Best Pumpkin Bread Recipe

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This is the best pumpkin bread recipe and it’s easy to make (no mixer required)! It is moist with a perfect crumb, loaded with fall spices and just the right amount of sweetness. Use fresh or canned pumpkin!

2 slices of pumpkin bread


It took me many years to create what I could confidently call the perfect pumpkin bread recipe.

 I wanted a simple pumpkin bread that wasn’t overly sweet and didn’t have any weird ingredients (like water – which in my opinion, just doesn’t belong in a quick bread)! 

So here it is, the best pumpkin bread recipe you’ll ever bake or eat! It’s easy to make and doesn’t require the use of a mixer. Also, it uses an entire 15 oz can of pumpkin! Also, try this pumpkin banana bread!

It’s dense & moist with a perfect crumb! Plus, this pumpkin bread is loaded with fall spices with just the right amount of sweetness. You can add chocolate chips or cinnamon chips to make it even more special! 

4 slices of pumpkin bread

Pumpkin Bread: Ingredients & substitutions 

Before we walk through how to make pumpkin bread, let’s chat about the ingredients in this recipe.

overhead view of the ingredients in this pumpkin bread recipe
  • Pumpkin puree. This recipe calls for 1 ½ cups of pumpkin puree, which equals one, 15 oz can of pumpkin puree. You can also use fresh homemade puree, just be sure to drain the water out of it so that it’s thick and isn’t runny. 
  • Salted Butter. Unsalted butter, coconut oil, canola oil or ghee can be used in place of butter. You can substitute up to half of the butter with applesauce, but I prefer it with the butter.
  • Brown Sugar. Both light and dark brown sugar can be used in this recipe. If you want a more molasses taste, use dark.
  • Granulated sugar. Any white granulated sugar works great in this recipe. I use organic cane sugar.
  • Eggs. I have not tried an egg replacement in this recipe, if you do let me know how it goes!
  • All-purpose flour. Bread flour and pastry flour also work well in this pumpkin bread recipe! You can use an all-purpose gluten-free baking flour for a gluten-free version as well.
  • Pumpkin Pie Spice. Use store bought or make your own with this recipe: homemade pumpkin pie spice.
4 slices of pumpkin bread

How to make pumpkin bread 

This pumpkin bread recipe comes together in one bowl without any fancy ingredients. Don’t forget to watch the video.

Begin by whisking together the pumpkin puree and melted butter. 

Next, add sugars and stir or whisk until the sugars are dissolved and the mixture is smooth.

two overhead photos of pumpkin bread recipe being made in a glass bowl

Then, add the eggs and whisk until they’re combined. Then add the dry ingredients.

You can either mix the dry ingredients together in a small bowl before adding them to the wet ingredients, or just add them on top. Just be sure to stir them well so they’re evenly distributed. 

two overhead photos of pumpkin bread recipe being made in a glass bowl

At this point you can add mix ins if you’d like to, here are some suggestions:

  • Chocolate chips
  • cinnamon chips
  • nuts (pecans, walnuts, etc.)
  • rasins
  • dried cranberries
  • white chocolate chips
overhead view of the finished pumpkin bread batter

Bake

Grease a 9×5″ loaf pan and pour batter into the pan. You can line it with parchment paper or foil for easy removal, but I find that as long as the pan is throughly greased, this pumpkin bread comes out easily.

pumpkin bread batter in a baking pan before baking

Bake at 350 degrees F for about 1 hour. I recommend baking on the lowest rack in your oven to avoid the top becoming too brown before the center fully baked through. You can also tent the loaf pan with foil if it begins to brown too much. 

The bread is done when a cake tester or toothpick inserted in the center of the loaf comes out clean. The top will be set and the edges will be slightly browned. 

pumpkin bread in a baking pan after baking

Cool

Let the pumpkin bread cool in the baking pan on a wire rack for at least 1 hour. After 1 hour (or longer) transfer the pumpkin bread to a wire rack to cool completely. 

Note: the crust becomes softer if the pumpkin bread cools in an airtight container in the refrigerator overnight! 

pumpkin bread on a wire cooling rack

Store

Store any leftovers in an an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.

Freeze

Freeze either an entire loaf or individual slices by letting the pumpkin bread cool completely. Then, wrap the loaf/slices in plastic wrap and store in an airtight container in the freezer for up to 2 months.

overhead view of a loaf of pumpkin bread with 4 slices cut out of it

Serve

We love serving this pumpkin bread recipe as a special breakfast (with our favorite breakfast recipes), snack or dessert. It’s great for gifting as well. Here are some serving suggestions: 

front view of a loaf of pumpkin bread with two slices cut out of it

Pumpkin Bread FAQs

Can you freeze pumpkin bread? 

Yes! You can freeze individual slices wrapped in plastic wrap in an airtight container for up to 2 months.

Why did my pumpkin bread not rise?

Check and see if your baking soda, baking power and eggs are fresh.  Next, be sure to not overfill the pan. The bread needs some space to rise in the pan, and if the batter reaches the top of the pan it will fall.

How do you know when pumpkin bread is done? 

You can be sure this bread is done when a cake tester or toothpick inserted in the center of the loaf comes out clean. The top will be set and the edges will be slightly browned. 

Can I double this recipe?

Yes, you can double this recipe and bake it in two 9×5″ loaf pans or 4-6 mini loaf pans.

Can I make this into muffins?

I suggest using this Pumpkin Muffins Recipe – so delicious!

3 slices of pumpkin bread

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Best Pumpkin Bread Recipe

Laura
This is the best pumpkin bread recipe and it's easy to make (no mixer required)! This pumpkin bread is dense & moist with a perfect crumb, loaded with fall spices and just the right amount of sweetness. Use fresh or canned pumpkin!
5 from 68 votes
Course bread, Breakfast, Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 10 slices
Calories 306
Prep Time5 minutes
Cook Time1 hour
Cooling2 hours
Total Time1 hour 5 minutes

Ingredients 
 

Instructions 

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  • Grease a 9×5” loaf pan, set aside.
  • In a small bowl, mix together flour, pumpkin pie spice, cinnamon, baking powder, salt and baking soda. Set aside.
  • In a large bowl whisk together pumpkin puree and melted butter.
  • Add brown sugar and granulated sugar and stir until combined and there are no lumps.
  • Add eggs and vanilla and stir to combine.
  • Add dry ingredients and stir until batter is smooth.
  • If desired, add mix-ins like chocolate chips, cinnamon chips, walnuts, etc. and stir until evenly distributed.
  • Pour batter in to prepared loaf pan and use a spatula to smooth out the top.
  • Bake in preheated oven for 60-65 minutes, or until a cake tested inserted into the center of the loaf comes out clean.
  • Let pumpkin bread cool in the loaf pan on a wire rack for at least 1 hour before removing it, or overnight.

Video

Notes

How to store pumpkin bread: 
  • Store pumpkin bread in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
  • Note:  The crust gets softer after it has been chilled in the refrigerator.
Freeze
Freeze either an entire loaf or individual slices by letting the pumpkin bread cool completely. Then, wrap the loaf/slices in plastic wrap and store in an airtight container in the freezer for up to 2 months.
Homemade Pumpkin Pie Spice
Use this recipe to make your own homemade pumpkin pie spice! 
Or, to make only 1 tablespoon of pumpkin pie spice combine: 
  • 1 ½ tsp cinnamon
  • ½ tsp nutmeg
  • ½ tsp cloves
  • ½ tsp allspice
Ingredient Substitutions
  • Pumpkin puree. This recipe calls for 1 ½ cups of pumpkin puree, which equals one, 15 oz can of pumpkin puree. If you have fresh homemade puree, feel free to use that as well! Just be sure you have drained the water out of it so that it’s thick and isn’t runny. 
  • Salted Butter. Unsalted butter, Coconut oil, canola oil or ghee can be used in place of butter with great results. 
  • Brown Sugar. Both light and dark brown sugar work perfectly in this recipe. If you want a more molasses taste, use dark. 
  • Granulated sugar. Any white granulated sugar works great in this recipe. I use organic cane sugar.
  • All-purpose flour. Bread flour and pastry flour also work well in this pumpkin bread recipe! You can use an all-purpose gluten-free baking flour for a gluten-free version as well.
  • Pumpkin Pie Spice. Use store bought or make your own!

Nutrition

Serving: 1slice | Calories: 306kcal | Carbohydrates: 49g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 11g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Cholesterol: 74mg | Sodium: 285mg | Potassium: 118mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 31g | Vitamin A: 370IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 58mg | Iron: 2mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

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Recipe Rating




38 Comments

    1. 5 stars
      I made this last week and it was delicious! I’m planning to make it again this week and want to add chocolate chips, how much should I add? 1 cup?

  1. 5 stars
    I made this recipe last night and then made it again tonight. I added way more of the spices, including adding straight ground ginger, to really pump up those fall flavors. I also did 1.5 sticks butter and a full 2 cups bread flour in the original recipe, then doubled the entire recipe to make two loaves. It’s in the oven right now and I can’t wait to taste it!

  2. 5 stars
    This is the very best pumpkin bread I’ve ever made or bought. It’s moist, keeps well and everyone loved it. My dogs were begging too!

  3. 5 stars
    I made this recipe with flax eggs and vegan butter. Turned out absolutely delicious and the perfect vegan pumpkin bread! thanks for the recipe

  4. 5 stars
    I love this recipe! It’s very tasty and simple. Always have the ingredients on hand. I’ve made it with chopped walnuts on top and chocolate chips inside, always a favorite with our family!