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vegan pumpkin bread with icing on a wooden cutting board

The Best Vegan Pumpkin Bread

Nisha Vora
This is the BEST vegan pumpkin bread you’ll try! It’s incredibly moist and tender, uses simple ingredients, and features a homemade pumpkin spice blend that takes the flavor over the top. A must make during pumpkin season!
4.96 from 41 votes
Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 55 mins
Total Time 1 hr 15 mins
Course Dessert
Cuisine Baking
Servings 10 slices

Ingredients
  

Pumpkin Bread Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup + 2 TBSP (~90 mL) aquafaba
  • 1/4 cup (60 mL) oat milk, or unsweetened plant-based milk of choice
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1/3 cup (75 -80 mL) sunflower oil, or any neutral-flavored oil
  • 1 cup + 2 TBSP (170g) organic brown sugar, loosely packed
  • 1 15-ounce (425g) can pumpkin puree (I recommend not using organic canned pumpkin)*
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 cups (240g) all-purpose flour, spooned and leveled (see “Tips” section above)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt

Homemade Pumpkin Spice

  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cloves

Optional Toppings

  • Vegan Cream Cheese Icing
  • Maple Tahini Icing
  • Pepitas (or finely chopped pistachios)

Cream Cheese Icing (optional)

  • 4 tablespoons (56g) vegan butter, softened at room temperature
  • 2 ounces (56g) vegan cream cheese**, softened at room temperature
  • 1 cup + 2 TBSP (135g) organic powdered sugar, sifted
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • Pinch of sea salt
  • 1/2 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice

Maple Tahini Icing (optional)

  • 1 cup (120g) organic powdered sugar
  • 2 tablespoons good-quality tahini***
  • 3 tablespoons oat milk, or unsweetened plant-based milk of choice
  • 1 teaspoon pure maple syrup

Instructions
 

  • Preheat the oven to 350°F/176°C. Arrange a rack in the middle or bottom third of the oven. Line a 9x5-inch loaf pan (23x13 cm) with parchment paper, letting the excess hang over the long sides to form a sling.
  • Stir the vinegar into the plant-based milk and set aside to curdle. This is the vegan “buttermilk.”
  • Pour the aquafaba into a small bowl. Using a handheld electric mixer, whip the aquafaba on medium speed for 45 seconds, or until uniformly foamy.
  • In a medium bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and all of the pumpkin spices. Whisk well to ensure the leaveners and spices are evenly distributed.
  • In a large mixing bowl, add the brown sugar and oil. Mix using the electric mixer or a whisk until well combined. Add the whipped aquafaba and mix until well incorporated. Add in the “buttermilk,” pumpkin puree, maple syrup, and vanilla. Mix until smooth and the ingredients are well incorporated.
  • Using a silicone spatula or large wooden spoon), add the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients and gently stir until the ingredients are just barely combined and no flour pockets remain, then stop mixing! The batter doesn’t need to be (and shouldn’t be) smooth. Some lumps are normal.
  • Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan and smooth out the top of the batter using a spatula or spoon.
  • Bake in the preheated oven for 55 to 65 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the top sides of the cake comes out mostly clean with just a few moist crumbs.
    Note: I like to check the bread at 53-55 minute mark. If the toothpick reveals batter that is still a bit gooey, return the pan to the oven for 5-10 more minutes. If you’re worried about the top overbrowning, you can loosely tent the pan with aluminum foil.
  • Transfer the pan to a wire rack and cool for 10-15 minutes. Then, using the parchment paper handles, remove the bread from the pan and cool on the rack for at least 30 minutes before serving.
    Serve plain, or with the Cream Cheese Icing or the Maple Tahini Icing and scatter with handful of pepitas or chopped pistachios.
    If using Maple Tahini Icing, pour it only on the amount of bread you plan to eat (or serve it on the side).****
  • Cream Cheese Icing (optional)
  • To a medium mixing bowl, add the softened vegan butter. Beat on low speed with an electric hand mixer until smooth. Add the cream cheese and beat until well incorporated and creamy. Add half of the powdered sugar, mix on low speed to combine, and then add the rest of the sugar. Mix until well combined and fluffy, scraping down the sides as you go. Add the vanilla, salt, and lemon juice and mix until smooth.
    If too thick, add a splash of plant-based milk. If too thin, briefly refrigerate.

Maple Tahini Icing (optional)

  • Sift the powdered sugar into a large bowl (sifting gets rid of the lumps in the sugar). Add in the tahini, milk, and maple syrup. Whisk to combine until the icing is thick but pourable. If too thin, add more sugar. If too thick, add more milk.

Video

Notes

* Organic canned pumpkin tends to be more watery than regular. If that's all that is available, strain it to get rid of excess water. To make homemade pumpkin puree, read the “Frequently asked questions” section.
** My favorite vegan cream cheese brands are Tofutti and Kite Hill Foods. 
*** My favorite brands for tahini are Soom Foods and Seed and Mill. The Whole Foods 365 brand is also quite good. 
**** See "Frequently Asked Questions" section for how to store pumpkin bread depending on how you serve it. 
Keyword bread, pumpkin
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