Pesto Pull-Apart Bread

Pesto Pull Apart Bread

Pesto Pull-Apart Bread is one of our favourite fun bread! No slicing needed, just pull apart and enjoy with your choice of dipping sauce or soup. The texture of the bread is soft and just perfect!

Pesto Pull-Apart Bread

I have been baking this Pesto Pull-apart Bread for several years now.

we call it the fun-bread because it’s just so cool to pull the slices casually and munch away. It needs no knife at all and that makes it so perfect for a picnic or party.

Our little one, loves to dip it in olive oil and balsamic dip. I don’t mind it absolutely plain or with a light soup. It’s always a favorite in our house.

Pesto Pull Apart Bread

Here is a VIDEO of the bread I made few years back! 

At first, I was intimidated with the idea of pull-apart bread. Mostly because I was quite new to baking breads using yeast.

But then, one day I decided to give it a go. I just made sure we had couple packets of instant noodle as a backup for dinner in case I end up ruining the bread.

As it baked, we got thrilled and amazed at how good the bread turned out. The entire process got a little messy but every slice was worth the effort.

The aroma it made was enough to start an early dinner that night.

Slicing and shaping bread

Preparing the Bread Dough

The bread dough is easy. Just flour, water and yeast.

Like most soft breads, this dough too needs kneading for at least 10 minutes. You could go with either all-purpose flour or a mix of white and wheat bread.

I haven’t tried with any other flour.

The key step for this pull-apart bread is to roll out evenly after the first rise. You want to roll it into a rough rectangle.

Of course, you could use a scale and measure it but I just go with a guess.

Ready for the oven!

Shaping the Pesto Pull- Apart Bread

As for the filling, you can make it sweet or savory.

I mostly go with pesto and try to keep the consistency of the pesto thick so that it’s easy to spread evenly.

As you slice the rolled dough into small squares or rectangle, try to maintain a consistent size. Although at times, I really don’t bother much about size because I like it rusty. I love how wonky it looks after the second rise.

Pesto Pull Apart Bread

Here are more Bread Recipes to try 

Also try this Star Pull Apart Bread perfect for Christmas Celebration
Pesto Pull Apart Bread

Pesto Pull-Apart Bread

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 55 minutes

Pesto Pull-Apart Bread is one of our favourite fun bread! No slicing needed, just pull apart and enjoy with your choice of dipping sauce or soup. The texture of the bread is soft and just perfect!



  • 1 teaspoon active dry yeast
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • ¼ cup luke warm water
  • 1 cup warm water to knead the dough
  • 1½ cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup whole wheat flour
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • ½ cup pesto sauce
  • ¼ cup grated mozzarella cheese, optional


  1. In a glass, mix 1/4 cup lukewarm water with sugar and yeast. Cover the glass with a plate and allow the yeast to activate. It should take 5 minutes. If you don’t see the foam, it means the yeast didn’t activate properly. You need to throw the whole thing and start over again.
  2. Once yeast is activated, add both the flours to the mixing bowl and make a well in the center. Pour the activated yeast into the well and give a mix. Then start pouring the remaining 1 cup water little by little as you make the smooth dough. Once the dough come together, knead it for 12 minutes.
  3. Next, take a big bowl and rub ½ tablespoon of oil at the bottom and side of the bowl. Then, shape the dough into a ball and rub ½ tablespoon of oil on it. Place the dough in the oiled bowl. Cover it with a clear wrap and then with kitchen cloth. Keep the bowl in a warm place or inside your oven with just the light on. It will take a minimum of 2 hours for the dough to rise.
  4. Once the bread dough rises and doubles in size, scrape it carefully to a floured board and roll it into a rough 25 x 35 cm rectangle. Brush ½ tablespoon of oil followed by the pesto sauce. Then, sprinkle the grated cheese.
  5. Using a sharp knife, slice the rolled dough into roughly 5 equal parts. Stack the slices on one top of each other and then slice the stacked dough into 5 roughly equal size squares/rectangles.
  6. Take a 9x5 loaf pan and carefully place the sliced squares/rectangles one after the other. Cover the loaf pan with a clear wrap and leave it for the second rise. It should take about an hour.
  7. After the slices rise and are puffed up, preheat the oven to 350F.
  8. Rub rest of the oil on top and place it on the middle rack of the oven. Bake it for 40 minutes or until the bread looks golden on top.
  9. Allow it to cool for a while before releasing it from the pan. To release the bread, just run a knife on the side and the bread should come out easily.
  10. Serve it warm as it tastes best when fresh.


The quantity of water required to make the dough might differ as it totally depends on the kind of flour you are using. So pour the water for kneading little by little to make sure your dough doesn't get too sticky.

Close up view of Pesto Pull Apart Bread

Irrespective of what filling you give, sweet of savory, if you prepare the dough the right way and let ot proof properly, the bread will turn out tasty.

Did you enjoy this Pesto Pull-Apart Bread? Share your creation by tagging @playfulcooking on Instagram with the #playfulcooking and I will re-share in my story!

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Leave a Reply


  • angiesrecipes
    July 12, 2017 at 12:07 AM

    It’s my top favourite bread! Ain’t homemade bread the BEST!

  • Aparna Somani
    Aparna Somani
    July 12, 2017 at 12:10 AM

    I’m going to try it right away 😋

  • Alida | Simply Delic
    Alida | Simply Delic
    July 12, 2017 at 12:30 AM

    LOVE the look of this pull apart bread. Absolutely scrumptious. And your photography is gorgeous as always!

  • Rosa
    July 12, 2017 at 3:53 AM

    It looks fantastic! The kind of bread you can’t stop eating.



    July 12, 2017 at 4:34 AM

    I have to try this recipe. It´s long time away that I have not prepared any bread and it´s time to. This looks wonderful and so soft that makes me feel hungry right now.

  • Kelsie
    July 12, 2017 at 8:28 AM

    I would eat this entire loaf on my own :). That’s how much I love bread AND pesto! This sounds absolutely divine. Have a great rest of your week, Kankana!

  • Matt
    July 12, 2017 at 10:29 AM

    Love your version, I’ve gotta try this! And your photography is really beautiful

  • shobee
    July 12, 2017 at 12:44 PM

    Sometimes, you just have to “GO FOR IT; ” and look at that bread right there. It looks so pretty. I bet it tastes good too.

  • Catherine
    July 12, 2017 at 6:14 PM

    Oh my goodness, what a gorgeous loaf!! Looks heavenly!!

  • Kate
    July 12, 2017 at 7:30 PM

    I am obsessed! Loving the pull-apart bread and the idea to add pesto! That video is adorable too!!

  • Eshika Roy
    Eshika Roy
    July 12, 2017 at 11:44 PM

    I literally started having hunger pangs halfway through the post. It looks amazing and I bet it also tastes delicious too. It is the perfect dish to cook up in this rainy season. I can’t wait to try it . Looking forward to reading more delectable recipes in the upcoming posts.

  • Sapna
    July 13, 2017 at 2:21 AM

    That is a gorgeous looking pesto pull apart bread. I love your artistic pictures and always admire you for the same. Love the video too Kankana.

  • Kimberly/TLP
    July 13, 2017 at 2:47 AM

    You’ve become such a pro at bread baking. I’m rather jalous! This one looks fun and delicious. Thanks for sharing.

  • Easyfoodsmith
    July 15, 2017 at 9:56 AM

    What a fabulous looking bread and love that it is a savory pull apart bread.

  • Evi @ greenevi
    Evi @ greenevi
    July 16, 2017 at 9:43 AM

    Oh my goodness, this bread looks unbelievably good! I could eat the whole bread right now! 😍
    Pinned, definitely going to try this 🙂

  • heather (dng)
    heather (dng)
    July 17, 2017 at 7:31 PM

    awesome video! i had no idea pull apart bread was so easy! i love the flavor of chimichurri, and i bet that would be tasty in here too :3

    • Kankana Saxena
      Kankana Saxena
      July 19, 2017 at 11:17 AM

      oh yeah! I love chimichurri sauce. It will tasty, I am sure.

  • Anindya Sundar Basu
    Anindya Sundar Basu
    July 18, 2017 at 6:27 PM

    your greatness lies in the fact that you have made me inspired now to try out baking. Great pictures as always. I think I will start with this and at teh age of 40 its yet not that late.

    • Kankana Saxena
      Kankana Saxena
      July 19, 2017 at 11:16 AM

      Thanks! I was not always a baker and still bake terrible breads at times. But some breads like this one is so easy that it stayed with me for years. Give a try. I think you will like it too.

  • Laura | Tutti Dolci
    Laura | Tutti Dolci
    July 21, 2017 at 9:46 AM

    I love those pesto swirls – this is one gorgeous bread!

  • Élo
    July 22, 2017 at 2:34 AM

    Hello! I stumbled on your recipe through foodgawker and instantly rushed to your blog. I love the sweet cinnamon version (I can eat it in a day!) but never thought of a savoury one so I think this one is definitly worth a try. And there are recipes that look really nice here, I might be back soon 🙂 Thank you.

    • Kankana Saxena
      Kankana Saxena
      July 26, 2017 at 10:03 AM

      Thanks so much and I am glad you liked my blog. And please do try the savory versions too. Makes a great dinner idea with some stew or soup 🙂

  • Protima
    August 12, 2017 at 11:30 AM


    I tried to make it with only APF and the dough was very liquidy. If I don’t use wheat flour, how much apf should I be using? thanks

    • Kankana Saxena
      Kankana Saxena
      August 12, 2017 at 12:30 PM

      I am sorry to hear the dough didn’t come out as your expected. When you use only all purpose flour chances are you will need less water. It is difficult to say exactly how much as it depends on the quality of the flour. I updated the recipe to make it more clear to everybody. So make the yeast mixture with 1/4 cup water. Then pour the rest 1 cup little by little until the flour mixture comes together and then you start kneading. If the dough gets too hard, add little water or oil, if the dough gets too sticky, add little bit flour. Hope this helps!