Pumpkin Brioche with Chocolate Swirl

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From time to time, I decide to make brioche. It’s not a weekly habit because, let’s be honest, a girl can’t afford to have bread as rich with butter as brioche is every single morning. But, occasionally, I find myself staring at my morning toast and wishing it was something like a big fluffy slice of this pumpkin brioche.

And then I start wishing I was in Paris eating brioche, and then I start wishing I was in Paris eating all of my favorite foods, and then I just curl up and cry. Okay, so I may have exaggerated with the crying bit (well, maybe), but you get the picture. 

This pumpkin brioche with chocolate swirl, however, will dry up all those tears, and that’s not an exaggeration!

pumpkin brioche

Pumpkin Brioche

This pumpkin brioche is pillow-y soft and light, with a crumb that’s golden and just a bit flaky. I had the idea in my head that brioche could only get better once flavored with pumpkin and filled with chocolate, and oh was I right. It is positively fantastic!

I know some people have a tough time making brioche, but the most difficult part of making it is being patient with the process. Otherwise, I think any mishaps with brioche are a result of a faulty recipe.

And I say that because I’ve seen quite a few brioche recipes out there with way too many eggs or too much milk, and in those cases, brioche can very easily go wrong.

But with the pumpkin brioche recipe I share today, I can confidently say that you will get a gorgeous loaf. If you’ve made cinnamon rolls before, then you’ll have no problem making this. 

pumpkin brioche

pumpkin brioche

Classic brioche usually needs a night in the fridge for the yeast to do its magic, and I find this especially true with pumpkin brioche. The overnight rise allows the brioche to absorb all the pumpkin goodness and fall spices that contribute to its depth of flavor.

The dark chocolate is melted and mixed with a bit of sugar and cinnamon before being spread on the flattened dough. Then the dough is rolled up, split down the middle and braided before resting one last time.

 

As the pumpkin brioche bakes, the aroma of pumpkin will provoke your senses with excitement. The result is a perfectly golden brown pumpkin brioche with chocolate flowing out.

A gentle cut through the loaf once it’s cooled will reveal swirls of heavenly chocolate nestled in fluffy bread. The bread itself is buttery and yet slightly sweet from the pumpkin.

It’s a wonderful twist on classic brioche that you can delight in anytime this season when you’re feeling a bit indulgent.



pumpkin brioche

Pumpkin Brioche with Chocolate Swirl

Yield: 10
Prep Time: 1 hour
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 25 minutes

Fluffy, pumpkin-flavored brioche bread with dark chocolate swirled inside. 

Ingredients

  • 2.5 cups + 2 tbsp unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 2.25 tsp active dry yeast
  • 1 tsp table salt
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature, plus 1 egg for the egg wash
  • 1/4 cup whole milk, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup pumpkin purée
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, slightly softened, cut into 8 pieces , plus more for greasing the pan

for the chocolate swirl filling

  • 3 oz dark chocolate
  • 2 tsp sugar
  • 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon

Instructions

  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the flour, sugar, yeast, salt, and ground cinnamon over low speed with the paddle attachment in place. Add the eggs, milk, and pumpkin, then mix just until a dough starts to form.
  2. Remove the paddle attachment and swap for the hook attachment. Knead the dough on medium speed for 2 minutes. It should be firm and have pulled away from the sides of the bowl by the time you're done. If not, add a tablespoon of flour until it does. Dough should not, however, look dry - it should be very sticky.
  3. Now, with the mixer on medium-low speed, add in half of the butter slices. Continue to knead for 2 minutes. Stop the mixer and use a rubber spatula to somewhat fold the dough over the unmixed butter, trying to incorporate the butter into the dough as best as you can. Turn the mixer back onto medium-low speed and add the rest of the butter. Continue to mix for another 4 minutes.
  4. Turn the dough out onto a very lightly floured board. Fold the dough in towards the center at 12, 3, 6, and 9 o'clock. Place the dough in a large, greased bowl. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap. Turn on your oven’s warm setting for 30 seconds before shutting off the oven, then placing the bowl of brioche in the oven. Close the oven door and let the dough rise in this warm, draft-free place for approximately 1 1/2 hours, or until the dough has almost doubled in size.
  5. Gently take the dough out and place it back on your lightly floured board. Again fold the dough in towards the center at 12, 3, 6, and 9 o'clock. Place the dough back in the bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate the brioche overnight.
  6. The next day, turn your dough out onto a lightly floured board. Roll the dough out into a 9 inch long and 7 inch wide rectangle.
  7. Create your chocolate filling by melting the chocolate in a bowl set over simmering water. Once the chocolate has melted, stir in the sugar and ground cinnamon. Use a brush or rubber spatula to spread this filling over the dough, leaving a 1/4 inch border clear along the edges of the dough.
  8. Roll the dough into a log, similar to a jellyroll or cinnamon roll, with the seam-side facing down. Refrigerate for 20 minutes. Then, take a sharp knife and slice the log, vertically, straight down the middle, starting 1 inch from the top of the log. You should get a wishbone shape from the dough. Gently braid the two strands together before fitting the dough braid into a greased 1 lb. loaf pan.
  9. Cover the loaf pan with a light kitchen towel and let the dough proof for another 40 minutes to 1 hour. It's finished proofing when you can gently press down on the top of the dough with your finger and find the dough immediately springs back.
  10. Once proofed, lightly brush the top of the dough with a beaten egg. Bake the brioche at 375°F for approximately 25 minutes, until deep golden brown. To check for readiness, insert a toothpick in the center - it should come out clean. To enjoy, let the brioche come to room temperature for best flavor and texture.
Nutrition Information:
Yield: 10 Serving Size: 10 Servings
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 287

pumpkin brioche
Make this buttery, French brioche bread at home! Flavored with pumpkin and gooey, melted chocolate swirled inside, this will be a fall favorite for breakfast or a snack! Recipe via MonPetitFour.com

30 thoughts on “Pumpkin Brioche with Chocolate Swirl”

  1. Hi! I’m a very beginner bread baker and I just tried making this. It smells delicious for sure, but something must have gone wrong for me! 🙁 I actually tried it twice and the first time I fully threw the dough away after the overnight fridge rise. Is the dough supposed to turn in a leathery, clay-like lump in the fridge? The second time the same thing happened but I figured, “Maybe this is how it’s supposed to feel since all that butter has hardened inside the dough” and rolled it out, filled and braided. It did rise again during the last rise (I had to leave it for a little over an hour), but it still didn’t fully bounce back when I gently pressed it, like you described. I baked it for extra time until my knife was coming out “clean.” After letting it cool overnight, I cut into it and the top bits are kind of okay (although the crumb is pretty tight), but the middle is doughy and dense. Any idea what that means or where I could have gone wrong? Honestly I can’t image how the dough in the middle of my braid would have ever gained air/life back after what it felt like coming out of the fridge…so I still feel like that middle fridge rise is the culprit.

    Reply
    • Hi Isabela! Thanks for the comment. Since you are a beginner bread baker, I highly recommend starting out with a regular brioche recipe like this because bread can be a very finicky thing and be affected by all sorts of factors, such as yeast (whether it was fresh or not, or activated the right way in the recipe) or the humidity of your kitchen, etc. Then when you add other ingredients like pumpkin and chocolate in there, you are messing around with the dough one step further so sometimes it’s good to just start practicing with the basic version of a recipe then move onto to customized versions. Hope that helps! Happy Holidays!

      Reply
    • Oh, Louise…you are so right – the kitchen always smells fantastic when I’ve got brioche in the oven! And I love your idea of enjoying it will some butter – mmm!! Thanks so much, beautiful!

      Reply
  2. Beeta, this loaf of Brioche is simply fabulous! LOVE that you made it with pumpkin AND incorporated a chocolate swirl! SO fun and absolutely PERFECT for this time of year! I can imagine this loaf will disappear within seconds in my house! Pinned! P.s. I cry myself to sleep wishing I was in Paris too. We should plan a trip… a one way trip. 😉

    Reply
    • lol Cheyanne! I agree, a one way ticket to Paris is in order! 😉 When we decide to come back to the U.S., I’m sure we will be 20 lbs heavier from all the food we’d eat in France! :p Thanks so much for your sweet words, as always! XO

      Reply
  3. Oh my goodness, this is such a beautiful loaf, Beeta! Anything pumpkin & chocolate sounds perfect around this time of year and you can’t beat how pretty the chocolate swirl looks! Getting to enjoy even one slice of this for breakfast is definitely worth any effort 🙂

    Reply
    • Thank you, Kelly! This brioche definitely makes breakfast all the sweeter so I agree, it’s worth the effort! 😀

      Reply
  4. What an amazing brioche loaf Beeta! I absolutely love brioche. What a great idea to make a pumpkin flavour too – so perfect for Autumn. Love the chocolate swirl as well, makes it even more perfect!. This sounds like absolute heaven!!!! Mmmm <3

    Reply
    • Thanks so much, Harriet! Isn’t brioche just the best? I think it’s so underrated compared to croissants and such. So glad you approve of this one with the pumpkin and chocolate <3

      Reply

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