Cinnamon Swirl Chocolate Chip Bread

We are so lucky our daughter Charlotte is back in school 5 days a week. While she was in school today and I was working from home, I decided to surprise her with a home-baked, after-school treat.

I love making quick breads. Lots of delicious flavor without a ton of mess or time. And, Charlotte loves chocolate and cinnamon bread so I figured she’d be into a recipe combining the two!

Most of the baking I’ve done over the past year has been thanks to recipes from Sally’s Baking Addiction or Smitten Kitchen. This one is from Sally’s Baking Addiction.

I followed the recipe pretty closely with a few notes to call out. I only had full-sized chocolate chips which made the bread feel a bit more decadent and chocolatey. Typically I buy Guittard semisweet chocolate chips. I also used Vietnamese cinnamon which is a bit richer, more fragrant, and pairs nicely with chocolate. I happen to have a large container from King Arthur Flour.

A lot of baking recipes call for buttermilk but I very rarely have any on hand. I’ve started making my own buttermilk substitute when needed as it’s important to not simply substitute buttermilk with milk. The acidity of buttermilk reacts with the baking powder or baking soda, creating a delicious tang and soft, light texture.

How to make your own buttermilk: Measure one tablespoon of white vinegar or lemon juice into a liquid measuring cup. Add in whole milk and fill to the 1 cup measurement line. Stir and let sit for 5 minutes. After sitting, the milk will have thickened and curdled slightly and is ready to use.

The bread was delicious — moist, bursting with cinnamon, and a rich dark chocolate flavor. It reminded me of a decadent breakfast Charlotte ate on our trip to Vietnam — cinnamon French toast with chocolate sauce.

Charlotte in Hoi An, Vietnam, 2017

Charlotte (now age 10) reports that this recipe is: “Delicious. The cinnamon gives it a nice kick.”

Cinnamon Swirl Chocolate Chip Bread
Sally’s Baking Addiction


Cinnamon mixture

  • 1 Tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/3 cup (65g) granulated sugar


  • 2 cups (250g) all-purpose flour 
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2/3 cup (120g) mini semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1 large egg, at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup (100g) packed light or dark brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup (50g) granulated sugar
  • 1 cup (240ml) buttermilk, at room temperature
  • 1/3 cup (80ml) vegetable oil (or canola; or melted coconut oil)
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  1. Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C). Spray a 9×5 loaf pan with nonstick spray. I prefer a dark metal loaf pan, which seems to help brown quick breads more evenly.
  2. Make the cinnamon-swirl first by combining the cinnamon and sugar together in a small bowl. Set aside.
  3. Make the bread: Whisk the flour, baking soda, and salt together in a large bowl. Stir in the chocolate chips. Set aside. In a medium bowl, whisk the egg, brown sugar, and granulated sugar together until combined. Whisk in the buttermilk, oil, and vanilla. Slowly pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and gently whisk until there are no more lumps. Avoid over-mixing.
  4. You’ll have about 3-3.5 cups of batter. Spread half of the batter into prepared loaf pan. Top evenly with 3/4 of your cinnamon-sugar mixture. Gently spread the remaining batter on top as best you can and sprinkle the rest of the cinnamon-sugar. Sprinkle with a couple more mini chocolate chips if desired. Using a knife, gently swirl the batter with 1 simple swirl (I usually swirl a “S” shape) from the top to the bottom of the loaf pan.
  5. Bake the bread for 50-65 minutes, tenting loosely with aluminum foil halfway through bake time. Quick breads are thick and dense, so don’t be alarmed if your loaf is taking longer. To test for doneness, poke the center of the bread with a toothpick. If it comes out clean, the bread is done. Allow bread to cool completely in the pan on a wire rack before cutting.
  6. Cover and store leftover bread at room temperature for 3 days or in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.

    Makes 1 loaf.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *