Cinnamon brown sugar pull-apart bread

This bread is perfect for this time of year because of all the sweet, warming cinnamon tucked between every layer of soft bread. The finished bread looks like it would be incredibly complicated, but it’s not. 


  1. Microwave ¼ cup (60 ml) of the milk to 100ºF (38ºC) in a small bowl. Add the pinch of sugar and yeast. Let stand for 10 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, microwave together the remaining ¼ cup (60 ml) of milk and butter until the butter is melted. Let the mixture cool to about 104ºF (40ºC) before whisking in the eggs. Set aside.
  3. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the flour and sugar. When the yeast mixture has sat for 10 minutes and is frothy, add it to the bowl along with the milk/egg mixture. Combine the ingredients on low speed until you obtain a rough, shaggy dough.
  4. Switch to the dough hook attachment and knead the dough on low for 10 minutes.
  5. Transfer the dough to a large greased bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Put the bowl in the oven (keep the oven off and make sure it is cool inside to begin with) and close the door. Turn the oven light on, still keeping the oven off. Let the bread rise for 60 minutes or until it has doubled in size.
  6. On a floured surface, roll the dough out into a 12 x 20 in. (31 x 51 cm) rectangle.
  7. Grease the inside of a loaf pan with a little of the melted unsalted butter and line the bottom with parchment paper. Set aside.
  8. Brush the rectangle of dough with the rest of the melted unsalted butter, making sure to brush every inch of the dough from edge to edge. Use all the butter.
  9. In a small bowl, combine the brown sugar and cinnamon. Sprinkle it evenly over the entire surface of the dough. Pat it down lightly.
  10. Cut the rectangle lengthwise into 6 long strips. Stack the strips one on top of the other.
  11. Cut the stack into 6 even blocks.
  12. Fit the blocks of layered dough into the prepared pan vertically, as if you were stacking books.
  13. Cover the pan loosely with a clean kitchen towel and let the bread rise on the counter for 30 to 45 minutes or until puffy.
  14. Preheat the oven to 350ºF (180ºC).
  15. When the bread is ready, remove the kitchen towel and bake the bread in the centre of the preheated oven for about 45 minutes or until the edges are deep brown. You can also check the internal temperature of the bread; it should be around 190ºF (88ºC).
  16. Let the bread cool 20 minutes in the pan before carefully unmoulding.
  17. Prepare the glaze by whisking together the icing sugar, vanilla and milk. Adjust with a little more milk as needed so that the glaze is thick but pourable. Drizzle it over the bread.

Janice Lawandi

Montreal, Quebec

Today, Janice works as a recipe developer and also writes about science in the kitchen.

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