Homemade pumpkin bread is a favorite fall recipe packed with cinnamon spice and tons of pumpkin flavor. Extra moist and easy to make, this recipe has been a fan favorite since 2014. You don’t even need a mixer! The days of bland pumpkin bread are behind us.
Reader Laura says: “Wanted to say this bread is really good! And last year when I took some of my farmers markets breads to our county fair, this is one of the breads I entered for judging, got a blue ribbon, 1st place, for it! Very good!”
When September rolls around, I have the sudden urge to make every quick bread recipe under the sun. Some of my favorites are banana bread, apple cinnamon bread, and this orange beauty: the BEST pumpkin bread I’ve ever had. This is a favorite pumpkin bread recipe because each slice is incredibly moist and the process is very straightforward. There are no dry crumbs here! This pumpkin bread is also packed with pumpkin and pumpkin spice flavors. I’m telling you… this is some good stuff.
Perfecting This Pumpkin Bread Recipe
When I was testing this pumpkin bread recipe, it took me about 6 or 7 tries to get it just right. After plenty of sunken, soggy, and flavorless loaves, I finally mastered what ingredients and how much of each to use, and the result is pumpkin perfection. The recipe is a lot like these pumpkin muffins.
Here are the key ingredients you need & why:
- Pumpkin: There’s a lot of pumpkin in this recipe because it not only adds flavor, but moisture as well. I always bake with canned pumpkin, but homemade pumpkin puree works too. If you’re interested, here’s how to make pumpkin puree. Make sure you blot your homemade pumpkin puree to rid some of the moisture (not necessary if using canned pumpkin). Simply measure your homemade pumpkin puree, then squeeze out some of the moisture with a paper towel.
- Oil: Adds incredible moisture and lightens up the crumb. Vegetable oil is best, but you can substitute melted coconut oil instead.
- Favorite Fall Spices: Cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, cloves… the gang’s all here! These 4 spices complement the pumpkin flavor wonderfully (and are often found together in many other pumpkin recipes). You could also use pumpkin pie spice—see my recipe Note below.
- Orange Juice: I know orange juice seems strange here, but don’t be nervous. This bread will NOT taste like oranges. I use orange juice because a little liquid keeps the bread from tasting too dense. Milk works too if you don’t have orange juice, but the subtle orange flavor is like magic in this bread. It just works.
- Chocolate Chips: Optional, but if you’re a chocolate lover, pumpkin + chocolate is always a good idea.
Here’s the batter and a couple pictures of the bread without chocolate chips:
Why You’ll Love This Pumpkin Bread Recipe:
- Delicious in the fall
- Smells wonderful while it bakes
- Easy to make—no mixer required
- Extra moist
- Tons of pumpkin flavor
- Loaded with warm spices
- Adaptable—studded with chocolate chips, or use chopped pecans, or leave plain
- Similar to banana bread, it tastes even better on day 2 (if it lasts that long!)
I love this pumpkin bread recipe so much that I included it in my first cookbook, Sally’s Baking Addiction. It’s always a hit, especially when pumpkin spice season picks up!
But after 1 taste, you might not want to limit this quick bread to the fall season. 🙂
Another reader, Liz, says: “This is by far the best pumpkin bread recipe I have made… It’s moist and loaded with flavor. I love the orange juice that adds a fresh flavor to it. I add some orange zest that kicks up the orange flavor a bit. It goes well with the chocolate chips too.”
More Perfect Pumpkin Recipes
- Pumpkin Muffins & Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls
- Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies & Pumpkin Snickerdoodles
- Pumpkin Roll
- Brown Butter Pumpkin Oatmeal Cookies
- Pumpkin Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting
- Recipes to Make With Leftover Pumpkin Puree
My Best Pumpkin Bread
- Prep Time: 15 minutes
- Cook Time: 1 hour
- Total Time: 1 hour, 15 minutes
- Yield: 1 loaf
- Category: Bread
- Method: Baking
- Cuisine: American
Homemade pumpkin bread is a favorite fall recipe packed with sweet cinnamon spice, tons of pumpkin flavor, and optional chocolate chips.
- 1 and 3/4 cups (219g) all-purpose flour (spoon & leveled)
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg*
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves*
- 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger*
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 2 large eggs, at room temperature
- 1/2 cup (100g) granulated sugar
- 3/4 cup (150g) packed light or dark brown sugar
- 1 and 1/2 cups (340g) pumpkin puree (canned or fresh)
- 1/2 cup (120ml) vegetable oil, canola oil, or melted coconut oil
- 1/4 cup (60ml) orange juice*
- 2/3 cup (120g) semi-sweet chocolate chips*
- Adjust the oven rack to the lower third position and preheat the oven to 350°F (177°C). Lowering the oven rack prevents the top of your bread from browning too much, too soon. Grease a metal 9×5-inch loaf pan with non-stick spray. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, whisk the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, ginger, and salt together until combined. Set aside. In a medium bowl, whisk the eggs, granulated sugar, and brown sugar together until combined. Whisk in the pumpkin, oil, and orange juice. Pour these wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and gently mix together using a rubber spatula or a wooden spoon. There will be a few lumps. Do not over-mix. Gently fold in the chocolate chips, if including.
- Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan. Bake for 60–65 minutes, making sure to loosely cover the bread with aluminum foil halfway through to prevent the top from getting too brown. The bread is done when a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean with only a few small moist crumbs. This may be before or after 60–65 minutes depending on your oven, so begin checking every 5 minutes around the 55-minute mark.
- Allow the bread to cool completely in the pan on a wire rack before removing and slicing.
- Cover and store leftover pumpkin bread at room temperature for up to 3–4 days, or in the refrigerator for up to a week.
- Make Ahead Tip: Baked pumpkin bread can be frozen for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator and bring to room temperature before serving.
- Special Tools: Glass Mixing Bowls | Rainbow Whisk | Loaf Pan | Cooling Rack | Kitchen Scale
- Spices: You can use 1 teaspoon store-bought or homemade pumpkin pie spice instead of nutmeg, cloves, and ginger. Be sure to still add 2 teaspoons of cinnamon to the batter.
- Oil: Oil is a better choice than melted butter in this recipe. The bread is not as moist and soft if using butter.
- Orange Juice: You can substitute milk (any kind) for orange juice.
- Chocolate Chips: If desired, try using milk chocolate, white chocolate, dark chocolate, or even chopped pecans/walnuts instead of the semi-sweet chocolate chips. You can leave the pumpkin bread plain, too.
- Pumpkin Muffins: This recipe makes 15–18 pumpkin chocolate chip muffins. Bake for about 20 minutes at the same oven temperature, or try this similar pumpkin muffins recipe.
- Bundt Cake: Simply make this pumpkin Bundt cake (pretty much this exact recipe) and leave out the cream cheese filling. Add 1 and 1/2 cups chocolate chips if desired. About 1 hour bake time.
Keywords: pumpkin bread
Reader Comments & Reviews
I made this Thanksgiving morning for my family. I’ve tried a different recipe each time over the past few years. This is a keeper. It was moist and not too sweet. My family loved it! Thank you for sharing your baking talents with us!!
I’ve made it both with orange juice and milk. Both are good. Worth it!
I love this bread. But I keep having trouble covering the pan midway through the cooking time. I tried making a tent shape so air can still get in but that collapses. i made the bread tonight. It looked great after 30 minutes. I kept trying to get the foil cover right. I wound up hitting the center top of the partially baked loaf causing a bigger crack in the middle of the bread. Can you please help with this? Thanks.
Hi Karen! Quick breads usually bake with cracks down the center. This is completely normal as steam tries to escape the tall and thick loaf. You can see a crack in the pictured bread, too! For tenting, I find it easiest to grab a long piece of foil, place it over top and bend the ends so they each touch either side of the loaf pan, sort of like a dome over the cooking bread. If you’re still having trouble, a thicker, sturdier aluminum foil is sometimes easier to work with, such as foil used for grilling.
I am super excited to try this recipe but was wondering if the sugars could be substituted with honey?
Hi Jacks, we don’t recommend it — it would take some recipe testing to determine the right swap, since it would be adding additional liquids to the batter. Best to stick with the recipe as written!
This recipe is very moist and delicious. I put 1/2 cup of chopped walnuts in mine. I have also made this in a mini loaf pan – 4 mini loaves. Watch the baking as noted and put on the lowest shelf in the oven. Delicious!
Made this today. Put on the lower shelf as recommended. It took 1hr 15 minutes. The last time I made it, didn’t adjust the oven shelves, baked for 60 minutes and it was perfect. Hoping the longer cooking time doesn’t dry it out.
It was a huge hit the first time I made it. Hoping for a repeat response!
Made the pumpkin scones – which were fabulous – and tried this recipe to use up the can of pumpkin pack. Used pecans instead of chocolate chips. Since it called for only a quarter cup of orange juice and we’re not big OJ drinkers here, I got an orange. zested it, and squeezed it for the juice. Tossed the zest into the dry flour mixture. Results were great. The orange zest added a great zing. Will definitely be making both recipes again.
My kids love this recipe. I’ve used a different pumpkin bread recipe for years and just recently switched to yours. My kids noticed and told me my bread was so much better than it used to be. Thanks!
It turned out perfectly, as written. It tastes great (right about of spice) and doesn’t require as much sugar and flour (carbs) as other recipes. I love the coconut oil and brown sugar. Best of all, it doesn’t require the mixer. This is my new go-to recipe.
This was the most flavorful and moist quick bread I have ever baked. Love the fall spices along with the chocolate chips. Will definitely be making this again!
Been looking for a pumpkin bread recipe, yours sounds by far the best for flavor, so I’ve settled on this one. I’d like to add some chopped dates to the batter as I’ve got them on hand & because I love dates in these types of breads. Also would like to add toasted chopped pecans. What amounts would you recommend for each? Making this tomorrow as have to buy the pumpkin. Also, I’ve made a few of your cakes, they are hands down better than other recipes on the web I’ve tried. You rock in the baking world! I really like your explanations too, the science behind ingredients etc.; really helps me in my baking endeavors. I am a sort of baking novice right now.
Hi Lucy! We recommend keeping the total amount of add-ins to about a cup. Hope you love the bread!
This recipe is fantastic! Better than the option at the international coffee shop. Easy to make and clean up.
I just want to say that this is the best pumpkin bread I’ve ever had. Thank you for sharing !! Will be sharing this with everyone
This is the best pumpkin bread recipe I have ever baked! So moist and full of flavor! Thank you so much for sharing! This is a keeper!
I made this this morning exactly as written!. Absolutely delicious!
Any vanilla needed in this recipe???
Hi Kendra, You can certainly add a little vanilla extract, but we don’t find that it’s necessary here. Lots of other flavors!
Kept it in the oven 1 hour 20 min and it was still uncooked. Is it suppose to be a very wet batter?
Hi Melanie! You can see the intended batter texture in the photos in the blog post and the video tutorial in the recipe card. It should be on the thick side!
I made this recipe yesterday and yes will be making again. I doubled the recipe which turned out to be two lovely loaves. Raisins in this recipe is excellent.
This is a YES recipe to make.
This was really good. I used homemade pumpkin puree, and a heaping tablespoon of pumpkin pie spice in place of the various spices. I also added vanilla to the wet ingredients. The main change I made was to halve the sugars – pumpkin has a natural sweetness so the recipe sounded like it might be too sweet for me as written.
Absolutely delicious pumpkin bread. I used the full amount of brown sugar in the recipe, but substituted an equal volume of granulated Splenda for the white sugar. No one knew and it helps cut down calories and carbs for me.
The OJ addition was delicious. I used the 1 tsp of pumpkin pie spice plus 2 tsp cinnamon, and this was a perfect amount. The only problem with this bake was I slightly underbaked it. Next time I will bake it a little longer.
I forgot to mention in my review, I didn’t have any orange juice but I added 1/4 t of orange extract to the milk. It’s still warm but I can taste a hint of all the wonderful spices, chocolate and orange. Delicious!
This recipe is delicious and so easy to prepare. I am having a still warm slice right now and typing 1 handed lol. Looking so forward to day 2 when it has had a chance to gel together.
What kind of heat do you use in the oven? Hot air or the up and down heat?
Greets from Holland
Hi Tamara, All of the recipes on this site are written for conventional settings. Convection ovens are fantastic for cooking and roasting. If you have the choice, we recommend conventional settings when baking cakes, breads, etc. The flow of air from convection heat can cause baked goods to rise and bake unevenly and it also pulls moisture out of the oven. If you do use convection settings for baking, lower your temperature by 25 degrees F and keep in mind that things may still take less time to bake.
Thanx for the fast answer! I understand it all now. The bread is in the oven now, added some pecans. I normally make banana bread every other week. Time to switch it up. I’m so excited for this. Will follow you and you’re delicious recipes.
Reeeeally good pumpkin bread.
I absolutely loved this and so did my family. After making 3 different recipes this is the best and with the chocolate chips, just divine! Made 2 smaller loaves and it freezes tightly wrapped really great also. Did not change a thing!
Does doubling this work?
Hi Tamisyn, for best results, we recommend making two separate batches rather than doubling.
How long would you leave in oven for individual mini loaf pans?
Hi Tami, Bake time will vary based on the size of the mini loaf pans. Keep a close eye on them and use a toothpick to test for doneness. Same temperature. Enjoy!
I only have a glass baking pan (same size as the pan used in the recipe). Does that change anything?
Hi Rose! You can use your glass loaf pan – just keep in mind the bake time may be slightly longer. Enjoy!
I made this recipe and baked it in my mini 4 loaf pan. I took them out at 40 minutes at 350 degrees. I checked and they were ready.. Follow the five minute rule noted in the recipe. . I sifted my flour one time. I also chopped 1/4 cup of walnuts and added to the mixture. They were so delicious and my husband says, “They’re the best!” Thanks for your recipe.
Great recipe! Can i bake it in a 8×4 pan? I don’t have a 9×5 pan but i want to make this, help!!
Hi Sofia, You can try dividing this batter between two 8×4 inch loaf pans. The baking time will be less but we’re unsure exactly how long they would take. Or you can make this recipe as muffins – see recipe notes.
Can i make this as a muffin?
Hi Riley, yes you can! See the recipe Notes, #7: This recipe makes 15–18 pumpkin chocolate chip muffins. Bake for about 20 minutes at the same oven temperature, or try this similar pumpkin muffins recipe.
Can you use sunflower oil for this recipe instead of vegetable oil?
Hi Luca, we haven’t tested this recipe with sunflower oil but can’t see why not!
I used peanut oil because I didn’t have vegetable oil at home and my bread came out very dense.
I have a new airfryer and someone said it can be used for baking too…
Can you cook this bread recipe in an airfryer?
Hi Sian, we’ve never tried baking this pumpkin bread in an air fryer before but let us know if you do!
This is a solid pumpkin bread recipe! Tastes like the filling of pumpkin pie. Don’t skimp on the spices! Thanks Sally & team for a recipe we can come back to every fall!
My air fryer is actually a convection oven, would make sense if so.