Pumpkin Loaf Recipe

You guys! I just realized I never posted my pumpkin loaf recipe here (I posted it on Live Journal, where I used to blog back in the old days, when dinosaurs roamed the earth). I made some tonight and, although we’re not huge proponents of feeding sugary stuff to our kid, it was a much bigger hit with him than our fancy sandwiches (rye, caramelized onions, smoked cheddar, sharp cheddar, and sliced gala apples, with a late appearance by the one thing that was missing, which turned out to be a little honey mustard, buttered and grilled).

Anyway, here’s what I had to say about pumpkin loaf and my recipe, with a few modifications from the original version.

When I lived in Oak Park, one of my favorite things in the world was the pumpkin loaf from Prairie Bread Kitchen. I think they had it once or twice a week. It was so popular it would sell out before I stopped by after taking the el home from work, so the guy would save a loaf for me. When I got home, I’d sit at my dining room table and eat way too much of it, but it was just that good.

It was years after leaving Oak Park (which we did seven years ago now!) before I had pumpkin loaf again. I found pumpkin loaf recipes from time to time, but there always was something that turned me off — nuts (nothing against nuts — I just don’t think they belong in pumpkin loaf); raisins (optional or not); oleo (ew). I know you can leave out the nuts or the raisins or use something other than “oleo,” but I strictly construe pumpkin loaf — it should not have nuts, raisins, oleo, or any type of glaze or frosting. It should be nothing but pure pumpkin goodness. I never tried a recipe that called for these extra ingredients.

One day a few years ago now, I spent way too much time on the internet searching for a good pumpkin loaf recipe, without the offending nuts, raisins, or glazes. I finally found one that looked promising. I made a few modifications, and here’s my recipe.

Pumpkin Loaf

(makes two loaves)


  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda [altitude adjustment = 1 1/2 teaspoons]
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 (15 ounce) canned pumpkin
  • 4 eggs [or Ener-G egg replacer if you feel like it and/or are vegan]
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup applesauce [I use unsweetened]
  • 2/3 cup water
  • 3 cups sugar [altitude adjustment = 2 1/3 cups]

Preheat oven to 350. Grease and flour two loaf pans.

In a large bowl, mix together flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, and ginger. In a separate, larger bowl, mix together pumpkin, eggs, oil, applesauce, water, and sugar until well blended. (It might be wise to mash up the pumpkin a little before adding the rest of the ingredients; I say this because today, my pumpkin was kind of lumpy and difficult to mix.)

Stir the dry ingredients into the pumpkin mixture until just blended. Pour into the prepared pans.

Bake for about 55 minutes (until a knife inserted in the middle of each loaf comes out clean). Enjoy!