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What is brioche? – 10 things you need to know about brioche

What is brioche? How do you even pronounce the word? St Pierre is here to answer all your burning brioche questions in honour of National Brioche Day!

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What is brioche? How do you pronounce brioche? What do you do with it, anyway? St Pierre is here to answer all your burning brioche questions in honour of National Brioche Day (14th May).

How to use brioche, what to make with it.  Allow us to give you the answers…

The team from St Pierre is here to answer all of your burning brioche-related questions in honour of National Brioche Day (14th May). Find out everything about brioche and how to best enjoy it – and become a true brioche expert!

Here are the top 10 things you should know about brioche, as explained by our bakery team…

1.What is Brioche?

Brioche is a type of bread, but better than you could imagine! It’s a soft, lightly sweet, rich bread that works in sweet and savoury dishes alike. The reason brioche is so light and tastes so rich is because it’s made with an enriched dough,which gives it that soft texture and amazing taste.

Brioche products spread

Brioche is enjoyed around the world as an upgraded substitute for ‘normal’ bread – subbed in for sandwiches, toasties, burgers and more. You can use brioche in dishes like bread and butter pudding, French toast, club sandwiches and plenty of others. Anytime you fancy elevating your everyday meals, or want to feel transported to a Parisian café… turn to brioche!

Lots of people ask “is brioche bread or cake?”. The truth is that brioche is considered a Viennoiserie – a sweeter, more indulgent form of bread, made with an enriched dough.  This is what makes brioche the magnifique treat that it is, with it’s signature golden colour, light sweetness and rich taste.

2. How do you pronounce “brioche”?

Brioche is a French word, and it’s pronounced “bri-yosh”. Around the world, there are lots of different ways that brioche is pronounced. For example, Americans tend to say “bree-aash” while people from Britain say “bree-osh”.

Grilled Lemon Chicken Burgers With Peppers

For a tongue twister, try saying “brioche au chocolat” three times fast! Alternatively, you could also just take a sweet break with a St Pierre Millionaires Waffle. However you pronounce brioche, just make sure you savour every sweet and decadent bite.

3. What should I make with brioche?

Brioche is incredibly versatile. You can make anything you want with brioche bread – that’s the beauty of it. It works for all meal occasions – breakfast, lunch, brunch, dinner, snack time, desserts… you name it! It also works with both sweet and savoury dishes, so the possibilities are endless.

You can typically look to use brioche bread in any recipe you’d use normal bread. For example, it really elevates dishes such as bread and butter pudding, grilled or toasted sandwiches, and even burgers and hot dogs. Of course, it’s a must-try addition to French toast, for when you need an extra dose of Parisian flair!

If you’re looking for some brioche meal inspiration, we have plenty of recipes for you to try out at home. Take a look at our brioche recipes page, or see some of our favourite things to do with brioche below…

Brioche French Toast

French Toast is a classic dish for a reason. One of the best weekend breakfast ideas, it’s also a great decadent dessert or a way to really level up your brunch table. Take some slices of our St Pierre Brioche Loaf, soak them in a milk and egg mixture, fry them up in butter (French, of course), and sprinkle with icing sugar, fresh fruit, syrup or anything you like. Nutella, peanut butter, chocolate sauce – the possibilities for creativity are endless.

St Pierre Brioche French Toast - Breakfast

Ready for the best breakfast? Try our Brioche French Toast recipe.

Loaded Brioche Burger

Wondering what to put in a brioche bun? A burger, of course! The light sweetness and soft texture of our St Pierre Brioche Burger Buns takes your burgers from meh to magnifique! Lightly toast your Brioche Burger Buns and load them up with all your favourite burger toppings.

St Pierre Brioche Burger

Whether you fancy a juicy beef patty, a healthy turkey burger or your veggie alternative of choice, our  Brioche Burger Buns make all the difference. Some of our favourite toppings for our Brioche Burger Buns include mustard, cheddar, onion rings, lettuce, tomato ketchup, grilled mushrooms… if you love it, it belongs in a St Pierre toasted Brioche Burger Bun.

Want the best burger recipe? Try our Loaded Brioche Burger recipe.

Brioche Nutella Rollups

Nutella and brioche go together like Paris and romance! These sweet Brioche Nutella Roll-Ups make for a wonderfully sweet breakfast or dessert, and are sure to be a hit with the little ones. Try them as part of a breakfast or brunch spread, or as a sweet snack.

Slices of brioche loaf rolled up and dusted in a cinnamon sugar on two plates with chopped strawberries

The soft brioche texture and light sweetness mean the bread pairs perfectly with more traditionally sweet toppings and spreads. Once you’ve mastered the technique, why not get a little creative in the kitchen and test a few alternatives? Perhaps Biscoff spread, peanut butter, jam… nothing beats a little treat of brioche to bring a touch of Paris to your plate.

For the ultimate sweet treat, have a go at our Brioche Nutella Rollups recipe.

4. Can I freeze brioche?

Yes, you can freeze brioche bread. Just make sure you freeze them before the best before date on the packaging. Once you’ve defrosted the brioche after taking it out of the freezer, you’ll need to use it right away. Frozen brioche makes great toast, and having a stash of frozen Brioche Burger Buns in the freezer means you’re never far from a delicious cheeseburger!

5. Where can you buy brioche bread?

You can find St Pierre brioche products and other French-inspired baked goods in various supermarkets and shops throughout the UK, as well as online. Shops that sell brioche include…

Use our product and store locator tool to find out where to buy St Pierre brioche for a true taste of France.

6. Can I toast brioche?

Yes – you can toast brioche bread. Most of the time, brioche doesn’t need to be toasted, it’s delicious as it is. However, you can lightly toast your St Pierre Brioche Burger Buns to warm them up before filling them, or toast a St Pierre Brioche Roll before spreading it with jam.

Two St Pierre Brioche Rolls sliced in half, with one filled with strawberry jam

Generally, you can lightly toast most brioche products – for 1-2 minutes on a low to medium heat. However, make sure you don’t toast it too long, as brioche burns quicker than regular white bread, since there is a little more sugar in brioche.

For the best results, we recommend heating up your St Pierre Brioche Burger Buns and Brioche Hot Dog Rolls in the oven for a few minutes. This is also the best way to heat up products like Brioche Baguettes and Brioche Swirls. For how to heat our Chocolate Chip Brioche Swirls, the method is much the same – heat them in the oven so the chocolate doesn’t burn in the toaster, but keep a close eye on them.

7. How do the French eat brioche?

In France, brioche bread is mostly enjoyed for breakfast or as an afternoon snack. After school, French children often like to have a few squares of milk chocolate wrapped in a brioche roll and washed down with a glass of milk. For breakfast, the French love a sweet moment to start the day, and will have brioche slices with jam or Nutella spread on them, served alongside a warm, milky coffee.

A chocolate chip brioche roll being dunked into a big mug of hot chocolate and whipped cream

Of course, there’s not really any wrong way to enjoy brioche. Brioche toast, brioche sandwiches, brioche dessert, brioche burgers… however you choose to enjoy it, enjoy a taste of France with every bite. There are various brioche variations throughout France, with many seasonal too. For example, in January in southern French regions you may find a brioche version of the famous ‘Galette des Rois’ – in which a small trinket is hidden, for the ‘winner’ to discover in their piece!

8. How do you serve brioche?

Are you wondering “so what do you eat with brioche?” Well, you can serve brioche any way that you like. Whether you have sweet tooth or prefer savoury foods, St Pierre brioche can do it all.

You can serve brioche up as part of a spread with dips and toppings, use it for burgers, hot dogs, grilled cheeses or simply on its own. The world of brioche is your oyster! Brioche works really well with both meaty and veggie fillings for things like sandwiches and burgers, so you can serve it for a summer BBQ or for lunch. Brioche is great served with sweet fillings too, so whether you pile it high with mixed berries as part of a French toast recipe, or spread it with Nutella for a quick fix, you’re in for a treat.

St Pierre Table Spread

For more inspiration, visit our recipe page, where we’re sure you’ll find the best ever brioche bread recipe to add to your repertoire.

9. What makes brioche different to most breads?

Brioche is different to most breads because it’s made with an enriched dough and tastes a little sweeter. . Because it’s an enriched dough, you get that famous brioche texture of soft bread, the classic golden colour and quintessentially rich taste. It’s bread made “magnifique”.

Because brioche bread has a higher sugar content than most other breads, it can also burn more quickly. For that reason, you need to pay close attention when you’re making brioche toast, or warming up your burger buns.

10. Where does brioche bread come from?

Like many of the most delicious bakery products, brioche bread comes from France. It’s debated where exactly in France it originated, but it has a long tradition all over France, particularly in the Normandy region.

Paris Balcony Eiffel Tower

It is thought that the first brioche bread recipe dates all the way back to the Middle Ages, and has been passed down from generation to generation, with tweaks and improvements made along the way. By the 1800s most cities and regions in France had developed their own signature brioche recipe, and it soon became a staple on the menus of cafés throughout the country.

All those brioche facts making you hungry? Add a little French flair to your day with a taste of signature St Pierre brioche products, or get inspired further with our team’s tried and tested recipe collection.

Go to our Brioche portal if you want to know more.