Keto Beautiful Braided Challah on a white platter
Baked Goods 78 comments

Keto Beautiful Braided Challah Bread

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This Keto Beautiful Braided Challah Bread is so delightful fresh from the oven with butter and jam and it’s arguably even better later as French toast! Low carb and sugar-free, this bread will definitely become a staple at your table.

Keto Beautiful Braided Challah on a white platter
Keto Beautiful Braided Challah – a sugar-free showstopper

Traditional bread keto-fied

Challah bread is a traditional Jewish bread that is served on the Sabbath as well as holidays. It is a flavorful, moist bread enriched with eggs. It is usually a bit sweet with traditional recipes containing honey. The braid is coated in eggwash which gives it the characharistic browned bumpy braid look. Challah is sometimes topped with poppy seeds or sesame seeds to add a little texture.

I first learned to make challah bread for my husband over a decade ago, well before out keto days! I love learning about Jewish culture and traditions and, of course I love caring for those around me through cooking and baking! So, I had to figure out a way to make a keto version of traditional Challah and that’s how the Keto Beautiful Braided Challah was born!

A “holiday” bread for all occasions

This Keto Beautiful Braided Challah Bread is wonderful for holdiays but it’s also amazing as an everyday bread. Its a pinch sweet, kind of like a Hawaiian roll. It’s great with butter and jam for breakfast! Let me recommend Keto Sweet Sugar-Free Strawberry Jam! And it is also completely happy making a sandwich for lunch. If it starts to get a little dry, PLEASE try it as French toast! You can thank me later!

A note on the origins of this keto recipe

This is for those of you steeped in the history and lineage of keto baking! This amazing bread builds on the success of other amazing Keto bakers. I think the original version is known as Deidre’s bread and was one of the first breads recommended to me. I made it in its original form but I never loved the flax in that recipe. I played around and came up with a variation on it that was pretty good and included some ingredients that are now nearly impossibly to source. Samyah of I don’t sugar coat went on to amend Deidre’s recipe by swapping out lupin flour for the flax. This challah is an enriched dough, truer to traditional challah, but the building blocks of the flour pull from Deidre and Samyah – thank you to them and all of the amazing bakers on instagram and reddit who share their successes and failures for us all to improve!

KEY INGREDIENTS KETO CHALLAH BREAD

Vital Wheat Gluten

This wheat protein gives the Keto Beautiful Braided Challah Bread bread its chew and bounce. It’s the most crucial for giving this bread it’s familiar chew. Make sure you knead it long enough to let this baby do its thing!

Check out more keto recipes with vital wheat gluten.

Lupin Flour

This high protein, low carb flour from the lupin bean helps this bread have its amazing texture. This miracle bean will help you recreate some of your favorite recipes in a keto way. It’s definitely worth the investment.

Check out more keto recipes with lupin flour.

Oat Fiber

This ZERO calorie fiber from oats helps give This Keto Beautiful Braided Challah Bread a soft crumb and slightly cakey texture. I love this ingredient for baking and use it in all of my breads. Please be sure to buy LifeSource brand, others I have tried have caused my breads to collapse.

Check out more keto recipes with oat fiber.

Allulose

This sweetener is my absolute favorite. Challah is traditionally made with honey and allulose adds a nice sweet note to This Keto Beautiful Braided Challah Bread. Don’t skip this one!

Check out more keto recipes with allulose.

TECHNIQUE

Kneading

This Keto Beautiful Braided Challah Bread seems to need a little extra help in the kneading department. Knead it until the dough is no longer sticky and it stretches when you pull on it, rather than ripping. It takes 8-10 minutes to get o a soft, supple texture.

Braiding

Whether in a loaf or a circle, braiding gives a challah loaf its characteristic look. It’s possible to do a complicated four or six strand but one of the easiest ways to get a beautiful look without a ton of hassle is doing a four strand woven braid. Roll your bread into four equally long ropes and starting at the left, pick up one strand and have it go over, under, over the following three strands. Continue in this exact way from the left, going over, under, over the other strands. You can leave this as a long loaf or make it into a circle.

Keto Beautiful Braided Challah Bread with egg wash
Keto Beautiful Braided Challah Bread with egg wash ready to go into the oven

Egg Wash 🥚

There are many ways to do this! You can use a whole egg, egg yolks or egg whites and you can give multiple coats if you like. I use the egg white because that’s what I have left over from this recipe. Apply gently with a silicone brush. There’s truly no wrong way, just don’t forget to do it because the brown, shiny braids give this Keto Beautiful Braided Challah Bread its iconic look.

Temperature

I like to use an instant read thermometer to check that the bread reaches 210 degrees F. I find that helps ensure that the loaf is done and that it holds its shape. The thermometer helps also while prepping the milk for the yeast.

EQUIPMENT

TROUBLESHOOTING

Okay, bread definitely presents its own set of challenges! Let’s plan ahead to avoid any troubles we could encounter with this Keto Beautiful Braided Challah Bread!

Why isn’t my bread rising?

  • Is your yeast dead? Make sure the yeast starts to bubble in the warm water.
  • Is your water too hot? Be sure to take the temperature of the water before adding your yeast. If it’s too hot, it can kill the yeast.
  • Did you give it time? Go by feel rather than by time. It can take bread a while to rise.
  • Did you place it in a warm spot? In the oven with the door closed and the light on an be a good place for dough to rise. Another trick is to boil water in the microwave, then add the covered dough to the microwave (TURNED OFF!) and the steamy water.
  • Did you remember to add honey or inulin to the recipe? Yeast is hungry and it loves sugar (who doesn’t?). After it gorges on the stuff it gets gassy and those bubbles cause the dough to puff, or rise. No food = no gas. Make sure the yeast is fed!
  • Did you try the instant yeast? It’s pretty darn forgiving.

Whys is my bread not reaching the windowpane stage?

Bread seems to have this magic stage where the gluten is fully developed and the dough can be stretched into a thin “window” without ripping. It takes time to reach this stage. Set your timer and check it but if it’s not there yet, give it a little more time. Breadmaking is process you have to get the feel for if you’re new. You’re heard the saying, to make an omelette you have to bread a couple eggs. Breadmaking can be like this – if you’re new to it, read all the instructions and look at the photos carefully – it can help!

Why did my bread not brown evenly like all the pictures?

Make sure you rotate the bread part way through baking so it browns evenly. If it starts to get too dark, cover it in foil. It’ll take a little babysitting at the end. And be sure to cover well in the eggwash, if it’s not applied evenly, the bread won’t brown evenly.

Keto bread is it’s own beast but there are some similarities across baking all yeasted bread. The King Arthur Flour website has some very good resources for bakers. Highly recommended!

🍽 SERVING

How to serve Keto Beautiful Braided Challah Bread:

Slices of Keto Beautiful Braided Challah
Slices of Keto Beautiful Braided Challah warm with butter and jam

STORING

I prefer to keep this one in the fridge to help keep an mold at bay. But this Keto Beautiful Braided Challah Bread never lasts long enough to get moldy in this house! You could freeze it if making a double batch but the texture might suffer.

❤️ MORE RECIPES YOU’LL LOVE

Keto Beautiful Braided Challah on a white platter

Keto Beautiful Braided Challah Bread

Lindsay
This Keto Beautiful Braided Challah Bread is so delightful fresh from the oven with butter and jam and it's arguably even better later as French toast! Low carb and sugar-free, this bread will definitely become a staple at your table for holidays and everyday.
5 from 26 votes
Prep Time 30 mins
Cook Time 40 mins
Rising Time 2 hrs
Course Bread
Cuisine Jewish
Servings 12
Calories 128 kcal

Equipment

  • Stand Mixer
  • silicone mat
  • Baking Pan
  • Wire Rack

Ingredients
  

  • 1 cup almond milk plain, unsweetened
  • 1 teaspoon honey for feeding the yeast
  • 1 tablespoon instant yeast
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 egg yolks – save egg whites for washing the loaf before it bakes
  • 4 tablespoons melted butter can substitute oil if preferred
  • 1/2 cup allulose
  • 150 grams vital wheat gluten approximately 1 1/4 cups
  • 80 grams lupin flour approximately 2/3 cup l
  • 40 grams oat fiber approximately 1/2 cup
  • 1 teaspoon salt

Instructions
 

  • Heat almond milk to 110-120 degrees F. Add honey and yeast and allow to bloom in the bowl of your mixer. Prepare the remainder of the ingredients while the yeast is blooming
  • Add eggs, egg yolks and melted butter to the liquids and mix lightly.
  • In a separate bowl weigh out the flours. Weight is much more reliable than just measuring by volume. I wish it were easier but truly weighing is best for baking! Mix dry ingredients thoroughly to avoid clumping.
  • Slowly add dry ingredients to the mixer as it runs on low.
  • Once combined, use the dough hook to mix for 8-10 minutes. Touch the dough to check for stickiness. The dough should stretch when pulled and not rip. It should have a nice supple feeling when it’s ready.
  • Cover and place in a warm spot. Allow to rise until doubled in size. Be patient!
  • Punch down the dough and divide into four sections. Roll each section into a long piece. 7. Place on a baking sheet with parchment or silicone sheet. Attach all four at the end and careful weave the left most strand over, under, over and repeat weaving the entire loaf. Leave long, or form into a circle. Ensure you pinch the ends together.
  • Cover and allow to rise again.
  • While rising a second time, preheat oven to 325 degrees F.
  • Before baking, use remaining egg white to wash the loaf carefully making sure excess liquid doesn’t sit in the braid.
  • Bake 25-30 minutes. The thickness of your loaf may require a longer bake time. Rotate part way during baking to ensure even browning. If loaf is getting too dark, cover with foil. The bread is done when the thermometer reads 210 degrees F.
  • Allow to cool on a rack. Try to resist eating it all straight from the oven!
  • Store leftovers in the fridge.

Notes

Nutrition Information (per serving, recipe makes 12 servings)
Calories 128, protein 14.2 g, net carbs 2 g, fat 6.3 g
Nutrition info provided for reference, please use your ingredients for accurate macros. Data from cronometer.
 
Keyword holiday

78 Comments

  1. Thanks for adding a lot of new taste to my plate. I am gonna try a few of them at least for sure.

    • Thanks so much, Sarath, I hope you enjoy! Reach out if you need help or tips! xo

    • I’ve been recently diagnosed as prediabetic, I’m Jewish and I’ve been totally discouraged trying to figure out what I will do for weekly Shabbos challah for myself! Obviously, I’ll continue to make traditional challah for my family, but I genuinely can’t imagine living without being able to enjoy it with them. Every recipe I’ve looked at has been unappealing or includes dairy and would not be kosher to eat with meats etc. so far until this one. I’m ordering all the ingredients today and I will most certainly report back! I hope everything arrives quickly so I can give it a shot this Friday… from my lips to Hashem’s ears!

      • You are so sweet, Esti, thank you for writing. We started keto for health reasons and also struggled to find good recipes. I truly hope you make this and enjoy it! You can easily use olive oil (or an oil of your choice) instead of butter. I would love to hear how it goes for you! All the best, Lindsay

  2. 5 stars
    This is a culinary piece of art with the benefits of health and deliciousness! We, Romanians, have a similar recipe to Challah, but not many have the courage to replace ingredients. I’m all for healthy stuff, so I’ll have to check the lupin flour. Thanks for posting this!

  3. 5 stars
    What a gorgeous bread!! Challagh is something I haven’t been brave enough to try making. I think I need to get over my fear 🙂

  4. 5 stars
    This bread is so beautiful and your recipe makes me actually want to attempt to make this challah bread! Thanks for the great step by step instructions and troubleshooting, I can’t wait to give this a try.

  5. 5 stars
    Tastes as good as it looks! Definitely one of our new favorite recipes!!

  6. 5 stars
    Wow! I just tried this and to my great surprise it is like a real Challah!!! I had it fresh out of the oven with melted cheese, toasted with salted butter, and with pyure hazelnut keto friendly spread. All D E L I C I O U S!!! Thanks for a great recipe!
    Tip for the bakers: must wait LONG to let it rise and put in a warm place or it will not rise well. Follow my IG as above for the pictures 🙂

    • Thank you SO much for sharing your experience! I’m very happy to hear that you enjoyed it and it worked well for you. I agree about giving it time to rise and making sure it’s warm enough – putting it in a warm microwave or the oven with the light on can definitely help with that. Thank you for posting the gorgeous photos of the bread you made. Here’s a link!

  7. such a beautiful bread! how can I eat that? Looks really delicious. Can I sub. eggwash with applesauce?

    • Thanks so much, Jeannie! If you don’t want to use eggwash, I’d suggest a little almond milk mixed with allulose. It should help with browning and add some shine to the bread.

  8. 5 stars
    Sooooo glad to have a keto version for this amazing bread.

  9. 5 stars
    I’m kinda an aficionado on challah and this is as good as it gets! Great for sandwiches, French toast,
    or just plain. Sooo good. Thanks!

  10. I’m making this for the first time. I’m really looking forward to the result but how long do u let it rise for the second time? The recipe doesn’t state. Is it 2 hours again?

    • Hi, Jenny! I’m hoping you’ll really enjoy it! The first and second rise are both more by looks than exact timing. The temperature of your place, etc has a lot to do with it. It should rise around an hour each time but again, it’s more by feel/looks than the clock. After the first rise you’ll braid it and then leave it to rise again. I suggest at 45 minutes to check it out and see if it’s puffy again. If so, great! Pop it into the oven! If not, check again in anther 15 minutes. I’m sorry that’s not too concrete but I hope it helps. If you have more questions please feel free to reach out. I’ll see it really quickly if your write to me in instagram because I get phone notifications. Feel free to comment or try me there! @starfishinthekitchen Best wishes, Lindsay

  11. 5 stars
    Wow this looks delicious! Can’t wait to give it a go at the weekend!

  12. 5 stars
    This was excellent!

  13. 5 stars
    I can’t believe this is keto!!!!! The colour on this is so gorgeous.

  14. 5 stars
    I love the golden color, it’s a sign of a perfectly baked and very tasty challah bread

  15. 5 stars
    Keto braided bread looks really delicious

  16. I’ve just discovered your website this morning and reading through all your bread recipes! 🙂 They look phenomenal! I’ve been making the bread dough/rolls from I Don’t Sugar Coat and while they turn out and look gorgeous, I’ve been running into the fact that by the time my dough is at a window pane stage, it’s really tough and chewy. I notice that you use a lower amount of VWG in your recipes. I’m hoping to make one of your recipes this morning and see if I can get that soft tender crumb. Question about this challah recipe – I noticed that you don’t include the water roux as a technique here. Would it work just as well with this challah?

    • Thanks so much, Cheryl! I have not used the water roux specifically for the challah bread, but I think it should work out fine. It tends to make the bread a little softer and helps some with shelf life. I haven’t experienced tough or chewy bread but I do kind of watch it. I add the butter in a little at a time and then watch for it to get completely incorporated. Most of my failures have been due to using different brands of oat fiber, with some of the collapsing. If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out here or message me on instagram @starfishinthekitchen. I’m happy to help!

  17. 5 stars
    Such a great recipe! Delish!

  18. 5 stars
    This came out so beautiful and delicious!

  19. 5 stars
    Both delicious and beautiful!

  20. 5 stars
    So beautiful! Thanks for the recipe!

  21. 5 stars
    Such a great recipe! Thank you!

  22. 5 stars
    Always looking for keto recipes and this one is a winner!! thank you!

  23. 5 stars
    Great instructions. It turned out great.

  24. 5 stars
    This is so beautiful!

  25. 5 stars
    I have never made Challah bread, I’m going to try your recipe this week!

  26. 5 stars
    I’ve never seen a keto bread recipe that looks this appetizing!!!

  27. 5 stars
    I made this this weekend, and my husband’s words were, “incredible!” I also had someone else over who has been on keto for over a year, and he said, “this is the best bread like keto bread I’ve ever had.” I have shared this recipe with some friends who will also be making it this week! I am so grateful for your amazing recipe curating abilities! Thank you!
    I used liquid allulose, and extra Virgin olive oil instead of butter, and I made 13 mini rolls with everything topping.

    • Thank you so much, Aurora! It made my day to read that you and your crew enjoyed this recipe so much. Thanks for taking the time to leave a review and also for sharing your substitutions. Thanks!

  28. Hi there,
    I looked at your recipe (x 1) and the challah bread looks like you doubled or tripled the ingredients. Is that correct?

    • Hi Paul, thanks for your message. The photos of the bread show the recipe as written (x 1). The slices (from memory) were probably about 4-5 inches wide. I think that’s what you were asking – if I didn’t get your question, or if I could help with other questions, please feel free to reach out! All best, Lindsay

  29. 5 stars
    Thank you Lindsay for this wonderful recipe. I have been making it in my bread machine every week since I discovered this recipe and it always comes out great. Best keto bread I have ever tasted!

    • Thanks so much, Samrah! I’m really happy to hear you’ve been enjoying this recipe! I don’t have a bread machine (yet?) so I really appreciate you sharing your experience making the bread using one. I’m sure many readers will be glad to know that the bread machine works well with this recipe. Thanks so much; you’re the best!

  30. Joanna Stuart

    Love the look of this bread, but I’m in Australia and we can’t get the same brands here, even through Amazon. Any suggestions?

  31. Thanks so much for this great recipe! I have long made Deidre’s bread and it’s a staple in my house. Can’t wait to try your keto challah today. For regular challah, I usually do the first rise overnight in the fridge. Have you tried that with this recipe?

    • Hi Joyce, that’s a great question. I haven’t tried it with this recipe specifically but I have with some others and I think it should be fine. If you give it a try, I’d love to hear how it goes! Good luck and feel free to write if you have any other questions!

  32. I’m in the middle of the recipe right now , during the kneading phase (8 min in). It’s just a sticky mess, not really coming together as a dough. 4T oil seemed like a lot. It appears like I need to add more dry ingredients. If I just continue to knead another 10-15 min, is it likely to change? If not, should I try to let it rise while it’s still not really a ‘dough’ or add more gluten?

    • Hi Joyce, I wouldn’t knead for much longer. Is it forming a ball? Whenever I’ve made it, it is definitely dough and will stick together. It is possible to over knead it and have it kind of rip apart. I’d likely not knead any more and possibly add a little more dry ingredients. Did you weigh the ingredients and wondering if you used the recommended brands? I have had really bad luck with other brands of oat fiber. Wishing you good luck!

  33. Joyce Keller

    Thanks, Lindsay. Yes, weighed and measured all, and I have always used LifeSource oat fiber. I usually use Anthony’s VWG, but tried a different one today, though can’t imagine that made the difference. Was not remotely in a ball, so I ended up adding 2.5T extra gluten, and that brought it together (though hopefully didn’t cause overkneading while incorporating, though i wouldn’t call the first 15 min actual ‘kneading’ since it was not in a ball of any type). I will report back on the rise/texture of the final result!

    • Hi Joyce, sounds like a roller coaster! I’m glad it was weighed out, that’s at least one variable down! And great news on the LifeSource, that’s good. I know this isn’t your first time by far, but my first time making another bread recipe somehow was really off. I contacted the recipe writer for help, doctored it up, and it worked out in the long run. I’m hoping the same will happen for you! I probably knead around 8-10 minutes total when I make it using a stand mixer on low/medium. Wishing you good luck! I do use Anthony’s VWG and haven’t tried other brands so I’m hoping it’s not that. Crossing my fingers for a good turn out!

  34. Joyce Keller

    5 stars
    Hi, Lindsay. I’m reporting back on doing the first rise in the fridge overnight. Works perfectly! The only quirk is that it has large bubbles in it. I have been pushing out as many as i can while punching down, but think i will just let the rolling of the strands accomplish that next time. No huge bubbles in the baked challah, so that’s good. My only issue (and this is true for regular challah, too) is that my challah is relatively flat. Any idea how to make it rise up rather than out? They look beautiful but not high. I tried to paste a photo, but didn’t work 🙁

    • Hi Joyce, Thanks so much, that’s great to know! I haven’t tried letting it rise overnight but I’ll definitely try in the future. Regarding the height, I definitely have the same experience. The four strand braid that’s like a woven braid that is pictured here is a flatter loaf. There are two braids that I find will give a taller loaf – the four strand braid where it’s more like a chain. The other is the six strand braid. These two both end up a bit taller because of their braiding technique. The other way you can get a taller loaf, if you’re open to it, is to do something like a four strand braid and bake in a loaf pan. I do this with babka sometimes. You still get a gorgeous braided top but the pan walls force everything to expand upward. I hope that helps a little! Thanks again for reporting back on the overnight rise! Feel free to send a pic to lindsay at starfish in the kitchen dot com if you’d like! All best, Lindsay

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