Pioneer Woman’s Cinnamon Raisin Bread

It’s Friday, and that means I’m sharing another recipe I’ve tried and whether or not it’s worth the effort. This week I’m tasting testing the Pioneer Woman’s cinnamon raisin bread recipe. Have you ever heard of said Pioneer Woman?

I had not until announcing I had a zillion raisins left over from the homemade mincemeat I made over the holidays and wasn’t sure what to do with them. A coworker shouted out to make this recipe because “it’s. the. bomb.”

But let’s recap in case you’re new.

I’m not a food blogger. I share recipes I’ve tried and if I’d make them again. I hate the word foodie and hefty paragraphs filled with adjectives about the recipe, and photographs that have dusted flour and cutting boards.

You can expect the recipe I used, helpful tricks or what not to do and a couple (probably one) real shots of what it looked like when my bake came out of the oven.

The Recipe:

FOR THE DOUGH:
  • 1 cup Milk, Almond Milk, Or Soy Milk, At 110ºF
  • 2 Tablespoons Brown Sugar (See Note)
  • 2-1/4 teaspoons Instant Rise Yeast
  • 6 Tablespoons Neutral Oil (See Note) Or Melted Unsalted Butter
  • 2 Eggs
  • 3-1/2 cups All-purpose Flour (17 1/2 Ounces By Weight), Plus More For Dusting
  • 1 teaspoon Salt
  • 1/2 cup Raisins
FOR THE CINNAMON FILLING:
  • 1/3 cup Brown Sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons Ground Cinnamon
  • 3 Tablespoons Melted Butter (or Oil)

Combine milk, brown sugar, and yeast in a bowl or measuring cup. Let sit for 10 minutes, until foamy. This indicates that the yeast is alive and well.

Pour the yeast liquid into the bowl of a stand mixer, and add oil and eggs. Whisk to combine the wet ingredients, then add flour and salt. Use the dough hook or a spatula to roughly combine the wet and dry ingredients into a shaggy dough. Add the raisins, then fit the bowl and dough hook to the stand mixer. Knead on medium-low speed for 10 minutes.

Remove the dough hook, cover the bowl with plastic wrap, and let the dough rise for 1 hour until doubled in size.

Flour your countertop as lightly as possible, then spread and stretch the dough into a rectangle that is the length of your loaf pan, about 9 inches by 18 inches. I prefer to use a 9×5 loaf pan.

Make the cinnamon filling by stirring together brown sugar, cinnamon, and butter. Spread this mixture all over the top of the dough rectangle, then roll the dough up as tightly as you can, rolling the long way. Place the roll seam-side down into a greased loaf pan, then cover with plastic wrap to let rise for 30 minutes.

Preheat oven to 375ºF, then bake bread for 40–50 minutes until the inside reads 190ºF to 200ºF with a thermometer. Let the bread cool completely on a wire rack before slicing. Enjoy!

Notes:
1. The 2 tablespoons brown sugar won’t make the bread very sweet. If you want a sweeter loaf, double the brown sugar.
2. I use grapeseed oil, but you could also use canola oil, vegetable oil, a light olive oil, etc.
3. The dough will be sticky but resist the urge to add more flour, as it will make the bread denser.

Storage: Since there are no preservatives, the bread will only keep for a few days at room temperature. I recommend freezing any unused bread.

My Findings:

  1. I tested with regular milk and almond milk, I enjoyed the almond milk recipe better.
  2. Regular milk heats up faster than almond milk. It took 30-45 seconds to heat regular milk in the microwave. It took almost 1.5 minutes to heat the almond milk to temp. I did both in 30-second intervals.
  3. I found the dough to be stickier with almond milk but held its shape better.

Would I Make It Again?

Yes. I hate raisins and LOVED this bread. I think I may need to bake it for holiday gifts this Christmas!

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