Homemade pumpkin bread is a favorite fall recipe packed with cinnamon spice and tons of pumpkin flavor. Extra moist and easy to make, this recipe has been a fan favorite since 2014. You don’t even need a mixer! The days of bland pumpkin bread are behind us.
Reader Laura says: “Wanted to say this bread is really good! And last year when I took some of my farmers markets breads to our county fair, this is one of the breads I entered for judging, got a blue ribbon, 1st place, for it! Very good!”
When September rolls around, I have the sudden urge to make every quick bread recipe under the sun. Some of my favorites are banana bread, apple cinnamon bread, and this orange beauty: the BEST pumpkin bread I’ve ever had. This is a favorite pumpkin bread recipe because each slice is incredibly moist and the process is very straightforward. There are no dry crumbs here! This pumpkin bread is also packed with pumpkin and pumpkin spice flavors. I’m telling you… this is some good stuff.
Perfecting This Pumpkin Bread Recipe
When I was testing this pumpkin bread recipe, it took me about 6 or 7 tries to get it just right. After plenty of sunken, soggy, and flavorless loaves, I finally mastered what ingredients and how much of each to use, and the result is pumpkin perfection. The recipe is a lot like these pumpkin muffins.
Here are the key ingredients you need & why:
- Pumpkin: There’s a lot of pumpkin in this recipe because it not only adds flavor, but moisture as well. I always bake with canned pumpkin, but homemade pumpkin puree works too. If you’re interested, here’s how to make pumpkin puree. Make sure you blot your homemade pumpkin puree to rid some of the moisture (not necessary if using canned pumpkin). Simply measure your homemade pumpkin puree, then squeeze out some of the moisture with a paper towel.
- Oil: Adds incredible moisture and lightens up the crumb. Vegetable oil is best, but you can substitute melted coconut oil instead.
- Favorite Fall Spices: Cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, cloves… the gang’s all here! These 4 spices complement the pumpkin flavor wonderfully (and are often found together in many other pumpkin recipes). You could also use pumpkin pie spice—see my recipe Note below.
- Orange Juice: I know orange juice seems strange here, but don’t be nervous. This bread will NOT taste like oranges. I use orange juice because a little liquid keeps the bread from tasting too dense. Milk works too if you don’t have orange juice, but the subtle orange flavor is like magic in this bread. It just works.
- Chocolate Chips: Optional, but if you’re a chocolate lover, pumpkin + chocolate is always a good idea.
Here’s the batter and a couple pictures of the bread without chocolate chips:
Why You’ll Love This Pumpkin Bread Recipe:
- Delicious in the fall
- Smells wonderful while it bakes
- Easy to make—no mixer required
- Extra moist
- Tons of pumpkin flavor
- Loaded with warm spices
- Adaptable—studded with chocolate chips, or use chopped pecans, or leave plain
- Similar to banana bread, it tastes even better on day 2 (if it lasts that long!)
I love this pumpkin bread recipe so much that I included it in my first cookbook, Sally’s Baking Addiction. It’s always a hit, especially when pumpkin spice season picks up!
But after 1 taste, you might not want to limit this quick bread to the fall season.
Another reader, Liz, says: “This is by far the best pumpkin bread recipe I have made… It’s moist and loaded with flavor. I love the orange juice that adds a fresh flavor to it. I add some orange zest that kicks up the orange flavor a bit. It goes well with the chocolate chips too.”
More Perfect Pumpkin Recipes
Homemade pumpkin bread is a favorite fall recipe packed with sweet cinnamon spice, tons of pumpkin flavor, and optional chocolate chips.
- Adjust the oven rack to the lower third position and preheat the oven to 350°F (177°C). Lowering the oven rack prevents the top of your bread from browning too much, too soon. Grease a metal 9×5-inch loaf pan with non-stick spray. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, whisk the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, ginger, and salt together until combined. Set aside. In a medium bowl, whisk the eggs, granulated sugar, and brown sugar together until combined. Whisk in the pumpkin, oil, and orange juice. Pour these wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and gently mix together using a rubber spatula or a wooden spoon. There will be a few lumps. Do not over-mix. Gently fold in the chocolate chips, if including.
- Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan. Bake for 60–65 minutes, making sure to loosely cover the bread with aluminum foil halfway through to prevent the top from getting too brown. The bread is done when a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean with only a few small moist crumbs. This may be before or after 60–65 minutes depending on your oven, so begin checking every 5 minutes around the 55-minute mark.
- Allow the bread to cool completely in the pan on a wire rack before removing and slicing. Cover and store leftover pumpkin bread at room temperature for up to 3–4 days, or in the refrigerator for up to a week.
- Make Ahead Tip: Baked pumpkin bread can be frozen for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator and bring to room temperature before serving.
- Special Tools: Glass Mixing Bowls | Rainbow Whisk | Loaf Pan | Cooling Rack | Kitchen Scale
- Spices: You can use 1 teaspoon store-bought or homemade pumpkin pie spice instead of nutmeg, cloves, and ginger. Be sure to still add 2 teaspoons of cinnamon to the batter.
- Oil: Oil is a better choice than melted butter in this recipe. The bread is not as moist and soft if using butter.
- Orange Juice: You can substitute milk (any kind) for orange juice.
- Chocolate Chips: If desired, try using milk chocolate, white chocolate, dark chocolate, or even chopped pecans/walnuts instead of the semi-sweet chocolate chips. You can leave the pumpkin bread plain, too.
- Pumpkin Muffins: This recipe makes 15–18 pumpkin chocolate chip muffins. Bake for about 20 minutes at the same oven temperature, or try this similar pumpkin muffins recipe.
- Bundt Cake: Simply make this pumpkin Bundt cake (pretty much this exact recipe) and leave out the cream cheese filling. Add 1 and 1/2 cups chocolate chips if desired. About 1 hour bake time.
Baking Made Easy
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