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A BFA Painting and Drawing graduate gone cookie designer and decorator.  I bring my knowledge of art, composition, and color to pastries to create the perfect cookies and cakes for your events or occasions.
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Monday, November 14, 2011

Thanksgiving Pumpkin Loaf Two Ways

When I was in Kindergarten we were all given two Thanksgiving recipes: one for Corn Bread and one for Pumpkin Bread.  Every year since then, it's been a tradition to make both for Thanksgiving.  Even when we do "nontraditional" dinners (in a family of half vegetarians there is never a turkey), these two dishes are always on the table.  Over the years my mom and I had tweaked with the recipe here and there, and the last few times I've changed a few minor components, but this last time I made it completely gluten free without really altering the flavor.  Also, this recipe doesn't require a mixer or anything.  And after all it was given to me in Kindergarten, so it's so easy a five year old could follow along.  This loaf is irresistible...it never lasts more than a few days.  While eating a little piece of it earlier tonight, I decided next time I want to make cupcakes, I'm going to try using this recipe.  It's moist, but still a bit cakey and not too dense.  It's filled with warm cinnamon and sweet bites of either cranberries or raisins.  And of course the star of the loaf is the pumpkin.

I'd recommend making it one of two ways (or well, three if you count my desire to make them cupcakes!).  The first is as slices as a side dish for your Thanksgiving meal.  It's also great this way year round as a snack or breakfast.  In this version, either cranberries or raisins are good but I think I prefer it with the raisins.  The second is as squares, topped with a cinnamon cream cheese frosting as a dessert.  In this preparation I prefer it with cranberries, and I sprinkle the top with some cranberries as well.  Or if you're like me, you pick one of the two dried fruits, and make half the loaf sliced and uniced, and ice the other half the of loaf for dessert squares!  Either way I promise it you and your guests will be taking seconds! 

Pumpkin Loaf: Two Ways
Recipe a Jesicakes original
Makes 1 Loaf in a 8'' X 4'' load pan
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup vegetable oil
- 3 eggs slightly beaten
- 2 cups 100% pure pumpkin puree (NOT pumpkin pie mix)
- 1 tsp salt
- 2 tsp vanilla
- 1/2 cup sorghum flour
- 1/2 cup brown rice flour
- 1/2 cup sweet rice flour
- 1/2 cup tapioca flour
- 1 tsp xanthan gum
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 2 tsp baking soda
- 1 Tbsp cinnamon
- 1 cup of raisins or dried cranberries
*Since this recipe was originally made with flour, if you and/or your guests are not gluten free, just substitute 2 cups of all purpose flour for all the other flours and the xanthan gum.

Preheat your oven to 350˚F.  Like I said, this recipe is really easy.  You pretty much just mix the ingredients in order.  I just hand whisk everything together and then fold in the dried fruit with a wooden spoon.
Whisk together the sugar and the vegetable oil.
 Whisk in the beaten eggs.
Whisk in the pumpkin.  Once incorporated, whisk in the salt and the vanilla
Gradually whisk in the flour.  Whisk in the baking powder and baking soda.
Stir in the cinnamon.
Fold in either the cranberries or the raisins (I used cranberries this time).
Pour into a 8'' X 4'' pan.  Personally, for this loaf I don't grease the pan.  If you have a good nonstick pan it will slide right out.  But of course feel free to.  Bake in the center of the oven, turning half way for about 50-60 minutes.
Remove from oven when toothpick comes out clean or with a few dry crumbs.  Cool til you're able to hold the pan to flip the loaf out.  Can cut while warm for slices.  If you're icing it as a dessert allow the loaf to cool completely.

If you're going to be icing it, while the loaf is in the oven you can go ahead and make the cream cheese icing.  Personally, I think Martha's recipe is hands down the best I've had.  Unlike a lot of other recipes I've seen, there's twice as much cream cheese as butter and there's half the amount of sugar.  I don't like my cream cheese frosting super sweet, and the whole point of cream cheese icing is for is for the tang of the cream cheese so why drown it out in butter?  But obviously, feel free to use your favourite recipe for it.  I add a tsp or so of cinnamon to this recipe, mostly just to taste.
I got to break in the sifter that my Grandma Millie gave to me.  So if you happen to be reading this thank you Grandma!
I didn't need a lot of this recipe to ice half the loaf, I'd say maybe 1/4 of the recipe for the full.  It freezes well though so you can keep it for the next time you bake this loaf, or for cupcakes, a cake, etc.  I top the whole thing with a few more dried cranberries.
Next weekend I'll be de-glutening my Corn Bread recipe and I'll be posting the results of that as well!  Til then, good luck in planning your holiday meal!

P.S. Sorry I left this out!  Uniced, it stores well in a airtight container 3-4 days unrefrigerated...anything longer I'd keep it in the fridge.  Iced keep in in the fridge because cream cheese icing doesn't do too well sitting out longer than a day.  And I know this will sound weird, but as delicious as this bread is nice and warm, I also find it delicious cold (especially with the icing).


  1. uno de mis best blogs va para ti <3


    You're on my list of top 10 blogs!


  2. Muchas gracias! I really appreciate it!

  3. I love Pumpkin, looks amazing! this information really helped me

  4. This reminds me of a harvest loaf cake my aunt always makes, she uses chocolate chips instead of the dried fruit. Thanks, now I can have it again, gluten free!!

    1. Chocolate chips would be great too!! I hope you enjoy this one too!!