Cinnamon-Swirl Chocolate Chip Bread.

Incredibly-moist quickbread with a iseep, dark cinnamon swirl inside. Oh, there’s chocolate chips too!

Super-moist, tender Cinnamon-Swirl Bread with Chocolate Chips by Simple ingredients, easy to make!

You see this bread here?

It was supposed to be heavily drizzled with a vanilla glaze, BUT… was too incredible as is! Drenching it in a glaze would take away from all of it’s cinnamon, brown-sugary, chocolate chippy flavor.

I found myself sneaking a small piece after breakfast, after my workout, and heck – I even replaced my nightly popcorn bowl in the name of swirled quickbread. If I hadn’t promised Kevin’s motorcycle friends (yes, I’ve been on it. yes, it’s frightening!) a few slices, then we’d probably polish off every last sugary crumb in only 2 days.

Super-moist, tender Cinnamon-Swirl Bread with Chocolate Chips by Simple ingredients, easy to make!

I’ll never tire of cinnamon swirl bread.  Growing up, my favorite school morning breakfast (umm besides strawberry toaster strudels) was cinnamon swirl bread, toasted and buttered. It sounds pretty boring, but if you’ve ever had a piece of buttered cinnamon-swirl bread, then you know what I’m talkin’ about!

I craved the same comforting flavors last week and before I knew it, this quick bread came to life. As I reached for a few pecans to toss into the batter, I accidentally grabbed the chocolate chips instead.  Oops?

Swirled with cinnamon sugar, topped with more, and dotted with teeny tiny chocolate chips. It’s almost like cake – soft, tender, and moist. I mean common, look at that deep, dark ripple of cinnamon!

Super-moist, tender Cinnamon-Swirl Bread with Chocolate Chips by Simple ingredients, easy to make!

Baking science alert! 

Imparting moisture are a few of my very favorite baking ingredients: oil, buttermilk, and brown sugar.

(1) First, the oil. I use oil in my Super-Moist Carrot Cake recipe and knew it was exactly what this quickbread needed. Butter is a fat that gives unbeatable flavor in my recipes, but nothing beats the moisture that oil brings – especially to muffins, cakes, and quick breads. There is so much flavor from the cinnamon, brown sugar, and chocolate chips that the flavor of butter would disappear anyway.

(2) The buttermilk. Don’t try to substitute the buttermilk with anything! Buttermilk is what makes my Triple Chocolate Cake so darn moist. You absolutely need buttermilk for this quick bread recipe. The lactic acid present is what will allow the baking soda to produce the leavening gas (carbon dioxide).

Don’t have buttermilk?  Most folks don’t typically keep buttermilk in the house. Save yourself a trip to the store and make your own at home. Measure 1 Tablespoon of white vinegar or lemon juice in a measuring cup. Then, add enough milk (1%, 2%, or whole) to the same measuring cup until it reaches 1 cup. Stir it around and let sit for 5 minutes. The homemade “buttermilk” will be somewhat curdled and ready to use in your recipe.

(3) Now the brown sugar. You’ll use both granulated sugar and brown sugar to sweeten the bread. Brown sugar is used (almost) exclusively to sweeten the batter, and white sugar is mixed with cinnamon for the swirl and topping. Brown sugar is one of my favorite ingredients – ever. I used light brown sugar in this bread, which is made with less molasses than dark brown sugar. You may use either dark or light in this recipe.

Super-moist, tender Cinnamon-Swirl Bread with Chocolate Chips by Simple ingredients, easy to make!

When you have those three imperative ingredients ready, all you have to do is mix your dry ingredients together. Then mix your wet ingredients together. Mix both seperately as much as you want! But when it’s time to combine the wet and the dry – be careful. Be very careful not to overmix. Overmixing your batter will develop the gluten and will result in a heavy, tough textured bread. That’s the last thing you want, trust me!  Just mix the wet and dry ingredients together until *just* combined.

You’ll add the batter to the loaf pan with a heavy layer of cinnamon-sugar. Cutting into the bread and finding that cinnamon-swirl tucked inside? Magic. If you couldn’t tell by now, I get really excited over cinnamon sugar swirls.

Before putting into the oven, sprinkle a little more cinnamon-sugar and chocolate chips on top. Ya know, for fun.

Cinnamon-Swirl Chocolate Chip Bread-2

Your kitchen is going to smell like a bakery. (You’re welcome.) There is just nothing like the warm, sweet scent of cinnamon bread baking in the oven. Especially on a chilly morning wearing fuzzy slippers and sippin’ chai tea.

There are two things that quick bread shouldn’t be: bland and dry. This bread is neither. If you can wait, this melt-in-your-mouth bread is even more flavorful and moist on day 2. It takes A LOT of willpower, so umm… you definitely don’t have to wait. But similar to how banana bread and carrot cake’s flavor intensifies overnight, this bread is just the same.

You could use this recipe to make muffins, too. I know you love cinnamon-sugar muffins as much as I do. Besides tasting better than a cinnamon bun – yeah, I just said that – it’s an incredibly easy recipe!

Follow me on Instagram and tag #sallysbakingaddiction so I can see all the SBA recipes you make. 

Cinnamon-Swirl Chocolate Chip Bread

Moist and tender cinnamon-swirl quick bread sprinkled with chocolate chips.



  • 2 cups (250g) all-purpose flour (accurately measured)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2/3 cup (120g) mini semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1 large egg, at room temperature*
  • 3/4 cup (150g) packed light brown sugar (or dark brown)
  • 1/4 cup (50g) granulated sugar
  • 1 cup (240ml) buttermilk (no substitutions)
  • 1/3 cup (80ml) vegetable oil (or canola; or melted coconut oil)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract


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


Preheat oven to 350F degrees. Spray a 9x5 loaf pan with nonstick spray. I prefer a dark metal loaf pan, which seems to help brown quick breads more evenly.

Make the cinnamon-swirl first by combining the cinnamon and sugar together in a small bowl. Set aside.

Make the bread: In a large bowl, toss the flour, baking soda, salt, and chocolate chips together until combined. Set aside. In a medium bowl, whisk the egg, brown sugar, and granulated sugar together until combined. Make sure there are no brown sugar lumps remaining. 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. Try very hard not to overmix, which will result in a tough textured bread.

Pour half of the batter into prepared loaf pan.  Top evenly with 3/4 of your cinnamon-sugar mixture. Pour the remaining batter on top and finish with the rest of the cinnamon-sugar. Sprinkle with a couple more mini chocolate chips if desired.

Bake the bread, covered loosely with aluminum foil, for 45 minutes to 1 hour. Poke the center of the bread with a toothpick. If it comes out clean, the bread is done.  Oven times will vary between ovens. My bread took 56 minutes exactly. Allow bread to cool completely in the pan on a wire rack before cutting.

Bread stays fresh covered tightly at room temperature for up to 6 days. Bread's flavor and moisture are intensified on day 2. Bread freezes well, up to 2 months.

Recipe Notes:

*Room temperature egg is highly suggested for this bread. To bring the egg to room temperature quickly, drop into a cup of warm water for 5 minutes.

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© Sally’s Baking Addiction. All images & content are copyright protected. Please do not use my images without prior permission. If you want to republish this recipe, please re-write the recipe in your own words, or link back to this post for the recipe.


After you make this bread, try these similar recipes next… 😉

Cinnamon-Swirl Banana Bread

Cinnamon Swirl Banana Bread


Homemade Orange Sweet Rolls

Copycat Pillsbury Orange Sweet Rolls. Gooey, fluffy, and dipping with orange glaze-5


Super-Crumb Coffee Cake

Super Crumb Coffee Cake

Nutella-Stuffed Cinnamon Sugar Muffins

Nutella Stuffed Cinnamon Sugar Muffins by Sally's Baking Addiction


Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls with Maple Cream Cheese Glaze

Soft Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls with Maple Cream Cheese Glaze


See more bread & muffin recipes.

Super-moist, tender Cinnamon-Swirl Bread with Chocolate Chips by Simple ingredients, easy to make!




  1. Hi Sally,

    Can I make this bread tonight for a work party on Thursday morning? Thank you!

  2. Sally,

    SO. DELICIOUS. I made this recipe in muffin form this morning, and it’s delightful. Those chocolate chips were the best “mistake” ever made! I have a question about bringing milk to room temperature. I made these at 7:00 a.m. and didn’t want to wait for the milk to warm, so I put it in the microwave at 10 second intervals. Do you have another “trick” to do this? Thank you, and Merry Christmas!

  3. Hi Sally! I truly love your recipes! They are so easy to follow and always make me look so good 😉 I hear you on the buttermilk! Since I love to use it but usually don’t keep milk or buttermilk on hand, I’m wondering what you think of powdered buttermilk – I always have that in the fridge! It has the acid in it and in the past has worked great for breads and pancakes and the like. Am I getting into substitution territory or do you think it will work out? Thank you so much for another great one!

    • I’ve had readers use it here and it works wonderfully for them! I have never personally tried it before though. Let me know how it goes.

  4. LOVED LOVED LOVED this. You want to hear something stupid though, I decided to make two of your “bread” recipes at the same time. What a way to almost mess up both recipes. Plus I have a teeny kitchen. So you can just imagine. Anyway, I used dark brown sugar, instead of the light… I think it made the finished product a little darker than your pictures. Is that possible.

    Also I had a lot of extra cinnamon sugar. I guess I didn’t have to use it all ?

    • Yes, it is possible the dark brown sugar will make the loaf a little darker. I instruct to use all of the cinnamon sugar mixture both layered in and sprinkled on top. It’s ok you didn’t use it all though– as long ad you love the taste!

  5. Hey Sally!
    I love your recipes and I’m planning on making this one today. One thing that I do not have is buttermilk. I usually use a substitute and it works fine, but I got a little nervous when you wrote “no substitutions”. Any thoughts?

    • Hey Diane! Buttermilk is so important. However, you can try a DIY buttermilk substitute: Measure 1 Tablespoon of white vinegar or lemon juice in a measuring cup. Then, add enough milk (1%, 2%, or whole) to the same measuring cup until it reaches 1 cup. Stir it around and let sit for 5 minutes. The homemade “buttermilk” will be somewhat curdled and ready to use in your recipe.

  6. Sally, I tried the Cinnamon Swirl Chocolate Chip Bread. Tastewise it turned out awesome. But it was very crumbly on the top. While slicing it was breaking up at least an inch down . After that it sliced well. Hence it was not very appealing to the eyes while serving. any idea what wet wrong?

    • Neeta, do you think you overbaked the bread at all? A crumbly top could mean that the top was overheated. Perhaps try to slightly reduce the oven temperature as well. This should help.

  7. Would everything be the same..(ex. Time in the oven) if I wanted to make mini loafs?

  8. Dear Sally, I tried making this bread this morning but ended up with burnt top and bottom but the bread is SO moist. I’m still figuring out what went wrong with the burnt sides. FYI, I’m using electric oven of which you can choose to use top or bottom or both flames and I used both flames for this bread. Should I have used just the top one instead? I used the aluminum foil at first but more than halfway when I checked the bread, the melted sugar on top kind of sticking to the foil so I removed it. Appreciate your feedback ‘coz I loveeee your recipes. Thanks

    • Silvia, it sounds like the oven was just too hot. I recommend just the top flame. Can you adjust the oven rack to the bottom level by chance? This should help tremendously.

      • Dear Sally, thanks so much for the quick reply. Will do as you’ve advised in my next baking. Can’t wait!

  9. I always come here when I want to try a new recipe, and after finding this cinnamon bread recipe last night, I had to make it today. I loved how easy this is to make, and it’s delicious. I’d definitely make it again. Although my bread took much longer to bake. After about 55 minutes, it was practically raw in the middle. I’m not sure why that is, but all in all this is a really delicious and easy quick bread. 🙂

  10. I have a jumbo muffin pan that I want to use to make this as muffins. What would a good bake time to start with be? I have three kiddos so I’m bad about forgetting my baked items. I would make it as bread, and I’m sure I will for a weekend, but my oldest son who’s 6 wants muffins before breakfast.

  11. My friend and I both made the bread and in both our cases the middle dropped? I would like to make this again but not sure what we’re doing wrong?

  12. I made this recipe lastnight, I did make a couple changes and it was delicious! Instead of buttermilk I used almond milk because I’m nursing and my baby has a dairy allergy, I also added 2 teaspoons of cocoa powder to the cinnamon swirl mix! The bread was so moist and great with coffee!

  13. I just wanna ask, based from what I googled, 1 cup equals 250g. In this recipe, it stated that 2 cups equal 250g. So, which is true? I’m so confused because I don’t use measuring cups as they aren’t available here. Thanks Sally 🙂

    • 1 cup of flour is 125g, so 2 = approximately 250. The cup – gram measurement depends on what you are weighing.

  14. Sally, if I don’t have any oil on hand, will it just fine to replace it with melted butter? If yes, then how much melted butter that needed in here? Thanks.

  15. Hi Sally, Thank you for the great recipe! Just to clarify: Should the brown sugar in this recipe be packed? I read your measuring guidelines and thought packed was the default, however, I noticed that you actually specified packed in another recipe.


  16. Hi Sally 

    Can I double up on the cinnamon swirl and/or the chocolate chips? 

  17. Hello! Tried the recipe and it was good. Very moist and flavourful. However, I did not get a clean cut like yours. Mine was a little crumbly. It was still good though. I’m gonna make these again but in muffin form too! 

  18. Hi, I goofed and only put in 1/2 cup of buttermilk but my husband and grandson loved it. My little guy said it tasted just like chocolate chip cookies.
    I am looking for Christmas loaves to give and this Thanks will be perfect but next time I will add the correct amount of milk. Thanks for the reicipe..

  19. What would you suggest to be the cooking times if  I wanted to make this into mini loaves? Also, wanting to make them as Christmas presents, so bake ahead of time and freeze? Thanks

  20. Is there a way to make buttermilk if we don’t have any at home?

  21. Sally,
    Can the vanilla extract be replace by vanilla essence??

  22. Hi Sally,

    I made this bread the other day and I used whole wheat pastry flour.  It didn’t come out very well.  The bread seemed heavy and it didn’t quite finish in the center but was definitely done on the outside.  Was this the result of the different flour I used or possibly something else?  I’ve heard you can use whole wheat pastry flour as a substitute for white flour and that it usually does very well.  Please let me know your thoughts.  Thank you.

    • It could have been the flour but it sounds like it was underbaked. Did you make sure to use buttermilk and baking soda? The combination of the two help the bread rise nice and tall, with a light texture. Maybe you overmeasured the flour as well? Be sure to spoon and level. These are just my thoughts!

  23. Made this yesterday around 1pm – it was gone by 7pm!!! Didn’t have buttermilk but mixed the milk and vinegar and used unrefined virgin coconut oil. I took an hour in my oven and I forgot to loosely cover it until 30 mins in but it still came out great. The sugar and cinnamon on top was a little dark but didn’t change the taste. I also added an extra 1/3 of chocolate chips because my family loves chocolate. This was amazing!!! I can’t wait to make it again!

  24. Sally,

    I just made this bread for the second time.  I don’t know what I do wrong, but it comes out overdone to the point of being almost burnt.  Up until the point when I take it out the top is runny, so I leave the bread in until my toothpick comes out clean, usually about an hour and a minute or so.  Burnt bread!  Help!!

    • I would check your oven temperature with an oven thermometer. The bread shouldn’t be burning like that. You can also cover it loosely with aluminum foil to prevent the top from browning so heavily so quickly.

  25. Followed recipe exactly and came out wonderful. Really hit the spot! I pretty much ate the whole thing myself! Made another one for the family. It’s that good!

  26. I just baked this bread but I had a problem: my aluminium foil sticked to the top when it rised and I didn’t realize until ~20 min later. I think that because of this, the center was very runny and couldn’t bake well. So the borders were already done (almost burning) and the center wasn’t. 

    Shouldn’t it be better if you covered it halfway through in order to prevent this from happening? Let it rise and cover it just to prevent over browning. Also, I had the oven thermometer inside the whole time so it wasn’t a temperature problem. I ended up baking it for 1h5min. We’ll see how it turns out! 

  27. Could sliced apples be added into the swirl mix?

  28. Sally, I made this without the chocolate chips (I know… people in my family are a bit weird) and it was GREAT! Added to my SOS recipe list just next to your brown butter pound cake! 

  29. Darn it! A friend made this for me a couple of months ago and it was DELICIOUS! I just moved into my first home a couple of days ago and decided to make this for some people coming over. Apparently, I clicked the “convection bake” option on my oven, and it didn’t cook correctly–nearly burnt on the outside, as it took forever to cook through. Not your fault, obviously. Just a note of caution to others who may try it using the convection setting. I’ll try it again, because it was awesome when my friend made it. 🙂

  30. Question for you! Do you think there is a way to make this into a pumpkin bread, with the cinnamon and chocolate chips and all? Not sure if that would work but just an idea. Let me know what you think!

  31. Hello …well I made this last night for work today. It smelled delicious but mine was significantly darker on the inside when it was cut. I think I overcooked a bit (someone said it was good but a little dry so I am sure I overcooked) but I cannot figure out why yours is so gorgeously cake-y looking and golden inside and mine came out so much more beige-brownish inside. Obviously, cook shorter amount of time but do you think if I went with more sugar and less brown sugar that would make it different (I used light brown sugar). Also, you have a nice cinnamon wave in yours and my cinnamon is more throughout. I am guessing I swirled knife too much. Would you suggest not swirling/marbling at all? Mine is just more messy/darker look all over and yours looks lovely! This is one I would like to make again and again — I think the cinnamon and choc chips combo is just timeless and appeals to everyone so any suggestions is appreciated!

    • Hi Kelly, I would reduce the baking time– and maybe skip the marbling/swirling. That will keep the bread white and a ribbon swirled in the center.

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