Whole Wheat Cinnamon Swirl Bread

by jenna on August 8, 2011

There is such thing as love at first sight and I don’t care what you say.

For instance, when I saw Pepperidge Farm cinnamon swirl bread for the first time in the grocery store years ago, it was love. I hadn’t even tasted it yet but I knew. You always know.

Shoes are another great example…but we won’t go there.

Today, let’s just talk about this bread instead. And how amazingly soft and fluffy it is, despite being whole wheat, with spicy sweet swirls of cinnamon sugar all throughout.

I made it last Thursday and by mid-day Friday it was all gone. Every last crumb. I don’t know how that happened! How rude.

You start with a very basic dough. Yes, you CAN do this! It’s really no frills: just whole wheat flour, white flour, a smidge of butter, yeast, milk, water and sugar.

New to baking with yeast? Read all about this friendly little fungus here!

The reason I use half whole wheat flour and not 100% all whole wheat flour is because whole wheat flour is very dense (due to a reduction of gluten development)…to create a super soft loaf, I used half and half. You still get the benefits of the whole wheat without the stone-like characteristics. Kinda like my pizza dough!

After a little rise, you just roll out your dough and smear it with butter, cinnamon and sugar. Well actually, I used Earth Balance not butter because I was out and clearly too lazy to walk the two blocks to the store.

Ain’t he cute? A wee bread butt.

40 minutes later……

Delicious smelling, soft, fluffy cinnamon swirl bread! No raisins ’cause they’re nasty not my cup of tea. The bread made a great snack and an even better breakfast the next morning, toasted and spread with some almond butter + more cinnamon sugar.

This bread was a total experiment and I let out a long sigh of relief when it worked. Sometimes things just don’t work…like the tomato feta pie I slaved over all day on Friday only to have it fail miserably. Poor Adam ate it anyway. Then brought me wine when I cried that my life was ending because I couldn’t make a simple pie. What a guy.


Double the recipe and make two loaves! One for you and one to freeze for later. Or better yet, for your sweet neighbor or friend.

Baking = Love.

Whole Wheat Cinnamon Swirl Bread

makes one loaf

Print this recipe!


1/2 cup warm milk

1/2 cup warm water

1 (1/4th oz) package yeast

1/2 cup sugar + 1 tbsp

6 Tbsp softened butter (or earth balance buttery spread), divided

1 cup whole wheat flour

2 cups all purpose flour

1.5 Tbsp cinnamon, divided

1 1/4 tsp salt

1 egg + 2 Tbsp warm water


Combine your warm milk, water, yeast and 2 tsp sugar in a measuring cup and let sit for 10 minutes until foamy. The temperature of the milk/water should be about 100 degrees…about the same temperature as a warm bubble bath but not too hot.

While the yeast is resting, combine the flours, 1/3 cup sugar, 3 tbsp softened butter, salt and 1 tbsp cinnamon in a large bowl. If you’re using a kitchen aid, use a paddle attachment and start to mix on slow. Then, drizzle in the water mixture while the machine is running. Increase speed to high and mix for about 6-8 minutes, until smooth and elastic. If you’re working by hand, simply add the water mixture to the dry ingredients and knead on a floured surface for 10 minutes until smooth. Put some muscle into it!

Spray a large bowl with cooking spray and place dough ball in. Cover with a cloth and let rise for 1.5 hours in the warmest spot of the house. I like to rise dough on top of the dryer when I’m drying my clothes.

While the dough is rising, mix together the remaining 3 T butter with the extra 1.5 tsp cinnamon and 1 tbsp sugar in a small bowl until smooth. After the dough has risen to double it’s size, roll out with a rolling pin on a floured surface to a long rectangle. Smear the butter mixture all over the top and roll up tightly.

Place dough in a greased loaf pan, cover with cloth and let rise for another hour in a warm spot.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Whisk together the egg and warm water then brush all over loaf. Bake for 40 minutes. Let cool and slice.


about 3 hours



Related Posts with ThumbnailsPin It

{ 109 comments… read them below or add one }

Molly @ RDexposed August 8, 2011 at 4:31 am

And then make French toast with this loaf!


Brittany @ Itty Bits of Balance August 8, 2011 at 4:33 am

This is comparable to a loaf of cinnamon roll goodness 😀


Hayley @ Hayley Daily August 8, 2011 at 4:34 am

Yum!! Cinnamon bread is the BEST. That bread is so pretty, too! 🙂


Mama Pea August 8, 2011 at 4:38 am

Beautiful! And that applies to you and Adam…and that wee bread butt.


Baking N Books August 8, 2011 at 4:46 am

You don’t like raisins?! Cinnamon-raisin bread is the best…but this one may actually do just fine – looks soft and doughy.

Love the butt.


Heather (Heather's Dish) August 8, 2011 at 4:47 am

ha! I love the wee bread butt…too cute 🙂


Lauren @ What Lauren Likes August 8, 2011 at 4:54 am

oh my YUM. I am drooling already! I cant wait to try this out 🙂


Averie @ Love Veggies and Yoga August 8, 2011 at 4:55 am

Awww, what a sweet picture of the two of you!

And what amazing looking bread! I admit, I Am one of those people terrified of yeast, dough rising, resting, kneading…basically that I am going to screw it up, big time. So I have never made bread from scratch. Your post gives me a little hope though.

The bread butt is the cutest thing ever 🙂


Blog is the New Black August 8, 2011 at 5:00 am

Wow, this looks amazing!!!! Such a great breakfast!


Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat August 8, 2011 at 5:04 am

That is a very cute bread butt! You definitely know how to make me smile on a Monday morning! 🙂


Liz August 8, 2011 at 5:06 am

ooo, jenna! i do believe!! 🙂


Natasha August 8, 2011 at 5:09 am

I can’t wait to make this! I’ve been slowly ticking things off my “intimidating recipes list” including macaroons, crepes & curry. Next on the list: bread! And, I think this will be it.

Unfortunately, the way it’s going (see my macaroon post for disastrous details), I need at least four tries before I get it right.



Heather @ Side of Sneakers August 8, 2011 at 5:17 am

Making this TODAY!!!


amy walters, aDESIGNdock August 8, 2011 at 5:21 am

Making bread terrifies me…but this looks so irresistible that I tempted to rise above my fears and try this delightful recipe 😉


AnneW August 8, 2011 at 5:30 am

This is just like the amazing cinnamon swirl bread I got at the farmer’s market last week! I definitely recommend saving a couple slices and making french toast when it’s a couple days old!!


Khushboo August 8, 2011 at 5:38 am

Wow0 this looks amazing, I bet it smells (and tastes) heavenly! It would be perfect with french toast…or pb sandwich…or solo with a cuppa tea!


Kelly August 8, 2011 at 5:45 am

I am so intimdated to make my own bread. You make it sound so easy….


Holly @ The Runny Egg August 8, 2011 at 5:48 am

Delicious! I know exactly what Pepp Farm bread you speak of — and this looks just like it!


Gina @ Running to the Kitchen August 8, 2011 at 5:50 am

The wee bread butt is so adorable 😉 We had pepperidge farm cinnamon swirl bread all the time in my house growing up. It was considered a “treat.” God, I miss that stuff!


Lisa August 8, 2011 at 5:57 am

I was (am) in love with that very Pepperidge Farm bread as well. It is my go-to bread for pb&j, but I’ve always wished the slices were thicker. And now they will be. THANK YOU SO MUCH!


d.liff @ yelleBELLYboo August 8, 2011 at 6:04 am

That Pepperidge Farm bread is my favorite! I haven’t made bread in a whileee so I’d love this to be the kick in the rear I need! Thanks!


Lisa @ I'm an Okie August 8, 2011 at 6:05 am

my heart skipped a beat with this bread.


Mich August 8, 2011 at 6:06 am

This looks great! I need the courage to make my own bread more often. And I do love me some cinnamon bread!!


The Blue-Eyed Bakers August 8, 2011 at 6:07 am

Oh for the love. We don’t stand a chance against this stuff…!


Kara August 8, 2011 at 6:13 am

this seems delicious. i’m totally with you on the raisins thing. well, i don’t like raisins baked INTO things. raisins are sometimes okay just by themselves. just don’t ever give me a baked good with raisins. yuck.


Kristen @ Popcorn on the Stove August 8, 2011 at 6:24 am

This sounds yummy! I’m anti-raisins, too. When I get a cinnamon raisin bagel, I usually pick them all out.

Do you think we could use soy milk instead of regular milk??


anurse August 8, 2011 at 6:25 am

when is the right time to freeze the loaf if I make double? after its all done or do you think its better to freeze after its risen but before its baked? thanks!!


Julie H. of Spinach and Sprinkles August 8, 2011 at 6:29 am

Awww, your right. Better that it makes two!!!! Now I’ll be able to share! 🙂


katie @KatieDid August 8, 2011 at 6:38 am

it IS the cutest bread butt haha! I made some bread the other day and I sat there while it was cooking thinking about swirl bread and how they possibly could get those swirls in the middle of it so perfectly… so thanks for showing me the pretty obvious answer ahah!


Cait's Plate August 8, 2011 at 6:40 am

Whole wheat cinnamon swirl bread is exactly what I make to show people I love them as well 🙂

The smell while it bakes in the oven can’t be topped!


Faith @ For the Health of It August 8, 2011 at 6:45 am

I’m definitely going to give this a go next weekend when I go up to visit my boyfriend – baked goods are always the key to the heart 😉


Jackie @ That Deep Breath August 8, 2011 at 6:52 am

Yuuuuum! I can never buy cinnamon swirl bread because it almost always contains raisins and I can’t stand them. I can’t wait to try this! Now I just need to get over my fear of baking bread.


Kelli H (Made in Sonoma) August 8, 2011 at 7:03 am

bookmarking and totally making this. I’m so happy it’s for one loaf too!


Bev Weidner August 8, 2011 at 7:05 am

Good. Grief.

I could snuggle with that bread. Seriously.


Aylin @ GlowKitchen August 8, 2011 at 7:11 am

I take every failed recipe as a life failure–you’re not alone! How can you not love raisins?!!!!!!! I could literally live off of them.


Erin August 8, 2011 at 7:11 am

Yummy! And you make it look easy.


Sally Anne @ PaleoRunnerGirl August 8, 2011 at 7:25 am

Goodness Gracious! Reading this post makes me miss bread something fierce! I think I can smell it through the computer screen!


Maria August 8, 2011 at 7:29 am

I could really use a slice of this bread for breakfast! YUM!


Hilliary@HappilyEverHealthy August 8, 2011 at 7:33 am

Cinnamon Swirl bread is one of my absolute favorite breads! I want to make this today, then curl up with a slice of the baked bread, some good tea and a book (its a rainy day in MN)!


AshleyH August 8, 2011 at 7:36 am

Oh I am making this today! I just bought a whole wheat raisin bread form whole foods and its well a little well blah. I think this will be much better. It could be really good as french toast too! Thanks Jenna 🙂


Lauren August 8, 2011 at 7:40 am

Your loaf looks perfect!


Jaime August 8, 2011 at 7:42 am

this is such a feel-good post! love it


Nicole August 8, 2011 at 7:42 am

Do you think I could substitute almond milk for regular milk in this recipe?


jenna August 8, 2011 at 7:50 am

yep! I actually used almond milk in the recipe.


Girl in the pink August 8, 2011 at 7:51 am

Mmmm I wonder how this would work using all white whole wheat?


jenna August 8, 2011 at 7:55 am

it would be heavy and dense…i don’t suggest it!


Bee Goes Bananas August 8, 2011 at 7:51 am

That looks delicious! I want to make it some day soon!


Ari@ThE DiVa DiSh August 8, 2011 at 7:59 am

That bread looks SOO beautiful!! I am in love!! 🙂


Sheri August 8, 2011 at 8:09 am

Gorgeous! I will be making this for sure!


alex August 8, 2011 at 8:11 am

I’ll have to try this. and I totally agree…raisins? there’s just no place for them


Heather @ Get Healthy with Heather August 8, 2011 at 8:12 am

I am so glad you made this! I can never find a whole wheat cinnamon swirl loaf of bread… But i’d so much rather bake my own!


Emily @ Life on Food August 8, 2011 at 8:38 am

I love cinnamon swirl bread. I love even more that this is whole wheat. I cannot believe you got our swirl so perfect. Mine always turns out a bit off. Lovely!


Kelsey @ aslolife August 8, 2011 at 8:42 am

This looks delicious! My Mother in Law makes french toast out of cinnamon swirl bread–its to die for!


marci August 8, 2011 at 8:48 am

yum, but it needs raisins! i just made my first challah this weekend, so i’m not scared of yeast anymore. can’t wait to try this. i’m on a bread baking kick. feel so accomplished making breads!


Carissa August 8, 2011 at 8:49 am

Yum yum yum! I’m totally craving cinnamon toast right now. I can’t wait to try this out!


Sarah @ Sarah's Modern Bites August 8, 2011 at 8:49 am

A wee bread butt! Hahahaha I needed that today 🙂 You make bread baking look so simple!! The loaf came out so perfect. I’m not sure if my oven could turn out something so beautiful. What type of loaf pan do you use? How important is type of loaf pan used do you think??


Estela @ Weekly Bite August 8, 2011 at 9:05 am

Love cinnamon swirl bread!! You make it look so easy 🙂


Errign August 8, 2011 at 9:11 am

I love first for the raisin line, and second for this deeeeelicious sounding recipe.


Lauren August 8, 2011 at 9:31 am

Looks delicious!


Brooke @ bittersweetbrooke August 8, 2011 at 9:48 am

I agree with cinnamon swirl pepperidge farm bread love at first sight. My grandmother always use to have it for us as kids. Nothing better than that sweet bread Slathered with butter. Yours looks fantastic!


Katrina August 8, 2011 at 10:08 am

This sounds delicious! The cinnamon swirls make me happy.


Kelsi August 8, 2011 at 10:12 am

mmm…swirl-alicious. i’ll have to make some. if i dare.


Teresa August 8, 2011 at 10:16 am

Thank you, thank you, thank you! I’ve been looking for a recipe like this. Going to try it this week.


Liz @ Tip Top Shape August 8, 2011 at 10:59 am

Aww, that picture of you two is adorable. Glad that this experiment turned out!! Now we all benefit! lol


The Undercover Cook August 8, 2011 at 11:30 am

This bread looks totally delish, even better than the Pepperidge Farm version. Will definately give it a try this weekend. I am thinking it would make delicious french toast!


Holli August 8, 2011 at 11:35 am

This is in my oven as I type 🙂 My house smells amazing! I can’t wait to try it.


Nicole August 8, 2011 at 12:04 pm

Wow…it looks glorious! I love how shiny the crust is…I would eat that whole loaf in a couple days 🙂


Betsy August 8, 2011 at 12:27 pm

I bet this smells amazing while baking in the oven, I just might have to give it a go! Love your style, too!


Gloria August 8, 2011 at 12:39 pm

Bread butt! So cute 🙂


Sarah K. @ The Pajama Chef August 8, 2011 at 2:11 pm

mmm i love cinnamon bread. yum!


Maria@La_Piattini August 8, 2011 at 2:41 pm

I bought a loaf JUST like this one at the Farmer’s Market yesterday…now the thought of making my own is enticing me. I’m using it to make strawberry stuffed french toast tonight for dinner- can’t wait. I <3 breakfast for dinner!


dana @ my little celebration August 8, 2011 at 3:16 pm

Making this STAT!


dana @ my little celebration August 8, 2011 at 3:40 pm

Do I use fast rise yeast or regular?


jenna August 8, 2011 at 3:45 pm

instant yeast…either will work.


lisa August 8, 2011 at 4:04 pm

that looks amazing!


mary (sisters running the kitchen) August 8, 2011 at 4:04 pm

yum! this looks fantastic. i will add the raisins though, as i love them! thanks for another fantastic recipe!


Mellie August 8, 2011 at 5:12 pm

Mmm, yum! I don’t like raisins either, well not the black ones.


Katie August 8, 2011 at 7:14 pm

Omg! This bread is fabulous! My husband thinks I’m a goddess now. Thanks, Jenna!


Kiran @ KiranTarun.com August 8, 2011 at 8:40 pm

Holy yum!! I love how this recipe is somewhat “healthy” in comparison to usual cinnamon bread 😀


Caroline @ chocolate and carrots August 9, 2011 at 5:43 am

Yum! Your bread looks delicious! I made another version of this bread a couple of months ago: http://chocolateandcarrots.com/2011/04/whole-wheat-cinnamon-swirl-bread It was amazing! 🙂 Yum!


Jenn Brigole August 9, 2011 at 5:57 am

How wonderful! I could almost smell this. 🙂 But considering how “nice” I am, I’ll probably share some with my gym buddies. lol


Amy August 9, 2011 at 7:18 am

This looks awesome!!! I was wanting to make bread this week, but wasn’t sure what to make. This is the answer! Thanks for sharing.


Anne August 9, 2011 at 8:14 am

Wow, LOVE this idea! I will definitely be making this today. Great tip about rising bread near a running clothes dryer…I’ll be trying that, too!


Jennifer August 9, 2011 at 10:33 am

This bread looks incredible. Imagine how this would taste as french toast bread! Love from runningwithmascara.com


Kinsey August 9, 2011 at 12:41 pm

I made this yesterday and the loaf was gone within 6 hours. In the filling, I put in some maple bites from King Arthur Flour and it was delicious! Thank you!


Emily August 9, 2011 at 4:32 pm

Love the pic of you two! And how perfect does that loaf of bread look? Jealous!! I can still never get my bread to rise. 🙁


Angie August 11, 2011 at 8:59 pm

At what point in the process would I freeze it to finish another time?


Amy August 12, 2011 at 4:12 am

I have a feeling that favourite daughter status is within my reach if I conjure up this bread sometime soon 🙂


Tess August 14, 2011 at 8:44 am

I just made this bread yesterday and it was AMAZING! i have a fairly low success rate with yeast breads (this one actually didn’t really rise at all b/c i overmixed it) but this was pretty easy. We already ate half of the loaf!

Thanks for the great recipes Jenna!


Kelli H (Made in Sonoma) August 19, 2011 at 10:02 pm

Made this tonight and it’s such a treat! Super easy to make too! Which I love…

I thought it would be more sweet like a cinnamon roll but it wasn’t…not a bad thing though! Can’t wait to have another piece in the morning.


Kelli H (Made in Sonoma) August 19, 2011 at 10:42 pm

I just noticed the ingredients list calls for 1/2 cup sugar and in the directions it calls for 1/3 cup. Maybe this is why mine wasn’t as sweet?


TrishR August 22, 2011 at 6:32 am

I finally made this yesterday and it is absolutely delicious!!! My whole family loves it!! I have a fair bit of baking experience but think this is so easy for anyone. I didn’t find my yeast to get very foamy but since I had just used that yeast earlier for a no-knead bread, I didn’t worry and just dumped it in. I popped it into my plain old 9×5 loaf pan and it was perfect. A gorgeous loaf!!!
And for those asking, I’d recommend baking then freezing. While I did pop a second loaf of this into the freezer last night 🙂 I freeze other loaves all the time and it works fine. Once the bread is cool, I wrap it tightly in foil then put in a ziploc bag. Works every time!!
Thanks so much for sharing this delicious recipe!! Now tonight – your tamale pie!!


Trish @ www.wishfit.wordpress.com August 26, 2011 at 1:37 pm

Finally got around to making this bread today. Made one loaf for me and my boys and one loaf as a gift for family who just moved into town. A little bit of home in a loaf! It’s amazing! Anything cinnamon and I’m in.

FYI, I made it with rapid rise yeast and it worked just fine. Never tried that before–usually use the old fashioned stuff.

Saw you are sick. I had strep throat last week and was miserable! Hope you feel better!


Casey September 23, 2011 at 3:16 pm

YES! finally, someone who shares my feelings on raisins. lol. this looks so yummy though, i’m making it right now waiting for the dough to rise 😀 Thanks for the recipe


amanda November 10, 2011 at 10:37 am

yum, this is in the oven right now and i am getting ridiculously excited!! thanks!


SheilaC February 13, 2012 at 8:31 pm

Yummmmmm!! Made this today and everyone in the family loved it. Thanks so much for posting this recipe! I linked to it on my blog. Thanks!


Emily W. February 19, 2012 at 4:39 am

Hey, Jenna –

Getting ready to make this and I just wanted to let you know that your ingredients list and directions talk about different amounts. It mentions adding cinnamon to the bread, but only 1-1/2 T is in the ingredients list (for the smear). The sugar amounts are also different throughout. Nothing catastrophic, but just something you might want to fix real quick! Can’t wait to make it..looks delish!



jenna February 19, 2012 at 7:26 am

Thanks, Emily! I’m going to have a look at it right now.

Looks like the amount of cinnamon says “divided” in the recipe and then in the instructions it tells you how much to use for both the bread and the smear. I believe that it’s 1 tsp in the bread itself and 1.5 tsp in the smear. Hope that helps!


Kymberly H May 24, 2012 at 9:09 am

I believe in the recipe it states 1 tbsp in the bread. I was wondering why my dough was a lot darker color then yours. Oh well, I hope the extra cinnamon doesn’t affect the taste.


Emily W. February 19, 2012 at 11:34 am

I am munching on it right now! YUMMMMM! It’s like a cinnamon roll in bread form. Mine is a bit denser (Hard to find a warm spot in this cold house!) so I had to bake it for 50 instead of 40 minutes. I also used 1/2c sugar like the ingredient list says, not 1/3c like the directions say. For my filling, I used 1.5T cinnamon and 1.5 T sugar. Perfect weekend recipe! 🙂


Perry April 11, 2012 at 6:21 pm

Well, I am happy as a clam. I googled “cinnamon whole wheat bread” just HOPING I’d find something similar to Pepperidge Farm’s, and BINGO this is what popped up! I’ve printed this and can’t wait to try it out – maybe this weekend. Thanks Jenna!


Megan May 4, 2012 at 3:21 pm

Oh bummer! What did I do wrong, Jenna? This bread didn’t work out for me. It simply didn’t rise, at all. Could my yeast have been dead? How can one tell? Could this bread work as a non-yeast bread? how would you modify the recipe to make it yeast-free?
Thanks for any advice 🙂
PS. I’m totally a novice bread-maker


Rachael September 29, 2012 at 5:05 pm

I randomly googled Whole Wheat Cinnamon bread because I had a huge bag of WW flour. That was a week ago. I have made this FOUR times since then. Bless you.


Margaret Strope August 26, 2013 at 4:45 pm

I add a hand full of ground flax seed and 1/2 cup of oats! Yummy!


Sondra March 26, 2014 at 4:47 pm

Hi Jenna,

I used your recipe to make miniature cinnamon bread for my blog post today! Thank you!!! So delicious!!!

Sondra @ PurpleHouseBlog


Ashley May 28, 2014 at 6:10 pm

Anyway to make this clean? Meaning no sugar or white flour?


Janna August 25, 2014 at 1:07 pm

I made this……..it taste soooooooooo good. No more plain whole wheat bread for me.


Beth February 28, 2015 at 2:51 pm

I made this bread today for the first time and it came out great. I doubled the recipe and added a little brown sugar & nutmeg to the spread mixture. I wasn’t able to roll it quite as perfectly as it shows in the picture, so I rolled the ends under and when I baked them, they came out beautifully. This is delicious and I will definitely make it again!


Erin October 13, 2016 at 8:15 pm

I just made this for the first time the other day and it is SOOOOO GOOD! Thanks so much for the recipe! It was my first time ever attempting to make a bread from scratch (not counting quick breads). I couldn’t believe it actually turned out (baking and I usually don’t go well together – ha!). My husband and two sons (4 and 2 years old) couldn’t get enough. I know what we will be eating for breakfast this fall!


Leave a Comment

{ 12 trackbacks }

Previous post:

Next post: