Kindred's Milk Bread

Test Kitchen-Approved

Author Notes: This recipe is served as a starter to each dinner table at Kindred Restaurant in Davidson, North Carolina. But the dough doesn't stop there. It can be used as sandwich bread, French toast, burger buns, doughnuts, and more. This is a bread that merges utility and taste, seamlessly. catherine margaret o'donnell

Makes: 6 rolls, two 9- by 5-inch loaves, or 12 split-top buns
Prep time: 1 hrs
Cook time: 1 hrs


  • 5 1/3 cups bread flour, divided, plus more for surface (Kindred uses King Arthur)
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1/3 cup mild honey (such as wildflower or alfalfa)
  • 3 tablespoons nonfat dry milk powder (such as Alba)
  • 2 tablespoons active dry yeast (from about 3 envelopes)
  • 2 tablespoons kosher salt
  • 3 large eggs, divided
  • 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, cut into pieces, at room temperature
  • Nonstick vegetable oil spray
  • Flaky sea salt (optional, but shouldn't be)
In This Recipe


  1. Cook 1/3 cup flour and 1 cup water in a small saucepan over medium heat, whisking constantly, until a thick paste forms (almost like a roux but looser), about 5 minutes. Add cream and honey and cook, whisking to blend, until honey dissolves.
  2. Transfer mixture to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook and add milk powder, yeast, kosher salt, 2 eggs, and 5 remaining cups flour. Knead on medium speed until dough is smooth, about 5 minutes. Add butter, a piece at a time, fully incorporating into dough before adding the next piece, until dough is smooth, shiny, and elastic, about 4 minutes.

  3. Coat a large bowl with nonstick spray and transfer dough to bowl, turning to coat. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm, draft-free place until doubled in size, about 1 hour.
  4. If making rolls, lightly coat a 6-cup jumbo muffin pan with nonstick spray. Turn out dough onto a floured surface and divide into 6 pieces. Divide each piece into 4 smaller pieces (you should have 24 total). They don’t need to be exact; just eyeball it. Place 4 pieces of dough side-by-side in each muffin cup.
 If making loaves, lightly coat two 9- by 5-inch loaf pans with nonstick spray. Turn out dough onto a floured surface and divide into 12 pieces. Nestle pieces side-by-side to create 2 rows down length of each pan.
 If making split-top buns, lightly coat two 9- by 13-inch baking dishes with nonstick spray. Divide dough into 12 pieces and shape each into a 4-inch long log. Place 6 logs in a row down length of each dish.
  5. Let shaped dough rise in a warm, draft-free place until doubled in size (dough should be just puffing over top of pan), about 1 hour.
  6. Preheat oven to 375° F. Beat remaining egg with 1 teaspoon. water in a small bowl to blend. Brush top of dough with egg wash and sprinkle with sea salt, if desired. Bake, rotating pan halfway through, until bread is deep golden brown, starting to pull away from the sides of the pan, and is baked through, 25 to 35 minutes for rolls, 50 to 60 minutes for loaf, or 30 to 40 minutes for buns. If making buns, slice each bun down the middle deep enough to create a split-top. Let milk bread cool slightly in pan on a wire rack before turning out; let cool completely.

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Bread|Honey|Milk/Cream|Serves a Crowd|Bake|Make Ahead|Easter|Thanksgiving|Winter|Christmas|Breakfast|Brunch

Reviews (396) Questions (11)

396 Reviews

Lgriff28 December 24, 2018
I almost forgot... due to high blood pressure running in my family, I never, ever use more than may 0.5 to 1.0 teaspoons of salt in any of my recipes, and I've never had an issue with the flavor.
Elly H. December 19, 2018
Or perhaps I should say this thread...<br />
Elly H. December 19, 2018
I so love that this recipe has taken on a life of it's own....<br />
Beth December 19, 2018
It never ceases to amaze me how the same recipe can come out so differently with different bakers. I've never had a problem with any milk bread, it always comes out soft and fluffy. The type of salt makes a huge difference, as many reviewers have pointed out but we like salty things so even regular salt is OK for us. I even heated the flour and milk in the microwave to save stirring in a pan, and that works too. Sorry the recipe didn't work for you.
Annie December 19, 2018
I tried to like this recipe but after trying it twice, I give up. 2 tablespoons of salt seems to retard the rise. Bread was too salty and certainly not fluffy.
GrannyGo December 20, 2018
Use Diamond Crystal kosher salt and it won't be too salty. It is fluffier and therefore the measurement is different than for regular salt. I would try it again. It's so worth it! I make this bread every week.
Lgriff28 October 15, 2018
I attempted to make a "vegan-esque" version of the bread. Based on whatever ingredients I had on hand, my modifications from the original recipe were as follows: 1. used coconut milk in place of heavy cream; 2. used vegan egg in place of eggs; 3. used vegan butter in place of butter; 4. I had no honey, so I used brown sugar; 5. I used equal parts unbleached all purpose flour and whole wheat flour; 6. I did not have any milk powder. Even after all the deviations, the bread came out really nice and lighter than I expected. I will definitely make it again.
Cee G. September 23, 2018
I'll change two things next time: cut the salt by half or more (!) and let the hot mixture cool significantly, to lukewarm, before exposing the yeast to it.
GrannyGo December 20, 2018
Use Diamond Crystal kosher salt and it won't be too salty. It is fluffier and therefore the measurement is different than for regular salt. I just don't cook it anymore after adding the cream and honey. That cools it down enough to continue with the recipe without waiting. I love this recipe! I make it every week!
Beth September 6, 2018
This recipe makes 2 good-sized loaves, so unless you have a pretty big machine it will overflow. Actually, I cut the recipe in half and it made one nice loaf. I did the kneading in my bread machine on the dough cycle, added the butter in chunks every few minutes as it was kneading, then baked it in the oven in a loaf pan after it rose.
jviss September 5, 2018
can i make this in a bread machine? if so, what would be the settings? thank you
sabrina September 5, 2018
Yes, you may use the sweat bread if you have one. Pay attention to what kind of yeast you use. Instant yeast may be mixed with the flour, but active yeast needs to be hydrated in water or milk, for 10 minutes. You may also use a stand mixer if you have one. But recipe asks for heat the flour and honey in a sauce pan. So you start with that and then you put in the machine for kneading
Murdock W. August 22, 2018
It's easy to find if you know where to look. Great recipe and I suggest everybody print it out while it's still there. Even better than this one.
Murdock W. August 21, 2018
Carol Hart, just found your article using way back from July 1, 2017.<br /><br />
Carol H. August 22, 2018
Thank You!!!
Murdock W. August 21, 2018
Here's a good article about source...<br /><br />
Carol H. August 21, 2018
The link offered below in the comments for Kindred's cinnamon rolls using this bread recipe no longer works. Apparently the Lake Norman news section of the Charlotte Observer no longer exists and they took down the link. Does anyone know of another source for this recipe?<br />Also, to answer a recurring question regarding the salt in this recipe, use 2 Tbsp of Diamond Crystal salt. Using a different salt will result in bread that is too salty. If you can't find DC salt, use less of whatever you have. Links to conversions are given below.
Laura J. July 19, 2018
I am nicknaming it Cream Bread. It really has cream in it, so makes more sense to me. :-)
BonnieN June 26, 2018
Just had a BLT with crispy bacon, thick cut tomato, mayo black pepper and genovese basil leaves instead of lettuce on lightly toasted slices of this bread.....heaven. Had to reduce heat & baking time & salt to 2 tsps to get it just right for me.
Elly H. June 15, 2018
Don't have a stand mixer but do have a bread maker. Is there anyway it could be used to knead this bread?
20ozMocha July 17, 2018
I just used my bread machine to make it, and it worked fine. Let the machine knead long enough so the dough is cohesive and nearly smooth, then start dropping butter in. It all comes together beautifully in the machine.
Martha C. June 5, 2018
I think the directions are slightly off on this. I didn't read the comments before I baked it today, sadly.. The bread is more than edible, however, I didn't get the raise that I expected and I am not sure why, also the 3 tablespoons of kosher salt or any salt to 5 1/3 cups of flour is awfully salty. Too salty for our Taste, but the bread texture and flavor is phenomenal. I can see why people love it.
Pamela_in_Tokyo June 5, 2018
I think the recipe says 2T of kosher salt not 3T. Did you use table salt or kosher salt?<br /><br />2T of kosher salt is 18g, whereas 2T of table salt is 36g. You have to be sure what kind of salt you used.... weighing the ingredients for bread is much more accurate but Foof52 does not include grams or ounces for the most part.<br /><br />I think one problem with a lot of recipes these days is that they call for kosher salt whereas most people, I bet, have just table salt. I certainly don’t have two kinds of salt… If the recipe provided the weight, we wouldn’t have this problem.<br /><br />Here is a good article about the different kinds of salt:<br />
Gaylene C. July 10, 2018
Plus it depends on which brand of kosher salt you have. They are remarkably different and it matters! 1T Morten's would be adequate and is a good amount for the amount of flour in this recipe. Diamond kosher is flakier and less dense and you can use up to twice as much as Morten's, so the 2T called for in the recipe is assuming Diamond, even though that's not specified. It would be nice if they put weights or explained the differences between table salt and the different brands of kosher.
tatiana May 23, 2018
Can I omit the dry milk powder? I don’t even know where to buy it. Thank you, Tatiana
Carla May 23, 2018
Are you in the US? Every grocery store here has powdered milk...Carnation is a popular brand. I bake a lot, so I order bakers dry milk from King Arthur.
Elizabeth S. May 30, 2018
I lived in 3 different European countries for over 25 years and often bought powered milk. It is usually available - sometimes in the baby food section.
tatiana September 23, 2018
Thank you Carla and Elisabeth! And yes I live in US but never cooked/used powdered milk.
els May 1, 2018
So I made this but I don't have a stand mixer so I kneaded it by hand. It was my first time making bread on my own so I figured it wouldn't turn out exactly like the recipe but it's still very addicting and everyone loves it.<br /><br />I sprinkled the active dry yeast over the still warm ~110* flour/cream mixture and barely stirred it in while I got the rest of the dry ingredients ready to add so it had a few minutes to activate. I didn't really know how to compare kneading by hand to a stand mixer so I think I overkneaded it prior to adding the butter piece by piece, at which point I think I overkneaded it. It was hard to add the butter when kneading by hand. It rose very well though so I knew I didn't kill the yeast.<br /><br />Regarding salt, everyone's comments made me nervous so I went by the conversion chart listed in an article someone posted below, and used 1.3 teaspoons of fine sea salt but I wish I used closer to 2.5-3 teaspoons. <br /><br />I baked for ~35 minutes and I think the internal temperature hit 200 degrees at probably around 30 minutes.<br /><br />It came out kind of harder and less fluffy than I anticipated, and I can see from comparing the photos that the bread pictured in this recipe has much bigger air bubbles than mine, which is why I think I could have kneaded it less.<br /><br />It tastes like a cross between challah and pretzel bread. We used it for french toast and it was yummy! Can't stop going back to the kitchen for more.
jelloooojen May 13, 2018
How long did you knead the dough for before you added the butter? I don't have a mixer either so I will knead by hand and would really appreciate an approximate time reference <br />Thank you!
els May 13, 2018
I read online that it’s like 12 minutes by hand for 8-10 minutes in a mixer, but I think I did probably 7-8 minutes by hand before adding the dough which was too much time. I should’ve added the butter when the ingredients were just combined after like 4 minutes. <br /><br />I wish I first read this article by The Kitchn called Bread Baking Clinic: Under-Kneading & Over-Kneading<br /><br />I def recommend you check that out bc it really depends on how it feels. <br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
els May 13, 2018
Before adding the butter*
jelloooojen May 19, 2018
Thank you els!! <br />I added the butter just after the dough formed a soft ball, but wasn't sure how much much to knead. Read a few articles that say the dough should pass the "windowpane" test<br />couldn't find a good video to show properly hand kneaded brioche dough
els May 19, 2018
No problem! How’d it turn out?
jelloooojen May 19, 2018
so I kneaded the dough to texture rather than to a certain amount of time. I thought it was a little tough so I left it to rest for about 15mins then when I checked again, I tried to pull it, and it almost passed the windowpane test. So I kneaded it for about 2 more minutes by hand. It's proofing now. We will see tomorrow how it bakes :)
Nalie S. April 27, 2018
4 tbspn butter is 1/4 cup. Is it supposed to be 4 tbspn or 8 tbspn?
Nalie S. May 4, 2018
Never mind. I see that it says “(1/2 stick)”, not 1/2 cup. My bad