December 3, 2020| By

Soft and Buttery Prune Starbread

Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
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Soft and Buttery Prune Starbread is a winter baking project that's so fun! Buttery dough filled with sweet prune butter & it's delish!

While you're here, try this Everything but the Bagel Sun Tart and this Blueberry Prune Buckle with Ginger Streusel!

Prune star bread

Soft and Buttery Prune Starbread is the winter baking project of your dreams. The dough is nice and buttery and soft. And the filling?! It's prune butter that's been cooked down and blended with sugar, a little vanilla extract and a pinch of salt. It's SO good! When you take your first bite, you'll be wondering why you didn't jump and make this sooner! This is the type of bread that you can eat any time of the day. It's perfect for breakfast with a cup of coffee, but also sweet enough to have as fun midday snack or even dessert! Not to mention, can we talk about how beautiful Starbread is?! I must say, looks alone, it's just so aesthetically pleasing. The swirls are mesmorizing!


I made this soft and buttery prune starbread on a sunday afternoon. My husband and his friends were over to watch the football game and they gobbled this up in a matter of hours! Not a crumb was left! I assumed they approved of this recipe. What's pretty funny about this is that they didn't know that the filling was prunes. After the game was over and they were walking about, they asked "Hey Brit, what kind of filling was in the bread?" - I said it was prune butter. They said prunes?! Those things that people eat to get more fiber?! I said yes, those prunes. The prunes that are good for you, help lower blood sugar, are packed with vitamins and fiber, and help reduce cholesterol. Yep, those prunes.

prune starbread

They were shocked. In sheer disbelief that prunes could "taste so good". Well, I am here to tell you, if you don't like prunes, you NEED to try this recipe. It'll change your outlook on them. In addition, there a SO many prune recipes that will make you enjoy them in ways you never could've imagined! Prunes can be eaten with savory dishes too! They're such a versatile ingredient to cook with because not only are they good for you, they provide such deep and rich flavor without all of the calories. While coming up with this recipe, I was perusing the California Prunes website and there are so many recipes for prunes that I cannot wait to try.

prune starbread

In sheer disbelief that prunes could "taste so good"

Until then, this recipe will definitely keep you busy! While this bread may look intimidating, it's far easier than you think. I first saw starbread on the Great British Baking Show. Off hand, I cannot recall who made it, but I remember thinking "whoa, that's intense!". So of course I had to try. I made it for the first time last year. It turned out perfectly on my second attempt. This was not because it was hard, it was because I was rushing and missed a step. So, my advice is to take your time. Be patient and have fun with this.

soft and buttery prune starbread

how do I make starbread?!

This recipe starts off pretty simply. Combine ingredients in a stand mixer and then let it rise. While the dough is rising, make the prune butter and set aside to cool. Once the dough is risen, cut the dough into 4 equally sized pieces and roll each piece into a ball. Then roll out one ball, put a salad plate on top, trace a circle, and cut the circle into the dough. Lather the prune butter on the dough and then repeat this process twice more. For the last piece of dough, simply lay it on top without adding prune butter.

Place dough onto a parchment lined baking sheet. (DO THIS BEFORE YOU CUT THE DOUGH!!) Place a small cup in the middle of the circle of dough. Then cut the dough into fourths, eighths, and then sixteenths. Take two pieces and twist them outward three times and pinch the ends of the dough together. Then repeat. See the tutorial below:

Once everything is twisted together and set, cover with a towel and allow dough to rise again for 20-30 minutes, until the dough is puffy. Brush with a beaten egg. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. Bake for 20-25 minutes, until golden brown.

soft and buttery prune starbread

Soft and Buttery Prune Starbread

Soft and Buttery Prune Starbread is a winter baking project that's so fun! Buttery dough filled with sweet prune butter & it's delish!
Serving: 8 servings
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Rising Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Total Time: 2 hours 20 minutes
Calories: 468kcal


  • 4 cups All-Purpose Flour
  • 1 cup Whole Milk
  • 2 ¼ tsp Active Dry Yeast
  • 2 eggs (1 additional egg for egg wash)
  • 1 tsp Kosher Salt
  • ¾ cup + 1 tbsp Granulated Sugar
  • 2 tbsps Salted Butter, room temperature


  • ½ lb California Prunes
  • ¾ cup Water
  • ½ tsp Vanilla Extract
  • 3 tbsps Sugar
  • ¼ tsp Kosher Salt


  • Warm milk in a small bowl in the microwave for about 30-45 seconds. Add 2 ¼ tsp active dry yeast and 1 tbsp sugar to milk and gently whisk. Allow yeast to activate/bloom for 10 minutes, until puffy and bubbly.
  • Using the dough hook attachment, combine all-purpose flour, eggs, salt, sugar, and yeast mixture in a stand mixture. Begin on low speed and gradually increase to medium speed as dough begins to form, about 5-8 minutes. If dough is too sticky (it sticks to your hand), add 1-2 tablespoons of flour and continue to knead.
  • Once dough has formed and is soft and smooth, add butter, one tablespoon at a time, allowing each tablespoon to become fully incorporated into the dough before adding the next. (dough may temporarily break apart but will come back together when you continue to knead in the mixer) Continue to knead dough for another 5 minutes.
  • Lightly oil a large bowl and add dough. Cover with a towel or plastic wrap and allow dough to rise until it has doubled in size, about 1-2 hours.
  • While dough is rising, let's make the filling. Follow the recipe for prune butter here: - Once prune butter is made, set aside and allow it to cool.
  • Once dough has doubled in size, turn dough out onto a well floured surface. Cut dough into four equally sized pieces and roll each piece into a ball and set aside. Grab one of the dough balls and roll into a large circle. Place a salad plate on top of the dough and trace a circle, cutting off any extra pieces. Add prune butter to the circle and set aside. Repeat this two more times, placing each layer on top of the other. For the top layer, simply roll the last piece of dough into a circle, tracing it with the salad plate and lay it on top without adding the prune butter.
  • Add dough to a parchment lined baking sheet. Place a small cup in the middle of the dough and cut the dough into 4 pieces, then 8, and then 16. (See video) Grab two pieces of dough and twist inward three times and pinch the ends together. Repeat for the remaining pieces.
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • Cover dough with a towel and allow to rise again for 20-30 minutes, until it becomes slightly puffy.
  • Brush with a beaten egg. Bake for 20-25 minutes, until golden brown.


Calories: 468kcal | Carbohydrates: 96g | Protein: 10g | Fat: 6g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Trans Fat: 0.1g | Cholesterol: 52mg | Sodium: 417mg | Potassium: 346mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 41g | Vitamin A: 418IU | Vitamin C: 0.2mg | Calcium: 68mg | Iron: 3mg
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American

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Recipe Rating

  1. 5 stars
    I have now made this several times, and commented on it back in June. It has been delicious every time. I do have a small would be helpful in this and all baking recipes if the times listed at the start of the recipe showed not just prep time and cooking time, but also rising time. This would make it easier to tell at a glance how much time to allow. Thank you...

    • Thank you for making this recipe multiple times! I will be sure to include rising time moving forward, thanks for your feedback!

  2. 5 stars
    I brought this to a potluck, and everyone loved it...looked beautiful, and tasted great. I used prunes I had leftover from making hamantashen...cooked prunes with cinnamon, walnuts, lemon zest and juice, and it was great. Prunes are sweet enough without adding sugar. Now I want to try other fillings...I can imagine savory versions with onion and cheese. The parts of the dough I cut away got baked into a small plain loaf, which reminded me of Mexican breads, wonderful dipped into cocoa.

  3. Hi Britney,
    This Star Bread looks amazing and I would like to make it. I watched the video and it did not show you adding the 2
    tablespoons of butter after the dough was mixed to a smooth ball. Should the butter be soft or hard and when is the best time to add it to the mix. Could the butter addition be an error? Please advise.
    Best Regards,

    • Hi Paula!

      Thank you! That part of the video is edited out because it would take far too long to show every step! This is not an error, room temperature butter should be added to the dough, one tablespoon at a time - ensuring that the butter is fully incorporated into the dough prior to adding the next tablespoon. I hope that this was helpful and that you love this recipe!

  4. 5 stars
    This starbread is absolutely delicious, not to mention how gorgeous it is! I have to confess that I was a bit worry about making it, but it turned out amazing! Thank you Britney, for such an amazing recipe!

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