Cranberry Cinnamon Star Bread for #BreadBakers

#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 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. This month the Bread Bakers are making Tear & Share Holiday Breads, a theme chosen by Felice from All That's Left Are The Crumbs.

This was such a fabulous theme! I had the chance to try something out that was completely new to me, and it certainly didn't come out perfectly but I have to say I was very happy with the final product! I think this star bread is both beautiful and absolutely delicious! 

The colored filling peeking through the twisted ends gives such lovely color and interest to this piece. The dough and filling are very reminiscent of cinnamon rolls, which we typically make on Christmas morning. I could definitely see making this instead! The dough is tender and buttery, and that yummy cinnamon filling studded with cranberries is absolutely delicious! There are so many variations of fillings for breads like this - I saw one that used cranberry and apple, another with nutella, another with cranberry and pistachio. 

I loved that this version incorporated some cranberry jelly into the filling - since I happened to have some leftover in my refrigerator still! 

Serve this stunning bread warm from the oven and watch those tear-able shareable pieces disappear in no time flat - it's wonderful room temp as well. If you want a little added sweetness add a dusting of powdered sugar or a drizzle of a simple icing made from some sifted powdered sugar and a little milk, or orange juice - that would be a lovely complement to the cranberry filling!

Don’t forget to check out all the amazing tear and share breads baked by our talented bakers:

Cranberry Cinnamon Star Bread 

Bread Ingredients
3 3/4 cups bread flour
1/3 cup sugar
1/4 tsp salt
3/4 cup milk, warmed to about 100º - 110ºF
1 TBS dry active yeast
2 large egg yolks, reserve whites aside
3 TBS butter, melted

Filling Ingredients
1/3 cup sugar
3 TBS brown sugar
1/2 cup butter, room temp
2 TBS ground cinnamon
1/8 tsp. salt
1/4 cup cranberry sauce (jellied)
1/3 cup dried cranberries

  1. In a medium size bowl, heat the milk in microwave for about 30 seconds for it to reach 100 - 110 degrees; then whisk the yeast into it and set aside 10-15 minutes to activate.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer, add the dry ingredients: bread flour, sugar, salt. Whisk to combine.
  3. When the yeast is active and frothy, attach a dough hook and turn the speed to low, pour in the milk / yeast mixture, egg yolks, and melted butter and gradually increase speed until the dough comes together. If it is too dry, add just a little bit of water at a time until the dough ball forms. Allow it to knead for about 3 minutes on medium speed. It should be smooth and shiny.
  4. Form into a ball, and add a little bit of oil to the bottom of the bowl. Return dough ball, and flip it over so it is coated on both sides. Cover with a tea towel and set aside in a warm place to rise 60-90 minutes, or until doubled in size.
  5. When dough is almost ready, prepare the filling by adding the sugar, brown sugar, softened butter, salt, and jellied cranberry sauce to the bowl of the stand mixer with a paddle attachment fitted. Start on low speed and increase to high until the mixture is very well blended and evenly combined. Stir in the dried cranberries. Set aside until ready to use.
  6. Punch the dough down. Dump it out onto a lightly flour counter and divide into 4 even pieces.
  7. Roll each piece out into a 10-inch circle (as evenly as possible. The dough may need to rest a few minutes before you can roll it out, without it immediately retracting.
  8. Lay your first circle down on a piece of parchment paper or silpat on the counter.
  9. Spread 1/3 of the filling all the way around, leaving a thin edge clean at the outside edges.
  10. Repeat with the next dough round, 1/3 filling, one more dough round, and the last of the filling. Then top with the final circle of dough. 
  11. Place a small cup or round cookie / biscuit cutter (about 3-inches wide) at the center and gently press just to leave an indent (don't actually cut into the dough). This is how far in to cut the next set of lines. Cut 16 lines, evenly around the circle, without cutting into that marked center circle. These 16 lines will become your 8 "legs" of the star.
  12. Take two of the strips and give them one turn away from each other, bringing their ends together. Press the ends together and shape into a point (see pictures above). Repeat until you have 8 pretty "legs".
  13. Place the silpat or parchment paper along with the bread carefully onto a baking tray. Cover with a tea towel and set aside in a warm place to rise for 20 more minutes.
  14. Whip the reserved egg whites and brush all over the risen dough while the oven preheats to 350 degrees.
  15. Bake 15-20 minutes, until the bread is golden brown and cooked through at the center. (The center will cook slower than the outer rings, you can cover the edges with foil to prevent over browning until the center cooks through if needed.
  16. Dust with powdered sugar or a simple powdered sugar icing drizzle for additional sweetness and a prettier presentation if desired before serving (do not add powdered sugar or icing until mostly cooled).
Recipe adapted from Wild Flour's Kitchen


  1. Just gorgeous Rebekah and I love the flavors you used.

  2. This has got to be the prettiest way to use up leftover cranberry jelly and cranberries that I've ever seen, Rebekah! Bet it disappeared in no time.

  3. I have some jellied cranberry sauce that I want to use up. This would be perfect.

  4. Adding the cranberry sauce was genius. This sounds delicious and looks stunning.

  5. I love cranberry sauce and it is a great idea to use in filling. This would be a delicious breakfast.

  6. I have leftover cranberry sauce!! YUM. I love making these stars.

  7. What an awesome bread Rebekah. Love the jelly and cranberries peeping out of the star arms. How delicious it must be!


  8. Amazing and beautiful bread Rebeka!!


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