Introduction: Age Old Pumpkin Bread

About: Educator, designer, maker of things

A while back, I wrote an instructable called Age Old Banana Bread to share one of those recipes that has apparently been handed down from generation to generation. It is by far one of the juiciest banana breads I've ever had that never dries out and isn't too sweet. Inspired by the 2020 Pumpkin challenge, I thought I'd try to modify my great great great grandma's recipe to turn this age old banana bread into a timeless pumpkin bread that isn't dry or too sweet.

I kept many of the specific techniques and order of operations from my banana bread recipe. For example, pre whisking the eggs and giving the mixture time to rise. I've skipped out on these in the past by just pouring it all together in one bowl and it ruined my banana breads every time, I figured it would be the same with pumpkin.


  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) of butter
  • 1 and 1/4 cup of sugar
  • 1 and 1/4 cup of all purpose flour
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 cups of pumpkin puree
  • 1/2 tsp of ground cinnamon
  • 1 pinch of ground nutmeg
  • 1 tsp of vanilla extract
  • 1 Tbsp of sour cream
  • 1 tsp of baking soda
  • cooking spray

Step 1: Step 1: Preheat Oven

Easiest step, preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

Step 2: Step 2: Preparing for the Mixture

I used to call this step a "mash" because it was the base for mashing in bananas. But no mashing is needed with a pumpkin bread so we're now referring to this as a "mixture". In a small dish, mix the sour cream and baking soda together. Set it aside while you work on the next few steps as the sour cream and baking soda need to sit and rise for about 10 minutes or so before mixing with the pumpkin.

Step 3: Step 3: Get Creamy

In a large bowl, add the butter and soften in the microwave for 30 seconds or so if needed. Then add the sugar and cream the butter and sugar together. I find this goes better when using a large spoon rather than a mixer.

Step 4: Step 4: Sweet and Yolky

In a separate cup or dish, whisk the eggs together with the vanilla extract. Then add the eggs / vanilla mixture to the large bowl along with the cinnamon & nutmeg into the sugar / butter cream. Using a spoon or a mixer on a slow setting, blend the ingredients together so they are nice and creamy.

Step 5: Step 5: Time to Make It Orange

Now for the pumpkin. Add the pumpkin puree into the bowl with the sour cream / baking soda mixture from the second step (this should have risen slightly by now). Using a spoon or mixer on a slow setting, mix the pumpkin in with the sour cream / baking soda mixture. Once well mixed, add the pumpkin / sour cream / baking soda mixture into the large bowl with the rest of the ingredients and mix until mostly smooth using either a spoon or mixer on slow.

Step 6: Step 6: Keep It Fluffy

Last mixing step! Add the flour to the large bowl of ingredients and mix slowly. Don't over mix it, make sure it remains light and fluffy.

Step 7: Step 7: Bake

Pour all ingredients into a well-greased baking pan. I found that the pumpkin bread took significantly longer than my banana bread in my oven. Typically, I baked the banana bread for 40-50 minutes, but the pumpkin bread took closer to 80-90 minutes. When the bread is ready, the top should crack and you should be able to poke a toothpick in the center and pull it out dry. The outside will brown much quicker than the inside will bake, but keep an eye on the center as you near 80 minutes or so. Removing the bread from the oven just as the inside finishes is key.

Step 8: Step 8: Time to Serve!

Let the pumpkin bread cool for 15-20 minutes before cutting into it. However, it is best served the next day, honestly it's like a completely different thing. After the pumpkin bread cools, cover with aluminum foil and let sit for 12 hours or overnight. Then cut, serve, and enjoy!

Thanks for reading, happy baking!

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