A once-a-year decadent treat that is beaming with holiday magic: christmas morning star bread. It’s the festive version of a pan of cinnamon rolls…rich and buttery dough, layered with an orange & vanilla scented brown sugar filling, baked until golden and bubbling, then topped with a sweet pecan caramel sauce and powdered sugar. The BEST thing to wake up to on Christmas morning.
Closing out the Week of Christmas Giveaways with one last (and VERY exciting) giveaway with Williams Sonoma! I couldn’t get by during the holidays without a trusty KitchenAid mixer, and they’ve got a gorgeously-designed, exclusive white mixer that we’ll be giving away to one of you!
Because this time of year is when we need our mixers the most…to make lots of cookies, breads, sweet treats, pizzas, and truly anything else decadent and festive you can think of! I use mine so very often. And I used it to make this very beautiful Christmas morning star bread.
The dough for this star bread comes together really easily in the mixer. It’s full of brown butter, cinnamon-infused milk, vanilla + almond extracts, and a little bit of orange zest. Lots of subtle flavors that create the most perfect “Christmas morning” feeling.
The dough is divided into four, rolled out thin, filled with a buttery brown sugar filling, cut and formed, and then baked until golden. It’s a really fun process that results in the most gorgeous bread.
I’m topping this one with even more sweet flavor – a sticky pecan caramel sauce. Which is very over-the-top decadent, and very perfect for the holidays.
There’s nothing I’d rather wake up to on Christmas morning!
*giveaway now closed*
For all the details on how to enter the last giveaway, head over to Instagram. We’ll be giving away a KitchenAid Artisan White Mixer with Hobnail Bowl from Williams Sonoma!! For a bonus entry, make sure to leave a comment on this blog post below.
Thank you so much for tuning in to the Week of Christmas Giveaways, and I hope you enjoyed all of the recipes and wonderful holiday products. I’m hoping it’s inspired you to have a festive, delicious, and absolutely magical Christmas season by getting in the kitchen and creating beautiful food for those you love!
I’ll see you next week for even more holiday recipes leading up to Christmas Eve!Print
Christmas Morning Star Bread
a festive, decadent christmas morning star bread scented with orange and vanilla, topped with a rich pecan caramel sauce
Christmas Star Bread
- ¼ cup warm water
- 1 tbsp + ¾ tsp dry active yeast
- ¾ cup whole milk
- 2 cinnamon sticks
- ¼ cup granulated sugar
- 1 ½ sticks (6 oz) butter, browned and cooled
- 3 eggs, beaten
- 1 tbsp vanilla extract
- 1 tsp almond extract
- 1 tsp orange zest
- 3 ¾ – 4 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 tsp kosher salt
- 1 egg yolk + 1 tbsp milk, beaten
- powdered sugar, for dusting
- 2 sticks (8 oz) butter, softened
- ½ cup brown sugar
- 1 tbsp cinnamon
- ¼ tsp ground cloves
- ½ tsp orange zest
- ¼ tsp kosher salt
- raw sugar, for baking
Pecan Caramel Sauce
- 1 stick (4 oz) butter
- ½ cup brown sugar
- ½ cup heavy cream
- 1 cinnamon stick
- ½ tsp vanilla extract
- 1 cup chopped pecans
- ½ tsp kosher salt
- Whisk the water and dry active yeast in the bowl of a stand mixer. Let sit for 20 minutes. Meanwhile, combine the milk and cinnamon sticks in a small saucepan. Heat over low heat for 10 minutes (the milk should just barely come to a simmer). Strain the milk.
- Add the milk, sugar, cooled brown butter, and eggs to the yeast mixture and whisk until smooth. Stir in the vanilla extract, almond extract, and orange zest.
- Add 3 ¾ cups of flour and salt to the wet ingredients. Using the dough attachment, mix on low speed until the dough starts to come together. If the dough is too sticky to handle, add in a little bit more flour. Once the dough begins to pull away from the sides of the bowl and form a ball, you’ve added enough flour. Continue to mix for 3 minutes.
- Transfer the dough to a lightly floured surface. Knead for 2 minutes longer. Flour the inside of the bowl and place the dough in there to rise. Cover with a damp towel and rise in a warm space for 1 hour, or until the dough has doubled in size.
- Mix the butter, brown sugar, cinnamon, cloves, orange zest, and salt together until well-combined.
- Cut the risen dough into 4 pieces. Roll each piece out into a circle, about 1/8” thick. Place one circle onto a sheet pan lined with parchment paper. Spread 1/3 of the filling onto the dough, leaving a slight border. Repeat with the remaining layers and filling. Place the last piece of dough on top to complete the layers. Gently press the edges of dough together.
- Use a drinking glass to mark a circle in the center of the dough. Cut the surrounding dough into 16 even slices (see photos). Take two slices and twist them outwards then press the ends together to seal. Repeat until a star shape has formed.
- Cover the dough with plastic wrap and let rest in a warm place for another 30 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350°F.
- Brush the star bread with the egg wash mixture and sprinkle heavily with raw sugar. Bake the bread for 20 minutes. Cover with foil and bake for 10 minutes longer.
- Let rest for about 10 minutes before serving. Dust with powdered sugar and serve the pecan caramel sauce (recipe below) on the side.
Pecan Caramel Sauce
- Combine the butter, brown sugar, heavy cream, cinnamon stick, and vanilla in a small saucepan over medium heat. Let the butter melt and mix well. Lower the heat to medium-low and simmer for 5 minutes.
- Stir in the pecans and salt. Simmer for another 5 minutes.
- Serve warm. If the caramel cools, it will harden. You can always put it back over low heat with a splash of cream to loosen up.
[This post was made in partnership with Williams Sonoma. Thank you for supporting the brands I love!]
128 thoughts on “Christmas Morning Star Bread”
Looks super yummy! Christmas morning for sure!
I would say its a star recipe as well. Those notes and which you have mentioned in this article are very useful. Thanks for sharing this with us.
What a beautiful breakfast – I look forward to trying it!
This mixer and bread are gorgeous!
So pretty. I’m not the best baker but it’s my 2020 goal to improve so I think I’ll give this a go!
Oh my gosh the browned butter here must make this taste absolutely amazing…definitely trying this out!
Such a beautiful and festive dish! Perfect for Christmas morning- can’t wait to try!
This looks delectably delicious ?
Looks delicious!!!! Can’t wait to make it!
What a beautiful dessert! If I’m brave enough, I’ll make it for Christmas!
I can’t wait to try this! ?
Such a beautiful mixer!! The bread looks beautiful too! Definitely meed to give it a try
I’ve got starry eyes ? for this star bread ✨
This is so pretty and it looks delicious! I’m spending Christmas at home for the first time ever and this would be a lovely Christmas morning treat!
This looks amazing!
Thanks for including the step by step pictures on how to twist the bread. It’s so beautiful and I can’t wait to make this for my family!
It may take me 100 tries but I WILL be making
Will definitely try making this for Christmas! Love your recipes!
First think I’ll be making if I get a mixer ☝???
So beautiful. Can’t wait to try!
I’m going to try to make this for Christmas this year!!
This looks so tasty!
Hope I can nail this recipe!
Wow. Hope I can nail this recipe!!
This would be perfect for Christmas morning! I think I’ll do a trial run first.
Beautiful! I bet it’s delicious
This looks so festive. I can almost smell it.
Oh my goodness, yum! ✨
Looks so pretty!
Yum! Looks beautiful !
Perfect dish for Christmas morning!
Stunning! Amazing craftsmanship
This looks SOOO intricate… I’m excited to try this with my partner this holiday season!!!?
Mine will not look like this but I cannot wait to try!! Gorgeous
I don’t quite understand how you twist it? Do you have a video?
Your recipes are always so good! Can’t wait to try this one 🙂
Yummy!! Can’t wait to bake this for family parties!! ?
Looks amazing! I’m going to try this for Christmas morning this year! ♥️?
Can not wait to try this!! I love everything I’ve made from your blog 🙂
Looks delicious! Perfect Christmas breakfast!
Seriously a work of art. ?
This looks SO delish. And easy? What a dream.
Looks so delicious!
wow beautiful. do i dare try to make this for christmas morning?!
The most perfect Christmas morning recipe!
Looks beautiful and I bet it tastes even better, I’ll definitely make this beauty this week.
Thank you ?
Might make one special for Santa….
Oh my gosh, this recipe looks so yummy! I can’t wait to make it and see the end result, it looks so beautiful!
Bread baking is not my favorite (or forte) but this looks too good not to try. Challenge accepted!
This looks soooooo delicious! Now I’m gonna have to make it Christmas morning! Thank you!
Wow looks amazing
I love your recipe!
Looks amazing!! Definitely going to try this 🙂 Thank you!
This looks divine!!
Looks heavenly! Thank you for sharing ❤️? ?
I am a newbie sweet dough baker but this gorgeous bread s tempting me to overcome my intimidation!
Can’t wait to try this with 12 year-old son who’s baked with me in the kitchen and has been learning to make bread since he was little.
My mom and I are always looking for new recipes to make on Christmas morning, can’t wait to try this one!!
This looks divine!
This bread looks so yummy and festive I can’t wait to try it on Christmas!
Just started baking recently, can’t to try this!!
I love all of your recipes. I make them regularly. And they are always a big hit. Can’t wait to try this one!
Looks great! Can’t wait to try it!
This is a beautiful bread. It would make a wonderful addition to our Christmas morning spread.
I want to try this next week for Christmas
Love a good briochey bread! Thinking of making this, and making a dark chocolate dip, accompanied by some crushed salty roasty pistachios. Both Caramel and chocolate lovers can rejoice together! And those of us that fall between can get the best of both worlds! ?
This looks absolutely beautiful and delicious!
Absolutely amazing! I can’t wait to try this recipe ???
Thanks for this recipe without chocolate (not easy to survive during December for someone who dislikes chocolate ?), can’t wait to try this, looks delicious ?
Just beautiful! And sounds delicious!
This is absolutely stunning. What a special tradition!
Oh this is so pretty!!! Almost too pretty to eat!
When I think of art, I think of food.. and this is the perfect example! Gorgeous! Thank you for the inspiration now I need to up my baking game ASAP!
I’ve found my Christmas morning breakfast ?
Do you think you could make the dough the day before and put it in the fridge?
Spending my Christmas in the middle of the ocean on a sailing wooden ship direction Caribbean. Was wondering what to make for that day but now I know! Thanks for the recipe xx
This looks beautiful!
Love this!! So beautiful
This looks beautiful!
Looks amazing!! ?
Can’t wait to try!
This will bring some Christmas cheer to my family’s spread this year!!
Yum! I can’t wait to try next week
This looks so yummy! Would love to make that to my family. All the way from Oslo, Norway <3
Definitely going to make this, looks amazing!
I can’t wait to try this on Christmas Eve morning! Thanks for sharing all your great recipes!
My family always makes some type of baked good together Christmas morning. I think I found this years recipe ☺️ looks delicious!
It’s so pretty!
Mmmmm the perfect Christmas morning treat!!
Oh my goodness…. I can almost smell it coming out of the oven as I was reading the ingredients list! I can’t wait to try it! – Lore (@eyeBionic)
It’s beautiful! Your amazing bread and the Kitchen-aid stand mixer too! Love the fun look of the bowl, which is fresh and classic rolled into one. All that butter in this recipe was probably extra happy being mixed in it! Merry Christmas and have a delectable morning!
Such a beautiful bread!
Yum! I’m making my first star bread this Christmas and am so excited to give this recipe a try
This is beautiful! Cannot wait to try it!
This looks amazing!
Lovely For Christmas Breakfast
The bread is even more beautiful than the gorgeous mixer!
Wow that looks soooo delicious! Can’t wait to try it out!
Prettiest and no doubt, yummiest, Christmas Morning Star Bread!! Can’t wait to make it. Thanks for sharing!!♥️
I believe cooking is one of the most beautiful ways to create experiences and beautiful memories. Thank you for sharing your recipes with the rest of us.
This looks amazing! The kids will love this for breakfast.
What a fun and fancy twist on a cinnamon roll!! I know what I’ll be making Christmas morning!!
I can’ wait to try the recipe.
I have never seen something so stunning and delicious at the same time! Need to make this on Christmas morning!
Festive, fun, and delicious!! Christmas morning couldn’t get any better!! Yummy!
Looks “almost” too good to eat.
Love all you recipes! Also it would be dope to win the mixer!!!!
This looks amazing!!!
This looks too beautiful to eat!
What a beautiful christmas bread????It’s a lot of hard work but it must be worth it??
Need to make this but first need the mixer!!!???
Yum! I can’t wait to make this
This looks amazing! Can’t wait to try making it!
Such a beautiful creation! We will definitely have to try this Christmas!
This looks dreamy!
I love baking, and this would be so helpful! ?
I can’t wait to make this lovely bread!
Beautiful! Can’t wait to make this for Christmas!