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 This cardamom-scented Star Bread recipe is so much fun to make! Deliciously fragrant, tender sweet bread, is studded with almonds and dried cranberries, perfect for holiday brunch or afternoon tea.

Star Bread Recipe

  • Author: Sylvia Fountaine | Feasting at Home Blog
  • Prep Time: 160 mins
  • Cook Time: 15 mins
  • Total Time: 2 hours 55 mins
  • Yield: 8-10 1x
  • Category: dessert, bread, morning bread
  • Method: baked
  • Cuisine: nordic
  • Diet: Vegetarian


How to make Star Bread – a simple, easy step by step guide to making the most delicious cozy winter treat, perfect for the holidays! (Recipe Updated 12/16/2018). Adapted from King Arthur Flour.


Units Scale


  • 3/4 cup warm milk (100-110 degrees F)
  • 2 cups All-Purpose Flour
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 cup soft unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons rapid rise or instant yeast ( if using active dry yeast, see notes)
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt


  • 1 large egg, beaten
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon cardamon (or nutmeg)
  • 3/4 cup dried cranberries (optional, sub other dried fruit)
  • 3/4 cup sliced almond ( optional sub other chopped nuts) )
  • Other optional fillings: almond paste, jams
  • Garnish: powdered sugar, melted butter


  1. To make the dough with the instant yeast: Place all of the dough ingredients together in a stand mixer and using paddle attachment, beat on low for 3 minutes. You can also mix by hand, in a bowl to make a soft, smooth dough.
  2. Place the dough in a lightly greased bowl, cover, and let it rise in a warm spot, for 60 minutes, until it has doubled in size.  If using active dry yeast, rising time will take twice as long.
  3. In the meantime, beat the egg and set aside. Mix the sugar, cinnamon and cardamon and place in a small bowl.
  4. Divide the dough into four equal pieces. Shape each piece into a ball, cover the balls, and allow them to rest for 15 minutes. On a floured surface, roll one piece of dough into a 10″ circle. Place the circle on a parchment -lined sheet pan, brush a thin coat of beaten egg on the surface, then evenly sprinkle with a third of the spiced-sugar, ¼ cup dried cranberries, ¼  cup almonds, leaving 1/4 inch of bare dough around the edges.
  5. Roll out a second circle the same size as the first, and place it on top of the filling-covered circle. Repeat the layering process:  egg, spiced sugar, cranberries, almonds, then  roll out the 3rd dough circle, add the remaining filling. Roll out the final ( 4th )dough circle, placing it on top, leaving the top totally bare.
  6. Place a 2  1/2″ to 3″ round cutter ( or cup) in the center of the dough circle to use as a guide. With a  sharp knife, cut the circle into 16 equal strips, from the edge of the cutter or cup- to the edge, through all the layers. Look at the photos. 🙂
  7. Using two hands, pick up two adjacent strips and twist them away from each other twice so that the top side is facing up again. Repeat with the remaining strips of dough so that you end up with eight pairs of strips. ( see photos)
  8. Pinch the pairs of strips together to create a star-like shape with eight points. Remove the cup/cutter.
  9. Cover the star with a thin towel and let it rise until it puffs, about 45 minutes.
  10. While the star is rising, preheat the oven to 400°F.
  11. Brush the star with a thin coat of the beaten egg. Bake it for 14 to 16 minutes, until it’s beautifully golden. Test doneness with a thermometer – it should reach 200°F in the center.
  12. Allow it to cool 10-15 minutes before serving. Dust with powdered sugar or brush with melted butter.


If making dough with active dry yeast – scald the milk and let it cool down to 100-110F. Place the warm milk, sugar and yeast into a stand mixer ( or bowl) and mix until combined. Cover with a kitchen towel, let stand until yeast is active and frothy, about 5-10 minutes. Add remaining dough ingredients and beat on low speed until combined and it forms a soft dough. Continue with the recipe above.


  • Serving Size:
  • Calories: 247
  • Sugar: 15.3 g
  • Sodium: 329.3 mg
  • Fat: 7.2 g
  • Saturated Fat: 3.9 g
  • Carbohydrates: 41.2 g
  • Fiber: 1.9 g
  • Protein: 5.4 g
  • Cholesterol: 39 mg

Keywords: star bread, how to make star bread, star bread recipe, morning bread, holiday bread, cranberry bread, almond bread, cardamon bread, christmas bread