chocolate babka
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Chocolate babka

This thick and buttery babka is made even better with the addition of a decadent chocolate filling! Eat one and gift the other to a friend!
Prep Time40 mins
Cook Time30 mins
Resting time13 hrs 30 mins
Total Time1 hr 10 mins
Course: Breakfast, Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Bread, Breakfast
Servings: 2 loaves
Author: Eva Bakes



  • 4 and 1/4 cups (530 grams) all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup (100 grams) granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons instant yeast
  • Zest of 1 small lemon or half an orange
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup water plus more as needed
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2/3 cup (150 grams or 5.3 ounces) unsalted butter room temperature
  • Sunflower or other neutral oil for greasing


  • 4 and 1/2 ounces (130 grams) dark chocolate can substitute with 3/4 cup chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup (120 grams) unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup (50 grams) powdered sugar
  • 1/3 cup (30 grams) cocoa powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon


  • 1/3 cup water
  • 6 Tablespoons (75 grams) granulated sugar


Make the dough

  • In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook attachment (or in a large bowl if using a handheld mixer/mixing by hand), whisk together the flour, sugar, yeast and zest. Add the eggs and 1/2 cup of the water and mix on medium speed until a dough forms. If it's too dry, add one teaspoon of water at a time until it comes together. Then add the butter a little bit at a time until it is fully incorporated. Keep mixing for a good 5-10 minutes until a smooth, pliable dough forms.
  • Transfer the dough to a generously greased bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Allow it to rest for at least 12 hours, or preferably overnight. Note that the dough will NOT double.

Make the filling

  • In a medium sized bowl, melt the chocolate and butter in the microwave and mix until smooth. Add the powdered sugar, cocoa powder, and cinnamon and mix well until a paste forms.

Form the loaves

  • Generously grease two loaf pans and set aside. Take the chilled dough out and divide it in half. Put one piece back in the refrigerator while you work with the first piece. Roll it out to a 10 inch long rectangle. Spread the filling on top of the rectangle and leave a half inch border all around. Roll the dough up, jelly-roll style, with the longest side facing you. Place the dough in the freezer for 10-15 minutes while you repeat with the other piece of dough.
  • Take the loaves out of the refrigerator and cut each in half, lengthwise. This will get messy! Place them cut-side up on a clean working surface. Take two halves and place them next to each other. Pinch the ends together and twist the rest of the "strands" together. Try to make sure the cut side is visible for a better presentation. Repeat with the other two halves of dough. Place them in the prepared loaf pans and allow them to rise at room temperature for another 1 and 1/2 hours.

Bake the babka

  • Preheat your oven to 375 degrees F. Bake your loaves for 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Make the syrup

  • While the loaves are baking, bring the sugar and water to a simmer in a small saucepan. Pour this over the bread after you take them out of the oven.


Keep babkas in an airtight container at room temperature. They will keep well for about 5 days or can be frozen and thawed.
Source: smitten kitchen