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Poppy Seed Pull Apart Bread

The dough for this Poppy Seed Pull Apart Bread is made from scratch, so it’s super moist and fluffy and filled with homemade poppy seed filling. It is perfect for your next brunch.

Are you feeling adventurous? If you want to bake a really different loaf of bread, try my authentic Georgian Khachapuri Cheese Bread Recipe. Or enjoy this delicious Russian Poppy Seed Honey Cake.

Recipe Details

This Poppy Seed Pull Apart Bread is perfect for a large gathering, and the best part is that there’s no cutting needed. Just pull on any piece you want. And it comes out of the oven looking absolutely stunning! This is one of my favorite “show off breads” because it looks so beautiful and tastes so good.

  • TASTE: This bread is buttery and yeasty while the filling is full of sweet, honey goodness. The poppy seeds and walnuts add a nutty flavor.
  • TEXTURE: Moist and fluffy, this Poppy Seed Pull Apart Bread is so tasty. The filling is thick and full of poppy seeds and walnuts for a deliciously crunchy contrast to the tender bread.
  • TIME: It takes 2 hours 20 minutes to make.
  • EASE: While there’s a number of steps, this is not a hard recipe. Just follow my step-by-step instructions for how to make amazing pull apart bread.

What You’ll Need

Ingredients for Poppy Seed Pull Apart Bread dough: flour, sugar, milk, sour cream, eggs, butter, vanilla, yeast, salt, and eggs.
Ingredients for Poppy Seed Pull Apart Bread filling: poppy seeds, walnuts, honey, and milk.

Ingredient Notes

  • Milk- This is a milk bread so the milk acts as a tenderizer, keeping it light and fluffy.
  • Yeast- This gives it that yeasty flavor and airy texture.
  • Eggs- These also add fluffiness to the bread.
  • Sour cream- This adds some moisture as well as tangy flavor.
  • Butter- Use unsalted butter since we adding salt separately.
  • Poppy Seeds- These have a nutty flavor and light sweetness that is intensified by the honey. We’ll be using this Poppy Seed Filling recipe.
  • Walnuts- These add more nuttiness to the filling and complement the poppy seeds.
  • Honey- This makes the filling deliciously sweet and thick.

Add-ins and Substitutions

  • Add lemon- Add lemon juice and lemon zest to give this pull apart bread filling a citrusy flavor that tastes great with the poppy seeds.
  • Make it gluten-free- Substitute gluten-free flour in this recipe 1:1 to make it a gluten-free dish you can serve to guests.
  • Top with cream cheese icing- A rich cream cheese icing made with milk, powdered sugar, vanilla, and cream cheese can be drizzled on top.
  • Add cheese- Make this Poppy Seed Pull Apart Bread more savory by adding some mozzarella or Monterey jack cheese inside with the filling. Then top with chopped green onions.

How to Make Poppy Seed Pull Apart Bread

  • Froth the yeast. Combine the warm milk, sugar, yeast, and 1/2 cup flour. Let it sit in a warm place for about 15 minutes.
Steps to make Poppy Seed Pull Apart Bread: froth the yeast with sugar and milk, then whisk in flour and let stand before adding to a stand mixer.
  • Combine with the other ingredients bread. Add the rest of the flour and salt to the bowl of a stand mixer and pour in the yeast mixture. Then add the eggs, sour cream, and vanilla.
  • Mix and add butter. Using the hook attachment, mix until it begins to take shape. Then pour in the melted butter and continue mixing on medium high speed until the dough becomes smooth.
This is just what you need to serve at your next brunch. This Poppy Seed Pull Apart Bread is sweet, fluffy, and tender, and looks beautiful! #bread #breadrecipe #milkbreadrecipe #homemadepoppyseedpullapartbread.
  • Let it rise. Place the dough in a large greased bowl and cover. Let it sit in a warm place until it doubles in size.
  • Divide, roll, and cut. Place the dough on a floured surface and divide it into 3 parts. Then roll each piece into a circle about 1/4 inch thick. Cut out small circles using a cup.

Pro Tip: Roll up the leftover dough scraps into a ball and wrap in plastic wrap. Place it in a warm oven for 10-15 minutes until it rises again and reuse it to cut out more circles.

Steps to make Poppy Seed Pull Apart Bread: let the dough rise, then divide it into thirds and flatten before cutting out circles in the dough with a cup.
  • Prepare the pans. Prepare 2 (10-inch) round baking pans with parchment paper and nonstick spray.
  • Add filling to the dough. Fill each circle with 1 tbsp of the poppy seed filling. Fold it over in half and pinch the two corners together.
  • Arrange the poppy seed rolls in the pan. Place them into the baking sheet standing up with the filling showing. Continue placing them in the pan working your way from the outside in.
Steps to make Poppy Seed Pull Apart Bread: fill the circles with filling, fold over and pinch he corner together, then assemble the poppy seed rolls in a baking pan.
  • Make the middle rolls. Once you reach the middle, cut two dough circles in half. Fill 3 of them with 1/2 tbsp of poppy seed filling.
  • Arrange the center of the pan. Place the filled half circles in a row overlapping each other. Then roll them up as one. Place this flower-like piece in the center of the baking pan.
  • Let the bread rise. Let the finished pastry rise in a warm place for about 30 minutes.
  • Bake. Brush with egg wash and bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 20 minutes until golden brown.
Steps to make Poppy Seed Pull Apart Bread: cut some circles in half and fold them into a rosette before adding to the center of the baking pan and adding egg wash before baking.

Recipe Tips

  • Warm the milk- Before adding the milk and yeast, make sure the milk is warm to encourage the yeast to froth. Cold milk won’t work and the dough won’t rise.
  • Don’t overmix the dough- When the dough is mixed, look for it to become smooth and not stick to the sides of the bowl anymore. You don’t want to overmix it.
  • Don’t make the circles too small- When cutting out circles in the dough, look for a cup that is 3 1/2 inches in diameter. You want the circle to be big enough to contain the filling.
  • Be careful not to overfill the dough- In the outer rolls use no more than a tablespoon poppy seed filling, and half that much in the middle ones. Too much will cause the rolls to overflow when baked.

FAQs

What is a Poppy Seed Roll?

A poppy seed roll is a sweet bread rolled around poppy seed filling. Authentic poppy seed rolls hail from eastern Europe, namely Poland and surrounding countries. I didn’t roll mine in the authentic fashion. While some recipes look like loaves of bread you have to slice, my poppy seed rolls pull apart and are bite-sized. No slicing needed!

Do you have to soak poppy seeds before baking?

Soaking poppy seeds helps make them more digestible because of their outer shell. We simmer them in milk before making the poppy seed filling in this Poppy Seed Pull Apart Bread.

A piece of Poppy Seed Pull Apart Bread: being pulled out.

Serving Suggestions

This Poppy Seed Pull Apart Bread is so delicious and is the perfect centerpiece on a dessert table. It goes well with lots of cakes, cookies, breads, and even specialty drinks.

  • Cakes: Serve this bread with a slice of Honey Raspberry Cake, Chocolate Mousse Cake, Easy Napoleon Cake Recipe (VIDEO), or Tiramisu Cake Recipe (VIDEO).
  • Cookies: Pair it with cookies like these Lemon Macarons, Jumbo Chocolate Chip Walnut Cookies, Almond Flour Chocolate Chip Cookies, or Chewy Nutella Cookies.
  • Breads: Enjoy this Poppy Seed Pull Apart Bread with some Double Chocolate Banana Bread, Apple Fritter Bread, Focaccia Bread, or Brioche Hot Cross Buns (VIDEO).
  • Coffee/Tea: Serve it with an Iced Matcha Latte, Iced Caramel Macchiato, Brown Sugar Boba, or Pumpkin Spice Latte.

Make This Recipe in Advance

Make ahead: You can prepare this pull apart bread and leave it in the baking pans in the fridge, covered, until you are ready to let it rise, add the egg wash, and bake.

Storing: Store this Poppy Seed Pull Apart Bread covered with plastic wrap at room temperature for up to 2 days, or in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.

Freeze: You can freeze this bread for up to 4 months in a freezer ziplock bag once it has cooled.

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Full Recipe Instructions

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Poppy Seed Pull Apart Bread

The dough in this Poppy Seed Pull Apart Bread is made from scratch so it’s super moist and fluffy. Each roll is filled with homemade poppy seed filling. Make some for your next brunch.













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Course: bread
Cuisine: American, European, Polish, Russian
Prep Time: 2 hours
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 2 hours 20 minutes
Servings: 70 rolls
Calories: 56kcal
Author: Dina

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 2 tsp dry active yeast
  • 5.5-6 cups all purpose flour divided
  • Pinch of salt
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 tbsp sour cream
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 4 tbsp unsalted butter melted
  • 1 recipe homemade poppy seed filling tripled

Instructions

  • Combine warm milk, sugar, yeast, and 1/2 cup flour. Let it sit in a warm place for about 15 minutes.
    Steps to make Poppy Seed Pull Apart Bread: froth the yeast with sugar and milk, then whisk in flour and let stand before adding to a stand mixer.
  • Add the rest of the flour and salt into the bowl of a stand mixer. Pour in the warm milk and yeast mixture.
  • Then add eggs, sour cream, and vanilla.
  • Using the hook attachment, mix until it starts to take shape.
  • Pour in the melted butter and continue mixing on medium high speed until the dough becomes smooth and no longer sticks to the side of the bowl.
    Steps to make Poppy Seed Pull Apart Bread: add the flour and eggs and vanilla, then the melted butter, mixing with the hook attachment until the dough is smooth.
  • Place the dough in a large greased bowl and cover. Let it sit in a warm place until it doubles in size. (About 1 hour)
  • Place the dough on a floured surface and divide it into 3 parts.
  • Roll each piece of dough into a circle about 1/4 inch thick. Cut out small circles, using a cup 3 1/2 inches in diameter.
    Steps to make Poppy Seed Pull Apart Bread: let the dough rise, then divide it into thirds and flatten before cutting out circles in the dough with a cup.
  • Roll up the leftover dough scraps into a ball and wrap in plastic wrap. Place it in a warm oven for 10-15 minutes until it rises again and reuse it to cut out more circles.
  • Prepare 2 (10 -nch) round baking pans with parchment paper and nonstick spray.
  • Fill each circle with 1 tbsp of the poppy seed filling. Fold it over in half and pinch the two corners together.
  • Place them into the baking sheet standing up with the filling showing. Continue placing them in the pan working your way from the outside in.
    Steps to make Poppy Seed Pull Apart Bread: fill the circles with filling, fold over and pinch he corner together, then assemble the poppy seed rolls in a baking pan.
  • Once you reach the middle, cut two dough circles in half. Fill 3 of them with 1/2 tbsp of poppy seed filling.
  • Place the filled half circles in a row overlapping each other. Then roll them up as one. Place this flower-like piece in the center of the baking pan.
  • Let the finished pastry rise in a warm place for about 30 minutes.
  • Brush with egg wash and bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 20 minutes.
    Steps to make Poppy Seed Pull Apart Bread: cut some circles in half and fold them into a rosette before adding to the center of the baking pan and adding egg wash before baking.

Notes

Makes 2 (10 inch) pastries

Nutrition

Serving: 1roll | Calories: 56kcal | “`html
Carbohydrates: 9g
| Protein: 1g | Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 9mg | Sodium: 11mg | Potassium: 21mg | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 40IU | Calcium: 9mg | Iron: 0.5mg

This recipe was originally posted on March 18, 2016, we’ve tweaked it a bit since then.

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