Looking for a special fall treat for your family without tons of sugar? This beautiful spiced apple bread is a great “twist” on cinnamon raisin bread. It’s also made from 100% whole grain flour, and it tastes just as good as it looks!
For another impressive loaf, try our Rosemary Braided Bread.
On these cool fall days I often feel like baking something a little special. Like spiced apple twist bread, all swirled and beautiful. I love apples, and I love bread, so developing this recipe was really fun. I love a good apple quick bread, but I wanted to try something new. And I am so happy with the results.
While it’s easy to make, this spiced apple twist bread does take time to make because it rises twice – like most good yeast breads. Aside from requiring lots of time to rise, though, this bread is pretty simple. It looks more complicated than it is (time to impress your friends and your kids!)
This bread makes two loaves, so feel free to cut it in half. But I figure, if you’re going to take the time to make bread you may as well have two loaves to enjoy! Freeze one or gift it to a friend or neighbor.
A Healthier Baked Good
Not only does this bread look impressive, it’s healthier than a classic pastry. We cut back on the sugar so that you use less than 1/4 cup per loaf! Plus, each loaf contains an apple, and a handful of nuts for a little protein. To top it off, the bread is made completely from white whole wheat flour!
With those great key ingredients, you can feel good about feeding your family this treat, even if you decide to top it with honey butter (which is delicious, by the way). I even enjoyed toasting a few slices of this bread for a special breakfast. It’s just a perfect lightly sweet, hearty kind of bread.
How to Make Apple Twist Bread
I love how simple mixing up this bread is! No special process for the yeast, no stove-top melting of butter. Simply stir together the dry ingredients (flour, yeast, and salt) and then add in the sugar, coconut oil (or butter works), and warm milk. Mix well, then set aside for ten minutes to let the ingredients meld for a little while – this makes the kneading easier.
While the dough is rising, make the apple filling. First you’ll mix everything by the apples so that it’s all evenly mixed and will coat the apples evenly. Then peel and coarsely grate or finely chop your two apples. I used Jonagold, but you could use Granny Smith, Braeburn, or really whatever you have on hand. And whether you chop or grate is up to you – grating is easier, but if you like to have more chunky apple pieces it’s nice to chop them. Mix the apples into the spice mixture until well coated and set the mixture aside.
After rising this first time, punch the dough down and split it in half. Put the first half on a floured surface to roll out with a rolling pin. Roll the dough into a rectangle, roughly 14 x 10 inches. Spread half the apple mix all over the rectangle, just leaving an inch clear on the two long edges.
Roll the dough into a log, starting on the long sides so the log is nice and long. With the seam side down, cut straight up the log lengthwise so that you get two long strips of dough. Stop cutting an inch before the end so that the two pieces stick together, and then carefully twist them together with the filling facing up. Pinch the end together and tuck it under so that it looks nice.
Repeat with the second half of the dough. Cover both loaves lightly with plastic wrap and allow to rise for another hour or so, until doubled. Finally, brush with egg wash and then bake at 350* F for about 40 minutes, or until golden brown and hollow sounding when tapped.
Storing and Serving Apple Twist Bread
This apple twist bread tastes great warm. Once it has cooled completely, store it in the refrigerator for a longer shelf-life. Let return to room temperature before enjoying (you can also microwave it for just a few seconds to warm and soften the bread after refrigeration.)
For serving, try a slather of honey butter or cream cheese!
Spiced Apple Twist Bread
- 3 1/2 cup flour, all-purpose
- 2 teaspoon yeast, active dry
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 2 tablespoon coconut oil
- 1 1/2 cup milk
- 1 large egg
- 1/3 cup sugar
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon cloves, ground
- 1/4 cup walnuts, chopped
- 2 tablespoon flour, all-purpose
- 2 medium apple
For the Glaze (Optional)
- 3/4 cup powdered sugar
- 2-3 tablespoons whole milk
- Whisk together flour, yeast, and salt in a large bowl. Stir in the 1 tablespoon of sugar, coconut oil, and warm milk until well combined. Allow the mixture to sit and rest for 10 minutes.
- Once the mixture has finished resting, knead the dough on a floured surface for 10 minutes, until elastic. Oil a large bowl, place the dough in it, and cover with a wet towel, plastic wrap, or a lid. Allow to rise in a warm place for about 1 1/2 hours, or until doubled in size.
- While the dough is rising, make the apple filling. In a small bowl, stir together 1/4 cup sugar, spices, nuts and flour. Peel and grate or finely chop apples and add them to the bowl of spices. Stir until apple pieces are evenly covered.
- Once the dough has risen, punch it down and split it in half. One half at a time, roll the dough out with a rolling pin on a floured surface until it is about 14 x 10 inches. Spread half of the apple mixture on top, leaving just an inch bare on either of the long sides.
- Starting with a long edge, roll the dough into a log. Using kitchen scissors or a knife, cut the log lengthwise (so that you are cutting the spiral in half all the way up the log) but leave just an inch on the end so the log stays attached. Now crisscross the two long pieces with the filling sides facing up, and seal the end by pinching the ends and folding under the log. Repeat for the second loaf.
- Allow the loaves to rise for 1 hour or so, covering lightly with some plastic wrap. Once doubled, brush with egg wash and bake at 350* F for 40 minutes, or until golden brown and hollow sounding when tapped.
- In a separate bowl, mix together the powdered sugar and milk until it's a smooth, pourable texture.
- Let the bread cool slightly, then drizzle the glaze over the top of the loaf before slicing.