Pumpkin Pecan Quick Bread
Quick breads are a wonderful and easy addition to any brunch or breakfast table. (Plus, there's less butter & sugar than in a cake, so you don't have to feel that pang of guilt as you eat a slice instead of the salad you packed for lunch!) It's a great way to use up any leftover fruits, veggies or pantry items you might have from the last great meal you prepared and it is moist enough to last throughout the week.
I especially love this pumpkin pecan quick bread because it has just a little bit sweet & spice to start my day but is filling enough to keep me satisfied until lunch. The pecans give it such a nice contrast in texture. Sometimes I leave them out for certain family members, (i.e.: my husband) but I always miss them! No matter what autumn recipe I make, there always seems to be leftover canned pumpkin to be used up. This bread comes together so quickly, you could even have your kids make it! Bake a few loaves at a time, wrap them tightly with plastic wrap and foil (once cooled) and freeze them to give as gifts later. You never know when you'll want to bring a little something sweet for a hostess, sick relative or new neighbor. Everyone loves an edible gift!
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1 teaspoon ground ginger
- 6 T unsalted butter, softened
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1/3 cup brown sugar
- 1 cup canned pumpkin puree
- 2 eggs
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1/3 cup milk
- 1/2 cup chopped pecans or walnuts
- 1/3 cup raisins or chopped dates (optional)
Preheat oven to 350°. Spray a loaf pan with nonstick baking spray. In a bowl, whisk together all the dry ingredients. In a separate large bowl, with an electric mixer, beat together the softened butter and two sugars for about 2 to 3 minutes. Gradually incorporate the pumpkin purée, eggs (one at a time), milk & vanilla. Once combined, add the dry ingredients in three separate additions. (Don't overmix, a few dry spots are OK.) With a spoon, stir in the nuts and chopped fruit. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and stir once more. Pour into the prepared loaf pan and smooth the top with a spatula. Place on the center rack of the oven and bake for approximately 50-60 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean. Let cool for 15 minutes in the pan then remove and place on a cooling bread or wire rack. Cool completely before slicing or freezing.