Swirled Cinnamon Raisin Bread

Swirled Cinnamon Raisin Bread is one of those classic favorites that is such a special treat when it’s homemade. With pantry staple ingredients that you probably have on hand, you can make this bread and spoil yourself and your family. It’s certainly a very upgraded toast to have with your coffee for breakfast or as a snack anytime of day.

The bread itself is so fluffy and rich from the butter and eggs. There’s plenty of cinnamon flavor in both the bread and the sweet filling that swirls throughout the bread. My husband and both my boys love when I make this bread and it gets gobbled up in no time. Raisins are actually one of Nathaniel and Josh’s favorite snacks, so they love this bread too. 

Ingredients:

1 1/2 cups warm milk (105-110 degrees Fahrenheit)

2 1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast

1/4 cup granulated sugar

4 Tablespoons butter, melted

3 egg yolks

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

4 1/4 cups bread flour or all purpose flour

3/4 cup raisins

Cinnamon Swirl:

2 1/2 Tablespoons butter, softened

1/4 – 1/3 cup brown sugar

3/4 Tablespoon ground cinnamon

1/2 Tablespoon all purpose flour

Instructions:

For the yeast dough, you can mix it by hand or use a standing mixer with a dough hook attachment. You can also use a bread machine, set to the “Dough” setting.

In a large bowl, mix the milk, yeast and sugar. Add the melted butter, egg yolks, salt and mix to combine. Add the ground cinnamon and vanilla extract. Add the flour, 1 cup at a time, until all the flour is incorporated. Knead for at least 5 minutes. If you are using a standing mixer, the dough should pull away from the sides of the bowl. The dough will be soft and somewhat sticky. Try not to add more flour, or the bread will turn out denser and not as soft and fluffy as it should. When the dough rises, it will be easier to handle.

Meanwhile, pour boiling water over the raisins and let them stand for about 5 minutes. Discard the water, drying the raisins somewhat with a paper towel or a clean kitchen towel. This will help to plump up the raisins and make them extra soft and juicy.

Add the raisins to the bread and mix for another minute, until the raisins are incorporated into the dough evenly. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap or a towel. Set aside to rise until the dough has doubled in size. Plastic wrap works a little bit better. Since it covers the bowl tightly, it creates kind of a steam in the bowl, keeps the dough from forming a dry skin and helps it rise better.

One of my favorite tricks is to wrap the bowl in a towel and place it inside a heated blanket. The bread dough rises evenly and very quickly.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

When the dough has doubled in size, sprinkle flour on kitchen counter and roll out the dough into a rectangle, about 18-20 inches by 9 inches. Spread the softened butter over the surface of the bread. Combine the brown sugar, ground cinnamon and all purpose flour. Adding  a bit of flour will help the swirl stick to the dough and help to prevent big gaps in the bread. If you use a bit of powdered sugar in addition to the brown sugar, it will do the trick too, since it has some starch in there. Use 1/4 cup brown sugar if you want it to be less sweet and 1/3 cup if you want it to be sweeter. Sprinkle the cinnamon sugar mixture over the butter. Roll up the dough as tightly as possible, kind of like a jelly roll, starting from the short side. Place the bread into a buttered bread loaf pan, a standard bread size, about 9 inches X 5 inches. Set aside to rise for another 30-40 minutes. (If your house is cold, it could take up to an hour.)Two Options: You can make the bread into one large loaf or divide the dough in half and make two smaller loaves of bread. 

Bake in the preheated oven for 40-50 minutes, if making the large loaf, or 25-35 minutes if baking the smaller loaves.

The Top Crust: You also have several option of what to do with the outer crust. To make if very shiny and glistening, brush the risen loaf(ves) with an egg wash (1 egg+1 Tablespoon water) before putting it in the oven to bake. For a more matte crust, brush the risen loaves with melted butter before baking it. You can also brush the top of the baked bread with melted butter, which will soften the crust. You can also omit all the toppings and leave it the way it is:).

Turn bread out onto rack and cool to room temperature. Slice as desired. (Bread can be kept in airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days. Baked bread freezes really well too. If you make 2 loaves, you can freeze one of them or freeze slices, however you want.)

Swirled Cinnamon Raisin Bread
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Recipe type: Sweets
Serves: 1 loaf
Ingredients
  • 1½ cups warm milk (105-110 degrees Fahrenheit)
  • 2¼ teaspoons active dry yeast
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • 4 Tablespoons butter, melted
  • 3 egg yolks
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 4¼ cups bread flour or all purpose flour
  • ¾ cup raisins
Cinnamon Swirl:
  • 2½ Tablespoons butter, softened
  • ¼ - ⅓ cup brown sugar
  • ¾ Tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ Tablespoon all purpose flour
Instructions
  1. In a large bowl, mix the milk, yeast and sugar. Add the melted butter, egg yolks, salt and mix to combine. Add the ground cinnamon and vanilla extract.
  2. Add the flour, 1 cup at a time, until all the flour is incorporated. Knead for at least 5 minutes. If you are using a standing mixer, the dough should pull away from the sides of the bowl. The dough will be soft and somewhat sticky. Try not to add more flour, or the bread will turn out denser and not as soft and fluffy as it should. When the dough rises, it will be easier to handle.
  3. Meanwhile, pour boiling water over the raisins and let them stand for about 5 minutes. Discard the water, drying the raisins somewhat with a paper towel or a clean kitchen towel. This will help to plump up the raisins and make them extra soft and juicy.
  4. Add the raisins to the bread and mix for another minute, until the raisins are incorporated into the dough evenly. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap or a towel. Set aside to rise until the dough has doubled in size.
  5. Plastic wrap works a little bit better. Since it covers the bowl tightly, it creates kind of a steam in the bowl, keeps the dough from forming a dry skin and helps it rise better.
  6. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  7. When the dough has doubled in size, sprinkle flour on kitchen counter and roll out the dough into a rectangle, about 18-20 inches by 9 inches. Spread the softened butter over the surface of the bread.
  8. Combine the brown sugar, ground cinnamon and all purpose flour. Use ¼ cup brown sugar if you want it to be less sweet and ⅓ cup if you want it to be sweeter. Sprinkle the cinnamon sugar mixture over the butter.
  9. Roll up the dough as tightly as possible, kind of like a jelly roll, starting from the short side.
  10. Place the bread into a buttered bread loaf pan, a standard bread size, about 9 inches X 5 inches. Set aside to rise for another 30-40 minutes.
  11. Two Options: You can make the bread into one large loaf or divide the dough in half and make two smaller loaves of bread.
  12. Bake in the preheated oven for 40-50 minutes, if making the large loaf, or 25-35 minutes if baking the smaller loaves.
  13. The Top Crust: You also have several option of what to do with the outer crust. To make if very shiny and glistening, brush the risen loaf(ves) with an egg wash (1 egg+1 Tablespoon water) before putting it in the oven to bake. For a more matte crust, brush the risen loaves with melted butter before baking it. You can also brush the top of the baked bread with melted butter, which will soften the crust. You can also omit all the toppings and leave it the way it is:).
  14. Turn bread out onto rack and cool to room temperature. Slice as desired.
Notes
For the yeast dough, you can mix it by hand or use a standing mixer with a dough hook attachment. You can also use a bread machine, set to the "Dough" setting.

One of my favorite tricks is to wrap the bowl in a towel and place it inside a heated blanket. The bread dough rises evenly and very quickly.

Bread can be kept in airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days. Baked bread freezes really well too. If you make 2 loaves, you can freeze one of them or freeze slices, however you want.

Look at that incredible fluffy texture of the bread. It is so tender.

6 Comments

  • Lilia Z

    Thank you for sharing this recipe! I will be trying it tomorrow. My kids love cinnamon raisin toast and we buy it all the time. I prefer to make my own bread but never thought about making cinnamon raisin bread. First day of school is tomorrow for our kids and I can’t wait to surprise them with this as an after school snack.

    God bless!

  • Ksyusha

    Oh, my. I love homemade bread , this recipe is life changing. We eat toast with cream cheese and jam almost everyday. Gonna make it tomorrow. Can’t wait to see my husband’s reaction. 😉

  • Lilia Z

    I made a huge mistake when I made this recipe… I didn’t double it! Our family of 7 devoured it within minutes. Some of us had it with butter and local honey. Oh so good! Olga I love how consistently you give us fool-proof recipes. This one will be on repeat at our household.

    • olgak7

      I’m so happy to hear that, Lilia! Thank you so much for taking the time to write. I’m so thrilled to hear that the bread was such a hit with your family.

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