Kefir Bread

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Kefir Bread Fresh Out of the Oven

Buttermilk bread was in my repertoire at least 20 plus years ago and used to be my “go to” bread to bake.  Over time, I must admit that I forgot about it and concentrated on challah, oatmeal bread, whole grain crackers and various loaves.  A couple weeks ago I decided to revert back to this recipe, subbing Kefir for buttermilk since I always have plain kefir on hand.  

This dough is silky and is easy to work with. The bread makes great toast or sandwiches – it’s not too sweet and it is really, really good.  This recipe makes one large loaf or two smaller loaves.  I think if I get fancy and try to form a turtle bread or a sunflower bread, I’ll use this recipe.  Meanwhile it is going into heavy rotation here. And yes, the house smells amazing!

Kefir Bread



  • 1 Tbsp. yeast
  • ¼ c warm water
  • ½ tsp sugar
  • ¼  stick soft butter
  • 2 Tbsp neutral oil (I use avocado or grapeseed oil)
  • 2 Tbsp honey
  • 1 ½  tsp sea salt
  • 1 c buttermilk or kefir,  room temp (after taking it out of the fridge and shaking  the carton, I heated it in a microwave-safe cup for 45 seconds)
  • 1 egg beaten, room temp (USE ONLY HALF FOR THE BREAD and add ¼ tsp sugar to the other half of the beaten egg for the top)
  • 3-4 c bread flour

In a bowl, proof yeast with the warm water and sugar.  Add liquids, then flour a bit at a time.  Knead for 8 minutes on the counter, then put in a buttered large bowl and  rise for 70 minutes covered with a tea towel in a warm place.  Punch  the dough down, kneading it 20 times or so.  Let it relax and sit for 10 minutes, then knead a bit more and form into rolls or loaves and let rise, covered, for 45 minutes in a warm place. 

At this point, begin preheating the empty oven to 325 degrees.  After the oven is preheated, brush the tops of the rolls or bread with the egg wash.  I usually score a design into the dough with my lame, then bake the two loaves on a parchment paper lined cookie sheet at 325 for 25 min until the center registers 190 degrees.   Cool on a rack for at least a half hour before slicing.

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4 Responses to Kefir Bread

  1. Ruth Craver says:

    I’ve got kefir in the fridge for molasses bread, but this looks good! And, yes, I also love the smell of yeast rising bread dough! If they made aroma candles with that scent, I’d buy them!

    • Marilyn says:

      A fresh bread rising in the oven scented candle might be a way for us to make our first million, Ruth. Love that idea! Happy the Kefir will be used again too. It stays a long time in the fridge so I use it in place of buttermilk for many things.

  2. Beth Donaldson says:

    Good morning Muffy!
    Is the softened butter considered a liquid?
    Thank you and happy Chanukah-

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