Easy One Bowl Pumpkin Bread

A pumpkin loaf cake, sliced, on a baking sheet.

Easy One Bowl Pumpkin Bread ~ because that first craving for pumpkin is powerful. I clocked the prep for this delicious golden from-the-pantry quick bread at 15 minutes!

stacked slices of easy one bowl pumpkin bread

This classic pumpkin bread is everything you want when the urge for fall baking strikes ~ it’s easy, one-bowl, moist, simple, and delicious. It’s got a cozy, comforting texture and that soft, golden pumpkin-y glow that I just love this time of year. The recipe can be easily doubled if you want an extra loaf to bring into work or pack into lunchboxes.

this pumpkin bread goes light on the spice…

The original recipe used nutmeg as the only spice. I liked the idea, because other spices like cinnamon and cloves can easily overpower, or you can end up with a very generic “pumpkin spice” sort of flavor. But, I couldn’t quite leave well enough alone, so I paired the nutmeg with a bit of ginger and a bit of cardamom. It’s a really nice, subtle blend that sets this loaf apart from the typical pumpkin bread.

a loaf of one bowl pumpkin bread just out of the oven

make this classic pumpkin bread your own ~

The recipe makes a simple, golden pumpkin bread from ingredients you undoubtedly already have in your pantry (canned pumpkin is absolutely a pantry staple 😉   Think of it as a blank canvas ready for your creativity!

  • Add your favorite chopped nuts. Pecans and walnuts are traditional, but why not try hazelnuts or pistachios?
  • Chocolate chips are a no brainer.  I’m partial to dark chocolate.
  • Dried fruit works so well in quick breads…try cranberries, or figs.
  • Lay down a layer of green pepitas over the top of the batter before baking for a crunchy accent.
  • Glaze the cooled bread with a simple confectioner’s sugar glaze. Create the glaze with milk or cream for a plain glaze. You can spice it with cinnamon or pumpkin spice if you like. You can also use maple syrup, orange juice, or any other liquid to create a flavored glaze.
  • Drizzle the cooled cake with melted chocolate.
a loaf of one bowl pumpkin bread, sliced, on a cooling rack

buttermilk is a key ingredient in this recipe

It keeps this pumpkin loaf extra tender and soft. Buttermilk, like yogurt or sour cream, is acidic. The acid actually helps to tenderize the gluten in baked goods like this quick bread. The buttermilk also helps the baking soda in the recipe do its job and rise the bread to make it light and fluffy.

A pumpkin loaf cake, sliced, on a baking sheet.

no buttermilk in the fridge? make your own ~

  • Start with a cup of milk (or half and half, or even cream!)
  • Add a tablespoon of lemon juice or white vinegar to the milk and stir.
  • Let sit on the counter for 15 minutes and then use as directed in your recipe.
one bowl pumpkin bread, sliced

grill your pumpkin bread, New England style

If you’ve ever lived in New England you’ll know that they enjoy their muffins split, buttered, and grilled. You can give this pumpkin bread the same treatment and it’s amazing!

other ways to enjoy pumpkin bread

  • Turn this simple breakfast loaf into an unexpected fall dessert, I think it would be fantastic grilled and served with a scoop of vanilla bean ice cream.
  • Serve drizzled with Salted Maple Caramel Sauce.

tvfgi recommends: the perfect loaf pan

Loaf pans can be surprisingly tricky to work with because they come in all kinds of sizes and most recipes aren’t specific about the dimensions. This is the classic 1 1/4 pound, 9×5 loaf pan that is your best bet for most recipes. USA pans are my favorite because they’re sturdy, and made here in the US.

I recommend having at least 2 loaf pans in your collection because some recipes are formulated for 2 loaves.

pumpkin recipes image

“Indeed the buttermilk MADE the recipe! It’s the VERY BEST Pumpkin Bread I’ve ever made!!!! It’s a keeper–for SURE!”


A pumpkin loaf cake, sliced, on a baking sheet.
4.67 from 21 votes

Easy Buttermilk Pumpkin Bread

Easy One Bowl Pumpkin Bread because that first craving for pumpkin is powerful ~ I clocked this delicious quick bread at 15 minutes!  
Course quick bread
Cuisine American
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Yield 8 slices
Calories 351kcal
Author Sue Moran


  • 9×5 loaf pan


  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup canned pumpkin, about 1/2 can
  • 1/3 cup buttermilk
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp ginger
  • 1/4 tsp cardamom


  • Preheat oven to 350F and butter a 9 inch loaf pan. Line the pan with parchment paper if you’d like for easier removal.
  • Whisk together the oil, sugar, eggs, pumpkin, buttermilk and vanilla extract until smooth.
  • Add the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, nutmeg, ginger, and cardamom to the same bowl and mix together until everything is evenly incorporated.
  • Pour the batter into your prepared loaf pan and bake for about 60-70 minutes, until risen and there is no more wet batter in the middle.

Cook’s notes

This pumpkin bread freezes especially well.  Let it cool completely, then wrap tightly in plastic wrap.  I like to wrap it again in foil, or put it into a heavy duty freezer bag, pushing out any excess air before I zip it up.  It will keep well for up to 3 months.
Recipe adapted from King Arthur Flour.


Calories: 351kcal | Carbohydrates: 49g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 15g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 8g | Monounsaturated Fat: 4g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 42mg | Sodium: 315mg | Potassium: 136mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 27g | Vitamin A: 4842IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 36mg | Iron: 2mg
The nutritional information for recipes on this site is provided as a courtesy and although theviewfromgreatisland.com tries to provide accurate nutritional information, these figures are only estimates.
one bowl pumpkin bread pin

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    Leave a Reply

    Please rate this recipe!

  • Reply
    October 27, 2021 at 8:45 am

    5 stars
    When I find myself lacking (in the buttermilk department), I usually use an item I almost always have: plain Greek yogurt. Plain yogurt, Greek or regular, can be diluted with a little milk and works brilliantly as a buttermilk substitute. I place about 2/3 to 1/2 the required amount in a measuring cup, then fill to the proper amount with milk, Works every time! 🙂

    • Reply
      Sue Moran
      October 27, 2021 at 10:09 am

      Thanks for that Carol. I’ll try it.

  • Reply
    Rosemary Cheung
    October 3, 2021 at 9:22 am

    Could I halve the sugar in this recipe ?

    • Reply
      Sue Moran
      October 3, 2021 at 9:32 am

      The rule of thumb is that you can safely decrease sugar by about 1/4 to 1/3 in a recipe without too much trouble. More than that starts to affect things like texture, etc.

  • Reply
    July 19, 2021 at 9:32 pm

    5 stars
    This is the best pumpkin bread I have made (or even had!). Perfectly moist with a great texture. I added cinnamon/sugar on top before baking. I also added approx 1/4 c brown sugar to the batter. The load itself tasted good enough, but for me, it did not have a ton of pumpkin flavor that I look for with a pumpkin bread. Easy to adjust the spices to your liking though. This recipe is a keeper!

  • Reply
    November 21, 2019 at 1:12 pm

    5 stars
    Very moist, great flavor with the right mix of spices, I added rough chopped toasted pecans
    My new favorite to add to gift baskets!

  • Reply
    November 4, 2019 at 6:41 pm

    5 stars
    Sue, this is Ahhmazing! Thank you for such a wonderful and simple recipe. This bread is fantastic. I absolutely love the addition of ginger. Thank you for being so generous in sharing your recipes. My family loved it, even my oldest daughter who does not enjoy pumpkin bread.

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