Challah Bread Substitute: Easy and Tasty Alternatives

loaf of challah bread

Are you searching for a delicious challah bread substitute? Look no further! In this article, we’ll explore some ideal replacements that can easily fit into your baking routine.

What is Challah Bread?

Challah bread is a delicious, braided bread traditionally enjoyed by Jewish people on the Sabbath and during holidays. It’s a rich, slightly sweet loaf made from basic ingredients such as eggs, sugar, oil, and flour.

When you make challah bread, the eggs give it a yellow hue and a rich flavor, making it slightly denser than regular bread. The sugar and oil add a touch of sweetness. Your final result is a beautiful, golden-brown loaf with an impressive braided appearance.

One of the key aspects of challah bread is its braid, which can range from simple three-strand designs to intricate, multi-stranded masterpieces. This braid isn’t just for show – it symbolizes unity and serves as a reminder of connection to Jewish spirituality. Plus, it offers you a stunning centerpiece for your Sabbath meal.

Bread Substitutes for Challah

When searching for a substitute for challah, you have several alternatives to consider. Try these bread options to complement your next meal, keeping in mind the key characteristics of challah: soft, slightly sweet, and a rich texture.



loaf of Brioche bread

You’ll find that brioche is an excellent substitute for challah bread. Brioche is a sweet bread made with plenty of butter, giving it a soft, tender crumb. Choosing brioche as your challah substitute will bring a slightly sweeter and richer element to your dishes.


Pullman bread

Pullman bread

Pullman bread, also known as sandwich bread or pain de mie, is another excellent substitute. It is soft and fluffy with a tender crust. While it may not have the same sweetness, Pullman bread adapts well for use in a variety of dishes.


Portuguese Sweet Bread and Hawaiian Bread

If you’re looking for a delightful alternative to challah bread, try Portuguese sweet bread or Hawaiian bread. Both types of bread offer unique flavors and textures that can elevate your meals.

  • Portuguese sweet bread is a light and sweet bread that originates from Portugal. Its slightly sweet taste comes from the use of sugar in the dough. Its fluffy, soft texture makes it a great choice for your morning toast or to soak up your favorite sauces.
  • Hawaiian bread has a subtle pineapple flavor because pineapple juice is used in the recipe. The juice helps to keep the bread moist. This delicious bread is enjoyed for its soft, pillowy texture and fruity undertones.


French Baguette

French Baguette

With its distinctive long, slender shape and crusty exterior, French Baquette is an excellent alternative for your savory dishes.

A French baguette can easily transform into mouthwatering French toast. Soak the sliced baguette in your favorite egg mixture and cook on a warm skillet. The crusty exterior gives a nice texture while the inside remains soft and fluffy.

For bread pudding, the French baguette’s sturdiness holds up well when soaked in a creamy, egg-based mixture. Dice the baguette into cubes and gently mix them with your chosen ingredients, like raisins, nuts, or chocolate chips. Bake the pudding until golden and serve warm.

To switch up your toast routine, try using baguette slices instead of your usual bread. Toast the baguette slices until they’re crispy, and add some butter, jam, or your favorite toppings. A baguette also works wonderfully with a cheese or charcuterie board, providing the perfect base for your favorite spreads and cheeses.


Italian Bread

loaf of Italian bread

If you’re searching for a challah bread substitute, Italian bread makes an excellent choice because of its light, fluffy, and airy texture.



plate of Croissants

Although flaky and buttery, croissants can be a tasty alternative for dishes like bread pudding or French toast.


Potato bread

loaf of potato bread

With its soft texture and mild flavor, potato bread makes for a delightful substitute when you can’t find challah.


Other Bread Substitutes


Zopf bread

Zopf bread is a Swiss-braided bread that’s similar to challah in texture and flavor.


Pulla bread

You can also try pulla bread, a Finnish cardamom-scented treat that’s gently sweet and buttery.


Mouna bread

Another appetizing alternative is Mouna, an Algerian citrus-flavored bread with a soft, fluffy interior.


Kubaneh bread

For a slightly different taste, you might enjoy Kubaneh bread, a traditional Yemeni slow-cooked bread with a tender yet flaky texture.


Tsoureki bread

Tsoureki bread can also satisfy your craving for a challah substitute. This Greek bread boasts a sweet and slightly spicy flavor, thanks to the addition of mahleb. It’s perfect for festive occasions or simply as a delicious snack.


Vanocka bread

Vanocka is a Czech braided bread that’s not only visually striking but also rich in flavor. With its layers of dough, almonds, and raisins, it will bring variety and zest to your table.


Kalach bread

Kalach bread offers a delightful alternative to challah with its slightly sweet taste and distinct rounded shape. This East Slavic bread is often used for celebrations and pairs wonderfully with a cup of tea.



2 loaves of challah bread

How to pronounce challah bread

To pronounce challah bread, say “kah-luh” or “hah-luh” bread. The “ch” sounds like a soft “k.”


What is a good substitute for challah bread in bread pudding?

A good substitute for challah bread in bread pudding is brioche, as it has a similar texture and rich taste. Another option is crusty French or Italian bread, which will provide a slightly different texture but still deliver a delicious result.


Is challah bread gluten-free?

Challah bread is not gluten-free, as it is traditionally made with wheat flour.


What is a good challah bread substitute for French toast?

Brioche is a great substitute for challah bread in making French toast, as it has a similar texture and flavor. Other options include Texas toast, sourdough, or thick-sliced French or Italian bread.


Is challah comparable to white bread?

Challah is not exactly comparable to white bread, as it has a richer flavor and denser texture due to the eggs, sugar, and oil in the recipe. While both are made from wheat flour, challah is a more indulgent and flavorful option than plain white bread.


What characteristics make challah unique compared to other breads?

Challah has a few unique characteristics compared to other breads. It is made with eggs, sugar, and oil, which gives it a rich taste and dense texture. The dough is traditionally braided, creating a beautiful presentation. Finally, challah often has a glossy surface due to an egg wash before baking, which adds to its visual appeal.

Written by Laurie Graves

Laurie is a 50-something wife and boy mom, who loves to share easy recipes, DIY home ideas, and food hacks. She truly believes that with a little inspiration, anyone can make their home and meals feel special.