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Challah Recipe

Challah Recipe

Eggs lend to the richness of this traditional braided bread. 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. + cooling YIELD:32 servings


  • 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 eggs
  • 6 to 6-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon cold water
  • 1 tablespoon sesame or poppy seeds, optional


  • 1. 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, about 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.
  • 2. 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.
  • 3. 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.
  • 4. Beat egg and cold water; brush over braids. Sprinkle with sesame or poppy seeds if desired. Bake at 350° for 30-35 minutes or until golden brown. Remove to wire racks to cool. Yield: 2 loaves (16 slices each).

Nutritional Facts

1 slice: 137 calories, 5g fat (1g saturated fat), 33mg cholesterol, 232mg sodium, 20g carbohydrate (3g sugars, 1g fiber), 4g protein.

Reviews for Challah

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Selena User ID: 9119539 263926
Reviewed 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 User ID: 548619 258419
Reviewed 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 User ID: 1238615 238784
Reviewed Dec. 5, 2015 Edited Jul. 6, 2016

"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 User ID: 8215683 221464
Reviewed Feb. 27, 2015 Edited Mar. 8, 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 User ID: 7401715 96096
Reviewed Nov. 5, 2013

"This is nice and tasty."

wasoongu User ID: 1077273 204635
Reviewed Mar. 31, 2013

"Classic flavor. Traditionally, the challah should have 12 braided sections, one for each tribe of Israel."

Sampsod User ID: 7124871 83019
Reviewed Feb. 9, 2013

"great recipe would make it again"

yides User ID: 4557887 41387
Reviewed Apr. 26, 2012

"This is our very own Jewish traditional challah which we eat at the shabbat dinner and shabbat lunch meals. It's delicious and has a very spiritual meaning. I haven't tried this recipe yet but i might still in the future..."

Viviant73 User ID: 2213487 83018
Reviewed Oct. 10, 2011

"I saw this recipe in my TOH baking Book and decided to try it. My son loved it so much I only had one slice. He used it for sandwiches, soups and just eating while watching TV. I guess this will become a staple in my house. Love the recipe."

peddicorse User ID: 3923383 90454
Reviewed Dec. 1, 2010

"Does anyone know if you can do this with whole wheat flour? Would you use the same amount as regular flour?"

kelgram1 User ID: 4807161 204634
Reviewed Nov. 24, 2010

"I make this recipe all the time. Due to dietary restrictions, I omit the salt, and it is still wonderful! No one has ever guessed that it is made w/o salt."

Mary_1959 User ID: 549472 130035
Reviewed Jan. 25, 2010

"Absolutely wonderful--and fun!"

danhclark User ID: 1924926 39650
Reviewed Dec. 15, 2008

"Great! Have to try it!"

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