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Rosca de Reyes Recipe (Three Kings Bread)

  • Author: Maxine Dubois
  • Total Time: 3 hours 25 minutes
  • Yield: 6-8 servings 1x


This Rosca de Reyes Recipe is a special bread that is made to celebrate when the three kings brought Jesus his gifts when he was born. 




  • 3 teaspoons (10 grams) active dry yeast
  • 1/3 cup (65 grams) granulated sugar
  • 4 1/2 cups (500 grams) all purpose flour, plus extra for dusting
  • 3 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • Salt
  • Butter or oil, for greasing


  • 4 1/2 cups (500 grams) all-purpose flour, plus extra for dusting
  • 1 cup (200 grams) butter
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 cup (225 grams) granulated sugar
  • 8 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 tablespoon orange blossom water
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 1 teaspoon orange zest

For the icing paste:

  • 3/4 cup (800 grams) all-purpose flour
  • 4 tablespoons butter, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup 950 grams) powdered sugar
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 egg

To decorate: 


  1. Make the starter: Pour 4 tablespoons lukewarm water into a bowl. Add the yeast and 1 teaspoon of the sugar. Let this stand for about 10-15 minutes. Put the flour, sugar, and salt into a bowl and mix well. Add the yeast mixture and eggs and mix into a rough dough. Cover and rest for 2 hours. 
  2. Make the dough: To make the dough, put the flour into a large bowl. Add the salt and stir. Add the starter dough, eggs, orange blossom water, both zests, and mix the dough together with your hands. Knead for 10 minutes. Add the butter and keep kneading for another 10 minutes until the butter is completely incorporated into the dough. The dough needs to be shiny and elastic. Place the dough back into the bowl and cover in cling wrap. Let it rise until doubled in size. Make sure to place someplace warm in your house so it can rise quickly. Alternatively, you could use the Kitchenaid mixer with the dough hook attachment to knead this dough until elastic and it’s not sticky, about 10 minutes. 
  3. Form the dough: Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper. Divide the dough in half and shape each half into a roll, about 2 inches in diameter. Join the ends of each roll to create a wreath, sealing them with a beaten egg. (If you happen to have the baby figure, it’s great to hide right where these connect). Make sure to hide the doll on the bottom.  Put a wreath on each baking sheet, cover with cling wrap, and let it stand for 45 minutes. 
  4. Make the topping: Meanwhile, combine all the topping ingredients in a bowl or stand mixer and mix until it becomes a paste. Cover this with plastic wrap and refrigerate. 
  5. Bake the rosca: Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C). Brush both wreaths with a beaten egg. Remove the paste from the fridge and divide it into 8 long strips. On a lightly floured surface, use a strip to cover the seam and then evenly space the remaining strips around the wreath. Cover the strips with the the beaten egg and sprinkle them with sugar. Decorate the rest of the wreath with the sugar and candied fruit. Bake for about 25 to 30 minutes. Check after 20 minutes or so if the Rosca is getting too brown, cover with aluminum foil. Remove from the oven and once cooled, serve. 


  • Read all the instructions completely before starting. 
  • Ingredients must be room temperature before baking. 
  • Make sure the oven is completely preheated before adding the Rosca. 
  • Prep Time: 3 hour
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: Mexican