These Christmas tree rolls are the perfect addition to your holiday table. Made from scratch, these soft and fluffy rolls are baked in the shape of a Christmas tree, making this a festive and delicious appetizer or side dish. They are perfect for serving alongside a cozy winter soup or stew this holiday season.
This Christmas tree pull-apart bread recipe is so perfect for this time of year. This recipe is easy to make and easy to assemble. You can make it even easier by using store-bought dough instead of making the pizza dough.
After that, you just stuff the dough with cheese and arrange it in the shape of a tree. So easy, so tasty. Who can turn down cheesy bread any time of the year? Not me.
I love how the fresh herbs give it a bit of tree-like character and add fresh savory flavor. Try mixing up the flavors and see what you come up with!
See the recipe card for exact amounts.
This recipe comes together quickly once the dough has risen and is ready to fill.
To make the dough, mix together the flour, sugar, salt, and instant yeast in a large bowl or in the bowl of a stand mixer. Add the olive oil and mix it into the flour. Add the water and combine the dough.
If making the dough by hand, knead on a counter for 10-12 minutes or until smooth.
If making the dough in a stand mixer, knead for 8-10 minutes, or until smooth.
Coat the dough in a light layer of olive oil and return it to the bowl. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap or a dish towel and set the dough aside to rise until doubled about 30 minutes.
Once the dough is ready, cut it into 32 pieces. You can use a sharp knife, pizza cutter, or a bench scraper. To get evenly sized pieces, cut the dough ball into quarters. Roll each quarter into a log and cut it in half. Cut each half of the log into 4 pieces each, giving you 8 pieces. Repeat for the other 3 quarters, which will leave you with 32 pieces. Watch the video in the recipe card to see exactly how this happens.
Cut the cheese into 32 cubes also.
- Divide the dough.
- Flatten a piece of dough and place a cube of cheese in the middle.
- Gather the edges and twist them together, sealing the dough ball.
- Roll the dough ball seam on the counter, smoothing out the dough.
See the video in the recipe card to see exactly how this happens.
Repeat this step for all of the dough and cheese.
Once all of the dough has been filled you're ready to arrange them in a large triangle.
- Arrange the dough. (Read below)
- Egg wash the dough.
Start at the bottom and place a row of 7 dough ball on the prepared baking sheet seam side down. Start placing them near the bottom of the cookie sheet so you have room for the whole tree. Next, center a row of 6 dough balls right above the row of 7. Add of the dough balls should be lightly touching. Continue with a row of 5, then 4, 3, 2, and 1. You'll have 4 dough balls left.
I add the last four dough balls, in a square, centered under the row of 7. This acts as a tree trunk. You should now have something resembling a Christmas tree shape.
Instead of making a thick trunk, you could try to combine two of the dough balls and form them into a star shape, but I like it without. You could also try using a star-shaped cookie cutter.
Cover the tray with a towel and let the dough rise for about 20 minutes. Preheat the oven halfway through rising.
Whisk the egg in a small bowl, and then use a pastry brush to brush it over top of all of the dough.
Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until cooked and golden brown.
Melt the butter in a small bowl in the microwave.
To top decorate the tree, brush melted butter over all of the dough. Sprinkle on the cheese and the fresh herbs.
Carefully slide the tree onto a large serving platter and add a bowl of marinara sauce for dipping.
Tips for making Christmas Tree Bread
What to serve with stuffed cheese rolls
I think this Christmas tree bread is great served for a holiday party, on a pretty platter with a few bowls of dipping sauces like marinara sauce or even beer cheese sauce. Try dipping them in ranch, or honey sriracha sauce.
You could serve these stuffed cheese rolls with soup or stew for dipping. Or serve them beside a Christmas charcuterie board.
Love this recipe? Try cheesy garlic pull apart bread next.
Store the rolls in an airtight container or a ziptop bag in the fridge for up to 3 days. After this, the dough starts drying out.
Microwave to reheat, or try baking at a low temperature, just until hot. You can sprinkle them lightly with water before reheating them in the oven if the dough seems dry.
Yes you can make the Christmas tree rolls and arrange them on the baking sheet. Cover the plastic wrap and refrigerate. Let the dough come to room temperature and rise before baking.
No, for this recipe you don't have to make the tree. You can arrange the dough balls in a rectangle, square, or circle if you wish.
Christmas Tree Rolls with Gouda
For the dough
For the tree
- 200 grams gouda (cut into 32 cubes)
- 1 egg (for egg washing)
For the topping
- 2 tablespoons butter (melted)
- ½ cup finely grated Parmesan cheese
- 1 tablespoon chopped parsley (fresh)
- 1 teaspoon chopped rosemary (fresh)
For the dough
- Make the dough. Mix the flour, yeast, sugar, and salt together in a large mixing bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer. Add the oil and mix well. Add the water and knead into a smooth ball, about 6-8 minutes in a stand mixer. This will take a little bit longer by hand.
- Cover the dough and allow it to rise until doubled in size.
For the tree
- Once the dough has risen, cut it into quarters. Cut each quarter into 8 equal pieces. You should have 32 pieces in total.
- Flatten each dough ball and add a piece of cheese inside. Gather the stems and twist them to close the dough ball. Roll the dough ball on the counter with a cupped hand to smooth and round it out. Set aside and repeat with all of the dough and cheese.
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Start arranging the dough balls on the prepared baking sheet. The bottom row should have 7 balls. Center all of the rows of dough balls. Continue with rows using 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, and then 1 dough ball. You'll have a large triangle of dough balls plus 4 extra. I arrange these at the bottom i a square to act as a tree trunk.
- Preheat the oven to 425°F.
- Cover the dough with a towel and let rise for about 20 minutes while the oven preheats.
- Whisk the egg in a small bowl and brush it over the dough.
- Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until golden brown and cooked through.
For the topping
- Brush the rolls with melted butter. Sprinkle with the cheese and the fresh herbs. Serve hot.
Nutritional information is an estimate. Values vary based on products used.
Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links, meaning I get a commission if you decide to purchase through my link, at no extra cost to you.
SHARE THIS RECIPE
Rating, commenting, and sharing my recipes really helps. Thanks for taking the time! Mention @pipercooksblog on Instagram.