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Easy Italian Breakfast Cake

This Italian Breakfast Cake, is an easy bundt cake recipe. Filled with chocolate chips and made incredibly delicious and moist with the addition of ricotta cheese. So good you will want breakfast more than once a day!

Cake on a black plate.


 

As I have mentioned it before the Italian is happiest when I bake his favourite Simple Cakes, such as a Yogurt Cake , Lemon Cake or this Vanilla Cake, nothing overly frosted or filled, as he says. He loves something homemade in the morning to dunk in his caffe latte, or even in the afternoon with an espresso, and I can’t lie so do I, except for the dunking!

Recipe Ingredients

  • Flour – all purpose or cake flour
  • Baking powder
  • Salt
  • Butter – melted and cooled
  • Sugar – granulated sugar
  • Eggs – 2 large eggs and 1 egg yolk
  • Ricotta Cheese
  • Vanilla
  • Chocolate chips – I used mini semi sweet, but you could use regular size and semi sweet or even milk or a mixture if you prefer

What does ricotta cheese do in cakes?

Adding some ricotta cheese to a cake can bring out the flavor and the texture, making it a soft moist cake that is perfect anytime.

How to make homemade Cake flour

For every cup of all purpose flour, remove two tablespoons and replace with two tablespoons of corn starch. Be sure to sift the flour and cornstarch together a couple of times, this way it is sure to be properly combined and lump free. Cake flour in cakes will give you a very tender texture and fine crumb, it will also help the cake to rise.

I was going through an old Recipe Book that belonged to my friend’s mother, which she let me borrow. And I found a great recipe for this Italian Breakfast Cake with mini chocolate chips.

How to make a Breakfast Cake

Drain the ricotta in a sieve for about 15-20 minutes. If the ricotta is thick then there really is no need to drain. In a medium bowl whisk together flour, baking powder and salt.

sifting the dry ingredients and beating the eggs & sugar, mixing the ingredients in a silver mixing bowl

In a medium mixing bowl beat together the melted butter, sugar and eggs for one minute, add the ricotta cheese and beat again for 1 minutes then add the flour mixture and vanilla, beat for one minute. Fold in chocolate chips.

adding the chips to the batter and mixing it in a silver bowl

Spoon the batter into the prepared cake pan and bake. Let cool, remove from pan, then drizzle with chocolate and or dust with icing sugar if desired.

adding the batter to a silver bundt pan

As with most Italian Cakes there is no buttery frostings or creamy glazes. Just the usual dusting with Icing sugar. I decided to dress it up a bit with a drizzling of dark melted chocolate.

Please don’t say “oh I can’t eat this, I can’t stand Ricotta Cheese”. Well to tell the truth I’m not crazy about it either but for baking, it is amazing, you won’t even notice it. Trust me it is the perfect addition to making a cake deliciously moist.

Breakfast cake or Coffee Cake?

It’s basically the same thing. The French and Italians refer to it as a Breakfast cake and Coffee cake is more American or Canadian. Both are served either at breakfast or even as a snack made to be eaten with a cup of coffee, hence the name Coffee cake.

What do Italians eat for breakfast?

Those who eat breakfast at the local bar usually choose an espresso, plain or macchiato (which is just a little milk added)) or a cappuccino served with a cornetto, also known as a croissant. It can be a simple one, or filled with custard, jam or a chocolate hazelnut filling. 

A typical Italian breakfast at home is usually a caffe latte or espresso along side a cornetto, a few plain cookies, a slice of homemade cake or a few biscottate, which are spread with jam, honey or chocolate hazelnut filling. Cereal, a bowl of yogurt and fresh fruit are becoming more and popular also. 

Bundt cake on a cake stand with a slice cut on a black plate.

How to store the cake

The cake can be kept at room temperature, be sure to keep it in an air tight container or in a covered cake dish. It will keep for 2-3 days. Or keep it tightly wrapped or in an airtight container in the fridge. It will keep for up to 7 days in the fridge.

How to freeze it

This Cake can also be frozen, be sure to wrap the cooled unglazed cake tightly with plastic wrap then wrap again with foil, place in an airtight container or freezer bag. It will last up to 3 months in the freezer.

To thaw the Cake remove it from the container or freezer bag, but still wrapped and let it thaw at room temperature. Should take about 2-3 hours.

Different flavouring

I used vanilla flavouring in this cake but my friend’s mother used orange flavouring, you could also use cinnamon or even lemon or orange zest. Instead of chocolate chips you could add chop a good quality chocolate bar either dark or milk chocolate or even add some nuts if you like. Great for using up any leftover Easter chocolate.

So whichever you choose it really is delicious. The Perfect Chocolate Bundt Cake for breakfast, snack or even dessert. Exactly what Italian Cakes are made for. Enjoy!

A slice of cake on a black plate.

More Coffee Cake Recipes

Cake on a black plate.

Easy Italian Breakfast Cake

Rosemary Molloy
This Italian Breakfast Cake is filled with chocolate chips & made incredibly delicious and moist with the addition of ricotta cheese.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Course Breakfast, Dessert, Snack
Cuisine Italian
Servings 16 slices
Calories 201 kcal

Ingredients
 
 

  • 2 cups flour (all purpose or cake flour)
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 pinch salt**
  • 1/4 cup butter (melted & cooled)**
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 1 cup ricotta cheese
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 3/4 cup chocolate chips* divided (semi sweet, milk or a mixture, you can even use regular chips)

*I left a couple of tablespoons to sprinkle on top of the batter before baking.

    **If using unsalted butter then add 1/4 teaspoon of salt.

      EXTRAS

      • 2-3 tablespoons icing sugar/powdered sugar for dusting
      • 2-3 ounces melted dark or milk chocolate for drizzling

      Instructions
       

      • Drain the ricotta in a sieve for about 15-20 minutes. If the ricotta is thick then there really is no need to drain.
      • Pre-heat oven to 350° (180° celsius).  Grease and flour a 9 inch (23 cm) bundt pan.
      • In a medium bowl whisk together flour, baking powder and salt.
      • In a medium mixing bowl beat together the melted butter, sugar, eggs and egg yolk for one minute, add the ricotta cheese and beat for another minute then add the flour mixture and vanilla and beat again for one minute, until smooth. Fold in chocolate chips.
      • Spoon the batter (which will be thick) into prepared cake pan, sprinkle with remaining chips and bake for approximately 30-35 minutes. Check for doneness with a toothpick. Let cool, remove from pan, drizzle with melted chocolate and or dust with icing sugar if desired. Enjoy!

      Notes

      Depending on your oven or cake pan of choice, the cake may take longer to bake.
      To make homemade cake flour, for every cup of all purpose flour, remove two tablespoons and replace with two tablespoons of corn starch. Be sure to sift the flour and cornstarch together a couple of times, this way it is sure to be properly combined and lump free. Cake flour in cakes will give you a very tender texture and fine crumb, it will also help the cake to rise.
      The cake can be kept at room temperature, be sure to keep it in an air tight container or in a covered cake dish. It will keep for 2-3 days. Or keep it tightly wrapped or in an airtight container in the fridge. It will keep for up to 7 days in the fridge.
      This Cake can also be frozen, be sure to wrap the cooled unglazed cake tightly with plastic wrap then wrap again with foil, place in an airtight container or freezer bag. It will last up to 3 months in the freezer.
      To thaw the Cake remove it from the container or freezer bag, but still wrapped and let it thaw at room temperature. Should take about 2-3 hours.

      Nutrition

      Calories: 201kcal | Carbohydrates: 28g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 8g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Cholesterol: 52mg | Sodium: 57mg | Potassium: 92mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 15g | Vitamin A: 225IU | Calcium: 71mg | Iron: 1mg
      Did You Make This Recipe?Please leave a comment below or pin it to your Pinterest account!

      Updated from January 3, 2018.

      46 Comments

      1. 5 stars
        I made this cake today for dessert and it was easy and everyone loved it ! I think this my new favorite.

      2. 5 stars
        Thank you, Thank you for sharing this amazing recipe of yours. It’s my son’s birthday today and being a teen – he is off to a Theme Park for the day and evening with friends, giving no opportunity for a usual birthday cake moment!
        So it was really lovely to bake this for him this morning; a cake that was lighter and as my son said – the perfect sweetness for a breakfast!
        Yet it really wouldn’t disappoint at any time of day – my boys said that it may even be their new favourite cake! I will most definitely be baking this again – very much looking forward to the next opportunity l get to do so!
        Have a lovely day! Warm Wishes, Josephine.

      3. How does this cake differ from the chocolate chip ricotta cake? I know this one uses a bit of melted butter so it must somehow affect the texture? I’d love to know so I can decide which one to make today. Grazie Mille!! Xo

        1. Hi Michelle, the Breakfast cake is richer and probably a bit tastier because of the butter. The other one is lighter probably fluffier than this one. My daughters just did a video for youtube for the chocolate chip ricotta cake and they loved it. Sorry I guess I am not much help. So basically this one is a bit heavier and the other is a lighter version. Let me know which one you decide to make. Have a great weekend.

      4. This cake looks & sounds delicious. Would lighter Ricotta cheese work in this recipe, since that’s what I have in my fridge, & I’d like to use it up. Thank you 🙂

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