Blissfully Delicious

Spiced Pumpkin Bread with Cranberries and Walnut

pumpkin bread 2
We had the most beautiful weather yesterday, which led up to a perfect weekend with a lot of outdoor times. The leaves’ colors have been changing everywhere, but I think they still haven’t hit their peak yet, so the best scenery is still yet to come.  We took the kids to a local creamery’s fall harvest yesterday, with lots of delicious sample of homemade food(homemade ice-cream, chocolate milk, apple sauce), music, farm animals, balloons, and all of fun times outside. The kids had such a blast that we had to drag them out of there. After that, we took them to a local park to have a short hike and exploration. One of the things that my hubby and I used to enjoy was our evening walks with our St. Bernard, Charlotte. We managed to keep up that tradition even after our daughter was born: we’d either carry her or put her in a stroller. Unfortunately, we haven’t really been able to re-establish that routine with the addition of our son. It’s a little hard to manage two kids who are trying to run in two different directions with a very large dog who loves to say hello to every walker and dog that we pass. Sunday was definitely a highlight of our weekend, and I hope that the weather continues to stay beautiful for a couple more days.

pumpkin bread
Despite of our awesome Sunday, I had a baking failure on Saturday; and it was pretty discouraging! I haven’t had a baking failure in a very long time; so I was actually pretty bummed. I peeled about 20 pears to make a crisp that turned out to be a total disaster so I felt like I just wasted all that time and good ingredients for something that we couldn’t enjoy. It was so wrong that I didn’t even know how to “fix” it. Thankfully, this happened after I made this pumpkin bread, which was a success. Everyone should bake a pumpkin bread like this in the fall; the kind that has chock-full of really good fall spices like cinnamon, nutmeg, and ginger, a tad of sweetness, and pumpkin flavors bursting out of each bite. And this bread is just that; it rose beautifully, and has just a perfect level of moistness without it being too mushy. A thick slice of this bread, warmed up or toasted gently, will be perfect with salted butter. It will be a perfect accompaniment to your spiced apple cider or coffee. It’s also relatively “healthier” than your average quick bread, it has a mixture of whole-wheat flour with all purpose flour to give it more robust flavors and some health benefits of more fibers. If you prefer to use all white whole-wheat flour, that would work as well. It also only uses about 1/2 stick of butter for the entire recipe. Not too bad, right? :)

Note:  I’m submitting this pumpkin recipe to our bake-along group “What’s Baking”. The theme is “Pumpkin”, and Carrie will be rounding up everyone’s submission by the end of the month on her blog, Carrie’s Sweet Life.

Spiced Pumpkin Bread with Cranberries and Walnut

Yield: 1 loaf


1 can (15-ounce) pumpkin puree - not pumpkin pie filling
1 cup granulated sugar
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg
1/2 tsp. ground ginger
1-1/3 cups all purpose flour
2/3 cups whole-wheat flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
4 tsp. (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
2 large eggs
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/4-1/2 cup walnuts, toasted and chopped
1/4-1/2 cup dried cranberries, chopped



Cook the pumpkin, sugar, cinnamon, salt, nutmeg, and ginger together ina  medium saucepan over medium-high heat, stirring constantly, until thick and shiny, about 5-7 minutes. Set aside to cool.

Adjust an oven rack to the lower middle position and heat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease one 8-1/2x4-1/2 inch loaf pan with a vegetable oil cooking spray.

Whisk the flours, baking soda and baking powder together in a large bowl. In a seperate bowl, whisk the cooled pumpkin mixture, melted butter, eggs, and vanilla together.

Gently fold the pumpkin mixture into the pumpkin mixture with a rubber spatula until just combined (do not over mix). The batter will be very thick. Fold walnuts and cranberries into the batter.

Scrape the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top. Bake until golden brown, and a toothpick inserted into the center of the loaf comes out with just a few crumbs attached, 45-55 minutes, rotating the pan halfway through baking.

Let the loaf cool in the pan for 10 minutes, then turn onto a wire rack and let cool for an hour before serving.


Source: America's Test Kitchen Healthy Family Cookbook


One Response to “Spiced Pumpkin Bread with Cranberries and Walnut”

  1. #
    Carol at Wild Goose Tea — October 20, 2014 at 5:41 pm

    This is definitely a holiday bread with pumpkin, cranberries and nuts. Wow. What a great texture it has too. I am sorry about your baking failure. It happens and it is disheartening—especially after all that peeling.

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