Festive Hanukkah Faves: Sesame Seed Challah

Challah is a traditional bread that’s been used for Jewish celebrations for centuries. Over time it has evolved and become extremely versatile (hello, babka) as people have created savory and sweet variations. 

This sesame seed challah is warm and toasty. It’s perfect for serving as an appetizer or using your leftovers for other dishes. Challah is your oyster – let’s get baking. 

Sesame Seed Challah 


2 ½ cups whole milk or water

1 packet active dry yeast

8 ⅔ cups all-purpose flour

¼ cup canola or vegetable oil

½ cup granulated sugar

4 eggs

1 tablespoon kosher salt 

Sesame seeds for sprinkling 



 1. In a small saucepan over low heat, warm the milk (or water) – don’t let it boil. 

 2. In a large mixing bowl, add flour, and create a well in the center. Add packet of yeast, ½ cup of warmed milk, and a few drops of honey into the well. Let stand until foamy. 

 3. In another large mixing bowl, combine the rest of the warmed milk, sugar, oil, and 3 eggs. Stir in the salt.

 4. Slowly combine the liquid mixture into the flour, about ½ cup at a time. 

 5. Once a sticky dough is formed, knead the mixture on a floured surface until smooth and elastic. Form into a ball.

 6. Place the dough in an oiled bowl, cover with a damp cloth, and let sit for 1 hour or until doubled in size. 

 7. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside. 

 8. Gently punch down the dough on a floured surface and divide it into 4 equal parts. 

 9. One at a time, divide each portion into 3 equal pieces, roll them out, and braid them. Pinch the ends and tuck them underneath to seal them. Cover with a damp cloth and let stand until they’ve doubled in size. 

 10. Preheat the oven to 325℉. 

 11. Beat the remaining egg and brush it over the braided loaves. Sprinkle with sesame seeds.

 12. Bake for 20 to 30 minutes or until golden brown. 

Ready to start baking? Get everything you need for your Hanukkah faves delivered with Shipt grocery delivery. 

Category: Food & Drink

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