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braided Easter bread with eggs

Sicilian Easter Bread Recipe (cuddura cu l'ova)

Sicilian Easter Cuddura cu l'Ova is a traditional Sicilian bread nestled with eggs and presented to family and friends each Easter.
Course Bread
Cuisine Sicilian-Italian
Keyword cuddura, Sicilian Easter bread, Easter cuddura, Easter bread with eggs, traditional Sicilian Easter bread
Prep Time 40 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Resting time 2 hours
Total Time 1 hour 40 minutes
Servings 2 cuddura with 4 eggs each
Calories 1853kcal


  • 3 ½ cups lukewarm water divided
  • 1 package dry yeast (8 grams)
  • 1 teaspoon granulated sugar
  • 7 cups all-purpose flour divided
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 8 large eggs


  • Place yeast and sugar in a small bowl and add ½ cup of the lukewarm water. Let sit for 10 minutes.
  • In a large bowl combine 3 1/2 cups flour and salt. Make a well in the centre and pour in the yeast mixture. Add the remaining 3 cups of warm water and stir with a wooden spoon to form a dough.
  • Place the dough on a lightly floured surface, it will be very sticky.  Gradually add the remaining flour, kneading it into the dough. Knead about 10 minutes, until smooth and elastic.
  • Place the dough in a lightly oiled bowl, cover with a cloth and let rise for 2 hours until doubled in bulk.
  • Cover 2 baking sheets with parchment paper. Place eggs  in a bowl, cover with hot tap water and let sit for 10 minutes while you shape the dough.
  • Punch down the dough and divide in 2.
  • Divide each half into 3 equal pieces. Roll each piece into a -20 inch long rope. Braid the 3 ropes and form a circle by pinching the ends together. Transfer to the prepared baking sheet.
  • Nestle 4 eggs at equal intervals into the dough. To form a basket, nestle 2 eggs on the bottom of the braid and slightly lengthen the top part of the braid to shape the basket’s handle. Repeat with the remaining dough.
  • Preheat oven to 350F.  Let the cuddure rest while the oven preheats. Bake for approximately 45-60 minutes until the bread is golden on top and underneath. Let cool before slicing. 



  • The eggs do not require boiling prior to baking. Place in a bowl covered with warm water while you are shaping the dough.  They will bake in the oven.
  • Please note that baking time may vary according to each oven. The bread is ready when golden in color both on top and underneath.  It will have a hollow sound when you tap it.
  • Store the bread at room temperature for up to 3 days.  Remove the eggs from the bread and store separately in the refrigerator.  
  • The bread can also be frozen (without the eggs) for up to 3 months.
  • For children, the bread may be shaped as a basket as shown. This one was prepared by my mother for my daughter a few years ago.


Calories: 1853kcal | Carbohydrates: 337g | Protein: 67g | Fat: 21g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Cholesterol: 654mg | Sodium: 1421mg | Potassium: 711mg | Fiber: 11g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 950IU | Calcium: 164mg | Iron: 23.4mg