Easy pumpkin bread is perfectly soft and tender, just like every quick bread recipe should. The top puffs up and cracks into a beautiful loaf worthy of gift-giving and a permanent place in your recipe files.
A few weeks ago, I found my old recipe binder from my single days. In my mind, the recipe binder isn’t that old, but when I started looking through it, I realized it’s 10 years old.
I created the binder when I was a single graduate student living in a shotgun-style house with a basement that flooded every winter in Davis, California. Back then, most food blogs didn’t exist, and so I turned to food magazines and Food Network to find recipes to cook.
When I found a recipe that I wanted to try, first, I would print it out. Then I would make it several times. If the recipe was amazing, I would write it down and save it in this recipe binder. This was before Pinterest and I couldn’t just save a recipe to a board to make again, can you even imagine?
Reasons this one bowl easy pumpkin bread made the cut:
So I’m really enjoying going through and making all of the recipes, because they’re all truly 5-star recipes. Everything that was deemed worthy of making the binder had to be absolutely delicious and turn out perfectly multiple times. This recipe meets all of the criteria.
After making it multiple times, it turned out perfectly, each time.
Everything comes together in one bowl, so easy!
Plus, all of the ingredients are always in my pantry. Even in the middle of summer, you can find a can of pumpkin in the back of my pantry. And when my kids get tired of eggless banana bread or chocolate banana muffins, I make this for them instead.
Substitutions are easy--flax egg for real eggs, leftover steamed sweet potatoes instead of pumpkin, and partial whole wheat flour instead of all-purpose. The recipe card had lots of stains on it, and many adjustments tested. The version that made the binder was vastly different than the original recipe that inspired it, but the final version below is absolutely perfect.
Easy pumpkin bread ingredients:
- Granulated sugar - Just 1 cup of the sweet stuff
- Light Brown Sugar - The molasses in brown sugar gives a caramel flavor to the bread--delicious!
- All-Purpose Flour - you can substitute up to ¼ cup of whole wheat flour for extra nutrition.
- Baking soda - Gives our bread fluff and lift
- Pumpkin pie spice - It's a spice blend made up of cinnamon, ginger, cloves, allspice, and nutmeg. I have a homemade recipe for pumpkin pie spice on my homemade pumpkin spice latte recipe, if you like.
- Canned pumpkin puree - Be sure to buy puree, not canned pumpkin pie filling.
- Eggs - Two large eggs keep our bread moist and help it rise
- Oil - Use any oil without flavor (canola oil, grapeseed oil, or vegetable oil)
- Water - just a touch, to bring it all together
- Vanilla extract - gives the bread such a yummy flavor
Now that we've gathered our ingredients, everything comes together in just one bowl! One bowl recipes are my absolute favorite, don't you agree?
How to make easy pumpkin bread:
First, whisk together your dry ingredients in a bowl. One strange thing about this recipe is that sugar is included in the dry ingredients. Sometimes sugar is whisked with flour instead of with the fat in muffin recipes, and it creates a soft crumb. A quick bread should have a soft crumb structure too, so we're using that method. Just follow the recipe instructions, and you'll have a great loaf of easy pumpkin bread.
I personally make my own pumpkin spice mix, because I include a special ingredient that makes it extra spicy--it's black pepper. However, this easy pumpkin bread recipe is just fine with store-bought pumpkin pie spice, really!
Whisk the dry ingredients together very well before proceeding.
Next, add all of the wet ingredients on top: the pumpkin, eggs, oil, water and vanilla. Whisk this mixture very well, but be careful not to over-mix.
Finally, pour it into a loaf pan. This is the loaf pan I love and use in my kitchen.
The reason this recipe made my special recipe files is because of the flavor, and the fact that it bakes up into a perfectly soft and tender, just like every quick bread recipe should. The top puffs up and cracks into a beautiful loaf, and I will admit that sometimes, I sprinkle extra sugar mixed with pumpkin pie spice on top before baking for a crackled top. Without the crackled lid top, the bread is your quintessential pumpkin loaf: spiced, soft, wonderfully fragrant and beautiful.
Using leftover pumpkin:
The recipe uses ¾ cup of canned pumpkin, and if you need recipes to use up the rest of the can, I have you covered here: pumpkin recipes to use up leftover pumpkin.
I also have an ebook with all of my pumpkin recipes in one place for you to download here.
If you don't finish the loaf in one day, leftovers keep in an air-tight container at room temperature on the counter. Try making french toast for two with it, or toasting leftover slices with extra butter on top!
I hope this easy pumpkin bread recipe makes its way into your permanent recipe files like it has mine. If you try this recipe, please come back to share using my 5 star rating system in the recipe card below. Not only do I appreciate it, but I know other readers do, too!
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- ½ cup light brown sugar
- 1 ¾ cup all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ¾ teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
- ¾ cup canned pumpkin puree*
- 2 large eggs, beaten
- ½ cup flavorless oil
- ⅓ cup water
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- Preheat the oven to 350, and spray a 9x5" bread loaf pan with cooking spray. Ensure a rack is in the center position of the oven.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the sugars, flour, baking soda, salt, and pumpkin pie spice.
- Make a hole in the center of the mixture, and add all remaining ingredients: pumpkin, eggs, oil, water and vanilla.
- Stir everything together very well, but try not to over-mix.
- Scrape the batter into the pan, and place in the oven. Bake for 60 minutes, and then test the center of the bread for wetness with a long toothpick. If the toothpick comes out clean, the bread is done. If not, add another 5 minutes of baking time and test again. Ensure the bread is fully done before you remove it from the oven or it will sink as it cools!
*Be sure to buy canned pumpkin puree, not pumpkin pie filling.
Also, flavorless oil can be: vegetable oil, canola oil, grapeseed oil, or avocado oil. Anything that won't impart flavor to the bread.
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Amount Per Serving: Calories: 314Total Fat: 12gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 11gCholesterol: 37mgSodium: 303mgCarbohydrates: 48gFiber: 1gSugar: 30gProtein: 4g