Babka with Bittersweet Chocolate Chunks: #BundtBakers

Babka (Polish Yeast Cake) with bittersweet Chocolate Chunks

As I sit here and type, I am on vacation in Asheville, where we have had record lows and torrential downpours the past few days, my daughters have both been diagnosed with strep throat and HostGator has been crashing all day which means that people have been unable to access my site. And I am posting with Bundt Bakers today, supposedly by 8 AM EST. Which may or may not happen. So hopefully nothing else will go too wrong while I am typing—KNOCK ON WOOD.

Babka (Polish Yeast Cake) with bittersweet Chocolate Chunks

But about things going right! First of all, the Bundt Bakers have a fabulous theme for you guys today (hopefully you are able to read this today!). Easter/springtime! Be sure to check out all the links down below to see everyone’s cakes! The second I heard the theme I knew exactly what I was making. Because I have always wanted to re-make babka for my blog. Because, uh, my pictures suck from the first time, not to put too fine a term on it. And I have a great babka recipe!

Babka (Polish Yeast Cake) with bittersweet Chocolate Chunks

For those of you who do not remember, were not reading back then, or just plain are not familiar, babka is a very old fashioned yeast cake. The same term is used for a similar Jewish cake (bread). But our theme is Easter, so I definitely had in mind a Polish Easter babka when I made this.

Traditionally babka is flavored in a very old fashioned manner, with nuts, raisins or other dried fruit and citrus peel. I wanted to update it a bit, so I used bittersweet (70+% cacao) chocolate chunks and vanilla paste and extract. I really liked it. I saved serving it for a day when my dad would be visiting (I learned to make babka for him—seems a shame to not make sure he can have some if I am going to make it!) and he and my mom, both yeast cake afficianados, gave it rave reviews.

Babka (Polish Yeast Cake) with bittersweet Chocolate Chunks

5.0 from 2 reviews
Babka with Bittersweet Chocolate Chunks
Adapted from Nick Malgieri
Recipe type: Dessert
Cuisine: cake
  • For Sponge
  • 1¼ cups milk (preferably whole)
  • 4 t active dry yeast
  • 2 cups AP flour
  • For Dough
  • 8 T unsalted butter, softened
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • 1 t salt
  • 2 t vanilla paste
  • 2 t vanilla extract
  • 12 large egg yolks
  • 2 cups AP flour
  • 2 cups bittersweet chocolate (at least 70% cacao) chunks (I used Scharffen Berger)
  1. For the sponge: In a medium saucepan, warm the milk over low heat until it is just lukewarm, about 110 F. Place the milk into a medium bowl and add yeast – whisk the two together. Stir in the flour; cover with plastic wrap and let rise until doubled, about 30 minutes.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, beat together the butter, sugar and salt until soft, about 2 to 3 minutes. Beat in vanilla paste and extract. Add 6 egg yolks, one at a time, beating until smooth after each one.
  3. Mix in about ⅓ of the flour, then 2 more egg yolks. Scrape down the bowl and beater. Add another ⅓ of the flour and 2 more yolks and scrape down again. Mix in the remaining flour and egg yolks.
  4. Add the sponge mixture into the mixing bowl. Mix on low for 2 minutes. Let the dough rest for 10 minutes.
  5. Beat the dough on medium until it is smooth and elastic, about 2 minutes; the dough should be very soft. Add chocolate chunks and mix until combined.
  6. Scoop the dough into a buttered 12 cup bundt pan. Cover and let the dough rise until it doubles, about 60 minutes.
  7. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees, with the rack in the center of the oven, 15 minutes before the dough has completely risen.
  8. Bake until well risen and very golden, about 40 to 45 minutes. I used a cake tester in the center of the bread to be certain it was done.
  9. Remove and cool in the pan on a rack for about 10 minutes. Then invert the babka onto a rack and cool completely.




#BundtBakers is a group of Bundt loving bakers who get together once a month to bake Bundts with a common ingredient or theme.  You can see all our of lovely Bundts by following our Pinterest board right here.
We take turns hosting each month and choosing the theme/ingredient.


  1. says

    I heard HostGator got bought by BlueHost and that is why it is acting up so much. Boo on them! I can relate, having had site technical woes two days ago. Hopefully it gets sorted out soon!!

    I’ve never made a yeasted bundt cake before! But it looks so tasty, especially with those chocolate chunks. And great texture!

  2. says

    Gorgeous Bundt, Laura! I have never tried a yeast cake before but now I know I NEED to! Hope your daughters feel better. Perhaps the blog being up and at ’em is a good omen.

  3. says

    Oh Laura it was one of those days! But I am happy for your perseverance and determination to post this lovely babka! It looks amazing and I am sure it tastes even better! I love that you put chocolate in it!
    Happy Easter

  4. says

    Yeast frightens me but the fact that this is Polish in origin really makes me want to give it a try. I find a lot of traditional Polish recipes come out of the wood-works this time of year, thanks for opening my eyes to a new one!

  5. says

    So thrilled to be joining Bundt Bakers this month! When I saw the title of your cake, I couldn’t wait to see your recipe. This looks delicious – can’t wait to try it!

    Also, I use MDD hosting and really love them. I’ve yet to experience a problem with them. You can check them out here if you’re interested:

  6. says

    And so thanks to you another thing is added to my to-do list… and that is making an yeast cake. What a lovely bundt for the Easter/spring theme and I’m so down with the chocolate chips too.

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