Chocolate Swirl Buns

Whether you’re a fan of cinnamon buns or babka, these chocolate buns are sure to please you. The sweet chocolate filling perfectly complements the soft, tender dough. White icing completes the ensemble for a wonderfully decadent morning treat, especially when paired with a hot cup of coffee or tea.

30 mins
20 to 25 mins
3 hrs 35 mins
8 buns
Chocolate Swirl Buns - select to zoom
Chocolate Swirl Buns - select to zoom
Chocolate Swirl Buns - select to zoom


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  1. To make the dough: Weigh your flour; or measure it by gently spooning it into a cup, then sweeping off any excess. Combine all the ingredients, and mix and knead — by hand, mixer, or bread machine — to make a soft, smooth dough.

  2. Place the dough in a lightly greased bowl and allow it to rise, covered, for 60 to 90 minutes, until doubled.

  3. To make the filling: Mix together all the ingredients, stirring until smooth. Set aside.

  4. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured or greased work surface and stretch or roll it into an 8" x 14" rectangle.

  5. Spread the filling (microwaving it briefly if necessary to achieve a spreadable consistency) onto the surface of the dough, leaving 1” uncovered on one short side. (A small offset spatula is a helpful tool here.) 

  6. Starting with the filling-covered short side, roll the dough into a log. Use a sharp serrated knife or dental floss (really, it works!) to slice the log into eight buns.

  7. Place the buns into a lightly greased 9" round pan, spacing them evenly.

  8. Cover the buns and allow them to rise for 45 to 60 minutes, until puffy. Toward the end of the rising time, preheat the oven to 350°F.

  9. Bake the buns for 20 to 25 minutes, until they're golden brown.

  10. Remove the buns from oven and allow them to cool in the pan for 5 to 10 minutes before icing.

  11. To make the icing: In a small bowl, combine all the ingredients, stirring until smooth.

  12. Pour or spread the icing evenly onto the warm buns. Serve buns warm or at room temperature.

  13. Storage information: Wrap leftover chocolate buns and store at room temperature for 1 to 2 days. Un-iced buns can be stored in the freezer for up to 1 month.