Pour the yeast packets and warm water into a large bowl. Cover with a dish towel and place in a warm area for 10-15 minutes. The mixture should get foamy.
Add the honey, maple syrup, olive oil, vanilla, eggs and salt. After all of that is mixed together, slowly mix in the flour, cup by cup. As you add more flour it will get more difficult to mix and you may prefer to knead the dough with your hands. Knead the dough until it’s smooth.
Once the dough is kneaded thoroughly, cover the bowl with a dish towel, and place somewhere warm. Allow the dough to rise for at least two hours.*Note – keep in mind that whole wheat dough is much denser than dough made with white flour, and it will not rise as much.
After two hours, punch down the dough, separate it and braid it. Before you braid, you can knead some cinnamon and peanut butter into each strand and roll in some dark chocolate chips if you’d like.
After you’ve braided all the dough, make an egg wash to brush over the challahs. Do this by thoroughly mixing an egg with a touch of water and (very little!) maple syrup. Afterwards, sprinkle a dash of sea salt over the challahs.
Bake the challahs at 350 F for about a half hour. Rolls will need a little less time – about 20 to 25 minutes. Challahs will be golden brown when ready.
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Keyword whole wheat challah that's better than cake