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Spiced Apple Star Bread Recipe

Spiced Apple Star Bread is a sweet buttery bread loaded with warm cinnamon and plump apples that’s fun to make. It looks holiday special but perfect at any time.

Top view of apple bread twisted into the shape of a star on a wooden cutting board.

This Cinnamon Star Bread is soft and tender and tastes like a cinnamon roll loaded with fresh apple.

With the fall spices and brown sugar it’s like a caramel apple without the stick.

This star shaped bread is perfect for a holiday morning but easy enough to make when you’re craving a delicious pastry.

We originally made this bread when I was participating in a monthly bread challenge.

The challenge was to create a bread using fall fruits or vegetables. Sweet or savory bread was all game.

Our Spiced Apple Star Bread just screams fall!

Star-shaped bread

Quite some time ago we saw Cinnamon Star Bread on the King Arthur website.

It was one of those recipes that we just couldn’t get out of my mind.

We wanted to make it but it really looked labor-intensive.

One of the reasons we joined the Bread Bakers group was to learn and challenge myself when it comes to baking bread.

This event was the perfect time to give it a try.

Star-shaped bread

Star Bread Fillings

To put a spin on the Cinnamon Star Bread, we stuffed our bread it with apples. Here are some more ideas.

  • Add raisins to the apples
  • Substitute the apples with pears
  • Substitute the fruit with chocolate chips

How to make Spiced Apple Star Bread

6 photo collage of how to shape the Spiced Apple Star Bread.
How to make Apple Spiced Star Bread
  • We used an electric stand mixer for this recipe. Add the dough ingredients to the bowl, and with the mixer running, slowly add the water until the dough is soft and smooth, not wet and sticky.
    • Cover the dough and let it rise for one hour.
  • Using a bench scraper, cut the risen dough into 4 pieces. I rolled them into balls and covered them for 15 minutes while I prepared the filling.
  • Roll each ball into a 10-inch circle.
    • I turn a baking sheet upside down and cover it with parchment paper. Put the first dough circle on the parchment paper.
  • Brush the dough with melted butter and sprinkle it with brown sugar and 1/3 of the diced apples.
  • Place the second dough circle on top of the first one and stretch it to match up the edges of the first circle.
  • Repeat the filling and third dough circle. Place the 4th circle over the previous 3 but don’t top it with filling.
  • Place a 2-1/2 to 3-inch biscuit cutter in the center of the top dough circle.
    • Don’t cut through the dough. Just place it there.
    • You can also use a glass. You just need a circle you can work around.
  • Using the bench scraper or sharp knife, make 4 cuts through all 4 layers evenly spaced through all four layers. Repeat until you have 16 cuts to the center.
  • Each 2 strips make one star tip. Pick up two strips and twist them twice away from each other. Continue until all 16 strips have been twisted.
  • Pinch the pairs of strips together to create a point.
  • Remove the cutter. Cover with a clean towel and let star rise 45 minutes. While star rises, preheat the oven
  • Remove towel and brush with beaten egg. Sprinkle with Turbinado or demerara sugar.
  • Bake

That many steps? Not really, I just really broke them down so it would be easy for you to shape your bread.

Love it? Pin it!

3/4 view of a star shaped loaf of bread on a wooden cutting board.

Tips for the perfect Star Bread

  • Dice the apples in small pieces to make twisting the bread easier without losing the filling.
    • We recommend using fresh apples. Canned or jar apple slices will have too much moisture making the bread soggy and/or lose it’s shape.
  • Don’t overfill the dough. You will just lose the extra filling when you twist it or it will be difficult to shape.
  • Don’t overproof the second rise. By doing so, you will lose the shape.
  • We added turbinado (sugar in the raw) to the top of our bread because we love the crunch you get when you bite into it. You could skip the sugar and just apply a dusting of powdered sugar or a simple glaze.
sliced bread

I’m hoping all of these details will encourage you to give it a try and I hope you’ll let me know if you have any questions.

If you like this recipe here are some other shaped bread recipes you may enjoy.

We LOVE baking bread! You can find all of our bread recipes here!

Don’t have time to make it now? Pin it for later!

Two Picture collage for Pinterest separated by the title "Spiced Apple Star Bread" Top picture is a baked loaf of star bread and the bottom photo shows the inside of a slice.

The bread gods were definitely with me. There isn’t anything difficult about making this bread and I’ll be making it several times throughout the year.

It’s not any more difficult than making cinnamon rolls, and makes an amazing gift!

If you like this recipe, we would appreciate your comment and a 5-star ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ review!

Top view of apple bread twisted into the shape of a star on a wooden cutting board
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5 from 4 votes

Spiced Apple Star Bread Recipe

Spiced Apple Star Bread is a sweet, buttery, bread that’s tender and warm from the fall spices. It’s easier to make than you’d think!
Prep Time 2 hrs 30 mins
Cook Time 12 mins
Total Time 2 hrs 42 mins
Servings 12
Author Julie Menghini

Ingredients

Dough

  • 2 cups Unbleached all-Purpose flour plus more for dusting
  • 1 cup of warm water may not use all
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter softened to room temperature
  • 2 tsp instant yeast
  • 2 tbsp white granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/4 cup dry milk
  • 1/4 cup potato flour or instant mashed potato flakes

Filling

  • 1/4 cup dark brown sugar
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp ground allspice
  • 2 tbsp butter melted
  • 1 apple cored, peeled, and finely diced
  • 1 egg slightly beaten
  • Turbinado or demerara sugar

Instructions

  • In the bowl of an electric mixer combine all dough ingredients EXCEPT water. Mix on low until blended. Drizzle in warm water with mixer running until dough is soft and smooth. Put the dough in a greased bowl and turn once to coat both sides. Cover with plastic wrap and allow bread to rise for 1 hour or until dough doubles in size.
  • Once the bread has risen, divide into four even-sized pieces and roll into balls. Cover with plastic wrap and allow to rest for 15 minutes.
  • In a small bowl combine brown sugar and spices. Mix to combine. Melt butter in a separate container.
  • Dust a working surface lightly with flour. Roll out each piece of dough into a 10-inch circle.
  • Place the first circle on a baking sheet covered with parchment paper. Brush with melted butter, sprinkle with brown sugar mixture and top with diced apples.
  • Place the next circle over the first filled circle. Stretch to match up edges. Repeat brushing with butter, sprinkle with brown sugar and then apples. Repeat with the 3rd circle and top with the fourth but don’t fill or brush the top of the fourth circle.
  • Place a 2-1/2″ to 3″ biscuit or cookie in the center of the circle. Don’t cut through the dough center just set it there. Using a sharp knife or dough scraper make 4 cuts through all 4 layers evenly spaced through all four layers. Repeat until you have 16 cuts to the center.
  • Pick up two strips and twist them twice away from each other. Continue until all 16 strips have been twisted.
  • Pinch the pairs of strips together to create a point.
  • Remove the cutter. Cover with a clean towel and let star rise 45 minutes. While star rises, preheat the oven to 400°F.
  • Remove towel and brush with beaten egg. Sprinkle with Turbinado or demerara sugar. Bake for 10-15 minutes until golden brown.
  • Cool on the pan for 10 minutes before serving.
  • Store covered at room temperature.

Video

Notes

Recipe adapted from King Arthur Flour

Nutrition

Calories: 189kcal | Carbohydrates: 27g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 7g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Cholesterol: 31mg | Sodium: 231mg | Potassium: 117mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 9g | Vitamin A: 230IU | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 37mg | Iron: 1.1mg
This recipe was calculated using the exact brands and measurements I used to make this recipe. If you are following a strict diet please note changing anything will cause the nutritional info to change. My calculations are intended as a guide only.
Tried this recipe? That’s awesome!Mention @hostessatheart or tag #hostessatheart!

Thank you Pavani for hosting this month’s fun challenge. We can’t wait to go through all of the recipes and hope you will check them out too.

This month’s for BreadBakers’, we’re baking bread with fall fruits and vegetables, for example, apples, grapes, pears, sweet potatoes, cauliflower, broccoli, acorn squash, butternut squash etc.

Our host of the month is Pavani at Cook’s Hideout. Check out what the Bread Bakers have come up with Fall Fruits & Vegetables.

#BreadBakers is a group of bread loving bakers who get together once a month to bake bread with a common ingredient or theme. You can see all our of lovely bread by following our Pinterest board right here. Links are also updated after each event on the #BreadBakers home page.

We take turns hosting each month and choosing the theme/ingredient. If you are a food blogger and would like to join us, just send Stacy an email with your blog URL to [email protected].

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Star-shaped bread
Recipe Rating




April

Friday 24th of September 2021

Had some difficulty with my layers staying pinched together. Is it possible I got my fillings too close to the edges? I was going to let my husband see it before tasting, but I couldn’t wait!

Julie Menghini

Monday 27th of September 2021

I think that maybe too much flour may be the culprit. Try brushing it off or even dampening the ends with your egg wash before pinching it together. Regardless, I'm glad you enjoyed it!

Michele

Monday 18th of November 2019

Unbelievable! Finally got the courage to try this recipe. My friends thought I was a master baker! It was so beautiful! The step by step instructions were just what this girl needed to make it! THANK YOU! ps... it tasted even better than it looked!

Julie Menghini

Monday 18th of November 2019

Thank you, Michele!

Chris

Saturday 28th of September 2019

This dough works well in a bread machine, dough cycle. I have made without apples from KARTHUR site. It is NOT recommended to preassemble and refrigerate as filling will seep out, this would be worse with apples as contact with sugar will draw moisture out of apples. I also used my pie crust bags, plastic circles that are zippered and enclose the dough, nice even round uniform circles.. this is bread not pastry, you won’t overwork it. Check out the blog on King Arthur, separate from the recipe for detailed shaping.. yes, time consuming but a beautiful and delicious bread, not overly sweet..

Julie Menghini

Saturday 28th of September 2019

Thank you for sharing, Chris!

Kristn

Monday 24th of December 2018

Wondering how much of this can be made ahead of time. I am debating on whether I should make it all the way to baking and then putting it in the fridge so that on Christmas morning, I just have to pull it out and bake it OR should I just bake it all the way and then just reheat it in the morning....have you or anyone else on here made it ahead? What were the results?

Julie Menghini

Tuesday 25th of December 2018

I've had that question before Kristn and sorry I didn't see it yesterday. Personally, I freeze baked goods all the time and know you can buy frozen cinnamon rolls dough and then bake them later. I think I'd bake it up and then wrap it in plastic and then foil. It should come out like it was freshly baked. I'll give this a try sometime and update the post.

Alicia

Sunday 23rd of December 2018

To prevent the filling from making a pool of caramelized sugar on the bottom, I divided the dough into 5 and rolled it out in stages, to let the layers relax in turn, achieving 10" disks for each. I buttered the bottom layer, then placed the first filled layer on top and when finished stacking and pinching the top 4 layers, cut and twisted them as Julie instructs in her recipe, leaving the bottom layer whole. Then I gently tucked in the bottom layer to keep the star shape and sure enough, when the whole beautiful thing was baked, the bottom whole layer caught the run-off from the top four layers. Instead of a sticky mess on the bottom, you get more of what you put in it with the same amount of dough, albeit thin as struedel without the hassle of making a giant paper-thin pastry dough, you do it in stages of manageable size 10". Thank you so much, Julie! Next, a savory version with herbs and nuts.

Julie Menghini

Tuesday 25th of December 2018

Wow Alicia you definitely did an amazing job and I'd definitely think the savory version with herbs and nuts would be delicious. Maybe even a sprinkling of grated cheese in your filling. If you do it let me know how it goes.