The Kind Life is a community around Alicia Silverstone and The Kind Diet where friends, doctors, experts in green living, and members share vegan tips.


Cookie’s Water Hallah

It was so fun making this water hallah with Cookie at Aleeza’s house and having the honor of tasting her vegan treats (you’ll notice by the end of the video how I look almost tipsy off all the sugar !) This is a part II to our Passover cooking fun. In addition to Cookie being a baker who makes tasty cookies, she has a lively personality that makes cooking together super fun!

When I was a little girl in Hebrew school we use to make the greatest hallah bread ever. It was so delightful making it with other little kids and then getting to eat it, it was soo good. As a result, I’m excited to share this hallah recipe with you since most of the time it’s made with egg. Take note that we made a huge batch, so please adjust the proportions as necessary. Also, in the video you will notice we did not use a food processor. However, Cookie has been making this water hallah for years and is a pro- so we’re giving you a more simple way of making it.  It was challenging for me to kneed the dough since it’s so heavy!! Additionally, making the hallah not stick while braiding it was super fun but definitely requires some practice so don’t be surprised if you find it tricky!

Have fun!

Prep time: 2 hours | Cook time: 45 minutes | Makes: 10+ Loaves


1 bag whole wheat flour

3/4 cup sugar (can use sucanut or agave nectar)

3 tablespoons salt

4 tablespoons yeast (on opposite side of salt in processor)

1 cup oil (grape seed or vegetable oil)

5-6 cups water

2 tablespoons almond milk

2 tablespoons maple syrup (or agave)

2 teaspoons poppy or sesame seeds


Set your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Put the whole wheat flour into a large food processor. Add the salt and yeast and process for about 5 seconds. With the machine running, add the sugar and oil. Continue to mix throughly, slowly adding the warm water. The dough should be defined and able to make a ball. If it is too dry, add more water (1 tablespoon at a time). If too wet, a more flour (tablespoons at a time). Place the mixture into a large bowl and set aside, allowing it to rise until it doubles in size.

Once it has risen, punch the dough down to knead it. Do this to ensure that the dough has a smooth, bouncy, and elastic feel. It should spring back when you press it down. Next, take the dough and design it into braids or whichever shape you prefer. To braid the hallah, flour your work surface and divide half the dough into 3 equal pieces. Using both hands, squeeze each piece into a rope 1 inch thick and 12 inches long. Roll out each rope so you have 3 ropes about 15 inches long. Place the three ropes side by side on your work surface and pinch the three ropes together at one end. Starting from this pinched end, braid the three ropes together. When the braiding is complete, seal the braid by pinching the ends together.

Once braided, mix the almond milk, maple syrup, and seeds into a small bowl (if you prefer less sweet, leave out the maple syrup). Take a brush and brush the mixture onto the surface of the hallah. When completed, place the hallah aside letting it rise one more time for about 45 minutes.

Once it has risen, place the hallah on slightly greased baking sheets. Place in the oven for 45 minutes, until it has a golden brown color on its surface. Remove from cookie sheets at once and set loaves on a rack to cool. When ready to serve, break apart the bread by hand and enjoy!


  • Kristina

    Looks delicious and beautifully made! I will try this recipe for sure! Thanks for sharing

  • Bethanee C.

    These look delicious! But I do have a question: can they be made with gluten-free flour?

  • Devorah Tucker

    Oh, this looks great! My daughters and I have been vegetarian for some time…honestly, it started because I am lazy and having a kosher kitchen with meat in it is just too much work.

    But recently, after reading The China Study, and after years of really questioning what the heck “cage free eggs” actually means, I decided to adopt a plant-based diet.

    The girls have been pretty good sports, but I will tell you that Shabbat has been a weekly whining session because I have taken their challah away from them. What kind of mother does that, right?? And just between you and me, using Ezekiel Bread just doesn’t cut it. I miss the challah, too.

    I will try this. I will make it work, even if it is sticky to braid. You are our hero for giving us this recipe!!!!! Thank you so much. !!!