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Chocolate Marbled Italian Easter Bread

  • Author: Joy the Baker
  • Prep Time: 120
  • Cook Time: 25
  • Total Time: 145
  • Yield: 6 1x


  • 1 1/4 cups warm 2% or whole milk (about 100 degrees F)
  • pinch of brown sugar
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons active dry yeast
  • 1/3 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 large eggs, beaten lightly
  • 1/2 cup packed light sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • about4 1/2 to 5 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
  • 1/2 cup mini chocolate chips
  • 1 large beaten egg, for egg wash
  • 6 dyed and dry Easter eggs
  • sprinkles


  1. Stir a pinch of brown sugar and all of the yeast into the warm milk and let sit for 5 minutes, allowing the yeast to bloom and bubble.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a bread hook, add the milky yeast mixture, butter, beaten eggs, brown sugar, salt, and about 3 1/2 cups of flour. First use a spatula to stir the ingredients until just combined.
  3. Beat the mixture (it will still be fairly wet) on medium speed using the mixer and dough hook. Add the final 1 to 11/2 cups flour creating a cohesive, though still slightly sticky dough. Beat for 4 to 5 minutes on the mixer. Add the chocolate chips in the last minute of kneading.
  4. Remove the bowl from the mixer and scrape the dough to the center of the bowl. Dust lightly with flour and cover the bowl with plastic wrap. Allow to rest in a warm place until doubled in size, about 1 hour.
  5. After rising, dump the dough onto a clean counter lightly dusted with flour. Line a large rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. Set aside.
  6. Divide the dough into 12 equal pieces. Roll each piece piece into a 14-inch long, 1-inch thick ropes of dough. I found this easiest to do without much flour on the counter. Attach two ropes at their ends, and twist over one another, Pull the ends together to form a round wreath and gently lift onto the prepared baking sheet. Place the raw dyed egg into the center of the wreath.
  7. Repeat with all of the dough, creating six dough wreaths with nestled eggs. Cover lightly with plastic wrap and allow to rest and rise for 30 minutes.
  8. While the bread rises, place a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 350 degrees F.
  9. After the second rise, lightly brush the bread with egg wash, being careful to avoid the dyed egg. Sprinkle with sprinkles or coarse sugar.
  10. Bake for 25 to 28 minutes, until golden brown and baked through.
  11. Remove from the oven and allow to cool to room temperature before serving.
  12. Bread will last up to three days, well wrapped at room temperature.