The Pumpkin Bread I Can't Stop Eating -- You Can Add Chocolate Chips

October 31, 2009
9 Ratings
Photo by James Ransom
  • Makes 1 loaf, 6 to 8 servings
Author Notes

Happy Halloween! This pumpkin bread recipe is adapted from the "Morning After Pumpkin Bread" in my book, which in turn was adapted from Bon Appetit. This time I used half white and half wheat flour (you can use all white if that's all you have) and I lessened the sugar and put in a couple of chopped apples. (I was going to say "threw in" but then I remembered how Gabrielle Hamilton is against that kind of talk). She's also against optional ingredients. I may continue to use them. I don't think any recipe is a perfect paradigm. There are options. —Giulia Melucci

What You'll Need
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup olive oil, extra virgin or any other kind
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup canned pumpkin puree
  • 1 good baking apple such as Cortland or Northern Spy, grated (you should have 1 cup grated apple)
  • 3/4 cup all purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9-inch loaf pan whatever way you please (I use Pam baking spray).
  2. Whisk together the sugar and oil until blended, then add the eggs and pumpkin. Lay out two paper towels, stacked on top of one another. Lay the grated apples over the paper towels. Roll up the paper towels into a log and squeeze gently to remove excess juices from the apples. Add the grated apples to the pumpkin mixture and mix to combine.
  3. In another bowl, stir together the flours, spices, salt, baking powder and baking soda. Add the pumpkin mixture to the dry ingredients and stir until combined. Mix in the walnuts and let batter rest for 15 to 20 minutes.
  4. When ready to bake, pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan. Bake until the loaf is very dark and a tester inserted deep into the middle comes out clean, about 1 hour and 15 minutes. Transfer to a cooling rack and cool in pan for ten minutes, then turn onto rack to cool completely.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Émilie Robertson
    Émilie Robertson
  • Taylor Stanton
    Taylor Stanton
  • Kate Valleri
    Kate Valleri
  • Maryellen Girton Nieminen
    Maryellen Girton Nieminen
  • Laura

67 Reviews

Dale M. October 26, 2022
Easy to make and absolutely delicious! The house smelled like Fall.
baker50 October 6, 2019
I made this and it was great. I have two suggestions:
1. Don't waste the apple juice! Squeeze it into a bowl for later use. One potential use is if you turn this pumpkin loaf into a sweet. I add chocolate chips and once baked, I mix a little of the apple juice with some confectioners sugar and drizzle over the top.
2. You begin with the standard direction to preheat the oven, however at the end of the recipe there is a wait time of 15 minutes. You might want to save everyone some energy and note that you can turn on the oven to preheat after combining all the ingredients but before the resting time.
Émilie R. November 8, 2018
Very yummy bread. I used less sugar, only all-purpose flour, and maple-roasted almonds instead of walnuts, but otherwise followed the recipe to a tee, and it worked out quite nicely. Thanks!
Taylor S. October 8, 2018
This is a decent enough loaf but I've made many better ones. I followed the recipe exactly except substituted raisins for the apple and cut the sugar to 1/2 c. instead of 1 c. Yes, I realize this might be why the recipe is just ok, but I like other ones (such as Tartine) better!
K.V. November 17, 2018
If you make substitutions to a recipe, the review should reflect those modifications and not the actual recipe itself.
emanne February 4, 2020
I feel like subbing raisins for apples would make it a wildly different texture, since the apples are going to give the cake the moisture.
Kate V. October 16, 2017
I'll definitely make this again! I used fresh Jarrahdale pumpkin, puréed with a banana for sweetness. Australian pumpkins just aren't the same as canned Libby's! Thanks to the other readers I added the cranberries, which turned out to be my favourite part. Also, I never buy paper towels, so I just squeezed the juice out of the apple- drink that!
Maryellen G. October 15, 2017
Just a few substitutions; sweet potato instead of canned pumpkin (because we had a bumper crop this year) and coconut oil instead of olive oil. Great, moist texture and excellent flavor.
leloup September 30, 2017
Made this today with a few modifications for celiac and ingredients I had on hand. I used Trader Joe's pre-mixed gluten-free flour (potato starch, brown & white rice, tapioca). I also subbed in unsweetened applesauce instead of the grated apple. Perhaps b/c of this particular gluten-free mix, I didn't need more than the prescribed 1.5 c. to compensate for the extra liquid in the applesauce. I halved the amount of sugar (1/2 c instead of 1 c.) and added 1 tsp of vanilla.
I don't generally care for the flavor of olive oil in baking and I didn't like it here either. If I make these again, I'd replace the 1/2 c. olive oil with 1/4 c. coconut oil + 1/4 c. applesauce and perhaps add a mashed up ripe banana for sweetness. The TJ gluten-free mix worked well with the level of moisture in the recipe. The bread was dense and not at all dry, but of course wasn't as flavorful as it could have been. An almond-flour base would probably be better.
leloup October 13, 2017
Made this again using different substitutions for a slightly healthier bread with less sugar and oil:
In place of 1 c. sugar, I used 1/3 c. sugar + 1 banana. Adding 1 tsp. of vanilla also helps add a sense of sweetness without sugar.
In place of 1/2 c. olive oil, I used 1/4 c. coconut oil + 1/4 c. unsweetened applesauce.
In place of 1 c. grated apple, 1 c. applesauce (I used a total of 1 1/4 c. applesauce).
For the flour mixtures, I substituted 1 1/2 c. Trader Joe's gluten-free flour mix.
I used the whole can of pumpkin and three eggs instead of two for density.
This version was even better. Perfect sweetness, density, and moisture. Definitely my new go-to bread.
Laura September 24, 2017
Could you give us a recipe with less sugar. 1 cup seems excessive for a non dessert bread.
Steven W. September 24, 2017
with that much olive oil no wonder it's moist...plus is has grated apple and pumpkin in it...how could it be dry?
Robin B. September 23, 2017
Can you use a sugar substitute?
taco_cat December 11, 2016
I made this last night but I didn't have apples or whole wheat flour. Skipped the apples and used a total of 1 and 2/3 all purpose flour instead. Turned out wonderful!
Monica G. November 20, 2016
This was delicious! I substituted half the shredded apple for fresh grated tumeric, added extra pumkin, some ground flax, upped the spices and a sugar/pumpkin seed topping, baked it for just under the 1:15 time. Moist and flavorul!
Andrea D. November 14, 2016
Recipe developers and bakers out there: please, please, please come up with a pumpkin bread recipe that uses the whole 14 oz. can of pumpkin puree. And please don't suggest I use the leftover puree for other pumpkin recipes. Maybe this recipe could skip the grated apples and just use 14 oz. of pumpkin puree? Does anyone want to try this and report back?
Patrice November 14, 2016
My suggestion? Although not the most convenient, but certainly the best flavor- stop using canned. Buying a fresh pumpkin and cooking takes a bit of time, but the rewards are so astronomically worth it. I have converted many a canned pumpkin user to using fresh (or fresh from your freezer) pumpkin.
But on the other hand- there is no harm in using the excess pumpkin from your can in the recipe. It will only add moisture and flavor- or if you have a dog, pour the remaining pumpkin over his/ her food. Pumpkin is an exceptional filler for dogs.
Ticketytwo November 14, 2016
The grated apples make it moist and give it a nice taste so I wouldn't skip that
Deedledum November 30, 2017
Don't give your dog too much pumpkin at once. Just one tbsp. a day! (It will act like Metamucil
Kathryn November 14, 2016
What size can of pumpkin - how many ounces?
Patrice October 22, 2016
I'm sorry, but this was terribly disappointing. I made the bread with fresh pumpkin. The bread baked as it should, but it does not have the flavor and is not as moist as my standard recipe.
Claire S. October 30, 2016
I'm glad we had the same reaction - glad I'm dumping this on my coworkers and not bringing it to some meaningful event!!!
Patrice November 14, 2016
I did the same thing! I actually doubled the recipe- BIG mistake. Sent some to my son who was recently deployed to Turkey and brought the other loaves in to work.
Natalia M. September 30, 2017
would be curious to try YOUR recipe!!
Patrice October 1, 2017
Natalia, not sure how I could share my recipe. I'm not a food blogger and not sure if posting my recipe here is appropriate?
britt S. October 8, 2016
can you substitute teff flour for wheat flour?
Amelia October 1, 2016
Second time I have made this and it's so delicious. The olive oil and wheat flour absolutely make it.
wenz August 26, 2016
I like this recipe. I made the bread but it doesn't look like the picture shows ;-( I think the problem is the pumpkin puree is too wet. I used an organic can food. Can you suggest one brand to use? Next time I'll try to make fresh one too. Thanks.
Chef D. November 22, 2015
Really good
stephanieRD November 19, 2015
Baking this now and it smells incredible!!!!