Italian Easter Bread Rings – if the though of baking with yeast scares you, try this non-traditional recipe that uses frozen bread dough. It also helps speed up the process too.
For the Dough:
- 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons warm milk
- 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 1 egg and 2 egg whites
- ½ cup sugar
- 4 cups flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 3 teaspoons yeast
For the Easter Bread Glaze:
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 2 tablespoons milk
- ½ teaspoon almond extract
- Easter sprinkles
For the Egg Wash
- 1 egg
- 2 teaspoons water
- Place all the ingredients for the dough inside the bread machine in the order they are listed.
- Turn the bread machine on to the dough only cycle.
- After the cycle is completed, remove the dough and place on a lightly floured surface.
- Knead the dough just a few times to get it into the shape of a large round ball.
- Divide the dough into three pieces. Then form each piece into a long ropes and start braiding them. Make sure you tuck both ends under when the braid is done.
- Place“temporary eggs” or aluminum foil to place in the bread rings while the dough rises. Cover the dough with a clean dish cloth and allow it to rise for another hour or until it’s doubled in size.
- While the bread is rising, dye the hard boiled eggs. I used a traditional box of egg dye, but you can dye your eggs naturally if you prefer. Set aside to dry completely while the bread bakes.
- After the dough has doubled in size, brush the loaf with an egg wash of one beaten egg and 2 teaspoons water.
- Bake in a preheated 350°F degree oven for 25 to 30 minutes or until golden brown.
- Gently remove the aluminum foil from the baked loaf of bread and gently add the dyed eggs into the spaces where the aluminum foil was.
- Combine the ingredients for the glaze together in a small bowl. Drizzle the glaze on top of the baked bread trying not to get it on the eggs.
- Add the sprinkles on top of the glaze.
If you don't like the flavor of almond extract, you can substitute vanilla extract.
The glaze dries quickly, so be quick when adding the sprinkles.
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Amount Per Serving: Calories: 204Total Fat: 4gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 3gCholesterol: 24mgSodium: 151mgCarbohydrates: 38gFiber: 1gSugar: 13gProtein: 5g
The nutrition information is calculated automatically. I cannot guarantee its accuracy. If this data is important to you, please verify with your trusted nutrition calculator.