Slovak Paska Bread Recipe: A Taste of Tradition

Are you ready to embark on a culinary journey to Slovakia? Get ready to experience the rich flavors and warm aroma of Slovak Paska Bread Recipe, a traditional Easter treat that’s deeply rooted in Slovakian culture. This beloved recipe has been passed down through generations, cherished for its soft texture, subtle sweetness, and symbolic significance. Let’s dive into the details of how to recreate this timeless classic in your own kitchen.

Embracing Slovakian Tradition with Paska Bread

Slovak Paska Bread holds a special place in the hearts of Slovakians, especially during the Easter season. This bread is more than just a culinary delight—it’s a symbol of hope, renewal, and community. The word “Paska” itself is derived from the Slovak word for Easter, “Paska,” highlighting its close association with the holiday.

Ingredients for Slovak Paska Bread

To make this delightful bread, you’ll need the following ingredients:

  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup warm milk
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter, melted
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 tablespoon active dry yeast
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • Zest of 1 lemon or orange
  • 1/2 cup raisins (optional)
  • 1 egg yolk for egg wash

Preparing the Ingredients

Before you start baking, it’s important to prepare all the ingredients and equipment.

  1. Activate the Yeast: In a small bowl, dissolve the yeast in warm milk and let it sit for about 5 minutes until foamy.
  2. Melt the Butter: Gently melt the unsalted butter and set it aside to cool slightly.
  3. Zest the Citrus: Use a fine grater to zest the lemon or orange, being careful to only grate the outer layer and avoid the bitter white pith.
  4. Soak the Raisins: If using raisins, soak them in warm water for about 10 minutes to plump them up.

Baking Slovak Paska Bread

Now, let’s dive into the baking process and bring the flavors of Slovakia into your home.

  1. Combine Ingredients: In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour, sugar, salt, and citrus zest. Create a well in the center and add the activated yeast mixture, melted butter, and eggs.
  2. Knead the Dough: Use a wooden spoon or your hands to mix the ingredients until a dough forms. Transfer the dough to a floured surface and knead for about 8-10 minutes until smooth and elastic.
  3. Incorporate Raisins: If using raisins, knead them into the dough during the last few minutes of kneading.
  4. First Rise: Place the dough in a greased bowl, cover with a clean kitchen towel, and let it rise in a warm, draft-free place for about 1-2 hours until doubled in size.
  5. Shape the Bread: Punch down the risen dough and shape it into a round loaf. Place the loaf on a parchment-lined baking sheet.
  6. Second Rise: Cover the loaf with a clean kitchen towel and let it rise for another 30-45 minutes until puffed up.

Baking and Serving

  1. Preheat the Oven: Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C) while the dough is rising.
  2. Egg Wash: Before baking, brush the surface of the loaf with beaten egg yolk for a shiny finish.
  3. Bake: Bake the Paska Bread in the preheated oven for 30-35 minutes until golden brown and hollow-sounding when tapped on the bottom.
  4. Cool and Enjoy: Let the bread cool on a wire rack before slicing. Serve slices of Paska Bread with butter and jam for a delightful Easter treat.

Tips for Perfect Paska Bread

  • Warm Milk: Make sure the milk is warm but not hot when activating the yeast to ensure proper fermentation.
  • Kneading: Take your time with kneading the dough to develop gluten and achieve a soft, fluffy texture.
  • Rising Time: Allow the dough to rise in a warm, draft-free place for the best results. A longer rise time contributes to better flavor development.


Slovak Paska Bread is more than just a delicious baked good—it’s a symbol of Slovakian heritage, tradition, and the spirit of Easter. With its soft, pillowy texture and delicate citrus flavor, this bread is sure to become a beloved favorite in your household. So why not bring a taste of Slovakia to your table this Easter?

For more ideas, recipes, and cooking tips and tricks, please visit us at Eli Derby.

FAQs About Slovak Paska Bread Recipe

Can I use instant yeast instead of active dry yeast?

Yes, you can substitute instant yeast for active dry yeast in this recipe. However, you may need to adjust the rising time slightly as instant yeast tends to work faster.

Can I add other dried fruits to the bread?

Absolutely! Feel free to experiment with other dried fruits such as cranberries, currants, or chopped apricots to add variety and flavor to your Paska Bread.

How should I store leftover Paska Bread?

Store leftover Paska Bread in an airtight container or resealable plastic bag at room temperature for up to 3-4 days. You can also freeze it for longer storage.

Can I make Paska Bread ahead of time?

Yes, you can prepare the dough ahead of time and refrigerate it overnight for the first rise. The next day, proceed with shaping, rising, and baking as directed in the recipe.