Vegan Pumpkin Bread Recipe and How to Make It

Vegan Pumpkin Bread

When the bright orange pumpkins first make their way into my local grocery stores, my first thought is to make pumpkin bread. However, I do use canned pumpkin, which of course, is available year-round.

This recipe makes it an absolutely wonderfully moist and delicious bread. And with the addition of a few chocolate chips, who can resist?

This bread also freezes well. If you want to save one loaf for later, just wrap it tightly in plastic wrap or foil for a non-vegan version.

Prep Time:
45 mins
Cook Time:
55 mins
Total Time:
1 hour 40 mins

Recipe Type: Dessert, Quick bread, Vegan bread
Tools: Two 9x5x2¾ inch loaf pans
Serving: 2 loaves
Pan Prep: Greased, Parchment lined (optional), Floured
Storage: Cover and room temperature or refrigerate

Vegan Pumpkin Bread Ingredients:

A small amount of vegetable shortening and flour are used to prepare the pan.

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1½ cups whole wheat flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon ground allspice
  • ½ teaspoon ground cloves
  • 2 cups firmly packed light or dark brown sugar
  • 1 15-oz can pumpkin puree (about 1¾ cups)
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • ½ cup applesauce
    (Tip: I use sweetened applesauce or unsweetened if preferred.)
  • 6 tablespoons pure maple syrup, preferably “grade A maple syrup with a dark color and robust taste,” formally known as “grade B” syrup.
  • 3 tablespoons water
  • ½ cup toasted walnuts or pecans, coarsely chopped (optional)
  • ½ cup chocolate chips (optional)

How to Make Vegan Pumpkin Bread:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Prepare two 9x5x2¾ inch loaf pans; lightly grease the pans with shortening and dust with flour.
    (Tip: to make baked bread easier to remove from the pan, lightly grease the pan, line it with parchment paper, and then lightly grease the top of the parchment paper and dust with flour.)
  2. In a medium-sized mixing bowl, combine all-purpose flour, whole wheat flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, and cloves; sift or whisk together to mix. Set aside.
  3. In a large bowl, combine brown sugar, pumpkin puree, oil, applesauce, maple syrup, and water; whisk together until well blended. Add flour mixture; stir just until blended. Add nuts and chocolate chips; stir until mixed.
  4. Bake: Pour batter into the loaf pans, divide the batter evenly between the two pans, and smooth the surface with a small offset spatula, rubber spatula, or the back of a large spoon. Bake for 50 to 55 or 60 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
  5. Remove pans from oven and let cool for about 15 minutes. Turn the bread out of the pans onto a wire cooling rack, or grab the top edges of the parchment paper and lift the bread from the loaf pans and place it on a wire cooling rack to finish cooling. Remove parchment paper and discard.
    (Tip: 60 minutes was the perfect bake time for my oven.)
  6. Testing for doneness: Use the baking times given in the recipe as an estimate, as some ovens bake faster or slower than others. Insert a wooden toothpick or long wooden skewer near the center of the bread and remove it.
    A few moist crumbs may be attached to the toothpick or skewer, but not the batter. Or, insert an instant-read thermometer into the middle of the loaf; the internal temperature should range between 195-205 degrees F.
    (Tip: I like to use a combination of the toothpick test plus a temperature reading using a Super-Fast Thermapen Thermometer for an accurate doneness test.)

The taste and feel of fall are in the air when you smell Pumpkin Bread baking in the oven. Full of rich pumpkin, warm spices, toasted nuts, and sweet raisins. This bread will be one of your favorites.

Related recipe: Vegan Zucchini Bread Recipe

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