Nut-Filled Easter Bread Crescent Rolls

For me, Easter is all about fluffy baked goods – everything is airy, soft and tender: the fluffy traditional German Easter bread with jam, yeast buns and the carrot cake that crumbles in your mouth. I wanted to create yet another fluffy easter recipe and created this new version of the famous German Easter bread.

Instead of a large loaf, I created small, filled crescent rolls. They are the perfect addition to your Easter brunch and every other occasion. What makes these croissants turn into Easter bread crescent rolls are the raisins, the lemon zest in the dough and a slightly crunchy topping of sliced almonds.

Don't be afraid of raisins!
I experimented with the raisins because I've read many times that you should soak them in advance. I wanted to see if that makes a difference, and yes, it does indeed. My test croissants with unsoaked raisins were a touch drier and the raisins were chewy and not as soft. If you soak the raisins, they add moisture to the dough and remain buttery soft while baking. This may be a game changer for anyone who doesn't really like the little dried fruits. Be sure to give it a try.

The golden filling
You only need three ingredients for the filling: ground nuts (I chose almonds), water and sugar beet syrup. I've been using the one from Grafschafter forever, so we're more than happy they're supporting us with their golden syrup for this recipe. You undoubtedly know the yellow cups (and dispenser bottles) from the breakfast table of your grandparents, parents and your own. The syrup is made from 100 % sugar beets and is produced regionally in the Rhineland. First, the beets are cooked and pressed. Afterward, the juice gets thickened and is ready for your breakfast table. Instead of using it "only" as a spread, you can use it for savory dishes such as sauces and marinades, bake bread, or, like in this case, make sweet fillings. Although it tastes mainly sweet, it has a slightly spicy note. You can find sugar beet syrup in almost all supermarkets and online.

How do you substitute an egg glaze when baking?
Once the filling is done, spread it onto the yeast dough and form little croissants. Afterward, they are brushed with glaze, which keeps them from getting dry while baking. In non-vegan cuisine, a beaten egg is often used for this, but you can also use plant-based milk mixed with a dash of sugar beet syrup.

And that still wasn't the end of our syrupy journey, because, after baking, we cover the crescent rolls in powdered sugar and add a drizzle of golden juice on top.

R821 Nut-Filled Easter Bread Crescent Rolls
R821 Nut-Filled Easter Bread Crescent Rolls
R821 Nut-Filled Easter Bread Crescent Rolls

Nut-Filled Easter Bread Crescent Rolls

8 small or 6 large crescent rolls
30 minutes (+ approx. 1.5 hours resting time + 20 minutes baking time)


For the dough:

  • 50 g (1.75 oz) raisins
  • 125 ml (0.5 cup) plant-based milk
  • 50 g sugar
  • 10 g (0.33 oz) fresh yeast
  • 40 ml (0.20 oz) neutral vegetable oil
  • 0.5 tsp lemon zest
  • 250 g wheat flour (type 405)

For the filling:

  • 100 g (3.5 oz) ground almonds
  • 50 g (1.75 oz) sugar beet syrup (Grafschafter Goldsaft)
  • 50 ml (0.25 oz) water

For glaze:

  • plant-based milk
  • sugar beet syrup (Grafschafter Goldsaft)

To serve:

  • sliced almonds
  • powdered sugar
  • sugar beet syrup (Grafschafter Goldsaft)


  1. First, soak the raisins in hot water for about 30 minutes. Then drain and squeeze the liquid a little using your hands.

  2. For the dough, heat the plant-based milk until lukewarm. Then add to the bowl of a food processor along with sugar and crumbled yeast. Let sit for about 10 minutes until bubbles form on the surface. Then add vegetable oil, lemon zest and soaked raisins and combine everything briefly. Then add flour little by little until a smooth dough forms.

Tip: You may need less or more flour for your dough. However, we recommend using less at first and working with a softer dough because later on, when you knead and roll out the dough, you will have to dust the work surface with more flour anyway. Otherwise, your dough may become too dry.

  1. Cover the dough with a clean, dampened cloth and let it rise in a warm place for about 1 hour until it has doubled in volume. Alternatively, you can let it rise overnight in the refrigerator.

  2. In the meantime, prepare the filling. Mix ground almonds with sugar beet syrup and water. The filling should be smooth but not too liquid. It is best if it is spreadable.

Tip: Depending on your taste, you can use more sugar beet syrup and less water if you prefer it sweeter.

  1. Knead the dough briefly using your hands, then roll it out into a circle (ø 25–30 cm / 10–12 inches) on a floured work surface. Spread the filling all over the dough with your hands and cut the dough circle into six or eight triangles. Roll each triangle into croissants starting from the long side.

  2. Place the croissants on a baking tray lined with parchment paper and let them rise again, covered, for about 20 minutes at room temperature.

  3. Preheat the oven to 180 °C / 350 °F (convection heat). Mix some plant-based milk with sugar beet syrup to brush the croissants. Then cover the croissants with sliced almonds – you can either sprinkle them on top or put the glazed side of the crescent rolls on a plate covered in almonds.

  4. Bake the crescent rolls at 180 °C / 350 °F (convection heat) for 15–20 minutes until they are fluffy and golden brown. Then remove from the oven and let cool.

  5. When cooled, dust with powdered sugar and drizzle with sugar beet syrup.

R821 Nut-Filled Easter Bread Crescent Rolls
R821 Nut-Filled Easter Bread Crescent Rolls
R821 Nut-Filled Easter Bread Crescent Rolls

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