The Best Brioche Bread Recipe

This homemade brioche bread recipe makes delicious buttery and tender bread. If you are a budding bread baker, perfecting a French brioche recipe is one of the best ways to broaden your bread-baking portfolio.

sliced brioche side view.

French brioche is a super enriched and buttery bread with rich flavor. It has a delicate and tender crumb and is not very sweet; you can use it for sweet and savory dishes. An enriched dough is one where fats and proteins are added, and brioche dough has a considerable amount of butter and eggs added to the dough. 

Adding all this fat means the dough reacts differently to standard bread. The high butter content slows gluten development down, so the initial kneading process is trickier than regular bread. However, you can build the dough’s strength with patience and time.

You can make enriched bread without butter, like these challah buns. They use oil instead.

hand slicing brioche loaf.

The development of brioche dough

Brioche develops over several stages, and the look and feel of the dough change throughout. The first stage makes a thick dough that uses all the ingredients except butter.

Add in the cubed butter in stage two, a bit at a time. Butter brings in fat and liquid. The dough will become slack and sticky with all this moisture and fat. 

Once the butter has been added, it is time to develop the gluten in the dough. This is done by kneading the dough, preferably in a stand mixer, until it becomes glossy and strong, pulling away cleanly from the sides of the mixer. 

This is a slow and steady process. The dough will seem sticky, but suddenly, it will come together and become glossy and strong.


  • A stand mixer fitted with a dough hook attachment- A stand mixer makes this brioche recipe nice and easy. It is possible to knead by hand, but with such a large amount of butter and eggs in the dough, it takes a lot of arm muscle.
  • Two standard 8.5 x 4.5 inch (21x11cm) loaf pans are used.

Making brioche dough by hand

You can make this enriched French bread by hand, but you will need plenty of patience and elbow grease. All the butter in the dough makes the gluten development very slow.

A slap-and-fold method works well for a very sticky dough. The dough can be slapped down hard on the bench and folded over itself. Use quick motions to avoid it sticking too much on your hands.

halved piece of brioche bread.

Let’s see how it’s done!

  1. Begin with mixing together your yeast, sugar and warm milk to let it activate.
eggs and flour in a stand mixer.
  1. Add in the eggs, flour and salt and mix it for 5 minutes to form a dough.
adding cube of butter to dough.
  1. Add in the cubed butter a little at a time until it’s all incorporated. Then keep mixing.
smooth brioche dough.
  1. For the best gluten development and brioche crumb, mix for at least 15-20 minutes.  
hand stretching dough.
  1. To test for proper gluten formation, let the dough rest for 5 minutes, then grab a piece and stretch it out til it’s see-through without tearing.
risen dough.
  1. Let the dough rise until doubled in size, then proof overnight in the fridge.
unrisen dough.
  1. The next day, shape the cold dough and let it rise.
egg wash brushed on brioche dough.
  1. Brush the risen dough with egg wash.
baked brioche bread.
  1. Bake until deeply browned.


Fresh brioche can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to three days. You can also freeze brioche bread wrapped tightly for up to 3 months. I like to pre-slice it before freezing so I can grab one or two slices as needed.

slices of brioche bread.

Uses for brioche

By day two, especially day three, the bread will firm up a bit. Use older brioche in recipes that add some extra moisture to the bread.

Here are 21 great ways to use brioche bread, including french toast, bread pudding, savory recipes, and more! You can also use this dough recipe to make brioche burger buns, brioche cinnamon rolls, and biscoff babka

baked brioche.

Authentic Brioche Bread Recipe

Elien Lewis
This brioche bread recipe makes a yellow, buttery and tender bread. This recipe makes 2 loaves
5 from 32 votes
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Additional Time 12 hours
Total Time 13 hours
Course Bread
Cuisine French
Servings 12
Calories 463 kcal


  • 125 g milk lukewarm(95-104°F / 35-40°C)
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons instant yeast or active dried yeast
  • 50 g granulated sugar
  • 600 g all-purpose flour
  • 1 ½ teaspoon salt
  • 5 large eggs approx. 260g-270g excluding shell.
  • 230 g unsalted butter room temperature, cubed

Egg wash

  • 1 large egg
  • 1 Tablespoon water


  • In a stand mixer bowl fitted with a dough hook, add the milk and stir in the yeast and one tablespoon of sugar. Leave it to sit for 5-10 minutes until foamy. Add to it the remaining sugar, eggs, flour, and salt. Turn the mixer on low and combine until it forms a thick but slightly sticky dough. Mix this dough for around 5 minutes to begin developing the gluten.
  • Add in the butter, a cube or two at a time, ensuring each cube has been incorporated before the next addition. Turn the mixer on medium and keep it mixing until the sticky dough starts to strengthen and come together and pull away cleanly from the sides of the bowl.
  • For the best gluten development and brioche crumb, mix the dough for at least 15 minutes. Proper gluten development will allow you to stretch the dough so thin you can almost see through it. This is called the window pane effect.
  • Pull the dough from the bowl onto a bench and form it into a ball. Place the dough ball into a clean bowl, cover it with plastic wrap or a damp kitchen towel, and let it rise for 1.5-2 hours (depending on room temperature) until doubled in size. Deflate the dough gently and reshape it into a ball again. Cover it with a lid or plastic wrap and place it in the refrigerator overnight. This step can be shortened, but an 8-12 hour fridge proof gives the best flavor.

Cold Proof

  • If you want to skip the overnight proof, the dough will still need an hour of fridge rest after room temperature proofing. This cold rest will let the butter stiffen, resulting in much easier shaping.
  • Pull the proofed dough from the bowl and tip it onto a lightly floured bench. Shape it into a round, then divide this into two equal portions. Line two 8.5 x 4.5 inch (21x11cm) loaf pans with parchment paper.

Shaping options

  • Option 1. Divide a portion of the dough into 8 equal-sized pieces. Roll each piece into a tight ball and place the balls in a lined tin, side by side, in two rows.
    Option 2. Divide a portion of the dough into 3 equal-sized pieces. Roll each piece into a long roll, about 30cm in length. Braid the three lengths together, tuck in the ends, and place the braided dough into the lined tin.
  • Let the shaped dough rise in a warm spot until it has doubled in size.


  • Preheat the oven to 375°F/190 °C and gently whisk an egg and one tablespoon of water in a small bowl. Brush the tops of the dough with the egg wash.
  • Bake the brioche bread for approximately 30 minutes until a deep golden brown.
  • Once baked through, it should sound hollow when tapped. If you have an instant-read thermometer, you can check for an internal temperature of 195°F / 90°C. Let the brioche bread to cool before slicing.


Cup Sizes. The cup sizes are US size, which is smaller than metric. For best results, use scales.
Flour. This recipe works best with flour with around 11% protein. All-purpose flour protein levels can vary between brands, and the name of the flour itself can vary between countries. It’s best to check protein levels rather than just the name of the flour
Kneading by hand. Brioche bread can be made without a stand mixer. It can be kneaded by hand, although it may take longer and require more effort. It’s a very sticky wet dough, so don’t be tempted to add more flour, or it will ruin the texture.
Storing. Brioche can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to three days. Alternatively, it can be frozen for future use.


Serving: 1gCalories: 463kcalCarbohydrates: 53gProtein: 12gFat: 23gSaturated Fat: 13gPolyunsaturated Fat: 2gMonounsaturated Fat: 6gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 163mgSodium: 402mgPotassium: 159mgFiber: 2gSugar: 6gVitamin A: 757IUVitamin C: 0.01mgCalcium: 48mgIron: 3mg
Keyword brioche bread, french bread
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

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  1. Love your recipes ( I have two questions at the end of this)
    When I made this bread. It was on a very cold day so my kitchen was not warm, however, during the first proof of sitting covered on the counter it to let it rise and it rose within an hour. For the second proof in the refrigerator it also rose quickly and was almost going over the side of the bowl within two hours. I then shaped into small balls for buns (using a muffin pan) and then did a braid for the loaf pan, covered to let is rise for a third proof. It more than doubled in 30 minutes. The bread is good and cuts like butter. Makes wonderfully tasty French toast. The buns worked out good and the kids loved them with a little butter and a slice of ham or even just plain. I do plan on making this bread again, however I do have a couple of questions.
    First, How come during the proofs it rose so quickly. I followed the measuring and mixing instructions word for word (I even bought a scale to weigh out the ingredients).
    Second: For this brioche bread are you able to add dried fruit and nuts to it at all after you do all the proofs when you are forming it into a loaf?

    1. Hey, did you use instant yeast? That proves quite quickly! It’s not a problem though, as long as it doesn’t overproof on the last rise just before you bake it :).
      You can add fruit and nuts after it has been kneaded, before the first rise.

  2. I made 2 batches of your cinnamon rolls the first time, they turned out so tasty and beautiful. I froze a few to enjoy later and shared the rest equally with four other siblings and their family. I was requested to bring the dinner rolls for our Thanksgiving dinner tomorrow. So today I’m making two more batches of the recipe for our thanksgiving dinner. I know they’ll be a hit at our dinner.

  3. I am trying this recipe for the first time this morning and I got about 80% of the way through the mixing process when my stand mixer broke! The pin that hold the mixer head on worked its way out and I didn’t notice until it was too late! So I turned it out and started the first proof. The problem us, the dough never became less sticky and glassy! Will it still work??? I’m so sad. 😔

  4. I made it exactly and weighed everything. I didn’t have instant yeast so used regular active yeast. It is in the refrigerator now, been there for about 4 hours. It is almost over the sides of the large bowl. I make regular sourdough bread weekly and have never had one rise this much.
    I’m afraid by morning it will have escaped the bowl, lol. What should I do?

    1. Punch it down and place it back in the fridge, it will rise again so maybe a bigger bowl too but will be fine to shape in the morning 🙂

    2. Thank you for responding. I light punched it part way down and went to bed. This morning it had not rose back up and I was afraid I had messed it up. But I followed the rest of the recipe and wow. It is fantastic. My fresh eggs are such a wonderful color that made a beautiful bread. I wish I could attach a picture.

  5. I am a novice at making bread, but this recipe was easy to follow. During the first and second rise, the bread doubled in size, but it never rose during the third proof. I took it right out of the refrigerator and plopped it in a loaf pan (I did half the recipe). There is no kneeding or shaping before I put it in the pan. I baked it anyway but it turned out like a brick. What could I have done wrong? Thank you for the recipe!

    1. Hey Jane, it’s essential to deflate the dough after it rises, then shape it before putting it in the loaf pan. If you just put it in the loaf pan right out of the fridge after it rose in there, the structure of the dough will be fragile and full of large air pockets that can’t expand anymore. Therefore, the dough won’t rise anymore and will most likely collapse (and you end up with dense bread). Deflating and then shaping the dough helps create a new structure for the dough and provides ‘a new place’ for the yeast to work and the gases to expand during the final rise.

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