Cinnamon Orange and Chocolate Chip Bread

For the #Twelve Loaves Challenge

I was originally going to make a plain Chocolate Chip Bread. However, when this month's Twelve Loaves challenge came up with the spices theme, I decided to add cinnamon, but was still itching to add something else to give the bread an added flavor. After thinking over it for a few seconds, I came up with orange. Isn't that the obvious choice? I mean orange tastes excellent with cinnamon and even better with chocolate! Moreover, it would give the bread a lovely fruity and citrusy flavored punch. What more could I've asked for?

This bread is loaded with chocolate chips, semi sweet ones actually.  The amount of chips that I added were on the higher side, so I've reduced the measurement in the recipe. The texture is not dense but not soft and fluffy altogether (due to the chocolate chips). However, the bread is moist and not dry at all. You might have noticed that the chips released their color into the dough. Though this would happen to a certain extent, in my case it seems more which I owe to the weather here. A hot and humid environment is a baker's worst enemy!

I wanted to have a cinnamon swirl in the bread but since I've used quite a bit of chocolate chips, I thought the swirl would just get lost in the chips and wouldn't be visible. So I used the cinnamon in the dough itself, and it's this cinnamon that will fill your kitchen with it's heady aroma wanting you to bake another batch :-).

Besides using the orange zest, I also added a couple of tablespoons of orange juice, since with all those chocolate chips and the powerful cinnamon in the dough, I wanted the orange flavor to really come through. Also wanted to use milk instead of water for some added moistness and softness but with that orange juice, I was a bit worried that the milk might curdle and affect the taste and texture of the bread. It's better to be safe than sorry, so I replaced water with milk and used butter instead of oil which gives the dough slight tenderness.

An important thing about chocolate chips, once you add them, the dough will become a little stickier if you have stored the chips in the refrigerator like me. Yeah yeah I know chocolate is not supposed to be kept in the fridge but with all the heat and humidity here, I can't take the risk of storing them at room temperature. Can I?

Now for the taste, it's a little sweet, you can taste the orange and you can taste the cinnamon. What did you expect? ;-) Bake it and you won't regret it :D

Looking for more spice driven breads? Take a look what the other talented bakers have made:
#Twelve Loaves is a monthly bread baking party that was created by Lora from Cake Duchess and runs smoothly with the support of Paula from Vintage Kitchen Notes and Renee from Magnolia Days. I'm so thrilled to be a part of this group, such a wonderful opportunity to share each other's recipes and get inspired by talented bread bakers out there.

Recipe Source: Bakingyummies

Makes one 8 1/2 * 4 1/2 loaf

300 grams / 11 ounces bread flour or strong white flour plus a little extra for sprinkling
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
grated zest of an orange
1 teaspoon instant dry yeast
25 grams / 1 ounce unsalted butter at room temperature
2 tablespoons orange juice at room temperature
160-180 grams / 6fl - 8fl ounces water at room temperature
100 grams / 3.5 ounces semi sweet chocolate chips (I went a little overboard with the chips, but I've reduced the amount here).

In the bowl of a stand mixer, mix together the bread flour,cinnamon,orange zest and salt. Add the yeast and mix. Now add the butter,orange juice and water. Knead the dough using the dough hook, first on the minimum speed until the dough starts to form and then on speed 1 until the right windowpane stage is achieved (which would take about 15 mins). You can knead the dough by hand as well, but it's going to take a long time.

To understand if you've reached the right windowpane stage, once you stretch the dough and it forms a windowpane, try to poke your finger through it (start checking after about 10 mins of kneading). The dough should not tear at this point. However, when you poke your finger real hard, you get a hole whose edges should be smooth and not rough. If the edges are rough, knead the dough a little longer. If you can easily poke your finger through the hole, then it means that you have over kneaded the dough. Over kneading isn't going to a pose a major problem. Just that the texture of the bread might be a little rough. Don't worry, it takes some time to get this right. Keep trying. If you want to look at the photos and understand, please click here.

Once you have reached the correct stage, press down the dough to form a rough circle. Sprinkle the chocolate chips. Fold the dough around so that you cover the chips completely. Knead the dough gently for 2 minutes until the chips are evenly distributed.

Lightly oil a large bowl and rotate the dough in the bowl so as to coat the dough with oil. Cover the bowl with a cling film and let it rest at room temperature until the dough has doubled in size.

Punch down the dough. Remove the dough from the bowl and press into a thin rectangle and roll it lightly like a swiss roll and let rest for 10 minutes. If the dough keeps coming back and doesn't stretch when you press it, let it rest for 20 minutes and then repeat.

Grease an 8 1/2 * 4 1/2 pan. With the seam side up, press the dough again into a rectangle. Now roll it again like a swiss roll, but this time tighter. Place the shaped dough with the seam side down in the greased pan. Spray with oil and cover loosely with a cling film and let to rest.

Once the dough is double in size, preheat the oven to 175 degrees C / 350 degrees F. Bake the bread in the preheated oven till golden brown overall and sounds hollow when knocked on the bottom with your knuckles. Alternatively, you can check if the bread is done with a food thermometer as well. It should register at least 95 degrees C / 190 degrees F.

Remove the bread from the pan and let cool on a wire rack completely before slicing.

Enjoy your home made and  delicious Cinnamon Orange and Chocolate Chip Bread!

Storage Suggestions: This bread can be stored at room temperature for up to 3 days in a ziplock bag or frozen for up to a month.

Happy Baking!!!

#TwelveLoaves November-Spice. October #TwelveLoaves was about baking with Root Vegetables. It was quite a delicious month! Temperatures are dropping  and it is the right moment to explore bread and SPICE! Share your November Spice Bread (yeast or quick bread). Let's get baking!

If you’d like to add your bread to the collection with the Linky Tool this month, here’s what you need to do!

1. When you post your Twelve Loaves bread on your blog, make sure that you mention the Twelve Loaves challenge in your blog post; this helps us to get more members as well as share everyone's posts. Please make sure that your bread is inspired by the theme!
2. Please link your post to the linky tool at the bottom of my blog. It must be a bread baked to the Twelve Loaves theme.
3. Have your Twelve Loaves bread that you baked this November, 2013, and posted on your blog by November 30, 2013.


  1. Wow, this bread has such fantastic color, at first glance I thought it contained pumpkin! Love the chocolate-orange combo, and the addition of cinnamon could only make that better. Lovely loaf.

    1. Thank you Heather. I've never used pumpkin for breads or desserts, it's only used for savory dishes in this part of the world. But after looking at all your guys recipes, I'm going to give it a try pretty soon.

  2. You nailed the flavors here! And they are so reminiscent of chilly days. Lovely bread!

    1. Thank you Paula, yeah chocolate and cinnamon are typical flavors of chilly days, though it's quite hot and humid here. But who cares? I can eat chocolate any time of the year :-)

  3. Chocolate and orange in a bread: wonderful.
    It looks like a great breat also for Xmas.

  4. Great choices to use orange with the cinnamon and chocolate chips. I think that sounds lovely. I may add orange zest into my next batch of chocolate chip cookies thanks to you!

    1. Thank you Holly, I decided to use the orange flavor at the last moment and I'm glad I did it. Oh yes chocolate and orange in a cookie, that sounds yummy!

  5. Welcome, welcome to Twelve Loaves! You have baked a wonderful bread. Cinnamon and chocolate are one of my top pairings ever. I also love the use of orange because I think a lot of folks miss that opportunity for citrus and use lemon.

    1. Thanks Renee for all your help in getting me to be a part of the group. I agree, when you think of citrus the first thing that comes to mind is lemon but I really love the sweetness and the slightly sharp taste of orange. It's quite refreshing for the palette but sadly I think it's an underrated fruit.

  6. Sounds so good! What a great combination of flavors. And beautiful photographs.

  7. The crisp citrus with the cinnamon spice are tempting me right this very moment. Chocolate is always a favorite in my house so your beautiful bread doesn't stand a chance! :-) Your bread looks so beautiful!

    1. Thank you Dionne. If you give it a try, I'd love to know how it turned out for you.

  8. I actually love that the chocolate chips lent more color to the inside of the bread. It looks so pretty that way! This bread looks yummy and adding cinnamon is never a bad thing :)
    Renee - Kudos Kitcchen

    1. I'm happy that you like the bread this way since I was a bit skeptical about the color. I thought the looks went for a toss :)


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