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Eggs lend to the richness of this traditional challah bread recipe. The attractive golden color and delicious flavor make it hard to resist. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen
  • Total Time
    Prep: 30 min. + rising Bake: 30 min.
  • Makes
    2 loaves (16 slices each)


  • 2 packages (1/4 ounce each) active dry yeast
  • 1 cup warm water (110° to 115°)
  • 1/2 cup canola oil
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 4 large eggs, room temperature
  • 6 to 6-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon cold water
  • 1 tablespoon sesame or poppy seeds, optional


  • In a large bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water. Add the oil, sugar, salt, eggs and 4 cups flour. Beat until smooth. Stir in enough remaining flour to form a firm dough. Turn onto a floured surface; knead until smooth and elastic, 6-8 minutes. Place in a greased bowl, turning once to grease top. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1 hour.
  • Punch dough down. Turn onto a lightly floured surface; divide in half. Divide each portion into thirds. Shape each piece into a 15-in. rope.
  • Place three ropes on a greased baking sheet and braid; pinch ends to seal and tuck under. Repeat with remaining dough. Cover and let rise until doubled, about 1 hour.
  • Preheat oven to 350°. Beat egg and cold water; brush over braids. Sprinkle with sesame or poppy seeds if desired. Bake until golden brown, 30-40 minutes. Remove to wire racks to cool.
Nutrition Facts
1 slice: 139 calories, 5g fat (1g saturated fat), 29mg cholesterol, 233mg sodium, 20g carbohydrate (2g sugars, 1g fiber), 4g protein.
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Average Rating:
  • Gigi
    Jun 15, 2020

    This is such an amazing recipe, I love it! It is super easy and delicious!!

  • Jess
    Apr 30, 2020

    I’ve never made bread before. I’m not a novice to baking, just to baking bread (use of yeast) and it turned out perfect! But like Robin said below, check on that time, I had 5 minutes left of the 30 minimum in this recipe and the bottom started to burn. Also, I used a non stick pan so that probably is the reason. Good recipe!

  • Jenny
    Apr 25, 2020

    Absolutely horrible I make different types of breads all the time I followed the recipe exactly and it seemed a bit off to how I normally make bread but I went along with it, I let it rise in a warm place for an hour and a half and hardly anything happened, when I baked it it hardly browned and was super dense definitely don’t waste your time

  • Robin
    Mar 28, 2020

    Oh my! Love it! First time with this recipe and it turned out perfect. Taste is right on, but watch as you bake. Different ovens, different times I suspect. Mine runs a tad hot so next time I will turn it down a notch I think.

  • danielleylee
    Apr 23, 2019

    This bread turns out gorgeous and delicious. It makes the house smell so good. I made it for Easter this year and told my dad I made two loaves one for the dinner and one just for him. I will definitely be making it again

  • Selena
    Mar 26, 2017

    I desperately wanted to love this. I have 5 kids who eat 2 loaves of challah in 3.8 seconds every Shabbat so I've been looking for a recipe to make 4 loaves so my husband and I can actually have a little. Plus, it's quite a pain to take 5 kids in car seats out for challah every Friday morning.I made it exactly as directed, no substitutions or additions or two separate batches (to yield 4 loaves), oiled bowl, flip, rose in the room with our fireplace, made ropes, braided, rose again, egg wash, bake... 30 minutes.... over cooked, second loaf: 25 minutes.... over cooked. Third loaf: 18 minutes, still a bit over cooked but close... final loaf, 12 minutes, just right, but still too dense a loaf, and NONE of them were sweet enough to be traditional challah.Waste of time, waste of ingredients, just.... what a waste. I could not be more disappointed. Guess I'm onto another recipe.Note: I cook most of our meals FROM SCRATCH and bake almost daily. I'm not inexperienced. This recipe is a major let down.

  • LegalSec
    Dec 21, 2016

    I make this every year during the Hanukkah holiday for my Jewish friend. Him and his family rave that it is the best Challah bread ever! Will be making another loaf for our Christmas dinner. It is absolutely beautiful before and after baking.

  • SanditheCat
    Dec 5, 2015

    We loved this recipe. My braiding wasn't as pretty as their picture, but practice makes perfect, and I plan to make this again.Update: I have now made this many times and my braiding now looks as good as the picture. I've made it with the poppy seeds, with the sesame seeds, but my family loves it best without either.

  • Shafiun
    Feb 27, 2015

    I have baked this bread following the same procedure , but i kept only about 30 minutes after shaping the bread instead of 1 hour. This was done for my over excitement. I think i should not, even then it was good and tasty. This is my first try. Thanks.

  • testuser120
    Nov 5, 2013

    This is nice and tasty.