Indulge in the delightful fusion of flavors and textures with our Sweet Potato Challah Bread recipe. This unique twist on traditional challah combines the earthy sweetness of roasted sweet potatoes with the comforting warmth of cinnamon, creating a mouthwatering treat that's perfect for any occasion. The soft, pillowy interior and golden, sesame-studded exterior make this bread not only a feast for the taste buds but also a feast for the eyes.
Sweet potato bread
During fall it's the time for some comforting, warm dishes and falling in love with your oven all over again. The air is cooler, so we’re all wearing our comfiest sweaters and are relaxing with hot pumpkin spice lattes. I really love fall and all the special recipes for the season!
This time, I’m sharing a recipe for Sweet Potato Challah Bread that is a perfect fit for the weather and honestly, tastes delicious. Fall is also the time for orange colored foods and my Sweet Potato Challah is perfect for this.
Every Friday, we have challah for the kiddush and from time to time, I like to try and add some new flavors to the challah bread - like a little upgrade. And since it’s fall, I’m adding sweet potato and cinnamon as the upgrade!
This challah has a festive look and a sweet taste, which is a perfect fit to the high holiday meals we are having now.
The recipe uses 2 kinds of flour - regular all purpose flour and whole wheat flour. The whole wheat flour and the sweet potato in the dough makes it a healthier recipe as well.
The shape of the challah is a braid made of 5 strands and to create the five strands, I watched this YouTube video. The video shows how to braid with 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 and 9 strands! I liked the shape of the braid made with 5 strands and I think the outcome is lovely ☺
Tips to ensure your Sweet Potato Challah Bread turns out perfectly
Sweet Potato Preparation
When baking the sweet potatoes, make sure they're fully cooked and soft. This will make mashing them easier and result in a smoother puree. You can test their doneness by inserting a fork into the cubes – they should go in without resistance.
When measuring flour, it's best to use the spoon-and-level method. Gently spoon the flour into the measuring cup and level it off with a flat edge. This prevents the flour from becoming compacted and leading to dry dough.
Kneading the dough helps develop gluten, which contributes to the bread's structure. Use a stand mixer with a dough hook for consistent results. Knead until the dough becomes smooth and elastic, about 6-7 minutes.
The rising time is crucial for a light and airy texture. Let the dough rise until it has doubled in size. The time can vary depending on the ambient temperature, but on average, it takes about 1 to 1.5 hours.
Shaping and Braiding
When dividing the dough and shaping strands, work gently to avoid deflating the risen dough. Braid the strands evenly and not too tightly, allowing the dough to expand while baking.
Brushing the challah with beaten egg before baking gives it a beautiful golden color and a shiny finish. This also helps the sesame seeds stick.
Allowing the braided challah to rise again after shaping gives it a chance to puff up and become even lighter during baking. Don't skip this step for the best results.
Baking Temperature and Time
Baking at the right temperature and time is crucial. It's recommended to start baking at a higher temperature (180°C / 360°F with fan) and then reduce it slightly to prevent over-browning. The bread should be ready in 25-30 minutes, but keep an eye on it as baking times can vary.
Once baked, let the challah cool at room temperature on a wire rack. This helps maintain its texture and prevents the bottom from becoming soggy.
Sweet Potato Challah Bread is best enjoyed fresh on the day it's baked. If you have leftovers, you can reheat slices in the toaster or oven to revive their warmth and freshness.
Other challah recipes on my blog:
Bake this sweet potato challah bread today!
Baking this bread is a labor of love that results in a masterpiece that's as beautiful as it is delicious. Join me in the kitchen as I blend wholesome ingredients and artisanal techniques to craft a Sweet Potato Challah Bread that's sure to become a cherished favorite at your table.
Sweet Potato Challah Bread
- 5 sweet potatoes peeled and cubed
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 cups whole wheat flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ¼ cup sugar
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 tablespoon dry yeast
- 1 egg
- ⅓ cup vegetable oil
- ¼ cup lukewarm water
For the garnish:
- 1 egg beaten
- 2 tablespoon sesame seeds
- Set the oven to 220°C / 430°F with the fan.
- Place the cubed sweet potato on a baking pan and bake for 40 minutes.
- Move the sweet potatoes to a bowl and mash with a fork until you get a unified puree. (You need to use 1.5 cups of puree for the recipe)
- In a stand mixer bowl, place all the dough ingredients, except for the salt.
- Knead the dough with the kneading hook for 2-3 minutes. Add the salt and continue kneading for 3-4 minutes more.
- With your hand, create the shape of a ball from the dough and place in a greased bowl so it may rise.
- Let the dough rise for an hour and a half or until it doubles in volume.
- Set the oven to 180°C / 360°F with the fan.
- Divide the dough into 2 balls.
- Shape each ball to 5 equal strands.
- For each strand, begin to braid.
- Place the braided challah on a baking pan and brush with the beaten egg.
- Sprinkle the sesame seeds.
- Let the challah rise for 15 more minutes.
- Bake for 25-30 minutes.
- Cool at room temperature.