This pumpkin bread with cream cheese frosting is super moist and flavored with warm fall spices. It’s topped with candied maple streusel and cream cheese frosting. This pumpkin loaf cake makes the perfect fall breakfast, snack, or dessert!
This flavorful pumpkin bread with cream cheese frosting tastes like fall! Pumpkin puree gives it a moist texture and it’s full of pumpkin spice flavor. The bread comes together without a mixer!
Why We Love This Recipe
- This pumpkin bread loaf is perfect for with coffee in the morning or as dessert after a hearty fall meal. For another yummy loaf recipe, try my carrot cake loaf cake.
- Bring it to holiday potlucks and parties. It is sure to be a hit with everyone!
- It comes together in minutes. You don’t even need a mixer to make it.
- It’s super moist thanks to the pumpkin!
Here are some useful notes on the ingredients for this pumpkin loaf cake recipe.
- Pumpkin puree- Use 100% pure pumpkin puree. Be careful not to confuse pumpkin puree with pumpkin pie filling. I recommend using canned pumpkin puree. I have not tested this recipe with homemade pumpkin puree.
- Oil- Oil makes this cake super moist. Use canola or vegetable oil.
- Brown sugar- Brown sugar adds moisture and warm molasses flavor. Use light or dark.
- Milk- Use whole, room temperature milk.
- Cream cheese- Use full fat, room temperature block style cream cheese.
Please see recipe card for a full list of ingredients and their measurements.
- Add the walnuts with or without the maple glaze. If you skip the maple glaze step, add an additional tablespoon of brown sugar in place of the maple syrup.
- To make this bread nut-free, leave out the nuts. Swap in an additional 1/4 cup of flour and an extra tablespoon of brown sugar.
Here are the instructions on how to make and bake this pumpkin bread.
Step 1: (Photo 1 above) Combine the nuts, cinnamon and salt in a hot skillet over medium heat. Add the maple syrup and stir for 3 to 4 minutes until the nuts have toasted and the syrup caramelizes. Spread walnuts evenly on parchment paper.
Step 2: (Photo 2 above) Mix the melted butter, flour, granulated and brown sugar, cinnamon and the cooled, chopped walnuts together. Set aside.
Step 3: (Photo 3 above) Whisk together the granulated sugar, brown sugar, oil, eggs, pumpkin, and vanilla.
Step 4: (Photo 4 above) Fold half the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients followed by the milk. Add the rest of the dry ingredients. Stir until just combined.
Step 5: (Photo 5 above) Pour the batter into a 9 by 5 inch loaf pan. Top with the streusel.
Step 6: (Photo 6 above)Bake at 350 Fahrenheit for about 1 hour.
Step 7: (Photo 7 above) In a small mixing bowl, cream the butter, cream cheese and vanilla extract with an electric mixer. Add the cinnamon and powdered sugar. Add the milk and beat til combined and creamy.
Step 8: (Photo 8 above) Drizzle frosting over the cooled bread.
Yes. Feel free to leave out the candied walnuts completely. You could use raw walnuts plus an extra tablespoon of brown sugar to the crumble. To make this loaf nut free, substitute the nuts for 1/4 cup of all purpose flour and a tablespoon of brown sugar.
Yes! Add 3/4 cup regular or mini chocolate chips.
Store unfrosted pumpkin loaf in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 4 days. Store frosted pumpkin loaf in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
Tip # 1: Use pure pureed pumpkin for this pumpkin streusel loaf and not pumpkin pie filling.
Tip #2: Avoid overmixing. Mix the batter just enough that the dry ingredients are combined with the wet. Stop mixing as soon as you no longer see any bits of flour.
Tip #3: To see if the cake is done, stick a toothpick in the center of the cake. It will come out clean with no crumbs.
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Pumpkin Bread with Cream Cheese Frosting
Maple Walnuts (optional)*
- 1/4 cup walnuts roughly chopped
- 1/8 teaspoon cinnamon or use pumpkin pie spice
- pinch salt
- 1 tablespoon maple syrup
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter melted
- 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons all purpose flour
- 3 tablespoons brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/4 cup maple glazed walnuts cooled and chopped (recipe above)*
- 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 2 1/4 teaspoons cinnamon
- 3/4 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/2 cup brown sugar light or dark
- 3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup vegetable oil
- 2 large eggs room temperature
- 1 1/2 cups canned pumpkin puree not pumpkin pie filling
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/3 cup whole milk room temperature
Cream Cheese Frosting
- 2 ounces cream cheese full fat, room temperature
- 2 ounces unsalted butter room temperature
- 3/4 cup powdered sugar sifted
- 3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon optional
- 1 tablespoon whole milk
Maple Walnuts (optional)*
- In a small bowl, toss the walnuts with 1/8 teaspoon cinnamon and a small pinch of salt. Add them to a dry skillet on medium heat. Add the maple syrup and stir constantly with a wooden spoon or a heatproof spatula for 3-4 minutes until the nuts are toasted.
- Turn nuts out onto a sheet of parchment paper. Spread the nuts out. Allow nuts to cool and dry for a few minutes then lightly chop them.
- Combine the butter, flour, sugar, cinnamon, and prepared maple walnuts* in a bowl butter in a small bowl. Set aside in the fridge to chill while you prepare the batter.
- Set your oven rack to the lower third position. Preheat oven to 350 F. Spray a 9 x 5 inch loaf pan with nonstick spray or grease the sides with butter and line with parchment paper and set aside.
- In a medium sized mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg and ginger. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the granulated sugar, brown sugar, oil, eggs, pumpkin, and vanilla.
- Fold in half the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients followed by the milk. Add the rest of the dry ingredients. Stir until just combined. Be careful not to over mix. Pour the batter into the loaf pan.
- Take the streusel out of the fridge and use a fork or two forks to break it up into chunks of the same size. Cover the top of the batter evenly with the streusel.
- Bake 1 hour to 1 hour 10 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean or with just a few moist crumbs on it when inserted into the center. Begin checking at about an hour and check it every five minutes or so until it’s done.
- Let cool for ten minutes in the pan on a wire rack and then remove it from the pan to cool on a wire rack. Enjoy warm or at room temperature. Once cooled completely, drizzle with frosting.
Cream Cheese Frosting
- In a small mixing bowl, cream the butter, cream cheese, and vanilla extract with an electric mixer til combined. With the mixer on low, add the cinnamon and powdered sugar followed by the milk. Beat til combined and creamy. Drizzle over cooled pumpkin bread.