Chocolate Swirl Bread

This image courtesy of Mark T. Shapiro

This is the best bread I’ve ever tasted in my life. Try it untoasted, toasted, as French toast, or any way that strikes your fancy. Just try it!

NotesThis bread makes fabulous French toast. Dip slices in an egg-and-milk batter and pan-fry until golden brown.

All of the recipes in this book were tested using large eggs. Using medium or extra-large eggs may adversely affect the outcome of the recipe.

I love parchment paper! It’s a grease- and heat-resistant paper used to line baking pans. It keeps your baked goods from sticking and burning and makes cleanup a breeze.

Makes1 loaf

Cooking Methodbaking


Total Timeunder 4 hours

Make Ahead RecipeYes

Kid FriendlyYes

Recipe Coursesnack

Dietary Considerationhalal, kosher, lactose-free, peanut free, soy free, vegetarian

Mealbreakfast, brunch, tea

Taste and Texturechewy, chocolatey, nutty, spiced, sweet

Type of Dishyeast bread


  • 1¼ cups (300 mL) warm water
  • 1 tbsp (15 mL) active dry yeast
  • Pinch granulated sugar
  • ¼ cup (50 mL) vegetable oil
  • ¼ cup (50 mL) granulated sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 5½ cups (1.375 L) all-purpose flour (approx.), divided
  • 2 tsp (10 mL) grated orange zest
  • 2 tsp (10 mL) salt
  • 1½ cups (375 mL) semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1 cup (250 mL) coarsely chopped walnuts
  • 1/3 cup (75 mL) packed light brown sugar
  • 1 tsp (5 mL) ground cinnamon
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1 tbsp (15 mL) water
  • Baking sheet, lined with parchment paper


  1. Dough: In a large bowl, combine water, yeast and pinch of sugar. Let stand for 10 minutes or until foamy.

  2. Whisk in oil, ¼ cup (50 mL) sugar and eggs. Beat in 4 cups (1 L) of the flour, orange zest and salt. Gradually stir in ½ cup (125 mL) more of the flour to make a soft workable dough. Turn out onto floured work surface. Knead dough with palms of hands, pushing down and out and folding farthest side back toward you in a continual pattern until you can feel the dough becoming smoother. While kneading, add in just enough of remaining flour, 1 tbsp (15 mL) at a time, to make a firm dough (it shouldn’t be sticky or wet but it shouldn’t be dry, either). Continue kneading and adding flour for 10 to 15 minutes or until dough is smooth and silky.

  3. Place dough in a large oiled bowl, turning to coat lightly. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and a clean kitchen towel. Place bowl in a warm place and let rise for 1 to 1 ½ hours or until doubled in bulk.

  4. Roll dough into a 21- by 14-inch (52 by 35 cm) rectangle with long edge closest to you. Sprinkle with chocolate chips, walnuts, brown sugar and cinnamon, leaving a ¼-inch (0.5 cm) border. Starting with edge closest to you, roll up dough jelly-roll style into a rope. Pinch edge and ends to seal. Then, starting from the center of the rope, gently squeeze the dough as you move your hands toward the ends, stretching the rope slightly as you go until the rope is 30 inches (75 cm) long. Twist the roll into a knot, tucking the end through the center. Carefully transfer to prepared baking sheet. Cover with a kitchen towel and let rise again for 30 minutes or until the dent does not fill in when dough is lightly pressed with a fingertip (do not let double in bulk). Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C).

  5. Egg Wash: In a small bowl, whisk egg yolk with water. Brush over top of loaf. Bake in preheated oven for about 50 minutes or until golden brown and loaf sounds hollow when tapped. Transfer loaf to a wire rack and let cool.

  6. Variation

  7. Add an additional ½ cup (125 mL) chocolate chips. Once the dough has risen the first time, divide it in half and make two smaller loaves instead of one. Roll up as directed and stretch each rope until it is 22 inches (55 cm) long. Shape and place on separate baking sheets. Let rise as directed. Reduce baking time to 30 to 35 minutes.


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