Easter Chocolate Chip and Ricotta Ciambellone-A very easy to make cake that is truly no-fuss. It is super soft from the rich ricotta and is perfect to make for any holiday, or just to have for Sunday morning breakfast. The addition of chocolate chips will please all the chocolate lovers and goes so nicely with zip of flavor from the lemon zest.
We had an Easter get together and I was busy making this Chocolate Chip and Ricotta Ciambellone (ring cake)was just the perfect treat! I had quite a lot of ricotta on hand as I made a pizza rustica (pizza gain-pizza chiena)and also a pastiera Napoletana .I also made this Crescia al Formaggio, which goes just perfectly with Prosecco and different salumeria.
Originally published April 2018n and updated and republished March 2022. One of my favorite holidays is Easter. The weather is so pretty and I always feel inspired to bake as many Easter breads and treats as I can in one short weekend. I baked this Easter Chocolate Chip and Ricotta Ciambellone for a big Italian party we were at on Easter Sunday.
This Easter party was a a very late lunch. It wasn't a brunch and it was way too early to be considered dinner. Everyone contributed by bringing something sweet or savory. Almost all of the guests were Italians from Italy. I knew I had to make some typical Italian Easter breads and also make something that everyone would like.
I was a little nervous about how the Italian ladies would react to my contribution. I know that in every region a dish is made a little differently and also I know that many Italian women are picky about something being called "Italian".
Imagine my delight when everyone was oohing and ahhhing over everything I made. One of the guests named Laura was curious as to what kind of ricotta I used. She explained that when her mom visits from Sicily, she makes her own ricotta to make some Easter treats.
Can I make the cake with homemade ricotta?
Yes, you can! I explained to one of my guests that day that there just wasn't enough time for me to make ricotta and that I used the brand Galbani. You could use whatever is your favorite brand of ricotta.
My Italian friend really liked the texture and the flavor. I know how good homemade ricotta is. Maybe another time I'll plan better and make my own ricotta for the sweet and savory Easter treats, but in the meantime, the one I used worked out just fine!
Which size Bundt pan works for this ciambella?
I used a cake pan my Italian friend from Bologna gave me. It's not the typical Bundt size. I did double the recipe as I wanted to be sure to fill the cake pan all the way.
Following this recipe, you could use a 10-inch Bundt pan (a ten-inch pan can hold 10-12 cups of batter).
The cake was super soft (very moist...can we still say that?) and it is so lovely even for Sunday morning breakfast, or any morning breakfast. It was really pretty filled with the Robin's Nest candies in the middle. You could use whatever chocolate Easter eggs to fill the middle of the hole for decoration.
What is an Italian Ciambellone?
A ciambellone is a ring cake. Ciambella means ring. So a ciambellone is a large ring cake. You could compare it to a Bundt. The Italian ring cake pan is different than the American Bundt cake pan. But you could use either.
Does a ricotta cake need to be refrigerated?
Yes, it does. You could leave the cake out for one day. But the next day, you should store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
How to prep your cake pan?
This Italian ring pan I have does not have all the nooks and crevices of a typical Bundt pan. I prepped it the way I usually do my Bundt pan, with non-stick baking spray.
If you use butter to prep your Bundt pan, the milk solids may make the cake stick to the pan. That's why I highly recommend non-stick baking sprays for any Bundt recipe (I never have any problems with the cake sticking!).
Some other Easter recipes to enjoy:
Easter Chocolate Chip and Ricotta Ciambellone
- 1 ¼ cups flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 4 eggs separated
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup ricotta
- ¼ cup butter melted 4 Tablespoons
- 1 Tablespoon lemon liqueur or lemon juice
- zest of one organic lemon
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ½ cup semi-sweet chocolate chips or dark chocolate chips
- malted Easter eggs for decoration
- Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Grease and flour Bundt pan (or you could use baking spray, as I did).
- In a medium bowl, combine the flour, baking powder and salt. Stir to blend.
- Beat the egg whites until stiff. Remove from the mixer and add to small bowl; set aside.
- In the bowl of the mixer, beat the butter, ricotta and sugar until blended, about 3 minutes. With the machine running, add the egg yolks one at a time.
- Add the lemon liqueur (or juice), zest and vanilla until combined. Add the dry ingredients, a small amount at a time, until combined. Fold in the chocolate chips. Fold in the egg whites a little bit at a time until incorporated.
- Spoon into prepared cake pan and bake for about 35-40 minutes
- Every oven is different so check your cake with a skewer at about 35 minutes to see if done.
- Let cool and remove from cake pan. Dust with confectioner's sugar.
- Decorate with malted Easter eggs in the middle if serving for Easter.
Please keep in mind that the nutritional information presented below is an approximation and may vary depending on the exact ingredients used.