Spicy Cheese Bread

This Spicy Cheese Bread has a long history starting with Stella’s Bakery in Madison Wisconsin.

Then Cook’s Country tried to duplicate it and that is how I stumbled on it!

Oh my… if you want a hearty soup and bread supper for a cold winter night or if you want to take your panini making to a new level – read on!

It is really good on its own too! What is not to like about a rich brioche style dough filled with warm melted cheese and dotted with spicy pepper flakes??

You can make this with a stand mixer and a dough hook or use the dough cycle in your bread machine.

I baked it in my 7 1/2″ cast iron skillet with some parchment paper on the bottom. The cheese likes to ooze out during baking so you will want to protect the bottom of your baking pan.

This has 2 rises of about 1 1/2 hours each and almost an hour of baking time so you will need to plan accordingly. If you can time it so it has about 45 minutes to rest out of the oven before you serve it it would be perfect.

Having said that… we had it the second day and if you rewarm it gently it was just as good in my opinion. The dough is so rich and flavourful it doesn’t dry out or even seem to to go stale.

I made it and served it and then refrigerated what was left. There is so much cheese content I though that would be safest.

But – I can also tell you… this will take your grilled cheese or paninis to a whole new level! I cut thin slices on day 2 and toasted them with a meat and cheese filling in my panini maker and it made for a pretty awesome sandwich!

I can’t wait to make this again. I used Mozzarella and Havarti cheese mix in my loaf but any soft, meltable cheese would work. You could experiment with a spicy or plain Monterey Jack or Provolone.

Round loaf stuffed with melted cheese and red pepper flakes.

Spicy Cheese Bread

This rich, spicy cheesy loaf is a treat on its own, beside a hearty soup and it makes a great panini the next day!
5 from 1 vote
Print Pin Rate
Course: Bread
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 10 mins
Cook Time: 50 mins
Rise time: 3 hrs
Total Time: 4 hrs
Servings: 1 loaf


  • 3 1/4 cups all purpose flour 16 1/4 oz
  • 1/4 cup sugar 1 3/4 oz
  • 1 Tbsp instant rise yeast
  • 1 1/2 tsps red pepper flakes
  • 1 1/4 tsps salt
  • 1/2 cup warm water
  • 2 large eggs
  • 4 Tbsps unsalted butter melted
  • 6 oz Mozzarella or other soft cheese of your choice
  • 6 oz Havarti or other soft cheese of your choice


  • 1 egg beaten
  • 1 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1 Tbsp unsalted butter softened


  • Bread machine: Mix flour, sugar, pepper flakes and salt in a bowl. Whisk water eggs and melted butter together. Add liquid to bread machine, then dry ingredients, then top with yeast. Set bread machine to dough cycle.
    Stand mixer: Mix all dry ingredients (excluding Toppping ingredients) in bowl of your mixer. Mix all wet ingredients together. Stir wet mixture into the dry mixture in the bowl. With dough hook, knead on medium for 9 minutes. Dough will form a ball and clear sides and bottom of bowl. Transfer dough to a greased ball, shaped in a ball. Cover with plastic wrap and allow to rise 1 1/2 hours until doubled in size.
  • Cut cheese in to 1/2" cubes and allow to come to room temperature while dough is rising.
  • Grease and line a round baking pan 7-9" in diameter, with parchment paper.
  • Transfer dough to working surface. No need to flour surface, the dough is soft and pliable. Roll out to 18 X 12" rectangle. Distribute the cheese cubes evenly over the dough leaving a 1" border free around the edges.
  • Roll the dough along the long side, tightly in to a log. Pinch the ends to seal them. Gently roll, massage the dough log until it reaches 30" inches. Pinch any tears in the dough to seal.
  • Coil the dough log in to your prepared baking pan. Cover loosely with a towel and allow it to rise 1 1/2 hours until doubled in size.
  • Heat oven to 350° near the end of the second rise. Brush to top of the loaf with the egg and then sprinke with the red peppers. Place baking sheet on a baky tray to catch any oozing cheese. Bake 25 minutes and then tent with aluminum foil. Bake a further 25-30 minutes until internal temp reaches 190°.
  • Remove pan from the oven and brush the top with the soft butter. Allow loaf to cool 10 minutes in the pan and then loosen the loaf and all it to cool another 30 minutes on a wire rack.
  • Serve warm.
  • To store refrigerate, well sealed. Reheat gently if desired. It is also delicious toasted in a panini maker or grill pan.


Per slice. Assumes 12 slices per loaf.


Calories: 291kcal | Carbohydrates: 31g | Protein: 12g | Fat: 13g | Saturated Fat: 8g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 4g | Trans Fat: 0.4g | Cholesterol: 81mg | Sodium: 464mg | Potassium: 86mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 542IU | Vitamin C: 0.1mg | Calcium: 173mg | Iron: 2mg
Spicy Cheese Bread

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