PART OF Comfort Food

How to Make Pizza Babka

Jewish babka meets Italian-American stromboli in this not-at-all-traditional version of a viral recipe. Fluffy bread is swirled with pepperoni, jalapeños and plenty of cheese to make a visually stunning, delicious loaf of pizza.

Pepperoni & Jalapeño Pizza Babka

“Inspired by the popular Pizza Babka by pastry chef Bill Clark, the enriched, savory bread dough is filled with mozzarella, pepperoni, pickled jalapeños and then doused with garlic-herb butter. Serve it with warmed-up pizza sauce for that perfect pizza flavor.”

-Jonathan Melendez

Heads up! This recipe makes two loaves, which means twice the fun.

Assemble Your Ingredients

In addition to rolling up your favorite toppings, you'll also be making your own dough. Don't worry; it's easy! Just make sure you've got all the ingredients measured out ahead of time. It'll make the process a thousand times easier.

Start with Dry Ingredients

Carefully add the flour to your stand mixer, then pour the sugar and yeast into one side of the bowl. Pour the salt into the other side of the bowl, avoiding contact with the yeast (salt can damage the yeast). Mix it all together with a wooden spoon.

Add the Wet Ingredients

Make a well in the center, then add the water, milk and eggs. Give it a stir to combine, then clip it into your stand mixer and knead on moderate speed until the dough comes together (about 5 minutes).

Knead That Dough

Dice the butter and add it to the dough, one piece at a time, and continue to mix until the dough is smooth and elastic (about 5 minutes more).

Let It Rise

Grease a large bowl with a small amount of olive oil, butter or cooking spray. Shape your dough into a ball and place it in the bowl, turning it over to cover it in oil. Cover loosely and allow to rise until doubled in size (about 1 to 1 1/2 hours).

Hello, Pizza!

Once the dough has risen, transfer it to a floured surface. Divide the ball in half, returning half to the bowl and covering it. Roll the first piece out to a rectangle roughly 10 inches by 14 inches, then brush with half of the tomato paste. Repeat the process with the second half of the dough ball.

Choose Your Toppings

Add your favorite toppings to both halves. We opted for pepperoni and pickled jalapeños, but you can add whatever you'd like!

Cheese, please!

Don't forget the mozzarella and parmesan!

Roll It All Up

Starting with one of the shorter, 10-inch ends, roll your pizza into a tight log and pinch the seam to seal it shut. Repeat with the second pizza.

Let's See The Layers

Using a sharp knife, slice the pizza roll in half so that all layers are revealed. Repeat with the second pizza roll.

Do the Twist

Position two of the halves so that the layers are facing up. Pinch them together at one end, then twist them around each other, creating a spiral. Pinch together the other end. Repeat with the other two pizza halves.

Into the Pans

Transfer your first pizza spiral into a greased loaf pan. If it's too long, just squish it in there! No need to be a perfectionist with this one. Repeat with the second pizza spiral, then cover both loaf pans with plastic wrap and let rise until doubled in size (about 1 hour).

Make the Garlic-Herb Butter

About 15 minutes before your pizza babkas are done rising, preheat the oven to 350°F. Start making the garlic bread topping by melting the butter in a small saucepan over low heat. Add the garlic, Italian seasoning, dried basil, pepper flakes, salt and pepper and cook for 5 minutes.

Paint Your Masterpiece

Brush the loaves with about half of the garlic-herb butter (save the rest for when the loaves come out of the oven!). Sprinkle with a bit of parmesan.

Bake Until Golden

Bake until the loaves are a beautiful golden brown (about 45 to 55 minutes). Test by poking with a skewer or toothpick; it should come out clean.

Patience... Time to Cool Down

Let the loaves cool for about 20 minutes, then run a knife around the sides before removing them from the pans.

Slice It Up

Brush with the remaining garlic-herb butter, then slice to reveal those swirled veins of salty pepperoni and spicy jalapeños!

Get In My Belly!

Serve warm, with plenty of pizza sauce for dipping.