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Coconut Cheesecake Breakfast Braid
Coconut Cheesecake Breakfast Braid

Coconut Cheesecake Breakfast Braid

5 from 1 reviews
Coconut Cheesecake Breakfast Braid
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
This recipe makes a delicious, crisp pastry braid filled with creamy coconut cheesecake. It's perfect for your Easter breakfast table!
Serves: 10-12
Dough Ingredients:
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup unsalted butter
  • 3 ounces cream cheese
  • ½ cup milk
  • ½ teaspoon almond extract
  • 1 egg whisked with 1 teaspoon water for egg wash
Filling Ingredients:
  • 1 (8-ounce) package Philadelphia Cream Cheese, softened
  • a scant 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon coconut extract
  • 1 egg, room temperature
  • 3/4 cup sweetened shredded coconut (plus more for topping)
Glaze Ingredients:
  • ½ cups powdered sugar
  • ⅛ teaspoon coconut extract
  • ⅛ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon milk
  1. Make the filling: Cream the softened cream cheese in a medium bowl until fluffy before adding sugar, coconut extract, and the egg. Mix together until well combined. Stir in coconut. Set aside on the counter while you prepare the rest of the braid.
  2. Make the pastry braid: Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. In the bowl of a food processor, mix the flour, powdered sugar, baking powder, and salt. Add the cream cheese and butter into the flour mixture and pulse to cut the fat into the flour (about 6 pulses). Add the milk and almond extract and blend until it’s just starting to come together into a loose dough.
  3. Turn the dough out onto a big sheet of lightly-floured parchment paper and knead each very lightly for just 4-5 strokes (be careful not to overwork the dough or it’ll be tough! Don’t worry about getting it smooth — just knead for these few strokes and let it stay a little rough.)
  4. Very lightly flour the top of the dough and place another sheet of parchment paper on top. Between two sheets of parchment paper, roll the dough to an 10- by 12-inch rectangle (I lift the paper off every now and then and flip the dough and repeat on the other side, to ensure the dough isn’t sticking). Remove the top sheet of parchment and discard. Measure and mark the dough lengthwise into thirds. Dollop the cream cheese mixture on top of the butter and spread it out (I use the back of two spoons to spread it around). Things will get oozy and you will worry that you're messing the braid up. Take a deep breath and soldier through, because it's gonna come out amazing!
  5. Continue assembling the braid: (Remember, there are photos below to help visualize this step!) Make diagonal cuts at 1-inch intervals on each the long sides. Do not cut into the center filling area. Fold strips, first one from one side and then one from the other side in an alternating fashion, over the filling. It will now resemble a braid. Use the sheet of parchment to carefully transfer your braid to a baking sheet. At this point you can cover and refrigerate the braid overnight, or you can continue to the next step.
  6. Bake and glaze the braid: Brush the pastry braid with the egg wash mixture. Bake in the 425 degree oven for 20-22 minutes, until the dough is really golden on top and the filling is set. After allowing the braid to cool for around 30 minutes, whisk together the powdered sugar, coconut and vanilla extracts, and milk in a small measuring cup with a pour spout. Drizzle over the top of the braid. Top with extra shredded coconut and serve!


Example of how to cut and assemble braid.

And here’s a video illustration:

19 Comments on Coconut Cheesecake Breakfast Braid

  1. debbie
    March 24, 2015 at 6:22 am (6 years ago)

    This looks wonderful! I love your story too. There is nothing like a good bakery. When I lived on Long Island we had tons of them but here in Virginia I have yet to find a really good one! I will have to try this recipe. I’ve never made a braided danish!

  2. Erin M.
    March 24, 2015 at 7:51 am (6 years ago)

    Hi Julie! This looks so good! I’m curious about the melted butter in step 4…I don’t see it listed in the ingredients. How much do you use? I may try this instead of cinnamon rolls for Easter, although I already have some dough in my freezer for those. I use your dough recipe for the morning buns because it’s so good and easy to work with! thanks for the recipe!

    • Julie Ruble
      March 24, 2015 at 9:10 am (6 years ago)

      Oops, Erin, the melted butter was a holdover from another recipe and I’m glad you spotted it! This post went through so many proofreadings by me AND others, too — I’m always amazed at how persistent mistakes can be! I fixed it now. I hope you love the braid! It is perfect for Easter morning. And I’m so glad you love the morning bun dough — it’s my favorite way to make any sort of bun, too! Heck, why not make both?! 😉

      • Erin M.
        March 25, 2015 at 3:59 pm (6 years ago)

        Thank you for the clarification! Twist my arm about making both 🙂

  3. Yankee Kitchen Ninja
    March 24, 2015 at 8:09 am (6 years ago)

    Love that this recipe was inspired by such a nice (and yummy!) childhood tradition!

  4. Lisa
    March 24, 2015 at 10:04 am (6 years ago)

    The only danish I would ever eat in a million years is a cream cheese one. I’m weird about fruit in things. I also never go to bakeries because I’m a giant pain and would rather make stuff myself so this was the perfect thing to see this morning. If only I wasn’t avoiding carbs right this second I would go home and make it right now. That and work being an obstacle. But I will make it for Easter! Gotta have carbs on that day. Thanks!

  5. heather @french press
    March 24, 2015 at 10:51 am (6 years ago)

    I LOVE every single one of your pastry braids, and nothing beats a really good cream cheese danish on a weekend morning. This sounds like a terrific addition to our Easter brunch table

  6. Catherine
    March 24, 2015 at 2:04 pm (6 years ago)

    Dear Julie, this sounds so good! I haven’t had a cheese danish in ages. I would be in heaven with a slice of this and coffee.

    I know exactly what you mean. Food has the wonderful ability to transport one to wherever they want to go. I cannot tell you how many times I’ve been to Italy 😉 …Many beautiful memories. Pinned for later and I enjoyed the video too! xo dear, Catherine

  7. Amy @ A Healthy Life For Me
    March 24, 2015 at 6:26 pm (6 years ago)

    This looks wonderful and what a great story. There is nothing better than a great bakery, sadly we don’t have many here in Cincinnati, but when we travel out east, I like to enjoy what they have to offer.

  8. Aida @ TheCraftingFoodie
    March 25, 2015 at 12:40 am (6 years ago)

    Julie, this looks amazing! The bread is fluffy and tender, and that filling looks absolutely delicious!

  9. Laura
    March 29, 2015 at 10:31 pm (6 years ago)

    My husband made this today and it was delicious. Thank you for sharing.

    • Julie Ruble
      March 29, 2015 at 10:58 pm (6 years ago)

      I’m so glad you all enjoyed it, Laura!! Thank you!

  10. Nlue
    April 1, 2015 at 11:00 pm (6 years ago)

    Oh how you delight my soul! When I was young about 8yrs old a neighbors daughter befriended me and her dad was one of those great dads! When I did a sleep over on Saturday night I was invited to go to the Patessiere.. ahhh.. it was heaven. And he would buy me a cheese danish. All my own!!! I was in heaven. No little brothers to share no frowning mother .. just happiness..
    Thank you very much♡

  11. Maria
    May 15, 2015 at 3:38 pm (5 years ago)

    Mine opened… Maybe I didn’t close the braid tightly? The filling stayed in but the whole thing opened up like a lake of cream cheese.

    • Julie Ruble
      May 15, 2015 at 3:55 pm (5 years ago)

      Did the braid strips cross over the whole width of the top? I don’t crimp mine together or anything. They do expand while baking, but if the strips cross the whole width of the braid (e.g. If your lengthwise thirds are pretty even width) they stay mostly closed for me. When you say lake of cream cheese, do you mean it was runny? The egg binds it, but I imagine if your cream cheese were to warm that might happen. Sorry it didn’t work out the way you expected!

  12. Morgan
    January 10, 2016 at 2:14 pm (5 years ago)

    Can you make the dough and filling ahead of time, refrigerate and assemble in the morning?

    • Julie Ruble
      January 10, 2016 at 4:12 pm (5 years ago)

      Yeah, you can! Some of the filling might ooze out, but that’s OK.


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