I found the original recipe for this deliciously sweet bread in a church fundraiser cookbook. I made this recipe my own by first cutting it in half. It was a huge recipe with 9 cups of flour. Imagine that? I have a lot of loaf pans, but certainly not enough for this huge batch of pumpkin bread! I typically use squash instead of pumpkin in this recipe and substitute the maple syrup for half the sugar. After several other adjustments we had a winner that I've been making and sharing since 1998. With four boys growing up in our home, it made a big batch and was a good way to get some squash into them, especially the picky eaters.
Substituting Maple Syrup for Sugar in Baked Goods
After I cut the recipe in half, I converted some of the sugar to maple syrup, adjusted the baking soda and the wet ingredients to accommodate using maple syrup in place of some of the sugar. When you use maple syrup in place of granulated sugar in a recipe, the cooking temperature and time also needs to be adjusted. Baking is certainly chemistry and you can use this formula to add a maple blast to all your favorite baked recipes.
How to cut granulated sugar and substitute maple syrup
To omit 1 cup of granulated sugar -
- Use 3/4 - 1 cup of maple syrup, to taste
- Reduce another liquid by 2 - 4 tablespoons per cup of maple syrup used or add 2 - 4 tablespoons flour
- Add 1/4 - 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda
- Reduce oven temperature by 25 degrees F when substituting maple syrup.
A Bread Recipe with Squash
I know I call this a pumpkin bread recipe, but I prefer to make it with a hearty winter squash. I'm talking about a very ripe, orange and dense vegetable. Butternut, Acorn and Buttercup are my favorites. I like the more pronounced flavors of the squash over pumpkin and the overall creaminess when it is mashed. I generally have leftover squash from a dinner since it's a favorite of ours and this is a good way to use up a leftover.
Preparing the Squash or Pumpkin
Sure, it would be much easier to use canned pumpkin and you certainly can if you're in a pinch for time. By planning ahead, when the oven is already on, maximize your energy consumption by loading it up with food that you can pre-cook and use as a side for dinner or to bake something delicious. I've even been known to top off the squash if I'm short for the recipe with leftover mashed sweet potato or carrots.
I start by roasting the squash halves in the oven after scooping out the seeds. You can give them a quick brush with olive oil or spray oil, but it really isn't necessary. A piece of parchment paper on the bottom of your pan helps with clean up. I add a splash of water for steam and cover.
Roast away in whatever oven temp you have going on. If I'm cooking a casserole or other dessert, I like to keep the oven busy with prep like cooking a squash or other roasted veggie. You'll know when its done because it will be fork tender. Allow the squash to cool and scoop with a spoon out of the shell. Be sure to compost all your scraps in a bin or feed the seeds and skins to backyard chickens, the love it!.
Healthier Pumpkin Bread
Applesauce can help make the balance. I generally use a 50/50 ratio in this recipe, but you can make up your mind by reading all about substituting applesauce for oil in baked goods. I’ve often wondered how the last banana on the counter could add to this recipe, too. If you try it, be sure to let me know.
Homemade Food Gifts for the Holidays
It is true that maple pumpkin bread is a favorite for food gifting around the holidays. I get told this often enough by people I don't even know, they only know me because of the circulation of this recipe. More than once someone has asked me if I am the person with the Maple Pumpkin Bread Recipe recently published in a holiday supplement to the local newspapers. Well yes, it is, and then they let me know how they love this recipe and giving it as gifts. Not only that, but it really freezes well so you can always have some on hand.
Best Maple Pumpkin Bread Recipe
1 1/2 cups Very Dark Strong Taste/Baking
1 1/2 cups sugar
3/4 tsp. salt
3/4 tsp. baking powder
1 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
3 cups mashed pumpkin or squash
1 cup oil (or substitute some applesauce)
4 1/2 cups flour
1 1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 1/2 tsp. cloves
1 1/2 tsp. nutmeg
Add nuts, raisins, currents or anything else you can pair up with maple syrup and pumpkin. There is no right or wrong here. I also sprinkle a little maple sugar on top before baking.
- Beat syrup, sugar, eggs and oil (applesauce) together
- Add pumpkin or squash and mix well.
- Add dry ingredients. Mix well.
- Spray 3 standard loaf pans or 5-6 smaller pans with cooking oil.
- Bake at 300 degrees for 1 hour and 20 minutes. Test with cake tester for doneness.
- Remove from pans onto a wire rack and cool.
Be sure to send me your comments. I'd love to update this listing with your additions. Enjoy!