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Homemade classic Kolaches are surprisingly easy to make. Use your favorite fillings to customize them to your tastes!

Kolaches on a parchment-lined baking sheet

Kolaches are something I’ve wanted to try baking for quite a while. For those of you not familiar with classic kolaches, they’re little pastries with an indentation full of a sweet filling. They’re perfect for a breakfast treat or a sweet snack.

Kolaches are a yeast-based pastry, but don’t let that cause you any hesitation. With the use of instant yeast, things go quickly and easily. Whether you’re new to yeast baking or a pro, I think you’ll find these to be surprisingly easy to make.

Kolaches on a white serving tray

The dough is made with a short list of ingredients. I love the addition of sour cream to the dough. It adds a wonderful flavor and also makes the dough really nice to handle. If any of you aren’t big fans of sour cream, don’t worry. Honestly, I don’t know that you’d be able to name sour cream as an ingredient if you were to try one without knowing the ingredients.

When it’s time to portion the dough, a kitchen scale is your best friend. Add in a little simple math, and you’ll make this part wonderfully easy. Weigh your dough in grams, and divide that by 24 to find out how much you want each portion to weigh. Having each of the kolaches the same size will not only look nicer, but you’ll also find that they bake more evenly.

Kolaches with pastry filling and a sprinkling of confectioners' sugar

I like to use a pre-made pastry filling to simplify things a bit. For variety’s sake, I often use different flavors for more option and a nice look on a serving tray. If you want to stick with one type of filling, that’s fine, too. The ones you see here were filled with apricot, raspberry, and almond.

You can serve these just as they are, or you can top them with a simple glaze or an even simpler sprinkling of confectioners’ sugar. The latter is my preference for the appearance and also to keep things simple. If you prefer a glaze, then try that reliable combination of confectioners’ sugar and milk or cream. We’ve probably all made a version of that dozens of time. I’d recommend keeping it on the thicker side so it will set well and stand out on the pastries.

fruit-filled Kolaches on a baking sheet

While kolaches will likely be at their very best the day they’re made, they also reheat nicely. Keep any leftovers tightly covered in the refrigerator, and then reheat in a low temperature oven for a few minutes or even in the microwave for about 10 seconds. You’ll also notice in the directions that the dough can be refrigerated for up to 24 hours if you want to divide the prep and baking over two days.

Homemade Kolaches have very quickly found a spot among my favorite yeast breads to bake. I love not only the flavor and the variety of fillings, but I also love the simplicity and approachability of the recipe. I hope you’ll give them a try!

Find more yeast bread recipes in the Recipe Index.

More Sweet Breakfast Treats


Yield 24 kolaches
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 23 minutes
Additional Time 3 hours 15 minutes
Total Time 4 hours 8 minutes

These classic Kolaches combine an easy-to-make yeast dough with your favorite fillings.

Kolaches on a parchment-lined baking sheet


  • 4 & 1/2 cups (540g) all-purpose flour, divided
  • 4 & 1/2 teaspoons (2 - 0.25 ounce packages) instant yeast
  • 1/2 cup (100g) granulated sugar
  • 1 & 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/2 cup (118ml) water
  • 1 cup (227g) sour cream
  • 1/2 cup (113g) unsalted butter
  • 2 large eggs
  • pastry filling*
  • confectioners' sugar, for garnish (optional)


  1. Combine 1 & 1/2 cups (180g) flour, yeast, sugar, and salt in a large mixing bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer.
  2. Place the water, sour cream, and butter in a medium saucepan. Heat on the stovetop until very warm (120° to 130°F).
  3. Gradually add the butter mixture to the flour mixture. Beat at medium speed for 2 minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl.
  4. Add the eggs and 1 cup (120g) flour. Beat at high speed for 2 minutes.
  5. Stir in the remaining 2 cups (240g) flour. The dough will be stiff.
  6. Cover and refrigerate 2 to 24 hours.
  7. Line baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone liners.
  8. Divide the dough into 24 equal portions. (Use your kitchen scale to make this simpler and more accurate.) Shape each portion into a ball.
  9. Place the balls of dough on the prepared pans, leaving about 2 inches between them.
  10. Cover and let rest for 15 minutes.
  11. Make a deep, wide indentation in each ball of dough. Leave about a 1/2-inch border around the outside. Fill each indentation with a heaping teaspoon of pastry filling.
  12. Spray plastic wrap with cooking spray, and use to cover the kolaches. Let the kolaches rise in a warm, draft-free place until doubled in size (about 1 hour).
  13. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  14. Bake the kolaches 18 to 23 minutes, or until lightly browned.
  15. Cool on the pans on a wire rack for 5 minutes. Then transfer from the pan to a wire rack to cool completely.
  16. If desired, sprinkle the top of each kolache with confectioners' sugar.


*A 12-ounce can of store-bought pastry filling is plenty for a batch of these. Look for pastry filling alongside canned pie fillings.

Recipe slightly adapted from Fleischmann's.

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    10 Comments on “Kolaches”

  1. Can I use cream cheese in this recipe.  If so how much & when do you add.  Love Kolaches never made with yeast.

    • If you want a cream cheese filling, then I would add it when you’d add the pastry filling. If you’re wanting cream cheese in the dough, then I don’t know how to incorporate that into this recipe without trying it. There are kolache recipes that don’t use yeast, and those often have cream cheese in the dough. If that’s what you’re wanting, I’m afraid I don’t have a recipe for that yet, but try a Google search for “kolaches no yeast”.

  2. My husband’s Grandma was 100% Czech and very proud of it. We make a lot of traditional Czech foods at Christmas time. Her kolache recipe doesn’t include yeast, it’s more of a pastry. Flour, butter, cream cheese. We fill them with apricot, prune, poppyseed or cream cheese. Delicious!

  3. In my Czech are they are folded over at the corners and you don’t have to worry about them sticking together. Then you can leave them out in a bag. Canned pastry fillings aren’t near as good as ones you can buy from a bakery. I actually used to make my own!

  4. Kolaches around here are more of a pig in a blanket, with sausage and cheese inside. But this dough looks like it would work for that.

  5. I have made a number of your recipes with complete success-not these! They taste more like a biscuit with jam-not a cookie-only 1/2 cup of sugar maybe thats why-not crazy about them-not a cookie by my definition

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