Chelsea struggled to find their fluency against a spirited Newcastle who went ahead just before the break courtesy of an Ayoze Perez strike.
Kurt Zouma and Branislav Ivanovic failed to deal with a long cross in to the box and Perez reacted quickest to fire the ball home from eight yards.
The Blues started well enough with Zouma, again preferred to John Terry in central defence, seeing a rasping free-kick go just wide early on.
And Loic Remy, who started up front ahead of Radamel Falcao, was unfortunate not to divert an instinctive first-time shot in at the near post after a good run and cross by Ivanovic.
But Newcastle’s pressing game started to force Chelsea in to mistakes in the centre of the park and they went close through an Aleksandar Mitrovic header and a Moussa Sissoko shot that went just wide.
And keeper Asmir Begovic also had to make fine saves to deny Perez and Daryl Janmaat in quick succession.
Chelsea briefly responded, Cesc Fabregas having a fierce long-range effort saved by Tim Krul, but the Magpies led when Perez made the most of defensive hesitation to control brilliantly and shoot home.
Subs: Blackman, Terry, Mikel, Ramires, Willian, Kenedy, Falcao.