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Chocolate Cinnamon Babkallah

I discovered this recipe last year and made it for my youngest son who loves both challah bread and chocolate. This is a cross between a chocolate babka and challah bread and it's so good.  I love the combination of the chocolate and cinnamon together.  


This "babkallah" is not at all hard to make, it just takes some time.  After you make the dough and let it rise, You divide the dough into three pieces and roll each piece out flat (see photos below).  On each piece of dough, you lay the chocolate/cinnamon mixture and then roll each piece up into a long log.  You braid the logs together and bake.  Honestly, this bread is divine

Chocolate Cinnamon Babkallah

for a printable recipe click here

½ cup whole milk
4 large egg yolks
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
½ cup (1 stick) butter, melted and cooled
⅓ cup granulated sugar
2¼ teaspoons instant yeast (like Rapid Rise)
½ teaspoon kosher salt
3 cups all purpose flour (approximately)

6 ounces bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
⅓ cup light brown sugar
1½ teaspoons ground cinnamon
all purpose flour for the counter
¼ cup (½ stick) butter, room temperature
1 large egg yolk
granulated sugar (for sprinkling - I used raw, coarse Turbinado sugar)


Make the dough:
Heat milk in the microwave or in a small saucepan on the stove just until warm, not hot.  Transfer to a large bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment.  Blend in the egg yolks, vanilla, butter, sugar, yeast and salt.  Mix on medium speed (or use a large wooden spoon) until well blended.  Switch to the dough hook. Add 2 cups of the flour and blend until fully incorporated.  For the last cup of flour, add slowly until you get a dough that just holds together well without being too dry or too wet.  Don't worry if you don't have to use all the flour - it's better to get the right texture dough.  Knead for about 5 minutes. 

Transfer the dough to a large bowl sprayed with a little cooking spray.  Cover with plastic wrap and let sit in a warm place until doubled in size about 2 hours. 

Filing and Assembly
Mix chocolate, brown sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl.

Turn out dough onto a lightly floured surface; divide into three equal portions.  Shape each into a 12" long rope. Roll out each rope to a 12x6" rectangle and about ⅛" thick. Brush with butter and top each rectangle with a third of the chocolate mixture.  Roll up to form a log; pinch seam to seal.

Place logs, seam side down, side by side on a parchment lined baking sheet. Pinch logs together at one end; braid, then pinch ends together and tuck under. Cover loosely and let sit in a warm place until 1½ times larger, 1-2 hours.

Preheat oven to 350° F. Beat egg yolk with 1 Tbsp. water in a small bowl. Brush dough with egg wash;sprinkle with sugar.  Bake until top is golden brown and the bread sounds hollow when bottom is tapped, 35 - 45 minutes. Let cool on a wire rack. 

adapted very slightly from Bon Appetit

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Reader Comments (9)

That loaf is a thing of beauty!

March 27, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterAnne Nelson

Wow! What a truly fabulous looking bread! And such great step by step photos...

March 27, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterLaney (Ortensia Blu)

Hello, your contact form doesn't seem to be working so this is the only way I could see to contact you.

I made a bread dough calculator for getting the right amount of starter, water, and flour, to reach the final hydration goal of the dough. If you have any suggestions or would like to share it with your readers, please feel free to do so.

Here is the link to it:

March 31, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterJeff

This looks delicious! I'll have to try it soon. Not sure if you know this, but if you braid the loaf from the middle to the end, then from the middle to the other end, you get a mirrored loaf. I'm picky about how my challah looks, so finding that out was an exciting moment for me.

April 1, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterKathryn

From The Italian Dish:

Kathryn: Thanks for the great tip on the braiding! I'll try that next time.

April 3, 2015 | Registered Commenter[Elaine]

It looks yummy and easy to make. This is the beauty of Italian Food where people can try their innovative idea to modify the recipe and make the dish attractive, delicious.
So thanks for sharing the recipe of Chocolate Cinnamon Babkallah.. I am definitely going to try it.

April 22, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterMichael Dabic

This bread is beautiful & tastes wonderful. Challah is a favorite.
Bread making is a passion of mine and it's fun trying every ones new recipes & creative ideas.

May 27, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterPamela Miller

I will try Chocolate Cinnamon Babkallah..........

June 4, 2015 | Unregistered Commenterddesign

truly its looking so fabulous. its great blog for sharing and commenting.
thank you for sharing with us.

June 9, 2015 | Unregistered Commenterpoonam

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