Chocolate Pumpkin Bread

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This Moist Chocolate Pumpkin Bread Recipe is a double chocolate pumpkin bread with deep chocolate notes from cocoa powder and creamy chocolate chips.

Chocolate Pumpkin Bread

This year I wanted to try something different for the fall. My only requirement was it had to have some of my favorite ingredients: dark chocolate chips, buttermilk, and warm spices. It also had to have a fall ingredient that I rarely use.

That’s how I ended up making this pumpkin chocolate chip bread recipe that reminds me of a moist chocolate pound cake loaf. It turned out to be 100 times better than I expected, and will definitely be the new member of my fall recipe rotation.

If there’s one thing that brings people together, it’s food, especially when it’s good food! This pumpkin recipe is so good it’ll convert non-pumpkin lovers. You know the ones who claim they hate everything, pumpkin.

I know you never heard of anything like chocolate pumpkin bread. That’s why you have to try it! Chocolate pumpkin bread is a perfect treat for the fall. It’s a chocolaty delicious way to warm up on a cold day, and it’s sure to please everyone who tries it. So why not give it a try?

Chocolate Pumpkin Bread close up

Key Ingredients

Here are the ingredients you’ll need for the chocolate pumpkin bread recipe.

Pumpkin

You’ll need 1 cup of canned pumpkin puree. The only ingredient should be pumpkin, so buy canned pumpkin puree and not pumpkin pie filling! The pumpkin pie filling mix will ruin the texture of the bread.

Unbleached Flour

Unbleached flour is healthier because it’s less processed than bleached flour and that’s important to me with all of my ingredients used for cooking and baking.

Cocoa Powder

Natural cocoa powder is all you need, but dark cocoa powder would make it amazing for dark chocolate lovers. Check the pro recipe tips and tricks section on why you don’t want to use Dutch processed cocoa powder.

Chocolate Chips

I use dark chocolate chips of a higher percentage for quality chocolate chips. Any chocolate chip will work but the higher the cocoa percentage, the deeper the chocolate notes.

Baking Soda, Baking Powder & Salt

These two leaveners, combined with salt, give pumpkin bread its height, texture, and flavor.

Sugar

I love using Imperial Sugar light brown sugar to add a caramel flavor to compliment the pumpkin and chocolate. Their sugar is affordable, consistent, and non-gmo.

Buttermilk

I love the combination of buttermilk and chocolate together. Buttermilk is my secret ingredient that separates this recipe from any other one you’ll find online.

Homemade Pumpkin Pie Spice

I make my own blend all the time with a blend of ground ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt. You can make a batch to keep on hand or use the individual spices when needed.

Slice of whole Chocolate Pumpkin Bread

How to make chocolate pumpkin bread recipe

I want your experience with my chocolate pumpkin bread to be fun, taste good, and leave you impressed because it was not as hard as you thought.

Step 1: Preheat your oven to 350°F. While the oven is heating, sift flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, ground ginger, and salt.

Step 2: In a large bowl, combine eggs, light brown sugar, oil, and buttermilk with a hand mixer or whisk for 2 minutes until smooth. Stir in pumpkin puree and vanilla extract. Add the flour mixture and mix on low speed for 1 minute until you no longer see streaks of flour. Then fold in ½ cup chocolate chips until combined.

Step 3: Pour pumpkin batter into a greased 1 ½ quart loaf pan (I use cooking spray), sprinkle remaining chocolate chips evenly over top, and bake for 55-60 minutes, until your home smells chocolaty or once a toothpick is inserted in the middle and comes out clean.

Step 4: Place a large piece of plastic wrap or parchment paper on a surface, then turn the pan over to release pumpkin bread. This will keep the chocolate from getting on everything. Cool for 15 minutes before serving.

two slices of Chocolate Pumpkin Bread

Pro Recipe Tips & Tricks

Here are the best practices, techniques, substitutes, and flavor builders you’ll need for a moist pumpkin bread recipe.

  • It would take 1-2 tablespoons of store-bought pumpkin pie spice to add this much flavor as our homemade pumpkin pie spice.
  • You can substitute any milk you have on hand, whether it’s dairy (whole milk) or non-dairy (almond milk), in place of buttermilk.
  • Dark brown sugar or granulated sugar will work great as a swap for light brown sugar.
  • Dark chocolate, natural or unsweetened cocoa powder, works best for this recipe.
  • Dutch processed cocoa powder acidity will stop the buttermilk, baking powder, and baking soda from working.
  • Place a large sheet of plastic wrap or parchment paper on a table to release the pumpkin bread. This will keep the chocolate from getting on your hands.
  • If you don’t have a sifter or fine mesh strainer to sift, the dry ingredients whisk or stir with a fork to blend them together.
  • You can use bittersweet, semi-sweet, milk chocolate, or white chocolate chips; they will be delicious too. Even mini chocolate chips will be great in this recipe.
  • Keeping cinnamon, nutmeg, and ground ginger that’s open in the freezer extends their shelf life because the oil doesn’t spoil.
  • You can sprinkle pumpkin seeds on top to give a nice presentation.
  • I would stay clear of any vegetable oil like canola oil and use avocado oil or coconut oil to bake with.
  • I like to add a scoop of ice cream on top for a dessert item.
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close up of two slices of Chocolate Pumpkin Bread

FAQs

Here is the top question I found readers have about making easy gluten-free pumpkin bread.

What does chocolate pumpkin bread taste like?

Chocolate pumpkin bread tastes like chocolate pound cake. In fact, if you put me in a blind tasting, I would think it’s a warmed spice chocolate pound cake.

Why is my pumpkin loaf so dense?

A dense pumpkin loaf can be the result of a few things. Using expired leavening agents, like baking soda, and baking powder. If you used Dutch processed cocoa powder, it would keep the buttermilk and leavening ingredients from activating.

Additionally, overmixing the batter will make it tough. The batter becomes tough from the gluten in the flour, overmixing activates gluten. Finally, check that you’re using pure pumpkin puree and not pumpkin pie filling, which is a liquid with added ingredients.

How do you know when a pumpkin loaf is done?

This will vary depending on the climate in your location. Things like high altitudes and humidity can adjust your baking time. Also, all ovens are different, some are electric or gas. Do you know which one you have?

The scent of chocolate is the first sign. If the smell of chocolate gets stronger, chances are when a toothpick is inserted in the center of the pumpkin loaf it will come out clean. Now, you may need to check more than one place because you may pierce a chocolate chip, so if there are no crumbs on the toothpick, even if there are a few moist crumbs, it’s done.

How many calories are in a slice of pumpkin chocolate chip bread?

This recipe makes one loaf and will make 8 slices. One slice has 450 calories and is worth every one.

How do I make pumpkin bread without eggs?

I like to use three options for plant-based egg substitutes. The first is whipping 3 tablespoons of aquafaba (canned chickpea liquid) to stiff white peaks for every egg required.
The second is applesauce, 1/4 cup apple sauce per egg.
Third, flax egg, 1 tablespoon of ground flaxseed + 2.5 tablespoons water per egg.

How to store and reheat?

Chocolate pumpkin bread is best 3 days after baking but will be fresh for 7 days in an airtight container in the fridge. Keep in a freezer-safe storage bag for 3 months. I wrap each piece individually when I freeze pumpkin bread. Reheat pumpkin bread by zapping it in the microwave for 10 seconds.

Close up slice of Chocolate Pumpkin Bread

More Fall Dessert Recipes

Here are some more awesome recipes to add to your fall table spread! Using leftover chocolate or pumpkin puree will work in these recipes.

Latest Recipe Video:

Piece of Chocolate Pumpkin Bread on a fork

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Before You Begin

Here are my steps for getting organized before I start anything.

Step 1: Preheat the oven to 350°F before pulling the ingredients out.

Step 2: Get all ingredients for the chocolate pumpkin bread on the counter.

Step 3: To save time, measure all ingredients into separate bowls before you start baking.

Step 4: Start following the recipe and get ready to eat good.

You can serve pumpkin chocolate chip bread for breakfast, dessert or snack, but it’s also great for potlucks. Its comforting flavor pairs well with coffee or tea, making it the perfect choice on cold winter days. So if you’re looking to mix up your usual recipes this fall and winter, why not give chocolate pumpkin bread a try? You won’t regret it!

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Slice of Chocolate Pumpkin Bread

Chocolate Pumpkin Bread

Kenneth Temple
Learn how to make a moist chocolate pumpkin bread from scratch. This recipe is loaded with warm flavors and deep chocolate notes.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 1 hr
Cooling 5 mins
Total Time 1 hr 20 mins
Course Breakfast, Brunch, Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 10 persons
Calories 360 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup natural cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 ¼ teaspoon cinnamon
  • ¾ teaspoon nutmeg
  • ½ teaspoon ground ginger
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 large eggs room temperature
  • 1 cup Imperial Sugar light brown sugar
  • ½ cup avocado or coconut oil
  • ¼ cup buttermilk
  • 1 cup pureed pumpkin
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup dark chocolate chips divided
  • cooking spray

Instructions
 

  • Preheat oven to 350°F. Over a large bowl sift flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, ground ginger, and salt.
  • In a large bowl combine eggs, light brown sugar, oil and buttermilk, with a hand mixer or whisk for 2 minutes until smooth. Add pumpkin and vanilla, mix until smooth. Add the flour mixture and mix on low speed for 1 minute. Then fold in ½ cup chocolate chips until combined.
  • Pour batter into a greased 1 ½ quart loaf pan, sprinkle remaining chocolate chips over top, and bake for 50-60 minutes, until your home smells chocolaty or once a toothpick is inserted in the middle and comes out clean with a few moist crumbs.
  • Place a large piece of plastic wrap or parchment paper on a surface, then turn the pan over to release pumpkin bread. This will keep the chocolate from getting on everything. Cool for 15 minutes before slicing and serving.

Notes

Pro Recipe Tips & Tricks
  • It would take 1-2 tablespoons of store-bought pumpkin pie spice to add this much flavor as our homemade pumpkin pie spice.
  • You can substitute any milk you have on hand, whether it’s dairy (whole milk) or non-dairy (almond milk), in place of buttermilk.
  • Dark brown sugar or granulated sugar will work great as a swap for light brown sugar.
  • Dark chocolate, natural or unsweetened cocoa powder, works best for this recipe.
  • Dutch processed cocoa powder acidity will stop make the buttermilk, baking powder, and baking soda from working.
  • Place a large sheet of plastic wrap or parchment paper on a table to release the pumpkin bread. This will keep the chocolate from getting on your hands.
  • If you don’t have a sifter or fine mesh strainer to sift, the dry ingredients whisk or stir with a fork to blend them together.
  • Use can use bittersweet, semi-sweet, milk chocolate, or white chocolate chips; they will be delicious too. Even mini chocolate chips will be great in this recipe.
  • Keeping cinnamon, nutmeg, and ground ginger that’s open in the freezer extends their shelf life because the oil doesn’t spoil.
  • You can sprinkle pumpkin seeds on top to give a nice presentation.
  • I would stay clear of any vegetable oil like canola oil and use avocado oil or coconut oil to bake with.
  • I like to add a scoop of ice cream on top for a dessert item.
Storage
Chocolate pumpkin bread is best 2 days after baking but will be fresh for 7 days in an airtight container in the fridge.
Keep in a freezer storage bag for 3 months.
Reheat pumpkin bread by zapping in the microwave for 10 seconds.

Nutrition

Calories: 360kcalCarbohydrates: 47gProtein: 5gFat: 18gSaturated Fat: 7gPolyunsaturated Fat: 2gMonounsaturated Fat: 8gTrans Fat: 0.003gCholesterol: 34mgSodium: 260mgPotassium: 296mgFiber: 4gSugar: 29gVitamin A: 3873IUVitamin C: 1mgCalcium: 125mgIron: 2mg
Keyword chocolate pumpkin bread, chocolate pumpkin bread recipe
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