This homemade pumpkin bread recipe is so simple and tasty that you’ll make it over and over again. Made with cinnamon, ground ginger, nutmeg, and, of course, pumpkin purée, this quick bread is for those who love fall-inspired desserts.
Why you should try this recipe
It’s bread, not a pound cake. Or it might be better to say it's like something in between. The texture is soft but not too tender and not dense. The bread holds its shape well and doesn't crumble in your hands.
Fluffy and moist pumpkin bread. Adding vegetable oil helps the bread stay moist for many days and the right amount of leavening agents will lift the bread during baking, creating a fluffier texture.
No need for special equipment. If you don't have a stand mixer or a hand mixer, fear not! For this recipe, you won't need anything except a mixing bowl, spatula (or you can use a whisk or even a spoon), and a loaf pan.
Ingredients and substitutes
Flour - Don't use cake flour for this recipe. It will make the texture too soft and almost crumbly. All-purpose flour will make your easy pumpkin bread more like bread and less like pound cake.
Pumpkin purée - Use 100% pumpkin purée, not pumpkin pie filling mix.
Sugar - I use white sugar, but you can replace half of it with light brown sugar if you want.
Leavening agents - I use both baking powder and baking soda to support each other. This bread has buttermilk and pumpkin purée which are both acidic, so using only baking powder won't be enough to light the bread and make the texture fluffy.
Spices - I use ground cinnamon, ginger, and nutmeg, but you can add ½-1 teaspoon of allspice on top if you want.
Eggs - Eggs should be at room temperature to mix well with the rest of the ingredients.
Fats - You can use melted butter and vegetable oil (I use extra mild olive oil, but canola oil or sunflower oil will work as well) as I did, or you can replace melted butter with the same amount of vegetable oil.
Buttermilk - If you don't have buttermilk at home, use whole milk with a splash of lemon juice or vinegar. Combine the two in a small bowl and let it sit for a few minutes at room temperature, then add to the batter as described in the recipe card.
Salt - Always add some salt when you bake!
Don't overmix the batter. Overmixing creates more gluten and your bread will be too chewy and dense. Once you don't see any dry ingredients in the mixture, you can transfer the batter into a loaf pan and bake it.
The right temperature is key. If you bake this delicious pumpkin bread low and slow, it won't rise that much and will have a dense texture. Don't bake lower than 175C 350F – if your bread browns too much at this temperature, cover it loosely with a piece of foil after the first 50 minutes of baking and bake for an extra 5-10 minutes or until done.
Don't open the oven too early. I would recommend not opening it for the first 50 minutes or your bread will sink.
Step by step directions
1. Preheat the oven to 175C or 350F and line a 9x5-inch (23x13cm) loaf pan with parchment paper.
2. In a bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and salt.
3. Into a large mixing bowl, add the sugar, butter, oil, buttermilk, eggs, and pumpkin purée. Whisk well until homogenous in consistency.
4. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ones and mix until no dry ingredients are left.
5. Pour the batter into the loaf pan, sprinkle with pepitas, and bake for 55-60 minutes or until the toothpick inserted in the middle comes out dry.
6. Remove from the oven and let it cool down for 15 minutes in the loaf pan. Then transfer onto a cooling rack to cool down completely.
Chocolate - Add ⅓ cup of chocolate chips of your choice to the batter to make pumpkin chocolate chip bread.
Nuts - Crushed walnuts or pecans can be added right into the batter or sprinkled on top of the bread before baking it.
Pepitas - I sprinkled some pepitas on top before baking my bread and it gave it an amazing flavor and crunch.
Streusel topping - Go ahead and check out my Pumpkin muffins recipe, where you can find an easy streusel topping mix that you can use for this pumpkin loaf.
Salted caramel - You can always drizzle some caramel on top of your bread.
Cream cheese frosting - If you want to frost your bread, make it after it's completely cooled down or the frosting will melt.
Store it in an air-tight container lined with paper towels at room temperature up for 4 days. If you frost your pumpkin bread with frosting, store it in the fridge for up to 4 days.
Freeze it (sliced or whole) in a freezer bag (or plastic wrap) wrapped in a piece of foil for up to 2 months. Thaw in the fridge overnight before serving. Additionally, you can reheat the bread in the microwave or oven for a few seconds to soften it up.
More sweet recipes
- Digital kitchen scale
- 9x5 inch (23x13 cm) loaf pan
- 230 g all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon ground ginger
- ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 200 g white granulated sugar
- 70 ml buttermilk at room temperature
- 300 g pumpkin puree
- 50 g unsalted butter melted
- 40 g vegetable oil such as canola oil
- Pepitas for topping
- Preheat the oven to 175C or 350F and line a 9x5-inch (23x13cm) loaf pan with parchment paper.
- In a bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and salt.
- Into a large mixing bowl, add the sugar, butter, oil, buttermilk, eggs, and pumpkin purée. Whisk well until homogenous in consistency.
- Add the dry ingredients to the wet ones and mix until no dry ingredients are left.
- Pour the batter into the loaf pan, sprinkle with pepitas, and bake for 55-60 minutes or until the toothpick inserted in the middle comes out dry.
- Remove from the oven and let it cool down for 15 minutes in the loaf pan. Then transfer onto a cooling rack to cool down completely.