Photo: Alison Miksch; Styling: Caroline M. Cunningham
Hands-on Time
1 Hour
Total Time
10 Hours 40 Mins
Makes 4 loaves

Pam found this recipe in an old issue of Southern Living and was making this family favorite long before joining the staff in 2003.

How to Make It

Step 1

Heat first 3 ingredients and 1/2 cup sugar in a small saucepan over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally, until butter melts. Cool to 100 to 110°.

Step 2

Combine yeast, warm water, and remaining 1 tsp. sugar in a large bowl; let stand 5 minutes. Stir in sour cream mixture and eggs; gradually add bread flour, beating at low speed with an electric mixer. (Dough will be soft.) Cover and chill 8 to 24 hours.

Step 3

Divide dough into 4 portions. Turn out each portion onto a heavily floured surface, and knead 4 or 5 times.

Step 4

Roll each portion into a 12- x 8-inch rectangle, and spread each rectangle with one-fourth of Cream Cheese Filling, leaving a 1-inch border. Carefully roll up, starting at 1 long side; press seam, and fold ends under to seal. Place 2 loaves, seam side down, on each of 2 parchment paper-lined baking sheets. Make 6 cuts across each loaf; cover with plastic wrap.

Step 5

Let loaves rise in a warm place (80° to 85°), free from drafts, 1 hour or until doubled in bulk.

Step 6

Preheat oven to 375°. Bake 2 loaves at a time 15 minutes or until golden brown. (Refrigerate remaining loaves while first batch is baking.) Drizzle warm loaves with Powdered Sugar Glaze.

Chef's Notes

To make ahead, prepare recipe as directed through Step 4. Refrigerate up to 24 hours. Let rise as directed in Step 5, allowing a little extra rising time. Proceed as directed in Step 6.

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Ratings & Reviews


December 27, 2016
This is delicious! It is perfect for Christmas morning! I made it in 2015 and again this year. It makes four loaves so it's nice to share!

And oldie but goodie from 1981 - LF

December 18, 2016
I have been making this off and on since 1981. "Christmas with Southern Living 1981" is where I found the recipe. Delicious! Cutting from the top with kitchen shears in a zip zag pattern  to resemble a braid was a totally  new thing for me.


December 13, 2015
Mine did not quite look like the picture but were delicious anyway. Absolutely would make this again!