This delicious, no-knead, no-mixer, Cinnamon Raisin Brioche Bread has a sweet, buttery, tender-crumb that studded with plump raisins and swirled with cinnamon sugar.
I've been trying really hard to stay away from this Cinnamon Raisin Brioche Bread as it's pretty much IMPOSSIBLE to just eat one slice. However, since I was starting to write this post, I thought it was important that sample a slice... you know, just so I could do a good job describing this delicious bread to you. Goodness! The things I do for you...
But now I can verify the statement above... it truly is IMPOSSIBLE to eat just one slice!
Our family used to take a vacation to a lovely beach in South Carolina. The beach was never crowded, the sand soft and white and the water took on a beautiful azure hue as the sunlight danced on the waves lapping the shore. We looked forward all year long to our time together and the lovely beach. Another thing that everyone anticipated was a wonderful bakery (called Kudzu Bakery) in a little town nearby. And although the bakery had drool-worthy croissants, sweet rolls, cookies, pies and cakes, their cinnamon raisin bread was out-of-this-world amazing.
When I took the first bite of this Cinnamon Raisin Brioche Bread, I immediately transported to the fabulous Kudzu Bakery and felt like I had cracked the code! It's sweet "but not too sweet" as described by one of my taste-testers. The tender, buttery crumb of this bread (adapted from our No-Knead Brioche Bread) is delicious on its own but add a swirl of cinnamon sugar and a generous scoop of raisins and you definitely take it to that impossible-to-eat-just-one-slice status.
Other statements from test-taster friends and neighbors were:
"The bread is 5 star and the loaf is almost small enough to eat the whole thing. #dangerous"
"I just had a piece of raisin bread. Oh my! That is delicious!"
It's a bit magical to me how this Cinnamon Raisin Brioche Bread has such a delicious tender crumb without having to spend time kneading the dough. Delicious homemade bread has always been much more work than this. In fact, other than popular artisan breads, most homemade bread recipes read "knead the dough for 8-10 minutes". Not this one, and, take it from an old fashioned bread maker, the results are just as good!
Minimal hands-on time
Although you do need (not knead) a bit of time to make this Cinnamon Raisin Brioche Bread, most of it is rising and resting time. The hands-on time is for sure, less than 30 minutes. How does it work? Simply combine flour, sugar, salt and instant yeast (don't worry if you only have regular yeast we have an adaptation for that) in a large bowl. Add melted butter, milk and hot water and stir until combined. Cover and let the dough sit for an hour to get the yeast going then refrigerate overnight.
The next morning, divide the dough into four portions (or two, for larger loaves) and roll each one into a rectangle. Brush the dough with milk or cream and sprinkle with cinnamon sugar. Tightly roll the rectangles and place in buttered loaf pans. The rest of the time, again, is hands-off while the dough rises and finally bakes. That's it... except to prepare yourself for the most intoxicating aroma to fill the house!
Makes the BEST gifts!
Because this No-Knead Cinnamon Raisin Brioche Bread makes four lovely little loaves and because it truly is #dangerous to have sitting around, I designed a pretty little label that can be attached with a ribbon for gift-giving. Imagine the excitement when a friend or neighbor finds a loaf of this bread on their front porch or in their mailbox. If you'd like a PDF for the labels, just leave me a comment below in the post and I'll be happy to share it with you.
There's an optional egg wash with a sprinkle of raw sugar but you probably don't want to miss this. It adds a delicious sweet crunch to each bite and only takes a minute or two. Plus it makes such a pretty presentation!
Has something come between you and a family member, neighbor or friend? A loaf of this No-Knead Cinnamon Raisin Brioche Bread and a sweet text or phone call can breakdown barriers. Want to say thanks to a teacher, post worker, grocery or UPS delivery person? Use the back of one of these pretty labels to write a kind note of appreciation. Want to add some cheer to someone's day? Yep, you guessed it, a loaf of this No-Knead Cinnamon Raisin Brioche Bread made and given with love is just want the doctor ordered!
Café Tips for making this Cinnamon Raisin Brioche Bread
- The recipe calls for all-purpose flour. Bread flour also works well.
- This recipe also calls for instant yeast but I've added a note after the recipe regarding how to adapt it for regular yeast.
- Don't like raisins? Just skip them for a really delicious loaf of Cinnamon Brioche Bread. Everything else will stay the same.
- I've made this Cinnamon Raisin Brioche Bread with currants in lieu of raisins - delicious!
- This recipe calls for hot tap water. The water should be nice and warm, not so hot that you pull your hand out if you touched it, but warm enough to feel hot.
- When turning the dough out onto the counter to form the loaves, use a tablespoon or two of flour. If the dough is sticking to your hands or the work surface, you need a bit more flour. Just keep flipping the dough in the flour till it's not sticky.
- I love using one of these bench scrapers when making bread. Instead of turning the sticky dough with your hands, using one of these tools makes things really easy. It's also a great way to scrape any floury dough off of the counter when cleaning up.
- If you want to make the dough in less time, just don't refrigerate it. It will take about 1½-2 hours for it to rise and then you can proceed with forming the loaves. Allow the formed loaves to rise and bake as directed once they have risen.
- I usually use four 3x6-inch bread pans for this recipe. If you want larger loaves, you could also use two 8x4-inch pans. The baking time will be 10-15 minutes longer for the larger loaves. If the tops are getting too brown towards the end of baking time just cover the with some foil.
- I like to put a sheet pan on my stovetop after I place the loaves in the oven. Then when I remove them to add the egg wash and sprinkle of raw or turbinado sugar, the pan catches any mess.
- To create a nice cozy place for your bread to rise after being formed into loaves, preheat your oven for 1 minute (no longer!), then turn it off. Turn the oven light on and place your bread pans on a sheet pan. Cover the loaves with a clean kitchen towel and place the pan in the warm oven.
Thought for the day:
For I know the plans I have for you declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future" Jeremiah 29:11
What we've been watching for inspiration:
If you enjoyed this recipe, please come back and leave a star rating and review! It’s so helpful to other readers to hear other’s results and ideas for variations.
This delicious, no-knead, no-mixer, Cinnamon Raisin Brioche Bread has a sweet, buttery, tender-crumb that is studded with plump raisins and swirled with cinnamon sugar.
- 4 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
- ¼ cup sugar
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 2 ¼ teaspoons instant dry yeast
- 1 ½ cups raisins
- 4 tablespoons butter
- ¼ cup milk
- 1 egg
- 1 egg yolk
- 1 cup hot tap water plus 2 tablespoons
- ¼ cup granulated sugar
- 2½ teaspoons cinnamon
- 1-2 tablespoons milk or cream
- 1 large egg yolk
- 1 teaspoon water
- soft butter for greasing the pans
Combine flour, sugar, yeast and salt in a medium-large bowl. Stir well then add the raisins. Run your fingers through the mixture to break up any clumps of raisins. Make a well in the center of the flour/raisin mixture. Set aside.
Melt butter in the microwave for 30-40 seconds on high power, until just melted. Remove from microwave and add the ¼ cup of milk. Stir with a fork then add the egg and egg yolk and stir again until well mixed.
Add the milk mixture to the well in the center of the flour. Add the 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons hot tap water to the well then stir to combine using a sturdy spatula. (Scrape the edges of the bowl as you stir, bringing the dry mixture to the center and rotating the bowl as you go.) If it’s hard to incorporate all of the flour, add one additional tablespoon of water.
When all of the flour is well incorporated, cover the dough tightly with plastic wrap. Allow the dough to sit at room temperature for one hour then place in refrigerator overnight, 6-12 hours.
Generously butter four 3x6-inch loaf pans and set aside. (Alternatively, you could use two 8x5-inch loaf pans.) Combine cinnamon and sugar in a small bowl.
Lightly flour a work surface and transfer the dough to the work surface. Turn several times with a bench scraper or spatula until the dough is coated with flour. Using a bench scraper or spatula, divide the dough into four equal pieces. Turn each piece in the flour to lightly coat all of the surfaces. Add a bit more flour to the work surface if the dough is sticky.
Take one piece of the dough and flatten it out with your hands into a rectangle shape. With a rolling pin, roll the dough into a larger rectangle approximately 6x10 inches with the short side facing you. Brush the rectangle lightly with milk or cream to coat the surface. Sprinkle with a rounded tablespoon of the cinnamon-sugar mixture.
Starting with the short side, roll the rectangle up tightly, then pinch the seam together tightly to seal. Tuck the ends under and again, pinch to seal. Shape with your hands to form an oval loaf. Place the loaf into one of the prepared pans.
Repeat with the remaining pieces of dough. Cover the pans with a clean kitchen towel and let the bread rise again in a warm place until the loaves look like they’ve doubled in size, about 30 minutes to 1 hour. (see the note above in Café Tips about creating a warm rising place.)
When the loaves are close to being doubled in size, preheat the oven to 350˚F (remove the pans first if using the oven as a rising place for the unbaked loaves). Prepare the egg wash by vigorously whisking together one large egg yolk with 1 teaspoon of water. Set aside.
Bake the loaves for 10 minutes then remove from the oven and brush each loaf over the top surface with the egg wash. Try to be careful not to let the wash drip down the sides of the loaves into the pan. Sprinkle each loaf with 1 teaspoon raw or turbinado sugar.
Return to the bread to the oven and bake for another 10-15 minutes or until golden brown. Check it after 10 minutes. If it's getting too brown on the top, cover it with foil for the last 3-5 minutes. (Larger loaves will take longer.) Remove bread from pans by gently inverting onto a cooling rack. (If bread is stuck to the side of the pan anywhere (from the egg wash), loosen it gently with a small thin-bladed knife.) Turn loaves right side up and cool completely before slicing.
See Café Tips above in the post for further instructions and more detailed tips.
If you don’t have instant yeast you will need to adapt the recipe just a bit.
Start the recipe by combining 2¼ teaspoons of regular active yeast in the hot water along with a pinch of sugar. Stir well and set aside. (The yeast should start to foam and bubble after about 5 minutes.)
Continue with the recipe (omitting the instant yeast in the flour mixture) as directed, adding the yeasted water when the recipe directs to add the hot water. The remainder of the recipe will be done as directed.
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