Cinnamon Pecan Babka

I will admit this was my first time making babka and I was stunned at how easy it was to make! Babka is a traditional Jewish bread originating from Poland & Ukraine. I’m from New York so anything Jewish I love and adore (especially challah & bagels!!). This recipe is straightforward, but there is some time you’ll need to let the dough rest & rise. It will be all worth it though! This babka is so soft and delicious! The best way to serve it is warm, so make sure you cut a slice and put it in the toaster! 


  • Stand mixer or hand mixer
  • Loaf Pans
  • Rolling Pin


  • If you don’t have a stand mixer or hand mixer you can mix everything in a bowl and knead the dough for up to 15 minutes after you’ve added the butter. 
  • If you are patient, it’s best to let the dough rest in the fridge overnight so the gluten can develop more and enhance the flavor of the babka. 

Babka Dough Recipe:

1 cup warm Buttermilk
3 1/2 tsps instant yeast
4 1/2 cups all purpose flour
2 eggs
1/2 cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla
1/4 tsp salt
8 1/2 tbsp salted butter

1 cup chopped pecans (optional) 


Cinnamon sugar paste:

2 sticks salted butter
1 cup brown sugar
3 tbsp cinnamon

Simple Syrup:

1/2 cup water
1/2 cup sugar


  1. Line and spray two loaf pans with baking spray and parchment paper. Set aside. 
  2. In a stand mixer with the dough hook attachment mix together the warmed buttermilk, yeast, flour, eggs, sugar, vanilla, salt and half of the butter in that order and mix on medium speed until a shaggy dough forms. 
  3. Reduce the speed and add the rest of the butter to the shaggy dough and increase the speed on high for 8 minutes. The dough should be soft and pass the window pane test. 
  4. On a well floured surface, roll the dough out to an 8x8 inch square and wrap it in plastic wrap. Refrigerate it for at least 4 hours or overnight. 
  5. To make the filling, melt two sticks of butter then add the brown sugar and cinnamon. Mix until we’ll combined and let it cool in the fridge until it reaches a spreadable consistency, about 20-30 minutes. 
  6. Remove your dough from the fridge and split it in half down the middle using a bench knife or regular knife.
  7. On a well floured surface, roll out one of your dough halves into a larger rectangle like you would if you were making cinnamon rolls. Take half of the cinnamon filling and spread it all over the dough. This is where you would add any nuts like chopped pecans or walnuts but that is optional. 
  8. Take the longer end of the rectangle and start tightly rolling it until it reaches the other side then pinch along the ends to seal the roll. 
  9. Using a serrated knife, cut all the way down the center of the roll so that all the layers are revealed. 
  10. Place the two split halves next to each other and start crisscrossing them until you have one long twisted bread. 
  11. Place your twisted bread in a loaf pan and cover it with a lightly greased plastic wrap and set it aside while you work on the other half. 
  12. Let the dough proof in a warm area for two hours. 
  13. Preheat the oven to 350° F and brush your babka dough with egg wash (mix one egg, splash of water and pinch of salt) before placing it in the oven. 
  14. Bake for 30 minutes or until your babka is brown all over the top. 
  15. To make the simple syrup, in a small pot heat together the sugar and water until sugar is dissolved. Brush the simple syrup on top of the Babka as soon as you take it out the oven. 
  16. Let it cool for 20 minutes before slicing. 

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