Pumpkin season is the perfect time for Swirled Chocolate Pumpkin Bread! Moist, full of spice, swirled with chocolate, and drizzled with Bourbon Butterscotch Glaze, this is the best mash-up quick bread for fall!
I’ve been a “take my breakfast on the go” kind of person for most of my life. From my school days to my bakery to days to even now – if it’s portable and not messy, it’s a to-go breakfast candidate.
Now, I wouldn’t say that this marbled quick bread is necessarily a breakfast item.
It’s a fall treat for sure, and one that’s pretty much covered in a bourbon caramel sauce. Not terribly nutritious as a first meal of the day kind of deal.
That being said, a lot of this WAS eaten for breakfast, so I can confirm that it pairs with coffee NICELY.
This page includes step by step instructions, as well as tips and notes. If you’d like to skip all that, feel free to scroll down to the full, printable recipe card at the bottom of the post.
So I’m in Kansas this week on a media trip, and before coming out to the midwest, I was convinced I would get a taste of fall out here.
As it turns out, Kansas in September feels an awful lot like home. Warm, humid, sunny days that leave you with a mild sunburn after only a couple hours.
Needless to say, this trip isn’t filling me with cozy fall vibes. But this bread sure did!
I’m always thankful for Pumpkin Week, since it forces me to really get ahead of the season and psych up for it!
What Is Pumpkin Bread?
If you love banana bread and zucchini bread, and are a fan of fall spices, you’ll love pumpkin bread!
Pumpkin bread is a type of super moist quick bread made with either canned or fresh, cooked pumpkin. It is usually baked in a rectangular bread loaf pan, and can sometimes include add-ins like nuts, raisins, dried cranberries, or chocolate chips.
Just like with other quick breads, the verdict is out as to whether or not they’re truly breads. This pumpkin bread recipe honestly eats more like a cake – but grabbing a slice on the go is a great
Is Pumpkin Bread Healthy?
Ehhhhh. Not exactly. Even though it’s made with pumpkin, the sugars and use of white flour make this a pretty calorie-heavy treat.
If you’d like to make this healthier, you could:
- Use whole wheat flour instead of all-purpose
- Sub out the sugars for honey or maple syrup, or cut down how much sugar you use
- Use coconut oil instead of melted butter
- Use lower fat milk
- Definitely leave off the glaze!
How to Store Pumpkin Bread
To store the bread at room temperature (for consumption within 3 days): Wrap the cooled bread in plastic wrap and keep on the counter.
To refrigerate pumpkin bread (for consumption within 1 week): Double wrap bread in plastic wrap and refrigerate.
To freeze pumpkin bread (for consumption within 3 months): Wrap the cooled bread (whole or in slices) in plastic wrap, place it in a plastic zipper freezer bag, and freeze. Defrost the loaf at room temperature the day before you’re ready to eat it. If defrosting slices, you can just pop them in a toaster oven and enjoy immediately!
Tips for Making THE BEST Pumpkin Bread
- Unless you’re using roasted fresh pie pumpkin, only use 100% pure canned pumpkin puree in this recipe! It can be found in the baking aisle or your grocery store.
- This pumpkin bread recipe is lightly spiced with pumpkin spice and cinnamon. If you’d like to add your own blend of spices, feel free to.
- Buttermilk is my liquid of choice in this recipe. If you’re out of buttermilk, measure out 1/2 cup + 1 tablespoon regular milk, and add 1 tablespoon of lemon juice or white vinegar. Whisk it together, then let it sit for 8-10 minutes. Instant buttermilk substitute!
- Make sure your melted butter has cooled slightly before mixing it with the other wet ingredients. Butter that’s too hot can scramble your eggs!
- I baked this loaf in my favorite Nordic Ware Heritage Loaf Pan (the glaze sits so nicely in the ridges!), but you can use any 8×4-inch loaf pan you have.
How To Make Pumpkin Bread
First, preheat your oven to 350 degrees F and grease a loaf pan, or line it with parchment paper.
In one large bowl, whisk together flour, pumpkin spice, baking powder, cinnamon, baking soda, and salt.
In a second bowl, beat together (Dixie Crystals!) sugars, slightly cooled melted (Cabot!) butter, and pumpkin puree. Add eggs and beat well.
Alternate adding dry ingredients and ½ cup buttermilk to wet ingredients in 3 batches, beginning and ending with the dry. Mix until just combined.
In a small bowl, whisk together remaining buttermilk and cocoa powder. Transfer 1 cup of batter to bowl and stir until smooth.
Pour half of the pumpkin batter into prepared pan, followed by chocolate batter and a third layer of remaining pumpkin batter. Use a butter knife to swirl the batters together.
Bake for 50 to 60 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Allow to cool in pan for 10 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack set over a rimmed baking sheet to cool completely.
While the bread is cooling, make the bourbon butterscotch glaze. In a small saucepan set over medium heat, combine the brown sugar, butter, corn syrup, Torani Butterscotch Syrup, bourbon, and salt. Cook about 2 minutes, stirring frequently, until butter melts and sugar is dissolved.
Whisk in the heavy cream and bring to a boil for 2 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from the heat.
Whisk sifted powdered sugar into the mixture until it’s completely smooth. Allow the glaze to cool 8 to 10 minutes until slightly thickened and still warm. Drizzle glaze over bread. Cool before serving.
LOOKING FOR MORE CHOCOLATE + PUMPKIN RECIPES?
- Chocolate Rum Pumpkin Monkey Bread
- Pumpkin Cheesecake Truffles
- Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Skillet Cookie
- Pumpkin Brownies
- Chocolate Pumpkin French Silk Pie
HELPFUL KITCHEN TOOLS FOR MAKING PUMPKIN QUICK BREAD:
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Swirled Chocolate Pumpkin Bread
Pumpkin & Chocolate Bread
- 2 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons pumpkin spice
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¾ cup brown sugar
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- ½ cup unsalted butter melted & slightly cooled
- ¾ cup pumpkin puree
- 2 large eggs room temperature
- ½ cup + 2 tablespoons buttermilk divided
- 3 tablespoons cocoa powder
Bourbon Butterscotch Glaze
- ¼ cup brown sugar packed
- ¼ cup unsalted butter
- 1 ½ tablespoons bourbon whiskey
- ½ tablespoon corn syrup
- ½ tablespoon Torani Butterscotch Syrup
- Pinch kosher salt
- 2 tablespoons heavy cream
- ¼ cup powdered sugar sifted
Pumpkin & Chocolate Bread
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Line an 8×4-inch loaf pan with parchment paper. Set aside.
- In one large bowl, whisk together flour, pumpkin spice, baking powder, cinnamon, baking soda, and salt.
- In a separate bowl, beat together sugars, melted butter, and pumpkin puree. Add eggs and beat well.
- Alternate adding dry ingredients and ½ cup buttermilk to wet ingredients in 3 batches, beginning and ending with the dry. Mix until just combined.
- In a small bowl, whisk together remaining buttermilk and cocoa powder. Transfer 1 cup of batter to bowl and stir until smooth.
- Pour half of the pumpkin batter into prepared pan, followed by chocolate batter and a third layer of remaining pumpkin batter. Use a butter knife to swirl the batters together.
- Bake for 50-60 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Allow to cool in pan for 10 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack set over a rimmed baking sheet to cool completely.
Bourbon Butterscotch Glaze
- In a small saucepan set over medium heat, combine the brown sugar, butter, corn syrup, butterscotch syrup, bourbon, and salt. Cook about 2 minutes, stirring frequently, until butter melts and sugar is dissolved.
- Whisk in cream and bring to a boil for 2 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from the heat. Whisk in the powdered sugar until completely smooth. Allow glaze to cool 8-10 minutes until slightly thickened and still warm. Drizzle glaze over bread. Cool before serving.