This vegan blueberry pull apart bread is made with a homemade cardamom scented brioche, and swirled with a sweet lemon blueberry filling. All baked in one loaf pan, it’s soft and gooey on the inside, crunchy on top and drizzled with a delicious cream cheese glaze. Easy to make and even more so to eat, perfect for a vegan brunch or dessert.
I know it’s not technically spring yet and I’m really not supposed to be making things with blueberries… but it was 60 degrees out yesterday (!?) so I had to celebrate somehow. So here we go, blueberry pull apart bread! With cardamom in the dough and a hint of lemon in the blueberry filling, I had so much fun playing around with flavors for this recipe. I think my family had a good time eating it too. There’s just something so satisfying about tearing off a nice hunk of soft, buttery bread dripping with cream cheese glaze. As you can imagine, my final iteration was gone in well under 24 hours.
How to make blueberry pull apart bread
It takes a good chunk of the day for the dough to rise, but all the steps to make this delicious dessert are pretty straightforward. All you need is a few large mixing bowls, a damp towel and parchment lines 9×5 loaf pan.
Step 1: Bloom the yeast – To make the vegan brioche dough, you’ll need to bloom the active dry yeast to activate it. You can do this by microwaving the plantbased milk until warm, but not scalding (105°-115° F). Add in the yeast plus a pinch of sugar and wait a few minutes for the yeast to bubble. If nothing happens, it either means the milk wasn’t the right temperature or the yeast is dead. Make sure you check the expiration date on your yeast package to make sure its fresh. If you have instant yeast, you can skip this step entirely and just mix the yeast in with the other ingredients.
Step 2: Make the dough – Now for the dough, combine all the ingredients in a large mixing bowl and stir with a wooden spoon until a shaggy dough starts to form. Roll it out onto a work surface and knead by hand until smooth and elastic. If the dough seems to be having a hard time forming a smooth ball, wet your hands with warm water and continue working. You’ll know the dough is ready when its very smooth and bounces back when touched. This takes about 5-6 minutes of kneading by hand or around 3 minutes if using a stand mixer. Cover the dough with a damp towel and let rise for 90 minutes or until doubled in size.
Step 3: Make the filling and assemble – While the dough rises, mix together the ingredients for the filling. You can also prepare a loaf pan by greasing the inside and pressing down a sheet of parchment paper. This will make it easier to lift the bread out of the pan. After the dough has doubled in size, punch it down and roll it into 9×24 in rectangle (aka a really long rectangle). Try not to fold the dough over itself or re-knead it or it will get harder to work with. Spread a layer of vegan butter across the dough then add the filling.
Now the fun part– roll the dough into a tight log and pinch the ends to seal them. Like you were making cinnamon rolls, cut even rounds out of the log and press them into the loaf pan. To get that braided look, alternate which side you press down. This is optional but makes the loaf look pretty cool. Cover again and let rise for another 45 – 60 minutes.
Step 4: Bake – Since its pretty dense and doughy, the loaf gets baked for almost an hour, probably around 50-55 minutes. Watch it closely! if the top looks like its browning too quickly, place a sheet of foil over it to trap the heat and help it cook though without burning. You’ll know its done when you can insert a toothpick and it comes out clean. It may seem a little doughy when you first remove it from the oven, but it’ll become fluffier as it cools.
Step 5: Make the glaze – This step is optional, but I definitely recommend making the glaze. The bread itself isn’t too sweet so the glaze makes it more of a sweet dessert and really brings it all together. It’s super easy, just whisk everything together in small bowl. The key is to use softened cream cheese here, or it will clump up. If you’re vegan cream cheese is exceptionally hard, I suggest that you use a blender to get that smooth creamy texture. Drizzle over your blueberry pull apart bread and serve fresh!
Tips for success
- For the dough, I highly recommend weighing out your ingredients, specifically the flour and milk. If you don’t have a food scale, just make sure your rounding off those cup measurements to get it exact as possible. I only included gram measurements for the dough because it’s ok if your measurements are a little off for the filling.
- For the second rise in the loaf pan, it’s important that you place the dough in a warm, draft free environment. My house is pretty chilly, so I like to heat the oven to 100° F then stick the dough in. I find that this gives me a consistent rise every time and helps the dough puff up properly while baking.
- I’ve tried this recipe with both fresh and frozen blueberries and have found that fresh work the best. Frozen tend to release a lot of juice, making it difficult to work with. If you do use frozen, just make sure they’re completely thawed. If they’re still slightly frozen, this will cause the bread to bake unevenly, resulting in a raw center.
Want more vegan dessert recipes? Try these:
- Blackberry banana crumb muffins
- Oatmeal banana snack cake with chocolate ganache
- Dark chocolate miso caramel cups
- Japende sweet potato blondies