Recipe: One Bowl, No Sugar Pumpkin Bread

A healthier, whole grain, real ingredient recipe for a fall favorite!

We’ve had a beautiful, abnormally warm fall here in Minnesota that’s kept me from baking much. But with Thanksgiving right around the corner, I just can’t wait any longer. I had to make something pumpkin-y.

Finally, a delicious pumpkin bread that's not overflowing with sugar AND is made with real ingredients like whole wheat pastry flour, maple syrup, and of course, pumpkin!

Do you ever get in a pumpkin mood? I absolutely love its taste. Unfortunately, so many of the pumpkin baked goods and drinks out there are less about the pumpkin and more about sugar. 🙁 That’s one of the things I love about my one bowl, no sugar pumpkin bread recipe. Yes, it has some maple syrup in it for some sweetness, but it’s not sugary. It’s fresh, dense, super moist, and filled with pumpkin goodness.

Now don’t get me wrong, I don’t consider this bread a health food—after all, it has a stick of butter in it. But it is made with whole wheat flour, real ingredients, and it’s not drenched with a cup or more of processed sugar. So for me it’s a great solution—still wonderful and tasty, but not over-the-top crazy. 🙂 And if you compare it to the ingredients in some of the popular, boxed pumpkin quick bread mixes, I think it’s clearly a better choice.

Boxed pumpkin quick breads may be a little more convenient, but they come with a whole host of highly processed ingredients and additives.

Yes, making your own quick bread takes a little more time, but you can avoid artificial colors, highly processed flours and fats, and a whole host of other additives by going the homemade route with my recipe!

Finally, like most quick breads, my No Sugar Pumpkin Bread freezes well, so make a double batch and save one for later. Just one little heads-up with this recipe. It’s super moist!! For most of us that’s a good thing, right? You just need to watch out, though. While it may be tempting to serve it up right out of the oven, let the bread cool to room temperature first. I had to take the photos for this post before the loaf had completely cooled, and it made the slices a little moister than usual. That said, boy did it taste delicious!

I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as we do. Make it up for a dinner party or maybe even your Thanksgiving holiday feast. No matter what the occasion, it will be a welcome addition!

Cheers!

Bruce

Recipe: Pumpkin Quick Bread or Muffins
Author: 
Recipe type: Bread
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 1 loaf
 
Ingredients:
  • 2 cups whole wheat pastry flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon nutmeg
  • ½ teaspoon ginger
  • 1 tablespoon ground flaxseed
  • 2 eggs
  • ½ cup oil (I use melted butter or coconut oil)
  • ½ cup applesauce
  • ⅔ cup maple syrup (or honey if you prefer)
  • 2 tablespoons milk or buttermilk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree (canned or homemade)
Optional Add-In:
  • 1 cup chopped nuts such as pecans
Instructions:
  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F and grease one 8½" x 4½" loaf pan.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, add the dry ingredients and whisk together.
  3. Make a well in the center and add in the eggs, oil, applesauce, maple syrup, milk, and vanilla. Stir together with a fork being careful to not overmix. Then fold in the pumpkin puree and optional nuts.
  4. Scoop batter into prepared loaf pan and bake at 350 degrees F for about 1 hour or until a toothpick comes out clean.
Notes:
We recommend organic ingredients when possible.

If you like the flavor of pumpkin pie spice, feel free to add a pinch or two of ground cloves and/or allspice.

I you prefer smaller loaves—the recipe should make three, 5½" x 3" "baby" loaves with a bake time of about 45 minutes. And if you want muffins, the bake time will be about 18-22 minutes for regular-sized muffins. Pans and oven temperature accuracy can throw off all bake times so when in doubt, let the toothpick rule decide doneness.

Using maple syrup or honey can make baked goods brown a little more. If the pumpkin bread isn't fully cooked but has already browned, drape a piece of foil over the bread until it has finished baking.

Kitchen Tips and Resources:

  • If you’re looking for a great bread loaf pan, here are two I love! This one is a heavy gauge steel loaf pan and these are glass! Just remember, different types of pans will change how long to cook your bread, and glass or darker, non-stick metal pans may work best if the oven temperature is reduced by about 25 degrees F.
  • I’m a huge fan of Bob’s Red Mill Whole Wheat Pastry Flour. I use it for most of my baking and cooking. It’s versatility and taste has helped ease my family’s transition to a whole wheat flour.

 

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