5 Minute Recipes/ Australian/ Christmas/ Recipes/ Snack/ Super Simple

Australian Fairy Bread Recipe

27/10/2020 (Last Updated: 02/11/2020)

This Fairy Bread recipe is Australia’s favourite party snack for kids and nostalgic adults alike. Make this colourful treat in minutes with just three ingredients!

Close up of a slice of fairy bread.

Why We Love This

Fairy bread would have to be the ultimate kids party food, but adults love it just as much!

Full of nostalgia, this sugary snack has the magic power to take you back in time and always brings a smile to everyones faces.

Kids love making fairy bread almost as much as they love eating it, and adults love it too because it’s no-cook, no-fuss and no-mess… Okay maybe we lied a little bit on that last point. 🙂

A piece of white bread topped with sprinkles, sliced in half to make two triangles.

What is Fairy Bread? 

It’s an old-fashioned Australian snack made from white bread, butter and sprinkles, more commonly known as 100s and 1000s (hundreds and thousands) in Australia. The original unicorn toast, it’s very similar to hagelslag, which is made with chocolate flavoured sprinkles instead.

Most Australians grew up with this beloved sugary snack which, like the best things in life, was reserved for children’s birthday parties and special occasions like Christmas or Australia Day.

You’ll usually find it cut into triangles and popped on a plate next to platters of homemade lamingtons, cupcakes or jelly slices. Sugar rush heaven and a no fuss substitute for cake!

Did you know: Australia has its very own National Fairy Bread day on November 24th each year!

Where does it come from?

According to the online grapevine, a poem by Robert Louis Stevenson back in his 1885 collection of ‘A Child’s Garden of Verses’ was said to have given one very clever person a very bright idea… Of that person, we could find no further clue, but whoever you are, our inner child salutes you!

From those early origins the love of Fairy Bread spread throughout the country. It was even mentioned in the Sydney Morning Herald in a 1934 article titled “Christmas Dinner with Toddlers”, which heartily recommended “a slice of fairy bread with sponge cake and the usual drink of milk” as a festive treat.

What You’ll Need

Just three ingredients are all you need for fairy bread!

  • Bread – You’ll need to start with a few slices of the freshest, softest, fluffiest white bread you can find. Note that it’s gotta be white bread. Ask your nearest five year old and they’ll no doubt agree – wholegrain just won’t do! But as with any recipe, if you feel like substituting we’ll never judge. You can leave the crusts on or cut them off, it’s up to you.
  • Butter – This helps the sprinkles stick to the bread. When we were kids, our mums would probably have used margarine, however we’re not big fans of it so we use butter. Salted or unsalted is fine. We recommend using room temperature butter which spreads more easily.
  • 100s & 1000s / Sprinkles – These are more commonly called sprinkles in the US, or occasionally ‘nonpareils’ if you’re feeling fancy. Made from sugar, starch and food colouring, we have two main kinds here in Australia: round balls (100s & 1000s) or strands. The round sugar balls are iconic for fairy bread, but Laura’s grandma always used the strand sprinkles. Which will you choose? Once again, go with your heart!
Ingredients for fairy bread.

How to Make Fairy Bread:

  1. To make your very own fairy bread, coat each slice of white bread with plenty of butter.
  2. Pour plenty of sprinkles / 100s and 1000s over the top of each slice.
  3. Slice the bread into triangles and enjoy!

Wandercook’s Tips

  • Crust On or Off – It’s up to you.
  • Sprinkle or Dunk – Sprinkle the 100s and 1000s over the bread, or pour them out onto a flat plate and gently press your bread slice, buttered side down, into the sprinkles.
  • Start with (Slightly) Frozen Bread – This makes it waaaay easier to spread butter or margarine over the bread as it won’t rip apart. If your bread is straight out of the freezer, let it defrost slightly first.
  • Play With Shapes – Cut the bread into cute shapes like triangles, circles or use a cookie cutter for hearts or stars.

FAQs

Can I make fairy bread without butter?

Yes you can! Spread margarine, condensed milk, nutella or peanut butter over the bread and top with sprinkles. For an even bigger sugar rush, spread icing sugar over each slice before topping with sprinkles.

Can I make it the night before?

We don’t recommend making fairy bread the night before. It looks and tastes much better fresh while the bread is nice and fluffy and the colour hasn’t run from the sprinkles. You can make it a few hours in advance if you need to. Just cover the plate in cling film or pop in an air tight container so the bread doesn’t dry out.

Variations

  • Halloween Fairy Bread – Top with orange and black sprinkles.
  • Chocolate Fairy Bread – Also known as ‘hagelslag’ or ‘chocolate hail’. You could even add fresh banana slices for Indonesian style roti coklat.
  • Fairy Toast – Toast the bread slices and make the recipe as normal, or swap the butter for one of the other spreads.
  • Not Enough Sugar? – Add clear sugar crystals on top of the sprinkles for extra sparkle.

Christmas Fairy Bread

While there’s no such thing as a White Christmas in Australia, with Fairy Bread there’s rainbow snow!

Aussie mums would often make up a batch of fairy bread for the kids on Christmas morning, and Aussie kids became very good at stealthily stealing a slice or two just for themselves. Sarah fessed up to this secret crime, but I’m pretty sure a trail of sprinkles on the floor and a rainbow smear around her smile would have been a bit of a giveaway.

Take a detour down memory lane with bright and colourful Christmas Fairy Bread. It’s fun, affordable, and easy to make with Santa’s little helpers.

Here are a few extra tips for Christmas Fairy Bread:

  • Arrange the slices into a cute Christmas Tree shape just before serving. We recommend slicing two pieces of bread in half diagonally and the remaining pieces into quarters for triangular pieces in different sizes. Experiment with the layout and have fun! Finish it off with a star piece on top!
  • Optional: Use the crusty end piece of your loaf of bread to make a nice trunk for your Christmas Tree.
  • Optional: Use red, white and green sprinkles if you can find them.
Pieces of fairy bread on a platter made to look like a Christmas tree.

For more sweet treats, try these next:

★ Did you make this recipe? Please leave a comment and star rating below!

Close up of a slice of fairy bread showing the colourful sprinkles.

Australian Fairy Bread Recipe

Fairy Bread is Australia’s favourite party snack for kids and nostalgic adults alike. Make this colourful treat in minutes with just three ingredients!
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 5 minutes
Course: Snack
Cuisine: Australian
Servings: 12 Slices
Calories: 129kcal
Author: Wandercooks
Cost: $5

Equipment

Ingredients

Instructions

  • To make your very own fairy bread, coat each slice of white bread with plenty of butter. Make sure to spread it all the way to the edges.
  • Pour plenty of sprinkles / 100s and 1000s over the top of each slice.
  • Finally, slice the bread into triangles and enjoy!

Video

Recipe Notes

  • Bread – You’ll need to start with a few slices of the freshest, softest, fluffiest white bread you can find. Note that it’s gotta be white bread. Ask your nearest five year old and they’ll no doubt agree – wholegrain just won’t do! But as with any recipe, if you feel like substituting we’ll never judge. You can leave the crusts on or cut them off, it’s up to you.
  • Butter – This helps the sprinkles stick to the bread. When we were kids, our mums would probably have used margarine, however we’re not big fans of it so we use butter. Salted or unsalted is fine. We recommend using room temperature butter which spreads more easily.
  • 100s & 1000s / Sprinkles – These are more commonly called sprinkles in the US, or occasionally ‘nonpareils’ if you’re feeling fancy. Made from sugar, starch and food colouring, we have two main kinds here in Australia: round balls (100s & 1000s) or strands. The round sugar balls are iconic for fairy bread, but Laura’s grandma always used strands. Which will you choose? Once again, go with your heart!
  • Crust On or Off – It’s up to you.
  • Sprinkle or Dunk – Sprinkle the 100s and 1000s over the bread, or pour them out onto a flate plate and gently press your bread slice, buttered side down, into the sprinkles.
  • Start with (Slightly) Frozen Bread – This makes it waaaay easier to spread butter or margarine over the bread as it won’t rip apart. If your bread is straight out of the freezer, let it defrost slightly first.
  • Play With Shapes – Cut the bread into cute shapes like triangles, circles or use a cookie cutter for hearts or stars.
  • Christmas Fairy Bread – Arrange the slices into a cute Christmas Tree shape just before serving. We recommend slicing two pieces of bread in half diagonally and the remaining pieces into quarters for triangular pieces in different sizes. Experiment with the layout and have fun! Finish it off with a star piece on top! Optional: Use the crusty end piece of your loaf of bread to make a nice trunk for your Christmas Tree, and use red, white and green sprinkles if you can find them.
  • Halloween Fairy Bread – Top with orange and black sprinkles.
  • Chocolate Fairy Bread – Also known as ‘hagelslag’ or ‘chocolate hail’. You could even add fresh banana slices for Indonesian style roti coklat.
  • Toast It – Toast the bread slices and make the recipe as normal, or swap the butter for one of the other spreads.
  • Not Enough Sugar? – Add clear sugar crystals on top of the sprinkles for extra sparkle.

Nutrition

Calories: 129kcal | Carbohydrates: 12g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 8g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Cholesterol: 20mg | Sodium: 62mg | Potassium: 14mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 7g | Vitamin A: 236IU | Calcium: 35mg | Iron: 1mg
Hey hey – Did you make this recipe?We’d love it if you could give a star rating below ★★★★★ and show us your creations on Instagram! Snap a pic and tag @wandercooks / #Wandercooks
Australian Fairy Bread Recipe

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15 Comments

  • Reply
    Shweta Pandey
    11/06/2021 at 7:27 pm

    5 stars
    This is such a fun recipe to make with kids. I am pretty sure my lil one will definitely love it.

    • Reply
      Wandercooks
      15/06/2021 at 2:52 pm

      It really is! Hope you all have fun together. 🙂

  • Reply
    Jacquelyn @ LittleOwlCrunchyMomma
    05/12/2015 at 4:37 am

    Too cute!

  • Reply
    Libby
    04/12/2015 at 5:31 pm

    What a cute name! With a few dietary modifications, this could totally work for us!

    • Reply
      Wandercooks
      04/12/2015 at 6:57 pm

      Hi Libby, thanks for the feedback. 🙂 We’re interested to know what modifications you’d make to suit your needs. Let us know and we can add that information on to help others 😀

  • Reply
    linda spiker
    04/12/2015 at 1:51 pm

    5 stars
    Very cute idea! Love this tradition. So fun for the kids.

    • Reply
      Wandercooks
      04/12/2015 at 6:58 pm

      …and us adults too 😛 (shhhh) haha

  • Reply
    Megan Stevens
    04/12/2015 at 1:51 pm

    I love that butter is the “glue.” Nothing like the real thing! 🙂

    • Reply
      Wandercooks
      04/12/2015 at 6:57 pm

      Agreed! 😀

  • Reply
    Emily @ Recipes to Nourish
    04/12/2015 at 12:00 pm

    Cute idea! I’ve never seen anything like that before. Love that it’s called Fairy Bread.

    • Reply
      Wandercooks
      04/12/2015 at 12:11 pm

      It’s like an instant happiness maker haha 🙂

  • Reply
    Jessica Lane
    04/12/2015 at 10:58 am

    5 stars
    I never would have thought of the combination of sandwich bread and sprinkles, but I have to thank you for bringing this novelty to light. It not only sounds great, but it’s something the kids can do with me in the kitchen. I love recipes like that.

    • Reply
      Wandercooks
      04/12/2015 at 11:49 am

      Great! It’s always been a fun recipe, I think we enjoyed making it as much now as we did 20 years ago haha.

  • Reply
    Andreas Bauer
    02/12/2015 at 7:39 pm

    I am sure cooks, that you cannot wait to come home.

    I like your Tree Idea.

    Enjoy

    Andreas

    • Reply
      Wandercooks
      02/12/2015 at 8:19 pm

      Thanks Andreas, yes not long now! Loving Vietnam though. The food here is amazing, and there is so much variety.

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