Cheese Babka

Cheese Babka


"Polish cheese babka like my grandmother served every Easter."

Ingredients 6 h 40 m {{adjustedServings}} servings 513 cals

Serving size has been adjusted!

Original recipe yields 12 servings



Amount per serving ({{servings}} total)

  • Calories:
  • 513 kcal
  • 26%
  • Fat:
  • 28.2 g
  • 43%
  • Carbs:
  • 44g
  • 14%
  • Protein:
  • 19.1 g
  • 38%
  • Cholesterol:
  • 134 mg
  • 45%
  • Sodium:
  • 769 mg
  • 31%

Based on a 2,000 calorie diet

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  • Prep

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  1. Sprinkle the yeast and the pinch of sugar over the warm water; stir to dissolve. Let stand until foamy, about 10 minutes.
  2. Combine the 1/2 cup butter, 1/4 cup sugar, salt, 2 teaspoons of vanilla, milk, and 3 eggs in a bowl with 1 cup of flour and mix well. Add the yeast mixture and beat for 1 minute. Gradually add the remaining flour to form a soft dough. Turn the dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic, adding small amounts of flour as necessary to prevent sticking. Shape the dough into a round, and place it in a greased bowl, turning to coat. Cover with plastic wrap and let the dough rise at room temperature until doubled in size, about 1 1/2 hours.
  3. Beat together the farmers' cheese, 1/3 cup sugar, sour cream, 1 egg, 1 teaspoon vanilla extract, and dried lemon peel in a bowl until smooth. Set the filling aside. Lightly oil a 10-inch fluted tube pan (such as a Bundt(R)).
  4. Turn the dough onto a lightly floured surface and pat into a 10-inch by 12-inch rectangle. Brush the dough with the 2 tablespoons of melted butter. Spread the cheese filling evenly over the dough. Roll the dough up like a jelly roll, starting from the long end; twist the dough 6 to 8 times to form a rope. Pinch the seams and ends closed and arrange the rope of dough in the greased pan. Cover loosely and let rise 1 hour.
  5. Preheat an oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
  6. Bake the babka until deep golden brown, 40 to 45 minutes. Remove from oven and let stand for 5 minutes; invert the babka onto a wire rack and remove the pan. Allow the babka to cool for at least 2 hours before slicing.
Tips & Tricks
Home-Style Macaroni and Cheese

The secret ingredient in this mac and cheese is cream cheese.

Chef John's Lobster Mac and Cheese

Chef John's decadent dish of Lobster Mac and Cheese is WAY easier than it looks!


  • Cook's Notes
  • Use a farmers' cheese that resembles very dry cottage cheese; do not use the slicing cheese that is also called farmer cheese or Amish farmer cheese.
  • If you have a silicone Bundt(R) pan, it will work wonderfully in this recipe.
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Reviews 17

  1. 22 Ratings

Baking Nana

The smell of this baking is enough to drive you crazy. So delicious. I will say - be patient with the rising times - mine took much longer than stated - but that might have been that it was pretty chilly here. I also used the zest of one fresh lemon - I had no dried. I am not Polish and I had never made a Babka before - this will be the start of a whole new tradition.

Karen =^..^=

After searching for a cheese babka for Easter and finding that all the stores and bakeries were out of them, we decided to make this on Easter Eve! My husband put all of the dough ingredients into the bread machine and ran it on the dough cycle while I was at work. When I got home, I removed the dough and got started. The dough was very sticky, so I would probably add some additional flour next time. For the filling, I subbed cream cheese for the farmers cheese and I also didn't need the whole 2 tbl. of melted butter, but otherwise I followed the recipe and it came out fabulous. On Easter, my family all said they hoped I would make it every year and never buy one again. This definitely was equal or better than any babka we've purchased...even from the Polish bakery. It wasn't too difficult to make and was so worth it. Thanks for sharing the recipe. It will now be a family Easter tradition for us. (Mine came out a little dark. My oven runs low, so I upped the temp to 375. Next time, I'll leave it at 350 and I think it'll be perfect.)


I reviewed this recipe on March 30, but decided to update the review after making it several times and each time it gets better than the last. Doubt it is as authentic, but it is sure scrumptious. We have now become Cheese Bapka addicts, thanks to this wonderful recipe, and no longer have to order it from New York. We incorporated the following changes to the recipe and it is right on the mark for us and is picture perfect, like Kristina’s photograph. As others have indicated, dough is a bit sticky and we added about ¾ cup of flour. We added additional vanilla to the dough and also the filling. We rolled the dough out on a huge cutting board covered with parchment paper which made the dough much easier to roll. We used cream cheese, instead of Farmer’s Cheese (as suggested by one reviewer), and it was just as good or better. We also did not spread the cheese mixture all the way to the other end and the mixture stayed contained in the dough and spread throughout to the end when rolling it. Next, we did not twist the dough and none of the cheese leaked out to the side of the pan during cooking time. We baked for 30 minutes perfect; moist and delicious.