Chocolate Six-Strand Braided Challah Loaf

Chocolate Six-Strand Braided Challah Loaf

If you haven’t noticed, I’m baking along with the themes of the Great British Bake Off each week. Not all the bakes of course, who has time for that? But each week I try to bake something inspired by the previous week’s show.

This week was Bread Week, and the bakers had to make a Signature bake of a chocolate loaf, then Dampfnudeln in the Technical (a kind of sweet steamed bun or dumpling, originating in Germany) and finally a savoury plaited loaf for the Showstopper. My bake this week is a chocolate braided challah loaf.

Chocolate Six-Strand Braided Challah Loaf on bakingqueen74.co.uk

Challah Recipe Inspiration

I’ve seen delicious looking challah made by Helen from Family Friends Food, among others, and wanted to make it for quite a while, so I decided this would be the time to do it.

I also came across a recipe by The Nosher for double chocolate chip challah and I loved the different colours of the dough and the multiple-stranded braid so wanted to include these elements in my bake as well.

As many challah recipes are in cup measurements and I didn’t want to use these, I referred to several different recipes for challah and used elements of each, including Helen’s spiced apple challah, to make my own challah inspired recipe for the bread.

Gladly it worked well and the resulting loaf is deliciously springy and full of the flavour of the cinnamon, honey and chocolate. As I didn’t try to incorporate any really heavy elements like chocolate spread into my loaf, it cooked through with problem (many of this week’s bakers seemed to have a problem with this due to all the chocolate in their bakes).

Chocolate Six-Strand Braided Challah Loaf on bakingqueen74.co.uk

Inside, the different coloured strands have made a two-tone loaf, and the chocolate chips have melted into the bread in places after baking giving a really unctuous flavour.

The slices look effective with their stripes of colour, and each slice is different due to the braiding. I love the dark colour that the dough with added cocoa has, and the bread really shines from the egg wash you apply before baking.

Chocolate Six-Strand Braided Challah Loaf on bakingqueen74.co.uk

My braid isn’t that tidy, some parts of it broke apart during the second rise.

I think on the show Paul mentioned it is best to only give a short rise time for the second rise when working with plaited bread, to avoid losing shape, but as I had to go to the supermarket while mine was proving there was little chance of that!

Chocolate Six-Strand Braided Challah Loaf on bakingqueen74.co.uk

I found the six-strand braid quite hard to do and will definitely be practising it again in the future.

I do plait both my daughters’ hair every day so I have a lot of plaiting experience, but luckily I just do normal plaits!

Chocolate Six-Strand Braided Challah Loaf on bakingqueen74.co.uk

Pin this Chocolate Challah Braid recipe for later on Pinterest:

Chocolate Challah Braid

Chocolate 6-strand Challah Braid

A challah braided loaf with chocolate and plain challah strands
5 from 2 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Baking
Cuisine: British
Prep Time: 35 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Proving Time: 1 hour 45 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
Servings: 12
Author: bakingqueen74


  • 300 ml warm water
  • 2 sachets (14 fast action yeast
  • 3 tbsp runny honey
  • 80 ml vegetable oil I used sunflower
  • 1 tsp heaped ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 0.5 tsp salt
  • 500 g strong white (breaflour
  • 25 g cocoa powder
  • 100 g chocolate chunks
  • 1 egg for egg wash


  • Add the yeast to the warm water in a large bowl and mix in the honey and oil.
  • Slowly add the flour, bit by bit, stirring at first and then kneading once it is less sticky.
  • Add the cinnamon, vanilla extract and salt, and knead using a dough hook in a stand mixer for ten minutes.
  • Split the dough into two pieces, place one piece in a bowl and cover with clingfilm, then leave it to rise for an hour until doubled in size.
  • Take the other piece of dough and knead in the cocoa powder. If it goes a little dry you can add a tiny bit more water and/or oil, but make sure it is only a tiny amount.
  • Put the chocolate dough in a bowl, cover with clingfilm and leave to rise for an hour until doubled in size.
  • Knock back both bowls, then add half the chocolate chunks to each bowl and knead in to the dough.
  • Split each piece of dough into three and roll each piece into a long thin strand.
  • Braid the six strands to form a plait (check YouTube for tutorials on how to do thiand place the loaf on a silicone mat to rise again, for 30 to 45 mins (I left it for longer as I popped out but would reduce the time next time).
  • Preheat the oven to 180 degrees (fan). Brush all over the loaf with the egg wash.
  • Bake for 30 to 35 minutes or until the loaf is golden brown and the base sounds hollow if tapped. When you check the loaf you can also brush on more egg wash to cover any areas where the bread has stretched during baking, this gives a uniform shiny appearance.
Tried this recipe?Tag me @bakingqueen74 or use hashtag #bakingqueen74!

Sending this over to the Great Bloggers Bake Off with Jenny.

Also joining in with We Should Cocoa with Choclette

And #Bakeoftheweek with Helen

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This looks fab, I do love the inside too! Going to have to try plaited bread at some point

This looks so impressive – I would love to make challah – maybe one day! And your braid looks great too – it is not something I am very good at – I went through a period of plaiting my daughter’s hair but she just takes it out if I put it up now – argh!


This is absolutely sensational Lucy. I was quite pleased with my chocolate twist bread until I saw yours. It looks so glossy and the colour contrast is fantastic. Star Baker for you. Thanks for sharing with We Should Cocoa 🙂

This sounds absolutely delicious Lucy, I love the contrast of the strands with and without the added cocoa powder.

I’ve never attempted a 6-strand plait before (actually I’ve never done more than 3), they always look a bit confusing when I’ve seen them done on TV. Yours looks like a great attempt, especially as you’d not done it before. You should be sending your daughters to school with 6-strand plaits until you know it so well you can do it with your eyes closed 🙂

[…] 1. 6 Strand Chocolate Challah Loaf from Baking Queen 74 […]

Wow Lucy, this looks amazing. I love how the chocolate taste would be broken up by the chocolate chip parts. Your braiding is brilliant – Definitely years of hair experience showing! Thanks so much for joining in with #BakeoftheWeek again and the lovely warm welcome back x

It looks amazing! I usually make a plait of 2 strands or maybe 3, but 6 it’s so complicated. Fab!

Bake off eat your heart out! That looks amazing, Paul Hollywood would be proud!


Oh how fun does this look? 😀 The chocolate bread bakes last week looked so amazing! You’re a star baker in my eyes 😀 looks stunning!

Wow, six strands – I even chickened out of doing 3! I love challah bread so this is definitely on my list when I have people to share it with (my boyfriend doesn’t like chocolate and as much as I’d love to, I mustn’t eat it all myself!)

I really like the idea of the flavoured Challah. Braiding is tricky at least I think so but it does look great. Bet this was really tasty.

I Am loving all these really pretty plaited breads inspired by GBBO. Your bread looks yummy.

Challah is so good but I’ve never tried a chocolate one. This looks really lovely. Plaiting dough is quite different to plaiting little girls’ hair – but at least it doesn’t wriggle so much!


Lucy this loaf looks superb! the colours running through it is so effective and i can imagine it tasted really nice, too. your plaits are great – as you say you get practice with your girls hair (unlike me!). very yummy looking xx thank you for linking up