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No Knead Chocolate Babka

February 14, 2016 | 22 comments

If I am what I eat, I would eat chocolate babka all day everyyy day. It’s soft, carelessly buttery, and 50% happiness + 50% chocolate (which is basically just happiness so babka can basically be 100% happiness). Why would anyone choose to be the bitter flavorless greens that are vegetables?

The only problem then would be that it’s so annoying to make with all the mixing, kneading, more mixing, shaping, and syrup. Here, I’ve basically said good bye to all the beautiful traditions (I’m sorry to all those people out there who have the time to knead and stay in the house forever), this babka is taking over. Mixing and sprinkling anyone can do and the rest of the time the dough naps like a cute little puppy in the refrigerator, filling it with a buttery, sugary aroma. Instead of being fussy, this babka dough is tamer than a wise grandmother and you can basically leave it in the fridge for forever before baking it (i.e. up to 48 hrs, not like 2 years forever 😛 ).

No Knead Chocolate Babka

No Knead Chocolate Babka-7

No Knead Chocolate Babka-11
No Knead Chocolate Babka-10

So it’s quite obvious that I’ve decided to take a simple approach to so many recipes. I used to hate these “no knead” recipes because I had a the more time it takes, the better mentality but that was probably because I was around 12 at the time and had allll the time in the world to waste. Now, I have more of a mix it, leave it mentality thanks to all the projects that have stolen away all of my free time.

However I mostly despised no knead breads because they didn’t make any sense to me. Kneading is key to developing gluten which helps the bread stay upright and be soft instead of a deflated deformed brick. Some cookbook authors didn’t think that was quite needed (the science behind it is quite interesting) and so since then a wave of “no knead” breads have swept the net in their glory. It wasn’t until my no knead hokkiado bread that I believed this little idea.

No Knead Chocolate Babka-4

No Knead Chocolate Babka-6

No Knead Chocolate Babka-13

Babka is basically a Jewish bread that is super enriched (as in it’s about as healthy and bread-like as a croissant and brioche mix) and in this case, swirled with an impossible amount of sweet, bitter chocolate and topped with a beyond crumbly, buttery streusel. This one is slightly healthier because I decided to forgo the extra 1/2 cup of sugar that every other recipe has and cut down the sugar by a couple quarters of a cup, but it has the exact same impossibly rich and buttery taste combined with the fluffy dedicance of any other babka. Also, did I mention this is also unbelievebly easy because it’s no knead?

Now I can finish my homework, projects, essays, AND make bread (although we all know what takes priority here… hint: it starts with br- and ends in -ead).


No Knead Chocolate Babka



  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 2 tsp yeast
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 4 1/4 cup flour
  • 1/2 cup butter softened

Chocolate Filling

  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1 cup chocolate chips
  • 1/3 cup cocoa powder
  • 1/3 cup powdered sugar
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon


  • 1/4 cup butter melted
  • 1/4 cup powdered sugar
  • 2/3 cup flour
  • 1/4 tsp salt

Egg Wash

  • 1 egg


  1. Heat the milk until warm to the touch. Add in the sugar, yeast, eggs, egg yolk, salt, 1 cup flour, and butter. Mix in the rest of the flour 1 cup at a time until fully incorporated. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise in the refrigerator for 24-48 hours (it will not fully double).
  2. To make the chocolate filling, melt the butter and chocolate chips in the microwave or in a double broiler. Mix in the cocoa powder, sugar, salt, and cinnamon. Set aside.
  3. Take the dough out of the fridge and cut in half. Roll one of them into a rectangle that's 2.5 the length of the bread pan and about 10-12 inches wide. The dough should be very thin, almost translucent (very crucial to a babka with intricate swirls -if you don't care, don't bother with the thinness). Spread on 1/2 of the chocolate filling, completely over the dough.
  4. Roll tightly, starting from the long end. Trim about 1 inch off the ends. Fold in half and twist into a large twist. Place in a bread pan.
  5. Repeat with the other piece of dough.
  6. Cover and let rise for 1-2 hours until nearly doubled.
  7. Meanwhile, mix the ingredients for the streusel to make a crumble (you may have to add more flour).
  8. Preheat the oven to 425 F.
  9. Beat an egg and brush on top of each loaf. Sprinkle streusel thickly on.
  10. Bake for 10 minutes, then reduce the temperature to 350 F and bake for 15-25 minutes (adding an aluminum foil cover if necessary to stop excess browning).
  11. Makes 2 loaves.


read or add your own

  1. Sabrina on

    February 15, 2016 at 12:01 pm says

    That babka looks awesome! Can’t believe it’s no knead

    • Anne on

      February 21, 2016 at 8:14 pm says

      That’s because it is absolutely awesome! 😉

  2. Aria on

    February 15, 2016 at 4:09 pm says

    Oh wow!!! This looks soooo good!

    • Anne on

      February 21, 2016 at 8:14 pm says

      Thanks Aria! 😀

  3. ZazaCook on

    February 20, 2016 at 7:50 pm says

    Beautiful:) And sounds super delicious!

    • Anne on

      February 21, 2016 at 8:15 pm says

      Thank you!

  4. Ai | Ai made it for you on

    March 2, 2016 at 8:07 pm says

    Beautiful! I’ve been seeing babka all over the internet, I think it’s a sign that I should make it soon 😉 Yours looks amazing!

    • Anne on

      March 21, 2016 at 6:45 pm says

      Yesss babka is awesome -especially when it requires minimal effort like this one 😉

  5. shanna on

    March 2, 2016 at 10:34 pm says

    Six years ago when my husband and I were dating, we made chocolate babka together over one long afternoon. This short version seems like the perfect thing for our current season of life, married with an eight-month-old baby. I am so looking forward to trying it! Thanks for the recipe — gorgeous photos and site.

    • Anne on

      March 21, 2016 at 6:48 pm says

      That is such a wonderful memory! But yes, reliving it with this babka would probably be quite fun -especially with a cute little baby 😉

  6. Jessica on

    March 24, 2016 at 8:49 pm says

    Just stumbled upon your blog and I’m glad I did!

    Regarding this recipe and the Hokkaido bread one (had to stop at these two recipes, the drool was getting out of control), is the yeast you use just “active” yeast?

    • Anne on

      March 25, 2016 at 2:54 pm says

      I always use active dry yeast -I probably should start specifying 😛
      Thank you so much for the kind words Jessica!

  7. Jessica on

    March 26, 2016 at 6:33 pm says

    Thank you!!

    These bad boys are next on my TO BAKE list ?

    • Anne on

      April 12, 2016 at 7:09 pm says

      Thank you!!! Comment back to tell me how they turn out! 😀

  8. lim on

    April 26, 2016 at 2:45 am says

    May I know what kind of yeast you used? I only have instant dry yeast on hand and I would like to make this, ot looks so goodddddddd

    • Anne on

      April 27, 2016 at 3:14 pm says

      Sorry for the late reply! Instant dry yeast should be fine 😉

  9. Linda on

    November 20, 2016 at 10:52 am says

    If I use instant dry yeast, is it ok to mix it in with the dry ingredients and do I keep the same prooofing time? And do you use US cup or metric one?

    • Anne on

      November 21, 2016 at 8:25 pm says

      I can’t give you advice on that because I’ve never used instant dry yeast. Sorry! I do use the US cup though 😉

  10. .chris on

    November 22, 2017 at 5:43 pm says

    Has anyone made this? It doesn’t seem like there’s much water/milk in the recipe compared to some other Babka recipes I’ve seen. Especially for a no knead dough. I though that was supposed to have a higher water to flour ratio?

  11. Christopher Will on

    November 27, 2017 at 2:33 pm says

    FYI, I made it and it turned out great. I tried too drifferent braiding techniques.
    The first one was basically what is called for in this recipe.
    The second method was where you cut the roll and then braid it together.
    The second (cut) method looks prettier on the outside, but the first method looked prettier on the inside and tasted better.


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