The Best Senorita Bread Recipe: Easy Step-by-Step Guide

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This delicious Spanish bread roll is a fantastic treat, with a plush, golden brown exterior, brimming with a sweet buttery breadcrumb filling, finishing with a layer of sprinkled crumbs for an impeccable crunch. Perfect for breakfast, lunch, or as an evening snack, let’s take a look at how we can make this brilliant Filipino Spanish bread recipe.

Table of Contents

What is Senorita Bread?

Senorita bread is a small pillow soft Filipino bread roll made from enriched pastry. Traditionally these bread rolls are loaded with a mouth-watering filling consisting of butter and brown sugar, then encased in crunchy bread crumbs and baked in the oven till beautifully golden brown.

Despite these bread rolls originating from the Philippines, they’re often referred to as Spanish Bread. This is mainly due to the idea of possible inherent bread baking techniques obtained from Spanish kitchens. Filipino Spanish bread has gained immense popularity worldwide, thanks to Starbread bakery.

Starbread bakery initially opened as a small bakery in California, where the steamed trays of hot Spanish bread wafted to unexpecting pedestrians, who followed the sweet smell all the way to the humble doors of Starbread bakery. Soon enough, with its rise in popularity, the bakery was able to expand to five distinct locations in California, including South Sacramento, available for many.

Señorita Bread Recipe

This mouth-watering Filipino Spanish bread is small and soft, made with the simplest ingredients that are most likely hanging about in your pantry. A single senorita bread roll contains 246 calories, so if you’re following a certain diet plan, you may want to adjust the amount of butter or sugar to accommodate this.

Here are some of the main ingredients you’ll need to bake:

  • Milk: Plain milk is great for this recipe, but if you’re following a plant-based diet, then almond milk works just as well.
  • Caster Sugar: Caster sugar has a fine texture that is perfect for baking, preventing your baked goods from obtaining a gritty texture. If you don’t have any caster sugar at hand, then you can use granulated sugar instead, as long as you process the grains briefly in a food processor before proceeding.
  • Yeast: Fresh yeast is one of the most vital components when baking bread. Not only does it compensate for the overall fluffiness of your bread, but it provides a distinct flavor to your baked goods that won’t taste quite the same in its absence.
  • Bread Flour: This type of flour has a much higher protein content compared to all-purpose flour. If you were to use all-purpose flour, you may find that your dough is stickier. This can easily be fixed with a few additional teaspoons of flour.
  • Salt: A pinch is all you need for some flavor
  • Butter: If you’re following a vegan diet, then you can substitute for vegan butter. This is a key element in your senorita bread recipe, creating a smooth, rich dough that will also be used for the filling.
  • Brown Sugar: Whether you use light brown sugar or dark is entirely up to you. Your choice of color will determine the overall complexion of your filling, making it lighter or darker.
  • Breadcrumbs: Breadcrumbs, though humble, are an essential component of this bread recipe. Providing a unique crunchy texture that creates the distinction between cinnamon rolls and these Spanish bread rolls.


Depending on how many Senorita bread rolls you intend to bake, you can use these measurements for guidance. Notice I’ve used light brown sugar for this recipe, but you can use dark brown sugar for your recipes if you wish.

Senorita Bread Dough

  • 1 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup plus 1 tbsp caster sugar
  • 3 cups bread flour
  • 1 package or 2 1/4 tsp active dry yeast
  • 1 tsp salt

Buttery Filling

  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar
  • 3 tbsp milk
  • 2 tsp flour
  • 1/2 cup breadcrumbs

Outer Coating

  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup bread crumbs


  • Heat your milk in the microwave or stovetop to between 105-115 degrees Fahrenheit. If you don’t have a thermometer at hand, use your fingers to test the temperature. Warm milk is just right; hot will cause your yeast to die.
  • Add bread flour, sugar, and salt to a large mixing bowl and whisk to combine these ingredients thoroughly.
  • Add the melted butter, milk, and yeast mixture into the bowl, and using the dough hook on your stand mixer, mix the dough till it begins to pull away from the hook. Remove your dough and place it on a lightly floured surface. Knead your dough until it adopts a nice ball shape.
  • Grease a large bowl with butter or vegetable oil and transfer dough into this lightly greased bowl. Cover your dough with a damp cloth or plastic wrap, and place it in a warm place so that the dough can rise comfortably. The dough should double in size in one hour before it’s ready to use. Though if it hasn’t doubled, let it sit for another hour.
  • Now it’s time to prepare your filling. Melt the butter in a saucepan or pot over low heat. Add brown sugar and stir until combined. Let this mixture simmer gently until all the sugar has dissolved. Now add your milk and flour, simmering for another minute, waiting for your sauce to thicken. Stir in breadcrumbs and set the filling aside to cool down. This will get thicker while cooling.
  • Line a baking tray with parchment paper and preheat the oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit
  • Punch your dough and divide the dough into two balls. Roll each ball into a long log shape then cut the log into eight individual pieces. You should be left with 16 pieces of dough. Roll each piece of dough into a ball and place them on your baking tray. Cover with a damp towel, and allow them to rest for 15 minutes.
  • Using a lightly floured rolling pin, roll each dough ball into a 3×5 inch rectangle. Spread a teaspoon of filling over the dough, leaving the borders clear. Starting from the shortest edge of the rectangle, roll the dough up tightly, tugging the dough gently with your fingers. Seal the bottom seam so that the filling doesn’t leak out.
  • Place your breadcrumbs in a shallow dish. Brush each roll with butter and roll them into the breadcrumbs. Transfer your Señorita bread rolls to the prepared baking sheet, placing them seam side down. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes until your rolls have achieved a golden brown color.
The best senorita bread recipe

How to Store Senorita Bread?

You can store your Senorita bread on the kitchen counter for up to 3 days; just make sure they remain covered to avoid them drying out. Alternatively, you can place the Spanish bread rolls into an airtight container and refrigerate them for a week. Refrigerating the rolls can give them a tougher texture, but this is easily fixable. Simply pop them into the microwave for 10 to 12 seconds, and they’re good enough to eat!

Can You Freeze Senorita Rolls?

Once the bread rolls have cooled completely, you can freeze them in a reusable freezer bag for up to 3 months. Whenever you plan to eat them, let them thaw in the fridge. Or reheat them in the microwave.

How to Serve Senorita Bread

Senorita bread can be served on its own as a delicious snack during a party, along with some hot tea or any other beverage of your choice. Personally, I’ve found that this delicious Filipino bread pairs well with cold fruity juices

The best senorita bread recipe - easy step by step guide

Tips and Tricks for Famous Senorita Bread

Many recipes require some tips in order to achieve perfection. Here are some tips for the ingredients required in this Filipino Spanish bread recipe:

  • What Type of Yeast
  • Overfilling Rolls
  • Margarine or Butter

What Type of Yeast

When you’re at your local supermarket trying to figure out what type of yeast to go for, you’ll probably have to choose from Instant yeast, Active yeast, and Fresh yeast, with each requiring a distinct approach when baking. If you’re looking for a type of yeast that requires no further actions, then choose Instant yeast. Just pour the contents into the recipe, and you’re good to go.

Active yeast and Fresh yeast both require blooming, so for the senorita bread recipe, dissolve the yeast in some milk and let it rest for 10 minutes until it begins to bubble.

Overfilling Rolls

With many first attempts there comes little accidents, which only make the next attempt exceptional. When I first made this Señorita bread recipe, my rolls had burst once they had emerged from the oven, oozing sweet paste. To avoid this happening, avoid rolling the dough till it’s thin, as this can heighten the risk of tearing. Also, ensure that your dough has been proofed for long enough before baking so that it has a better chance of rising.

Margarine or Butter

The traditional Filipino Spanish bread recipe is made with lots of butter in the dough, with margarine in the filling. Butter provides that moist deliciousness, while margarine is much easier to spread. What do you think?

Bottom Line

Señorita bread is a traditional Filipino recipe consisting of delicious sweetened bread rolls that are quite simple to make. You can use this recipe as an initial try at baking Spanish bread before going off to experiment with other versions for future bakes.


What is Senorita Bread Made of?

Essentially, senorita bread is small oblong rolls, made of enriched bread dough coated with butter, sugar, and breadcrumbs. The dough is then rolled up, sprinkled with sugared bread crumbs, and baked.

Where is Senorita Bread Made From?

Senorita bread is Filipino bread and is commonly referred to as Spanish bread.

Is Starbread Filipino?

Starbread is a family-run Filipino bakery with seven locations around Northern California, some of which happen to operate 24 hours a day.

Why do They Call it Spanish Bread?

Many wonder why Filipino bread is also called Spanish bread, and this is because Filipinos had adopted bread making from Spanish kitchens; developing a variety of shapes and fillings of this bread.

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