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Incredibly moist chocolate chip quick bread with a sweet dark cinnamon swirl inside.

cinnamon swirl chocolate chip bread

slices of cinnamon swirl chocolate chip bread

I’ll never tire of cinnamon swirl bread. Growing up, my favorite school morning breakfast 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 talking 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!

slices of cinnamon swirl chocolate chip bread on a white plate

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. (Like banana bread!)

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cinnamon swirl chocolate chip bread

Cinnamon-Swirl Chocolate Chip Bread

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 55 minutes
  • Total Time: 2 hours
  • Yield: 1 loaf 1x
  • Category: Bread
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American


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




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


  • 2 cups (250g) all-purpose flour (spoon & leveled)
  • 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.


  1. Freezing Instructions: Freeze baked and cooled bread for up to 3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator and bring to room temperature before serving.
  2. Room Temperature Ingredients: All refrigerated items should be at room temperature so the batter mixes together easily and evenly. Read more about the importance of room temperature ingredients.
  3. Buttermilk: Buttermilk is required for this recipe. You can make your own DIY version of buttermilk if needed. Add 2 teaspoons of white vinegar or lemon juice to a liquid measuring cup. Then add enough whole milk to the same measuring cup until it reaches 1 cup. (In a pinch, lower fat or nondairy milks work for this soured milk, but the bread won’t taste as rich and moist.) Stir it around and let sit for 5 minutes. The homemade “buttermilk” will be somewhat curdled and ready to use in the recipe.

Keywords: cinnamon chocolate chip bread

Reader Questions and Reviews

  1. Would using a loaf pan that’s 8.5 x 4.5 x 2.75 in make a difference at all?

    1. Not at all! That’s such a slight difference, the bake time will be practically the same.

  2. Can I make this in a 9×9 or 8×8 pan? How long to cook?


    1. This recipe is for a loaf pan, it would be very thin in a square pan.

  3. This bread is good! Thinking about making some mini loafs in the disposable pans for teacher apperication. How much of the batter would you put in each mini loaf pan form just the original recipe and how long would you bake? Thanks again for all your fabulous recipes!

    1. Hi Natalie! I’m unsure of the exact bake time, but only fill the mini loaf pans halfway. Use a toothpick to test for doneness.

  4. Just made this for family, huge hit! Now I’m making second loaf to take to party tomorrow.

  5. Hi Sally! Could this recipe be doubled or would it be better to make 2 separate batches? Thank you for all your amazing recipes!

  6. Made this last night for coworker’s birthday today. Not a lot of people in the office (it’s Friday) but the whole thing is almost gone in less than 3 hours! Rave reviews from those who I’ve heard from.

  7. I made this a few weeks ago and it was fantastic! Want to make again and am considering adding pecans to the cinnamon sugar swirl. Do you think this would work?

    1. I’m so glad you enjoyed it. Yes, feel free to add some crushed pecan pieces to the swirl – yum!

  8. You state in the direction is whisk, so you do not use a mixer at all in the recipe?

    1. Hi Peggy, Sine we don’t have to cream butter there is no need to use your mixer if you don’t want to! Simply whisking by hand is all that is needed here. Enjoy!

  9. It’s so delicious… Thanku Sally for such a wonderful recipe

  10. Hi Sally,

    Love love all your recipes and I would like to try this one but I am wondering if I could sub out the buttermilk for sour cream? Thanks so much!

    1. Hi Trish, thank you! The bread will taste very dense using all sour cream. Instead, you can use 1/2 cup sour cream and 1/2 cup regular milk or buttermilk.

  11. This was amazing! I have never really baked before, but I have made many of your recipes and I feel so much more confident! Thanks, Sally!

  12. If I make it with the half greek yogurt/half milk option, does the greek yogurt need to be room temp?

    1. Hi Kaylee, I recommend bringing the yogurt to room temperature for best results.

  13. OMG, i try out your recipe. Its turns out amazing and i love it because it is quick and does not involve kneading. I switch the chocolate chips to butterscotch chips and add on cinnamon streusel topping. I ate half of the loaf within 45 mins. Thanks for sharing your recipe❤️.

  14. I really love all your recipes, but my granddaughter must have gluten free. Can I substitute the flour with Bob’s Red Mill’s “1to1 baking flour”

    1. Hi Joan, I haven’t tested this recipe with gluten free flour but let me know if you try it!

  15. This was easy to follow and very VERY delicious. Didn’t change a thing.

  16. If I leave the mini chocolate chips out do I have to substitute with more flour or anything

    1. Hi Linda, You can leave them out without making any other changes.

  17. Made this recipe as muffins and they turned out perfect!! Sally’s recipes never fail. I got 12 muffins from the batter and cooked for a total of 21 minutes in my oven by following the cooking instructions for Sally’s blueberry muffins. They were moist but not claggy. I will definitely be making these again.

  18. Hi Sally. I have been wanting to make this bread for a couple months now. I am just reading the reviews and I am afraid to make it. I only have a glass loaf pan. Any suggestions on how to keep it from being raw in the middle and overcooked on the edges? Maybe 325F for longer? I want it to be amazing! Thank you!!

    PS: I LOVE all of your recipes that I have tried!!

    1. Hi Lauren, The standard advice for baking in glass is to lower the oven temperature by 25°F from what the recipe calls for, and bake up to 10 minutes longer. This is a great article that explains the difference in glass vs metal pans:

  19. Hi sally, would this recipe be enough for say two mini loaf pans rather than one large pan?

    1. Hi Amaniy, yes! You can use mini loaves here instead. Yield will depend on the size of your mini loaf pans.

  20. Hi
    Love the bread. Not sure when to use aluminum foil. At the first half of baking or last half? Thanks!!

  21. Hi Sally, I’m wondering if you can use heavy cream and baking powder instead of using buttermilk and baking soda for this recipe?

    1. Hi Audrey, That would take some recipe testing for us to be confident of an answer. Baking soda is about 3-4x stronger than baking powder. You would have to use enough baking powder to provide the proper rise in this heavier batter, but using too much and it could affect the taste negativity. We recommend sticking to the recipe if possible!

  22. I forgot to tent it with the foil until about 15 minutes before it finished baking… Will this negatively affect my loaf?

    1. It shouldn’t. Does it look burnt on top? It’s really just to prevent the top from over-browning too quickly.

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