A delightfully moist and perfectly spiced vegan pumpkin bread topped with candied pecans for the ultimate fall pastry or DIY holiday gift.
I recently had a reader ask me about the best egg replacer for pumpkin bread. She was getting ready to whip up a bunch of loaves to gift to her friends this holiday season. A friend who gives out vegan pumpkin around the holidays! Now that’s the kind of friend I want to have!
As I talked with her about different egg replacers, I dawned on me that I ought to have a vegan pumpkin bread recipe for the blog and so I set to work to make my dreams come true.
Vegan pumpkin bread, my friends!
This vegan pumpkin bread should be a staple in your households this holiday season. Not only does it make a great DIY gift (as some of you already know) but it’s also the perfect accompaniment to winter soups and chai tea lattes all fall and winter long.
Let’s take a look at how to make this pumpkin bread.
Step one – Combine your dry ingredients
In a medium bowl combine the flour, salt, baking soda, and spices. Make sure to really whisk the dry ingredients together. I had a few issues when I first made this recipe with my baking soda clumping together. This is not only a nasty surprise to bite into but when the baking soda is not fully incorporated, the bread cannot rise as full and evenly.
So whisk until those dry ingredients are perfectly uniform.
Step two – Combine your wet ingredients
In a separate bowl (or liquid measuring cup) mix together your wet ingredients. That’s the pumpkin purée, sugars, apple sauce, coconut oil, and vanilla extract. Again you want to really combine these ingredients until smooth and even.
Why is sugar considered a wet ingredient?
Occasionally I’ll get a reader asking why sugar is considered a wet ingredient. By first dissolving the sugars in the wet ingredients, the sugars break up the fats allowing a fluffier and lighter quick breads. This method also more evenly distributes the sugar, which would otherwise dissolve unevenly when the wet ingredients are added.
Step Three: Mix Together
Combine the wet ingredients with the dry, mixing until you have a uniform batter. Don’t over-mix as this will make your pumpkin bread dense and gummy. Because pumpkin bread is quite heavy with the pumpkin already, this is even more important to keep in mind.
Light and fluffy! Light and fluffy!
Step Four – Pour and Bake
Pour the batter into a prepared loaf pan and bake for about 60 minutes at 350 F. The baking time will vary depending on your oven. After about 50 minutes, you can check for doneness by inserting a toothpick in the middle of the loaf. If it comes out clean or with just a few crumbs, your pumpkin bread is done.
If your batter is still fairly loose, add 10 minutes before checking again.
Step Five – Candy those pecans (optional)
While your bread is cooking, it’s time to candy those pecans. You can candy either in the oven or on the stovetop. I prefer the stovetop method for this recipe since you don’t want to be opening and closing the oven door much as your quick bread rises. For the stovetop method, heat the vegan butter in a small skillet. Add pecans, sugar, and cinnamon, and cook, stirring frequently, until pecans are toasted and the butter/sugar mixture has coated them evenly. That’s it!
Candied pecans store for a week so if you prefer the oven method you can follow these instructions.
Step Six – Topping the bread
When the pumpkin bread is ready, remove from oven. With a pastry brush, brush on melted butter and immediately top with your candied pecans.
A few other optional variations for this vegan pumpkin bread are:
- chocolate chips
- walnuts or pecans baked into the bread
- a cheesecake swirl
- raisins or cranberries
However you decide to dress it up, these vegan pumpkin loaves are perfect for your winter meals and holiday gifting!
This vegan pumpkin bread is fairly straight forward. However, a few things to keep in mind when making this recipe:
- Make sure not to over-mix your batter. When batter is over-mixed, it allows gluten stands to form which leads to gummy dense pastries. We’re looking for light and fluffy!
- Spray your loaf pan well to prevent the batter from sticking to the pan.
- Depending on your oven, the top of the bread might start to brown before the center is done. If this is the case, cover the bread in tin foil the final 10-15 minutes.
- Let your bread cool for 10 minutes before flipping it out onto a wire cooling rack.
- Let your bread cool completely before storing it. To store it, wrap it in plastic wrap and keep it at room temperature for up to 5 days. The bread can also be frozen and pulled out to thaw the night before.
- 1/2 cup pecans,
- 3 tbsp vegan butter, divided
- 2 tbsp sugar
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon
Preheat the oven to 350F. Generously spray a 9x5 loaf pan and set aside.
In a medium bowl, combine flour, baking soda, spices, and salt. In a separate bowl, whisk together pumpkin puree, sugars, apple sauce, coconut oil, and vanilla extract.
Pour wet ingredients into the dry and fold together with a wooden spoon until a thick uniform batter has formed. Be careful not to over-mix. Pour the batter into prepared loaf pan and bake for 50-65 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the middle come out clean.
While the pumpkin bread bakes, make you candied pecans. Heat 2 tablespoon of vegan butter in a small skillet. Add pecans, sugar, and cinnamon, and cook, stirring frequently, until pecans are toasted and sugar has coated them evenly, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat.
Melt the remaining tablespoon of butter in the microwave or on the stovetop.
Serve immediately or wrap in plastic wrap and store at room temperature.