Swiss Butter Braided Bread (Butterzopf)
Swiss butter Braid AKA Butterzopf is a slightly sweet, plaited, special occasion bread, perfect for the holidays, entertaining, or when you want to treat yourself to some yeasty deliciousness. Crank up your oven and bake a loaf of this magnificent braided bread.
A Swiss Butter Braid for the Holidays
I have a “thing” for braided bread recipes. They just seem festive. My mom would braid dyed hard-boiled eggs into our Easter bread and drizzle it with icing, and I contemplated forming this loaf into a wreath as she did till it came up short in length. This butter braid or butterzopf is more of an everyday bread to the Swiss, but I think it looks pretty fancy. A good dose of sugar provides a lovely sweetness, and two eggs plus one yolk adds richness along with a lovely golden color. I think it would be perfect for any holiday meal this month. And imagine leftovers (IF there are any) as French toast. Swooning at the thought This butter braid was a huge hit with my crew.
How to Make Braided Yeast Bread
- If you own a heavy-duty KitchenAid or another mixer, use the dough hook to knead the dough. It will save time and energy.
- Do not force the proofing by putting the dough in an overheated area. 80-90 degrees is just fine. Any warmer and the result yeast efficiency will not be optimal. Plus, a slower rise develops better flavor.
- Braiding bread is much like braiding hair. Once you get the rhythm, it becomes easy. Pinch the 3 strands together at one end, then cross the left strand over the middle strand, then the right strand over the middle strand, and continue. Pinch the strands together when there is not enough to braid anymore. Tuck the ends under and you’re set!
- Let proof (rise) again, glaze, and bake!
More Holiday Breads You’ll Love:
- Stollen Wreath from Cake Duchess
- Braided Easter Bread
- Plaited Easter Bread
- Easy King Cake
- Spinach Onion Braid
- More Bread Recipes
Swiss Butter Braid
A sweet, buttery loaf braided for the holidays. Adapted from Nick Malgieri.
- 1/2 cup milk
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 6 tablespoons butter, melted
- 2 eggs plus 1 egg yolk
- 2 1/2 teaspoons or one envelope instant yeast (Red Star Platinum yeast preferred)
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 egg, for glaze
- In stand mixer bowl with paddle attachment, combine milk, sugar and melted butter. Mix in eggs, then yeast. Slowly add in salt, then flour with mixer on low. Let continue to mix for 2 more minutes to knead (unless your mixer starts to overheat). Alternatively, knead by hand on lightly floured surface. Dough will be soft.
- Let rise in a greased bowl covered with greased plastic wrap at a warm room temperature for 1-1 1/2 hours or till doubled in bulk.
- Deflate dough and divide into 3 equal pieces. On a lightly floured surface, roll each piece into a 15-inch rope. Braid starting at the middle and working to one end, then repeating on the other side. Carefully transfer to parchment lined baking sheet.
- Cover with greased plastic wrap and let rise till doubled, about 1-11/2 hours.
- Preheat oven to 375º. Whisk remaining egg and brush over the surface of the braid. Bake for 30 minutes, covering with foil for last 5-10 minutes if loaf is browning too fast.
- Cool on wire rack.
Total time does not include proofing time.
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Serving Size:1 slice
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 226Total Fat: 8gSaturated Fat: 4gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 3gCholesterol: 78mgSodium: 115mgCarbohydrates: 33gFiber: 1gSugar: 11gProtein: 5g
48 Comments on “Swiss Butter Braided Bread (Butterzopf)”
About the most perfect braid I have ever seen! How do you do that? =) Simply stunning.
So beautiful, your braided breads are always perfect!
Beautiful bread! I love the braiding too- it looks so elegant! I wish one of these would magically appear in my oven. 🙂
What a gorgeous braid, Liz! Beautiful texture and such a beautiful shine! Though I imagine this just perfect, out of the oven, warm with a slathering of butter…..my mind went straight to french toast as well! I’ve got to try a braid, soon! Thanks for hosting a wonderful theme this month! : )
Braid breads used to scare me something fierce, but now that you’ve posted this they scare me….less. 🙂 Well, I guess that’s a step in the right direction at least, right? Gorgeous, Liz!
Delicious looking loaf and you are right there is something so festive about a braid of bread.
Liz, these swiss butter braid look soooo good. I wish we were neighbors so I can grab a freshly baked bread. 🙂
Swooning in plain or French toast form. Thank you for the motivation once again to make braided bread…I carefully read your instructions about starting in the middle…Wondering, too, how well your recipe could be worked in a bread maker…Well, we’ll see what 2015 brings =)
It is such a gorgeous loaf for the holidays, I would make an extra loaf just for the french toast!
Just adore all your braided breads, they do give a special look. And more butter is always a good thing!
I would have a thing for them too if mine turned out this gorgeous!!
Braided bread always looks more fancy! Beautiful bread!
Liz, I made one of these for Easter. . your swiss butter braid is gorgeous. . just like everything else you bake. . seriously. . this braided bread needs to be on every holiday table this year. . love!!
OMG! What a beautifully braided bread…would be beautiful on any meal or holiday table!!
Oh this is a beauty! I love the color and can just imagine the flavor. Thank you for hosting Twelve Loaves this month. I appreciate all the time you spent on organizing us.
I can never resist a braided loaf of bread! It’s so pretty, and it would make fantastic French toast.
I agree, there’s just something about braided bread that screams festive and holidays! This buttery loaf is absolutely making my mouth water (and now I’m craving french toast). Thanks so much for being our hostess this month, Liz!
OMG! That bread looks softer than my pillow! I absolutely love it!
Gorgeous! I can almost smell it now:@)
You made one perfect bread Liz! Looks delicious! If you like this type of bread, check my site for tsoureki! It is very similar only more aromatic!