Chocolate Sourdough Bundt Bread

I recently discovered baking sourdough bundt breads (or cakes if you prefer to call them like this) made only with sourdough without using any baking powder, baking soda or yeast.

Beside the evident health benefit, there is something that I love about this type of cake. With sourdough you know for sure that your cake will rise as you will see it before putting it in the oven, With baking powder, if you picked a good recipe you have some chances to see it rising but do not be surprised if some are not.

The first recipe I developed in this way was made following more or less the steps I usually do for classic sourdough bread. I had a successful recipe last time but I was wondering if I cannot simplify it even more. What if I would add all ingredients at once, without having to add them in steps at a certain interval? I was not looking for developing a structure as I would do for classic bread because I bake in a pan.

Bundt pans are having the advantage of having a central element (that creates the hole of the bundt cake) that ensures that the cake is baked evenly also in the center. That said, I didn't need an extra structure, so no folding, no extra gluten development, no lamination needed and no shaping needed. So why not put the batter straight into the pan? I told myself it was worth a try.

Then, sourdough needs time to grow. It took me about 5 hours to see it growing and I put it in the fridge as it was too late in the evening to bake it directly. If you want to bake it directly, I would recommend to add maybe another extra hour for proofing because mine it continued to rise in the fridge. By morning, it reached the level of the pan and had also a bump that overpassed it.

In the oven, it rose even more, but it didn't go down over the borders, it rose up keeping the shape of the pan.

I made this recipe with very little sugar and it resembles to a light sweet bread with profound chocolate taste. You might want to extend the sweetness by adding more sugar, but I preferred to keep it also in a healthier version.

I used stiff sourdough at 50% hydration because I wanted to avoid any sour taste for a sweet bread, but I do not think the taste would have been completely changed if with a starter at 100% hydration. Maybe I will try this one day.

Regarding the hydration of the dough/batter, I found that there should be a balance. Make a simple ratio between the wet ingredients and the dry ingredients (excluding the sugar/jam etc) and if you are staying in 1.3 - 1.4 there should be no issue with this bread rising nicely. This ratio can be translated into 130% to 140% hydration but special ingredients like eggs, yogurt, oil cannot be considered as containing only water. There are other elements in there, like proteins, fats that cannot be counted as water. But keep this ratio in mind and then, you can make convert any bundt cake recipe based on baking powder into a bundt bread with sourdough .

This is a really simple sourdough recipe for a light sweet bread. If it looks nice to you, give it a try and let me know what you think about it.


  • 425g all purpose flour
  • 100g cocoa powder
  • 150g olive oil (or any vegetable oil)
  • 4 eggs (about 240g)
  • 375g yoghurt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla essence (5ml)
  • 150g jam (or you can use sugar instead)
  • 150g stiff starter (50% hydration)
  1. [Day 1, 18:00] Mix all ingredients together with the help of the standing mixer. If you do not have one, you can do it by hand in the following way: mix separately the dry ingredients and wet ingredients. Then add the dry ingredients over the wet ones, one spoon at a time. Or if you prefer, you can mix them alternating dry and wet. 
  2. Just after, take a 10 cup bundt pan, butter it and dust it with cocoa powder. Pour the composition into the bundt pan. Let the composition sit in a warm place (I put mine in the bread proofer set at 29ºC) for 5 hours. During this time the the composition slowly increased. Mine rose about 1 cm in height in the bundt pan.
  3. [Day 1, 23:00] Cover the pan with a lid or a plastic bag and put it in the fridge overnight. In the fridge, it will slowly continue to grow. Mine reached a bit over the top of the pan.
  4. [Day 2, 10:00] Preheat the oven at 180ºC, take the bundt pan with the composition from the fridge, remove the lid/bag and bake it directly. The baking time is about 50 minutes but this depends on the shape of the pan. The best is to measure the temperature inside the bread and if reached 95ºC then it is done. Without a thermometer, use the old good method of insert a wooden stick inside and if it comes out clean, then it is ready.
  5. [Day 2, 10:50] Take the pan out of the oven and leave it cool for about 15 minutes at room temperature or until you can put your hand on it without getting burned.
  6. [Day 2, 11:05] Return the pan on a plate and remove the pan. Let it cool until reaches the room temperature and then you are ready to cut it or, maybe you prefer to decorate / glaze it.


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