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Povitica with American Measurements

A Great British Baking Show Bake

This recipe for Povitica makes a great swirled looping bread all stuffed and baked in a bread pan. It’s glorious but also a labor of love. Its part of my Great British Baking Show (GBBO) Bake-Along Group on Facebook, this week is “Advanced Dough.” And true to its title I have worked hard to switch this over to American Measurements so anyone with measuring cups and spoons can make this recipe. No scale needed.

Povitica bread recipe

You pronounce Povitica Pov-e-Tee-za. It’s a lovely Eastern European Bread swirled around a walnut filling. It’s rolled almost like cinnamon rolls and then looped into place in an 8-inch bread pan. It makes multiple layers of swirls. We’re working through Collection One of the Great British Baking Show on Netflix; this is episode 9. In this Episode contestant Chetna makes Povitica as her Signature Advanced Dough bake only to find out, surprise, it’s ALSO the technical. It kind of HAD to be our bake for Advanced Dough week on the Bake-Along, don’t you think?


No one part of the recipe for povitica is extremely hard, its just multiple steps that take a while. But the advanced dough doesn’t mean YOU have to be advanced it means you’re adding in things that slows down the action of the yeast. This recipe has butter, milk, and eggs, most advanced doughs do. Advanced doughs are also called enriched dough.

Povitica slice AND loaf

More GBBO Recipes

I’ve had a LOT of fun making recipes from the GBBO (or in America, it’s Called the Great British Baking Show.) One of my early favorites was Paul Hollywood’s Cottage Loaf. And then, of COURSE, the Bedfordshire Clangers Recipe. And more recently I made Jaffa Cakes which are now a family favorite. There are so many great recipes shared on the shows, it never fails to inspire me!

slice of Povitica

About your Povitica

  • you will want a stand mixer AND a food processor for this recipe
  • it looks very involved, and it is, but none of it is TOO hard, it’s just steps
  • to stretch the dough roll it out as thin as you can, then brush with butter, then continue stretching it with the backs of your hands
  • if the dough starts to tear let it rest and then try again
Yield: 8 servings


Povitica bread recipe

A gorgeous swirled loaf of bread!

Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
proving time 3 hours
Total Time 4 hours 20 minutes



  • 2 1/2 cups flour
  • 3 Tablespoons sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon yeast
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 Tablespoons butter
  • 2/3 cup milk
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

Walnut Filling

  • 4 1/2 Tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 3 1/4 cups walnut halves
  • 2 Tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 egg yolk, save the white!

Additional Ingredients

  • 1 Tablespoon butter, melted
  • 1 egg white
  • 1 cup powdered sugar


Povitica instructions

  1. put flour, sugar, salt, and yeast in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook
  2. warm the butter and milk together, do not boil, just warm until the butter melts
  3. once the butter has melted cool until lukewarm
  4. then pour the butter and milk in the flour mix, add the egg, and the vanilla, and mix
  5. once ingredients have formed a dough let it continue mixing for 5-8 minutes or until smooth
  6. place in a greased bowl, cover, and let double in size

walnut filling

  1. warm the milk and butter together until the butter is melted
  2. meanwhile pulse the walnuts, sugar, and cocoa powder together in a food processor until finely chopped
  3. when the butter has melted cool until room temperature or so, then add it, the egg yolk and vanilla to the food processer and pulse until completely combined

rolling and filling the bread

  1. once the dough has doubled in size cover your dining table with a clean sheet, OR wash it down thoroughly, and dust either down with flour
  2. roll the dough out to a rectangle 12X20 inches, brush with melted butter and continue rolling and/or stretching with the backs of your hands underneath the dough until its 24X40 inches
  3. spread the filling evenly across the dough, if your filling feels thickened up add an extra TBSP of milk and blend again
  4. once it's covered roll from the long side into a log
  5. butter an 8-inch loaf pan, lay the dough in the pan in a U shape, then repeat over top looping it into another U
  6. cover loosely and let rise for 1 hour OR until almost doubled in size, it will be working filling in all the gaps so don't expect a MASSIVE rise out of it
  7. brush with egg white and bake at 350˚ for 15 minutes then reduce heat to 300˚ and bake another 45 minutes, if the top starts to darken cover loosely with foil
  8. once it's baked cool in the pan on a wire rack for 30 minutes
  9. then take it out and cool completely
  10. if you like icing, mix the powdered sugar with a few drops of water and drizzle it over the cooled bread

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6 thoughts on “Povitica with American Measurements”

  1. Well this is a challenge I think I’d like to tackle! First I need an 8″ loaf pan I guess. I love an excuse for another pan. Thanks for sharing.

    Wishes for tasty dishes,

  2. WOW ,,, You are correct it is a time consuming bake. But for sure well worth it. I made the TX Roadhouse Cinnamon & Honey Butter excellent on the bread great with a cup of coffee or hot chocolate ☕️

  3. This is a thing that my grandmother made over Serbian Christmas each year and is still my favorite thing. It true Serbian grandmother fashion she never gave the actual recipe to anyone (you’ve got to be from the Iron Range to understand that). Over years I’ve bought a couple that are okay but hers had the beautiful thing and kinda flakey consistency to the dough. Reading this I think this will give me what I want to accomplish. I’ve got a good recipe that I use for the filling but I’m absolutely going to try this for the dough. Thank you for putting the is out there.

  4. My family uses honey and hot milk rather than sugar and butter in the nut mix. We make 20 loaves or more at Christmas.

  5. I love this recipe. Have made it 4 times. Once used cinnamon and sugar and nuts no chocolate. It’s really cool when you finally get to slice and eat.


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