Chocolate Cinnamon Bread Wreath

Christmas morning will seem even more magical if you serve a gorgeous chocolate cinnamon bread wreath! These wreaths make marvelous holiday gifts and are something your family will ask for year after year.

Chocolate Cinnamon Bread Wreath #christmas #holidayrecipe #bread #nutella

We have certain traditions we honor each year to make the holidays special. Advent calendars, Elf on the Shelf, Visiting a local Light Show, Cookie Exchanges, Christmas Eve Service…

One of those traditions is to serve piping hot fresh-made bread on Christmas morning.

Last year after all the presents had been open, we sat around in our fuzzy jammies and ate hot sticky Drunken Monkey Bread with a cream cheese scramble and grapefruit mimosas.

Making Cinnamon Bread

This year I have something else in mind.

Something with chocolate-cinnamon layers and yeasty dough twisted into delicate folds.

Something that looks lovely sitting out on the table…

A Chocolate Cinnamon Bread Wreath.

Chocolate & Cinnamon Bread Wreath #christmas #holidayrecipe #bread #nutella

This cinnamon bread variation, not only looks lovely, its tastes divine. Similar to Pain au Chocolat with a softer texture and zesty spices layered throughout, it is a wonderful celebration bread!

Because bread needs times to rise, you could make this a day ahead and rewarm on Christmas morning. Or, you could make it several days (even weeks) ahead and freeze before the second rise. Then place it in the fridge to thaw the night before serving, and give it a few more minutes to rise on the counter before baking, for fresh-out-of-the-oven bread.

This recipe calls for all purpose flour, not bread flour, so the layers stay nice and tender. Yet anytime I’m making bread I use Gold Medal Flour, because I’ve found the consistency is always right on the money. Gold Medal’s super-fine milled flour helps the bread rise into fluffy loaves.

Making Chocolate Cinnamon Bread Wreath #christmas #holidayrecipe #bread #nutella

To Make a Chocolate Cinnamon Bread Wreath

Prepare the bread dough and let it rise until double in size.

Roll in out, spread with Nutella, and sprinkle with brown sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg.

Then roll into a giant log.

How To - Chocolate Cinnamon Bread Wreath #christmas #holidayrecipe #bread #nutella

Cut the log down the middle and “braid” the two pieces into one log twist.

Shape into a circle and tuck the ends under.

How to Make Chocolate Cinnamon Bread Wreath #christmas #holidayrecipe #bread #nutella

This is where you would freeze, if you were making this chocolate cinnamon bread wreaths ahead.

Freeze it uncovered for 2 -3 hours, then wrap well and refreeze until ready to thaw.

Warm Chocolate Cinnamon Bread Wreath #christmas #holidayrecipe #bread #nutella

The ooohs and ahhhs on Christmas morning are well worth planning ahead for this one.

You could even make several to send to friends and neighbors for their Christmas breakfast!


Yield: 1 large wreath

Prep Time: 40 minutes active time

Cook Time: 25 minutes

Chocolate Cinnamon Bread Wreath


  • 3/4 cup whole milk, scalded
  • 1 packet dry active yeast (2 1/4 tsp.)
  • 1/2 cup warm water
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 4 cups All Purpose Gold Medal Flour
  • 4 tablespoons melted butter
  • 3/4 cup Nutella chocolate hazelnut spread
  • 3 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon course sea salt


  1. Scald the milk on the stove or in the microwave. Bring it to a boil, then remove from the heat and cool completely before using. You can place it in the fridge to bring the temperature down faster. (Don't skip this step, or you're bread may not rise properly.)
  2. Using an electric mixer with a bread hook, place the warm water (just barely over luke-warm, too hot will kill the yeast) and sugar in the mixing bowl. Sprinkle the yeast over the water and let it foam for 10 minutes.
  3. Then turn on the mixer and add the cooled milk, egg and salt. Slowly add the flour. Once all the flour is in the bowl, add 4 tablespoons of melted butter. "Knead" the dough with the bread hook for 5-8 minutes.
  4. The dough will be smooth, but tacky. Oil the mixer bowl, then cover with plastic wrap, and let the dough rise in the bowl for 2 hours. Mix the brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg and sea salt in a separate bowl and set aside.
  5. Once the dough has doubled in size, dump it out on a floured work surface. Roll the dough out into a large rectangle, 18 x 13 inches in size. Gently spread a thin layer of Nutella over the dough, leaving the dough bare around the edges. Then sprinkle the cinnamon mixture over the dough. Now starting on one of the long edges, roll the dough into a long cylinder.
  6. Use a large knife to cut the dough down the middle, length wise, and open it up to expose the layers inside. Then alternate crossing the pieces over each other to create a braid. Move the braid to a parchment paper-lined baking sheet and shape into a ring. Fold the ends under each other, so they resemble the braid.
  7. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F and allow the bread wreath to rise for at least 45 minutes. Then bake for 22-30 minutes, until brown and crispy on top. Cool at least 10 minutes before cutting.

More Christmas Breakfast Ideas

Drunken Monkey Bread

Pumpkin Pull Apart Bread

White Chocolate Glazed Gingerbread Muffins

Breakfast Stuffed Poblano Peppers

Corned Beef Hash with Creamy Horseradish Sauce

Disclosure: This post is sponsored by Gold Medal Flour. All opinions are my own.

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64 Responses to “Chocolate Cinnamon Bread Wreath”

  1. #
    Julia@Vikalinka — December 16, 2013 @ 4:53 am

    This looks simply incredible and the detailed tutorial takes all doubts away from this yeast fearing baker. :-) I am definitely going to give it a try!


  2. #
    Christi @ Love From The Oven — December 16, 2013 @ 7:07 am

    Not only does it look delicious, but your photos are stunning!


  3. #
    Jenny Flake — December 16, 2013 @ 7:54 am

    Lovely Sommer! Perfectly festive too!


  4. #
    Marian (Sweetopia) — December 16, 2013 @ 7:54 am

    What a gorgeous treat! And made with nutella – can’t get better than that!


  5. #
    Tieghan — December 16, 2013 @ 7:54 am

    This is GORGEOUS!! You twist is perfect and these flavors are the ultimate Christmas flavors! LOVE it, Sommer!


  6. #
    Susan @ Flavors by Four — December 16, 2013 @ 7:56 am

    It looks delicious and would be perfect for Christmas morning. Thank you.


  7. #
    Jeanette | Jeanette's Healthy Living — December 16, 2013 @ 7:56 am

    What a fun holiday treat! Love all the swirls!


  8. #
    Sandy@ReluctantEntertainer — December 16, 2013 @ 7:57 am

    Love this, Sommer. So fun and festive. Love anything with Nutella :)


  9. #
    Alison @ Ingredients, — December 16, 2013 @ 8:04 am

    so pretty and scrumptious looking


  10. #
    Kevin @ Closet Cooking — December 16, 2013 @ 8:11 am



  11. #
    Erin | The Law Student's Wife — December 16, 2013 @ 8:30 am

    This is GORGEOUS!!! Love that you can make it ahead too. I want to dive into every one of those layers.


  12. #
    Heather Christo — December 16, 2013 @ 8:40 am

    this serioiusly beautiful Sommer, I feel like this would become a family tradition.


  13. #
    Lori @ RecipeGirl — December 16, 2013 @ 8:57 am

    WHOA. This looks amazing!!!


  14. #
    Julie @ Table for Two — December 16, 2013 @ 9:08 am

    This is absolutely stunning, Sommer! I love the twist of the brown and white dough!


  15. #
    Aimee — December 16, 2013 @ 9:49 am

    This turned out beautifully. Can’t wait to try it!


  16. #
    Maria — December 16, 2013 @ 10:10 am

    So pretty!!


  17. #
    Alice F — December 16, 2013 @ 11:49 am

    What a lovely dish to serve on Christmas morning. How can you go wrong with nutella?


  18. #
    RavieNomNoms — December 16, 2013 @ 10:55 am

    That looks SO delicious!! WOW


  19. #
    Rust — December 16, 2013 @ 11:08 am

    It’s gorgeous! …and added to my must-make list for Christmas. :)


  20. #
    Linda K. — December 16, 2013 @ 11:10 am

    That looks amazing!


  21. #
    Shaina — December 16, 2013 @ 12:21 pm

    Such a brilliant wreath, and I love the cutaway, too. I added grapefruit mimosas to my Christmas morning list. Divine!


  22. #
    Lauren @ Climbing Grier Mountain — December 16, 2013 @ 1:45 pm

    You have mad baking skills, Sommer! This would be the perfect treat to have on Thanksgiving!


  23. #
    marla — December 16, 2013 @ 8:01 pm

    This looks amazing Sommer!


  24. #
    Julia | — December 16, 2013 @ 9:02 pm

    This bread is perfect to start a Christmas morning – I love traditional and memorable holiday treats like this one! It’s braided beautifully, and with the layers of Nutella spread over the dough, this bread would definitely be favorite with adults and children alike!


  25. #
    Penni — December 16, 2013 @ 9:04 pm

    Can this be made with refrigerated bread dough?


    • Sommer — December 16th, 2013 @ 9:49 pm

      Hi Penni. Most definitely! It just won’t have the same tender texture as this bread dough. But I bet it would still taste great!


  26. #
    Gaby — December 16, 2013 @ 9:47 pm

    So gorgeous, not to mention delicious!!


  27. #
    Laura (Tutti Dolci) — December 17, 2013 @ 1:15 am

    I absolutely need this bread for Christmas morning!


  28. #
    tanya — December 17, 2013 @ 4:42 am

    Oh my goodness, cinnamon and Nutella?? This is so gorgeous Sommer!!


  29. #
    katie — December 17, 2013 @ 2:25 pm

    This looks dreamy and with nutella–yes please!


  30. #
    Coco in the Kitchen — December 17, 2013 @ 2:26 pm

    This is so lovely.
    Chocolate pairs well with cinnamon and the
    presentation is primo!


  31. #
    Sylvie @ Gourmande in the Kitchen — December 18, 2013 @ 4:37 am

    It’s so beautiful and sounds delicious too!


  32. #
    Layla @ Brunch Time Baker — December 18, 2013 @ 9:17 am

    This bread looks very beautiful! This is the kind of thing to make when you want to impress your guests!! Thanks for sharing :)


  33. #
    Ellen K — December 18, 2013 @ 12:29 pm

    This looks amazing! But I have the first of 3 batches of dough that I made ready, and it is really loose. Did you need to incorporate a lot of flour as you rolled it out? I ended up needing almost an extra cup just to get it to hold together enough to roll out. I’ve checked the measurements several times, and followed the directions to the letter…am I missing something? I’m hoping to give these to neighbors, so any help is appreciated! :)


    • Sommer — December 18th, 2013 @ 2:09 pm

      Ellen, my deepest apologies! I think this is the first time this has ever happened, but somehow I managed to post this recipe with an inaccurate measurement. It should be 4 cups of flour. I’M SO SORRY!! I’m making adjustments to the official recipe right now, but you should be able to work extra flour in as you go. Please report back!


      • Ellen K — December 18th, 2013 @ 2:42 pm

        No worries! I could tell from your gorgeous pictures what it should look like, so I worked it up until it held. The first loaf seems to have turned out just fine, second is in the oven, and third one is rising as a wreath right now. :) I stopped after those, but I’ll do my next ones with the 4 cups. Thanks so much for replying and solving it for me!

        • Sommer — December 18th, 2013 @ 3:09 pm

          Whew!!! I was so worried! I’m glad they are turning out and thanks for being so gracious. Merry Christmas!

  34. #
    Brenda @ a farmgirl's dabbles — December 18, 2013 @ 3:24 pm

    Beautiful! Reminds me of chocolate babka, which I find irresistible!


  35. #
    Megan {Country Cleaver — December 18, 2013 @ 3:32 pm

    I think I just swooned out loud…pretty sure people in my office heard me. :)


    • Sommer — December 19th, 2013 @ 10:41 am

      Lol! Girl, I just love you. ;)


  36. #
    Marly — December 19, 2013 @ 7:47 am

    I saw this on Pinterest and KNEW it had to be you! It’s so beautiful – can’t wait to try it!


  37. #
    multikulinaria — December 19, 2013 @ 12:33 pm

    Wow, this looks gorgeous. I love the idea of splitting the rolled dough before braiding. It adds a lot of structure and color to the traditional Hefezopf. I’ll certainly try…


  38. #
    Tina — December 20, 2013 @ 10:07 am

    I made this for breakfast this morning. It was delicious. My children loved it!


    • Sommer — December 20th, 2013 @ 2:00 pm

      Thanks for commenting, Tina. I’m so glad your family liked it! :)


  39. #
    Stacy — December 21, 2013 @ 2:21 am

    Any advice for someone without a stand mixer? How long should I knead on the countertop for?


    • Sommer — December 21st, 2013 @ 8:10 am

      Hi Stacy, I’d say 6-10 minutes of kneading. At least your arms will look really nice!! :)


      • Stacy — December 21st, 2013 @ 1:38 pm

        Thanks! I kneaded for 8 min and that seemed to do the trick. I just took it out of the oven and it looks gorgeous! It is tomorrow’s breakfast for our early Christmas before we travel. Can’t wait to try a slice!

      • Stacy — December 22nd, 2013 @ 12:10 pm

        Ha! You’ll never guess what I got for Christmas. Haha!

  40. # — December 21, 2013 @ 12:48 pm

    Very pretty and creative. I love the use of nutella and cinnamon. I bet it smells wonderful. I will have to give this one a try. Thanks!


  41. #
    Nutmeg Nanny — December 26, 2013 @ 8:34 pm

    This is absolutely gorgeous! I would love to start making this every Christmas :)


  42. #
    Patty — April 8, 2014 @ 4:38 pm

    How should I freeze the dough?


    • Sommer — April 8th, 2014 @ 6:01 pm

      Hi Patty, Freeze it flat on a baking sheet, uncovered, for about an hour. Once it’s solid, wrap it well in plastic and place back in the freezer until ready to use.


  43. #
    Jamie — December 3, 2014 @ 3:28 pm

    ‘just wondering if this could be done to the dough stage in the bread machine – I would add the cooled scalded milk, water, salt, sugar, egg, flour, yeast in that order and then run the dough cycle. . .your thoughts?


    • Sommer — December 4th, 2014 @ 7:31 am

      Probably so. I might not let it run as long as normal, because to want the dough to stay light and not get too dense.


  44. #
    Caitlin — December 8, 2014 @ 10:16 am

    This looks incredible! I’d love to make this for my family Christmas morning. Do you think it would be possible to make this the 23rd, let it cool and then seal up and then reheat Christmas morning?



    • Sommer — December 8th, 2014 @ 9:21 pm

      Hi Caitlin. Sure! Or you could freeze it unbaked, then put it out to thaw the night before.


  45. #
    Medea — December 25, 2014 @ 5:07 pm

    This is absolutely magnificent, scrumptious, delicious, super yummy bread. I love to bake, and I have lots of good recipes, but this bread is truly out of this world for us, chocolate lovers especially. I made it before Christmas to test and in three hours it was totally gone between four of us, and I made it for this Christmas too. I will make it again and again and again. Thank you soooo much Sommer for this recipe.

    Merry Christmas and Happy New 2015 Year!



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