Filed Under: Bread | How To | Savory | Videos

How to Make Challah Bread with Video

By Tessa Arias
May 29th, 2013
4.82 from 27 votes
4.82 from 27 votes

How to Make Challah Bread with step-by-step video that's ultra rich and beautiful without being overly complicated or difficult.

Yield: 1 large loaf

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Cook: 40 minutes

ANYONE can make this beautiful perfect bread! Step-by-step video with simplified techniques. This is the best recipe!

Tessa's Recipe Rundown...

Taste: Rich, ever so slightly sweet, and perfect with dinner or as French toast in the morning.
Texture: Moist and tender yet firm.
Ease: The steps are relatively easy they just require some patience. I always thought challah was extremely difficult to make but after watching someone do it in school I realized it shouldn’t be that intimidating.
Appearance: Challah is one of the most beautiful loaves of bread and this recipe creates a fantastic but uncomplicated braid.
Pros: So much better than store-bought challah and much more satisfying (both in terms of taste and accomplishment).
Cons: Requires pretty much a whole day to make,
Would I make this again? I’ve made challah probably 5 times at home already.

I’ve made challah bread way more times than I care to admit after learning how to make it in culinary school. It’s such a gorgeous and complicated looking bread that I was never really confident enough to try it. This recipe is actually pretty easy, even if you’re not a super experienced bread baker. I wanted to make a video about challah because I feel that once you see how easy it really is your at-home challah baking will be much more successful. Be sure to save some day-old challah because it makes killer French toast.

YouTube video

*Please note: I am not Jewish so I am not claiming this is traditional or authentic challah.

4.82 from 27 votes

How to make
Challah Bread

Yield: 1 large loaf
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Inactive Time 2 hours
Total Time: 3 hours 10 minutes
How to Make Challah Bread with step-by-step video that's ultra rich and beautiful without being overly complicated or difficult.


  • 3 to 3 1/4 cups (15 to 16 1/4 ounces) all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
  • 1 envelope (2 1/4 teaspoons) instant yeast
  • 1/4 cup (1 3/4 ounces) sugar
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons salt
  • 3 large eggs, one egg separated (reserve the white for the egg wash)
  • 4 tablespoons (2 ounces) unsalted butter, melted
  • 1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon water, at room temperature


  1. In a medium bowl whisk together the flour, yeast, sugar, and salt.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook, mix together the 2 whole eggs and 1 egg yolk, melted butter, and 1/2 cup of the water until combined. Gradually add the flour mixture. Increase the speed to medium and mix until the dough comes together. Knead for about 5 minutes, or until the dough is smooth and elastic, adding up to a 1/4 cup more flour if the dough is too wet and sticky. Mix the egg white and the remaining 1 tablespoon of water and cover and refrigerate until ready to use.
  3. Shape the dough into an even ball and place in a lightly oiled ball. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise until doubled in size, about 1 1/2 to 2 hours. Gently press down on the dough to deflate it then cover with plastic and let rise until doubled again, about 40 to 60 minutes.
  4. Transfer the dough to a floured work surface. Divide the dough into 2 pieces, one about half the size of the other (the small piece should weigh about 9 ounces, the larger should weigh about 18 ounces). Divide the large piece into 3 equal portions. Roll each portion into a 16-inch long rope. Line up the ropes and pinch them together at one end. Braid the rope pieces, pinching the other end together to seal the braid. Place the braid on a parchment or silicone mat-lined baking sheet. Repeat the exact steps with the remaining 3 smaller pieces of dough. Brush egg wash onto the large braid then carefully place the smaller braid on top. Loosely drape the loaf with plastic wrap and let rise until puffy, 30 to 45 minutes.
  5. Meanwhile, adjust an oven rack to the lower-middle position and preheat to 375°F. Brush the loaf with the remaining egg wash. Bake for 30 to 40 minutes, or until the loaf is golden brown and registers an internal temperature of 190°F with an instant read thermometer. Let the loaf cool completely before slicing.

Recipe Notes

If you need to keep a kosher table substitute olive or vegetable oil for the melted butter.
From The New Best Recipe
Tessa Arias
Author: Tessa Arias

I share trusted baking recipes your friends will LOVE alongside insights into the science of sweets. I'm a professionally trained chef, cookbook author, and cookie queen. I love to write about all things sweet, carb-y, and homemade. I live in Phoenix, Arizona (hence the blog name!)

Tessa Arias

About Tessa...

I share trusted baking recipes your friends will LOVE alongside insights into the science of sweets. I'm a professionally trained chef, cookbook author, and cookie queen. I love to write about all things sweet, carb-y, and homemade. I live in Phoenix, Arizona (hence the blog name!)

Find Tessa on  

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Recipe Rating

  1. #
    Bonnie — August 3, 2017 at 9:09 am

    Hi Tessa
    I found you years ago on YouTube. I watched your videdo on how to make Challah Bread. I have been making it ever since. I love, love your videos. You also mention questions that I was wondering about. You covered the recipe wonderfully. I just made it yesterday. This morning, French Toast!
    Thanks for everything. Your doing a great job
    Peace, Bonnie

    • #
      Tessa — August 5, 2017 at 10:57 am

      Thank you so much, Bonnie! I really appreciate your kind words 🙂

  2. #
    Sara — July 6, 2017 at 11:58 am

    Thanks for sharing this amazing and easy recipe!!

    I have a question if I would like to replace butter for olive oil, could you tell me the amount?


  3. #
    Lynn — May 7, 2017 at 8:51 am

    Hi This will be my first atempt at making bread. I was wondering if i can bake the bread in a 9×5 loaf pan instead of braiding it and if so do I let it rise the second time in the pan then bake it? thank you

  4. #
    Lynn — April 28, 2017 at 2:15 pm

    This video is awsome! I will try this for sure. Thank you for taking the time to make your video, my grandson and I will have a great time making this.

    • #
      Tessa — April 30, 2017 at 11:55 am

      How fun! Enjoy the bread, and your time together 🙂

  5. #
    Debbie Heerkens — March 30, 2017 at 1:15 pm

    Tessa, I really enjoyed the video on making Challah Bread. I always wanted to make this and never had the nerve. Now I am going to attempt it. I am now on Paleo and am working to better my bread making and pastry making abilities. Every once in a while I miss having good bread and so does my family. I am only using King Arthur flour for this. I worry about pestisides and GMO’s in store brands. I will welcome your newsletters to get me fired up for those special weekend goodies. Thanks

  6. #
    Starla — December 25, 2016 at 12:31 am

    Alright, so- follow up to my comment question above. I made this last Christmas and it didn’t rise as much as it should. It was still delicious! However, I live in Seattle… In an old apartment with thin windows so my apartment is often cold. This year I started mixing at 9am. Let the ball rise for 12 hours total, braided and then let it rise for another 2 1/2 hours. Took a long time and I had to set the dough near a heater vent the whole time, but it rose much better this year! Thanks for the recipe!

  7. #
    Starla — December 23, 2016 at 6:44 pm

    Do you think the braided loan sit overnight before baking it? Sorry if already asked- so many comments! Thanks!

  8. #
    Patricia — December 22, 2016 at 2:18 pm

    Thanks so much for the video…have tried making bread several times and not good. This will be so much easier when I can use my bread hook and mixer and it all goes in at once, awesome. Happy Holiday!!

  9. #
    Donna — November 11, 2016 at 8:01 pm

    Can I use quickrise yeast?

    • #
      Tessa — November 12, 2016 at 10:26 am

      Yep! That’s the same as instant.

  10. #
    Linden — October 27, 2016 at 12:36 pm

    The two concerns for making this kosher are 1) if you use butter, does it have a kosher symbol, a hechsher, on it, and 2) use oil instead if it will be served with a meat meal.

  11. #
    Stajah — October 2, 2016 at 4:42 pm

    I made this bread today and boy is it delicious! I ate it with honey and butter and I’m trying not to devour it all right now. Thank you for sharing the recipe and for the wonderful video! 🙂

  12. #
    Layla — September 10, 2016 at 10:52 am

    Dear Tessa, I just made the Challah bread this morning. It came just as yours, even the colour. Sooo good. This bread intimidated me for a long time. I studied your video and comments for a long time and this morning was my trial. It really is easy the way you explain the recipee to us.

    It only took a long time to prepare (from 8.30 till 12.30), but in the meantime I made some 30 minutes rolls, washed clothes, and so on. The Challah is for tonight.

    Thank you one million times.

  13. #
    marisol — August 27, 2016 at 12:23 pm

    si es muy rico se parece al pan fino de colombia

  14. #
    Cyn — June 14, 2016 at 6:17 am

    I made this twice this week! I wanted to make French toast out of it but only had a little left so I will have to make a double batch next time. The teenagers LOVED it! Thank you for posting this recipie and video I absolutely loved it!

  15. #
    june — March 27, 2016 at 2:08 pm

    Made this last night eat it today for Easter very good. Thank you for sharing God Bless you.
    I will make the french toast with the rest of it.
    will let you know how it comes out.
    wish I could do something for you for sharing


  16. #
    virginia52 — March 24, 2016 at 4:13 pm

    I love this recipe!! Is the second time I have made your recipe,It was easy to understand and it was great!

  17. #
    Agy — March 2, 2016 at 11:42 am

    Hi Tessa,
    I found your recipe on reddit and decided to give it a shot. After adding half of the flour mix the dough became insanely dry and impossible to work, my mixer started making weird clicking sounds… I ended up adding 1 more egg (to be fair my eggs were more medium than large), 2 ts butter and 50ml milk, to be able to work in the rest of flour and have more normal consistency of the dough. I am not sure what happened. I am European so had a bit problems with the weights of ingredients but I used my 1/2 cup measure and stack with spoons for the rest (which should be of universal size I guess). Anyway, after that the dough rose but had visible flour lines when I was rolling it into strands for braiding. I wet my hands in water to help with that.
    In the end I baked in 190 Celcius degrees for 25 minutes and that was aprox. 2 minutes too long! Challah got slightly too burned from the top in some places.

    All in all – I am happy with the end result! Shame I can’t post a crumb shot here! It looked really nice, tasted great, nice soft middle. Next time I’ll start with 3 eggs and probably reduce the amount of flour to 2,5 cups.

    • #
      Tessa — March 2, 2016 at 12:03 pm

      I’m glad you made the recipe work for you! Thanks for letting me know how it all turned out 🙂 And I’d love to see a photo! Maybe on Instagram (tag @handletheheat or #handletheheat) or on my Facebook page:

  18. #
    Danielle — February 23, 2016 at 1:29 pm

    Bonjour Tessa 🙂

    I just watched your video on how to make Challah Bread. I have tried to make Challah Bread before and it was a disaster! My future son-in-law is Jewish and I’d love to surprise him with a delicious Challah Bread. I am French from France and make croissants and baguettes no problem, so I hope, with your recipe, to be able to add Challah Bread to my répertoire.
    Thank you so much and keep up the good baking!

  19. #
    Lina — February 7, 2016 at 6:47 pm

    I suck at baking [ seriously, even when I make brownies they come out bad 🙁 ]
    I gave this bread a shot today and I had not one drop of hope hahaha, but it actually came out pretty good. Thank you so much!! Will be looking at your other recipes also! Maybe your videos will better my baking skills 😀

    • #
      Tessa — February 8, 2016 at 9:27 am

      Awesome, Lina! Happy to hear it 🙂

  20. #
    Erin — February 4, 2016 at 9:21 pm

    This is the second time I have made your recipe and it was great again. It was easy to understand and my daughter had a ball helping.

    • #
      Tessa — February 6, 2016 at 8:19 pm

      Love to hear that!!

  21. #
    Debbie Smith — January 6, 2016 at 6:36 pm

    Looks perfect going to try this.ty.

  22. #
    Kaila — December 19, 2015 at 9:01 pm

    Oh and also it had only been in the oven for 20 minutes? What’s wrong?

  23. #
    Kaila — December 19, 2015 at 8:59 pm

    I love this recipe so much but I just had a quick question. While I was in my kitchen and the challah was baking I smelled something burning. And sure enough the bottoms were completely black! I even only had it on the middle rack. Is there anything I might be doing wrong?

  24. #
    Marci — November 25, 2015 at 5:18 pm

    this was the best ever bread! I am making it again for Thanksgiving tomorrow!

  25. #
    Marci — November 25, 2015 at 5:16 pm

    i amazed myself making this! It was a hit and I am making it tonight for Thanksgiving tomorrow morning! ?

  26. #
    Lauren — August 11, 2015 at 7:45 am

    Hi Tessa!
    Thanks so much for the recipe, really looking forward to trying it!
    I don’t have a KitchenAid at home… is it possible to make this bread without a mixer?


    • #
      Tessa — August 11, 2015 at 2:51 pm

      You can make any bread by hand kneading. The mixer isn’t necessary, it just makes things easier and less laborious. It’ll probably take about 7+ minutes to knead this Challah by hand depending on your upper body strength 😉

  27. #
    Camille — July 7, 2015 at 5:24 am

    Hi, the recipe is great. I had a little problem cuz the dough wouldn’t rise but it finally did after one night in the fridge 🙂 I braided it the next morning, let it rise one hour and baked it. The result is great and tasty, thanks a lot!

  28. #
    Maxine — April 22, 2015 at 1:31 am

    How was oil must I use as I don’t want to use butter for kosher reasons

  29. #
    Annette Lowrie — April 16, 2015 at 1:35 pm

    Wow. My family will think I’m a professional bread maker now thanks to you. This was a great recipe, a wonderful video and amazingly good bread. Thank you. The two mistakes that I made as a rookie were 1) adding the salt before seeing that the butter should be unsalted. oops, and 2) not seeing that the last tablespoon of water was to be reserved for the egg whites. Both were easily done by someone who reads through an entire recipe

  30. #
    Paul — April 16, 2015 at 8:33 am

    Thanks for making this video it was great. I love using challah bread for my Limoncello bread pudding

  31. #
    Cataluna — April 15, 2015 at 10:54 am

    So you know, butter can be kosher It just needs to be certified kosher butter. Using oil instead of butter doesn’t seem like it would make nearly as good or rich of a loaf,

  32. #
    Dulce — April 6, 2015 at 8:13 am

    Hi, congratulations for your great videos. You sure make all this baking easy. I use fresh yeast, how much will be the 2 1/4 ts dry yeast? I´m glad I found your blog. I already registered to recieve your new posts. Thks so much.

  33. #
    Deborah — March 29, 2015 at 12:10 pm

    What beautiful bread!. Great video, by the way – makes it so much easier for beginners to follow and actually “see” what to do. Thank you so much!!

  34. #
    linda dietrich — January 30, 2015 at 2:18 pm


  35. #
    Linda Tomson — January 17, 2015 at 3:42 pm

    Can you tell me why you do 2 braids, one on top of the other instead of one larger braid. I’ve never made this before and wondered why most do one big braid versus one on top the other. Does it cook differently?

  36. #
    Marianne — January 16, 2015 at 4:14 am

    I put the challah in the oven and decided to clean the bathroom while it was baking. All though I was using chlorine and other chemicals I could still smell the bread baking, with all the doors closed. When I went in the kitchen, I fell in love! The smell is amazing, the challah looks amazing and the taste.. no words for it! Thank you so much for this recipe!

  37. #
    Rosemarie — September 22, 2014 at 12:08 pm

    kneaded for 5 min in mixer. Had to add more flour to work with, but baked beautiful! Thanks for your video which is a great help!! Hope it taste good!
    Plan on selling @ our church bake sale..

    • #
      Tessa — September 22, 2014 at 7:59 pm

      Glad to hear it!

  38. #
    Rosemarie — September 20, 2014 at 10:00 am

    My dough is sticky after adding extra 1/3 c flour
    What did I do wrong??

    • #
      Tessa — September 21, 2014 at 2:52 pm

      How long did you knead for? Perhaps the gluten wasn’t able to develop. You are better off with a sticky dough than a dough with too much flour. Did the loaf end up shaping and baking well?

  39. #
    Amber — September 4, 2014 at 5:34 pm

    Tessa, I just found you about three weeks ago and I have made this fantastic Challah each week since. Your recipes are great and easy to follow and my husband is certainly enjoying the benefits

    Thanks so much!.

    • #
      Tessa — September 5, 2014 at 9:03 am

      That’s awesome, thanks so much Amber!

  40. #
    lee — April 6, 2014 at 4:19 pm

    what happens if you use bread flour instead of all purpose?

    • #
      Tessa — April 6, 2014 at 4:51 pm

      The challah would probably have more of a chewy texture.

  41. #
    Puteri — March 23, 2014 at 8:30 pm

    Hi, Tessa!

    I made this the other day for my family and I just wanted you to know that it turned out awesome! I watched the video several times and did exactly as you told. I have never had challah bread in my life, so that was the first time. Is it supposed to be not sweet? Because I felt that it needed a lil’ more sugar, but that’s my opinion. Anyway, we could easily just sprinkle sugar on our buttered bread, so no biggy. Thanks for the awesome fullproof recipe!

    • #
      Tessa — March 23, 2014 at 8:32 pm

      That’s awesome! It’s really only supposed to be slightly sweet. If you make it again feel free to add 2 tablespoons to a 1/4 cup more sugar. Thanks for commenting 🙂

  42. #
    Emily Arzola — January 22, 2014 at 1:37 pm

    The easiest non complicated egg challah recipe I have done , I have tried others in the past without success. As soon as I touched the mixed dough I knew I had a winner this time…
    Thank you so much for sharing your expertise!!
    How can I share the pic with you ?
    By the way I just took it out of the oven….lol
    Thanks again,

  43. #
    Efrain Alarcon — January 3, 2014 at 3:42 pm

    I woke up early to try this recipe and it’s fool proof! I remember using Challah bread for French toast and it was perfect. Then the store stopped selling it, so I decides to make it. I was intimidated and this is my first loaf of bread and it came out perfect! Thanks.

  44. #
    [email protected] — November 7, 2013 at 7:31 pm

    I’ve made challah before—but your recipe looks sooo much more simple and easy. I really enjoyed the video too—you made it look so easy! Planning on trying this tomorrow! 😀

  45. #
    Meaghan — September 29, 2013 at 1:45 pm

    My dough didn’t double in the 1 1/2 time. It got bigger but def not doubled. What did I do wrong?

    • #
      Tessa — September 29, 2013 at 4:42 pm

      I really wouldn’t worry too much about it doubling exactly, as long as it puffed up nice and big. Did you use instant yeast? Maybe your kitchen was too cold? Hard to say without being there with you.

  46. #
    rosine — September 7, 2013 at 1:51 pm

    thanks for repling!!!! i made it and it came out great, just like yours. thanks again

    • #
      Tessa — September 7, 2013 at 7:14 pm

      That’s awesome!! Thanks for the comment.

  47. #
    rosine — September 3, 2013 at 8:57 pm

    can i use salted butter instead??? thanks for replying. the bread is gorgeous just wanna make one and eat right away.

    • #
      Tessa — September 3, 2013 at 10:02 pm

      Yes you can – I would cut the salt called for in the recipe by up to half though.

  48. #
    dena — June 15, 2013 at 12:00 pm

    two note:
    1) use honey instead of sugar for an even more awesome challah.
    2) what is this thing you refer to as “day-old challah”? It simply does not exist, unless you make TWO loaves.

  49. #
    Chung-Ah | Damn Delicious — June 1, 2013 at 10:33 am

    You are so cute in that video! And dude, I’m one of those people intimidated with challah bread but you totally convinced me that it’s doable, even by me!

    Oh and your disclaimer is hilarious.

  50. #
    Rena — May 31, 2013 at 2:22 pm

    Im Jewish and dont worry its an authentic recipe! New fan, found you via The Lemon Bowl, looking forward to trying some of your recipes!

    • #
      Tessa — June 1, 2013 at 10:35 am

      That’s great to hear! Welcome over – say hi to Liz for me 😉

  51. #
    katie — May 31, 2013 at 6:51 am

    Great video! I’ve never tried making challah bread before but now I need too!

  52. #
    Abby — May 30, 2013 at 4:39 pm

    such a gorgeous bread…. and i love, love the video!

  53. #
    ashley – baker by nature — May 30, 2013 at 10:33 am

    I LOVE that you made a video! Because I MIIIIIIISS you. Waaaaaah 🙁 come to nyc, and bring challah please?

  54. #
    Rachel @ Baked by Rachel — May 30, 2013 at 7:19 am

    I’m absolutely saving this for later. Definitely want to give it a try 🙂

  55. #
    Heidi @foodiecrush — May 29, 2013 at 2:20 pm

    Check you out! I dont’ know that I’d ever dare make challah from scratch, but it is for sure one of my favorite recipes. Love the fast action of the egg wash in the video 🙂 stellar job!

  56. #
    Diane @ Vintage Zest — May 29, 2013 at 8:28 am

    I am definitely going to suggest this as my family’s next weekend recipe when we get together. 🙂 We don’t always have a chance to cook together, so it’ll be perfect!

  57. #
    [email protected] — May 29, 2013 at 7:14 am

    Your bread looks beautiful. I’ve got several recipes for Challah French toast, but plain would certainly do the trick, too!

  58. #
    Tracey — May 29, 2013 at 6:01 am

    This is my favorite challah recipe, I’ve made it so many times and always with great results! I just love your videos, so well done 🙂

    • #
      MARY — April 12, 2020 at 10:06 am

      A little time consuming but worth the wait. It wasn’t too hard to do the braiding and the finished challah looked incredible and tasted AMAZING

  59. #
    Abby @ The Frosted Vegan — May 29, 2013 at 5:42 am

    I JUST had challah on the brain, so this will be going onto my weekend to-do list : )

  60. #
    Tieghan — May 29, 2013 at 5:21 am

    I love making homeade Challah bread, it so good and pretty! Your video is really awesome!

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