These delicious dough-filled, buttery soft kolaches pack a punch of flavor. This recipe is a tried and true favorite that will be a hit with your entire family!
What is a Kolache?
Before you start baking, it’s always good to know exactly what the recipe is before you begin! A kolache (pronounced koo-lah-shee) is a Czech pastry made from sweet yeast dough. The dough is puffy and holds a sweet cream cheese filling that’s plain or topped with jam. Kolaches are not hard to make. In fact, most of the time that you spend will be waiting for them to rise and bake! The actual prep time is short and sweet.
This dessert is so good and can be served after just about any meal. I usually love a classic pie or brie after a large family meal, but these kolaches have now taken their rightful spot at the top of that list! Kolaches are always a hit at any party, so try them out and bring them to the next one to impress all of your guests. It will knock their socks off!
Ingredients to Make Kolaches
The ingredients that you use to make these kolaches are actually pretty simple! In fact, you probably already have them in your kitchen. See the recipe card at the bottom of the post for exact measurements.
Whole milk: The milk needs to be warm (but no warmer than 110 degrees) to activate the yeast. Granulated sugar: This is used to sweeten up the dough. Rapid rise yeast: Even though I use rapid rise yeast, I still like to activate it.Butter: I used unsalted butter in this recipe. Eggs: In this recipe you will use whole eggs and egg yolks. Flour: All-purpose flour works great for this recipe!Salt: The salt will enhance all of the other ingredients. Cream cheese: This is for the filling and will mix better if you soften it at room temperature before making this kolache. Vanilla extract: This enhances all of the sweet ingredients in the filling. Jam: This is is what you can use for the fruit filling. Pick any flavors that you like!
Let’s Bake Some Kolaches!
These take some time and patience but trust me. These kolaches are SO worth it! You will make these once and then want to make them over and over again!
Activate yeast: Combine the warm milk (no warmer than 110°), 1 tbsp of the sugar, and yeast in the bowl of a stand mixer. Let sit for 5 minutes or so until frothy. You can skip this step and go right to mixing all the liquid ingredients together, but I like to activate my yeast even when it’s rapid-rise yeast.Add butter and eggs: Add the melted butter, egg, and egg yolks to the milk mixture and whisk together.Mix in the flour: Add 3 ½ cups of flour, the remaining sugar and salt to the wet ingredients and mix using a dough hook on low for about 2 minutes. If the dough is still very sticky, add the remaining ½ cup of flour a couple of tablespoons at a time until the dough is soft but not sticky. Use the dough hook to knead on medium-low for 8-10 minutes, until the dough pulls away from the sides and begins to get smooth.Cover dough and let it rise: Transfer the dough to an oiled bowl and cover. Let sit in a warm place for an hour or so, until it has doubled in size. While the dough is rising prepare the cream cheese filling.
Cream Cheese Filling
Mix filling ingredients: In a bowl beat together the cream cheese, sugar, and flour. Once smooth, add the vanilla. Cover and set aside until you need this to fill your kolaches.
Assembly and Baking
Divide dough, form into balls and let it rise: Divide the dough into 16 equal portions and form into balls. Place on parchment-lined baking sheets and cover with a clean kitchen towel. Let sit in a warm place for about an hour and a half, until doubled in size again.Preheat oven and add in filling: Once the dough is done proofing, preheat the oven to 350°. Using the bottom of a large cookie scoop or just your fingers, make a large indent in the center of each ball of dough. Add 1 tbsp of cream cheese filling and 1 scant tablespoon of the jam of your choice in the center of the cream cheese. You can alternatively use about 1 ½ tablespoon of just cream cheese filling or just jam instead of both.Brush with egg wash and bake: Brush the dough with the egg wash and bake for about 18-20 minutes. Do not let the kolaches get too golden, they should just barely start getting color on them when they are ready.Cool: Let cool for 10-15 minutes before serving.
What Filling Flavors Can I Use?
The best part about kolaches is adding different fillings to make them taste totally different. This means that the options are endless! I like to use jam or pie filling in my kolaches. Here are some flavors that you could try!
How to Store Leftover Kolaches
If you have any leftover kolache then put the extras in an airtight container. Put it in your fridge and these will last for 4-5 days.
Cream cheese filling
8 ounces cream cheese softened¼ cup granulated sugar1 Tablespoon flour½ teaspoon vanilla extractJam for fruit filling1 egg plus 1 tbsp water for egg wash
Cream Cheese Filling
Assembly and Baking
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