Perfect Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bread

Year after year, pumpkin season after pumpkin season, autumn after autumn, with all the variations of pumpkin bread on the market, this is the only recipe I turn to. I’ve made it no less than a gazillion times, according to my scientific, statistical records and it continues to be my favorite.

Passed on to me years ago by my fantastic chef-of-a-brother, Nate, this bread is moist and dense and perfect. Nothing else to say, really, except that it has one more glorious trait: it tastes even better the next day! What does that mean? Breakfast, baby.

Perfect Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bread

One Year Ago: Strawberry Cream Puff Cake
Two Years Ago: Creamy Chicken Fettuccine

Perfect Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bread

Yield: Makes 2 (9X5-inch loaves) or 3 (8X4-inch loaves)

Perfect Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bread

Note: This bread tastes best when it has cooled completely for a few hours and tastes even better the next day.


  • 2 ½ cups white flour
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 3 cups granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 (15 oz.) can pumpkin puree (not pie filling)
  • 1 cup canola or vegetable oil
  • 4 large eggs
  • 2/3 cup water
  • 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease two 9×5-inch loaf pans or three 8×4-inch loaf pans.
  2. In a large bowl, mix flours, sugar, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt together. Set aside.
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together canned pumpkin, oil, eggs and 2/3 cup water until well combined and stir into dry ingredients, just until the dry ingredients are moistened and no dry streaks remain. Stir in chocolate chips. Pour batter in prepared pans.
  4. Bake the bread for 60 to 70 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Remove the bread from the oven and let sit for 10-15 minutes. Run a knife gently around the edge of the bread and turn the bread out, right side up, onto a wire rack to cool completely.
  5. This bread freezes beautifully. After cooling, wrap the bread in a layer of plastic wrap and then a layer of tin foil. Freeze for up to 2 months.

Recipe Source: my brother, Nate W.

109 Responses to Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bread

  1. wow – this looks perfect indeed! And since it has chocolate chips in it my husband may even try it! (he’s not a huge fan of pumpkin. gasp!)

  2. Janel says:

    Wow – 3 cups sugar – no wonder this is the ideal bread! I don’t think I’ve ever put more than 2 cups of sugar in a quick bread recipe, I’ll have to make this today 🙂 Surely the cup of whole wheat flour balances everything and makes it a healthy indulgence!

  3. Kim in MD says:

    Pumpkin and chocolate are such a perfect combination! Your pumpkin bread looks delicious, Melanie! I wish I had a piece for breakfast! (Is that bad?) 🙂

  4. this looks similar to my mom’s pumpkin bread recipe which is my all-time favorite…. might have to try it!

  5. Adrienne says:

    I make this exact recipe. I can attest….It is divine! Now I have to go make it.

  6. This looks delicious! I may have to make some of this asap. Thanks for sharing. 🙂

  7. Amy Wolin says:

    Yum!!! I’m a sucker for pumpkin chocolate chip yummies!! Love your recipes!!

  8. Lisa says:

    I love pumpkin bread, though I’ve never tried it before with chocolate chips. It really is amazing how many variations of it there are. I keep thinking someone should do a linky of pumpkin breads alone just to see how many different ones pop up.

  9. yum-pumpkin bread is the BEST–I love the addition of chocolate chips!

  10. Erika says:

    I have a similar recipe I’ve been using for a couple of years & have tweaked it to make it healthier. Mine calls for milk, butter instead of oil & more eggs. I’m going to try yours & see how it compares because I like some of your ingredients better!
    My kids take it to school for a snack & love it! I triple my recipe using 5 cups of flour & freeze 2/3 of it & it’s great to have in the freezer!

    I think you could use less sugar in your recipe & more whole wheat flour too. My kids can’t tell the difference!

  11. Sara says:

    Looks so yummy! I haven’t made a loaf of pumpkin bread yet and it’s already mid-October..Yikes!

  12. Taylor says:

    I have never heard of water in a quick bread…very interesting! I have yet to make pumpkin bread this fall and this just might be the one I make! It looks delicious!

  13. Astrid says:

    Thanks for the post – I appreciate that this recipe makes 2 9X5 pans. I’m always on the lookout for larger volume recipes! this will be one of my weekend projects!

  14. Jennifer says:

    This looks so delicious, I will have to make it! Never tried with choco chips before, yum.

  15. ingrid says:

    I’m in but hold the chocolate! 🙂

  16. Really have been looking for a great pumpkin bread! I’m excited to try it!

  17. Amanda says:

    Made this today! YUM, thanks!

  18. Johnson says:

    Made it. Ate all of it. Loved it.

    To the readers who said it had too much sugar, au contraire mon amie. I think you got it wrong. This recipe actually has LESS sugar than most recipes. Some stated that their recipe usually uses 3 cups sugar; I have similar recipes — but they only make one loaf. This recipe makes two loaves. So, there is only 2 cups per loaf.

    The wheat flour is a huge plus.

    By the way, that Nate guy seems pretty awesome. I recognize the name from the best corn bread and honey butter of all time.

    • Mel says:

      Johnson – thanks for your comment (made me smile)! I was actually getting ready to chime in on the too-much-sugar discussion by also reaffirming that this recipe makes two large loaves so thanks for doing it for me. And actually, sugar and loaves aside, this isn’t meant to be health food so as long as you realize it’s more like a cake, we should all be good to go! Glad you loved it. Oh, and yes, that Nate guy is pretty awesome. Good looking. Smart. Funny. He gets it from his big sister.

  19. Shandra says:

    Melanie..this is my favorite recipe too! A quick ‘lowfat’ tip…use 1/2 c. applesauce and 1/2 c. oil and you will never be able to tell the difference! It will still come out soft and smooth, but it will be half the fat. Applesauce is my go-to ingredient when trying to cut back on calories.

    Great minds think alike…I was just about to blog about pumpkin bread today too. It must be that time of year 🙂

  20. Allie M. says:

    Mel, this was fabulous! Perfection! I think it had the perfect amount of sugar and my house smelled unbelievable. I COULD NOT wait until the time you mentioned it would be at its best….I ate it straight out of the oven! My mom kept making up excuses to come back in the kitchen and get another chunk! She said, and I quote, “I don’t even like stuff with pumpkin, and I am in HEAVEN!” I used one 9X5, two little tiny pans, and then made the rest into the perfect muffins which my kids are devouring two at a time! It made me happy to put those as the dessert in their school lunches instead of a Hostess Ding Dong! Truly, you are my hero.

    • Mel says:

      Allie M. – glad you liked this one (even straight out of the oven!). That is hilarious about your mom…and a great compliment! Thanks so much for checking in on this recipe!

  21. Katie C says:

    If you substitute apple sauce for the oil, it’s just as moist and much healthier! :]]
    and it tastes AMAZING!! my family loves these in muffin form.

  22. grace says:

    pumpkin bread is tolerable, but the simple addition of chocolate makes it irresistible. it’s probably not a good thing that an ingredient holds such power over me. 🙂

  23. Erin says:

    I made this bread last night, and everyone loved it. I only put 2 cups of sugar instead of 3 and it tasted great.

  24. Erin says:

    Oh, We also added applesauce instead of oil and it was still fabulous!

  25. lori says:

    Hi Mel! Could I refrigerate the batter since I had some leftover and was thinking making I could make a few muffins? Do you think it would work in muffin form and if so, how long should I try baking for?
    Also, do I store the bread in the fridge overnight or just leave it on the counter?


    • Mel says:

      Lori – I’m guessing this batter would fare well refrigerated but probably not for more than a day. I definitely think these would work in muffin form. I’d check them after baking for 10-12 minutes just to be sure. They might need upwards of 15 (at the same temp in the recipe). I usually leave my bread on the counter overnight.

  26. Camille says:

    I’m so excited that you posted a recipe for this! Your recipes haven’t failed me yet, and I’ve been looking for the perfect pumpkin chocolate chip bread recipe for a loooong time – I’m hoping this is it! I’ll try it out this weekend.

  27. Maria says:

    It’s not fall without this bread!

  28. Missy says:

    I forgot about this recipe! Thanks for posting it and reminding me about this delicious bread!

  29. Erica says:

    Very tasty. I completely forgot to add the water and it wasn’t a problem at all.

    I did half oil and half applesauce. Hmm… I wonder how it would be if you increased the amount of WW flour and decreased the white flour….

    • Mel says:

      Erica – glad you loved this. And as for the whole wheat flour, I’ve successfully made it with all whole wheat flour (using white wheat flour). It is definitely more dense and not as light and decadent, but it is still delicious.

  30. JaNae says:

    I made this other day and we all LOVED it! I planned to freeze two of the loaves for later during pumpkin eating season, but nope – they are all gone! Thanks for the recipe.

  31. Amy says:

    I have NEVER made pumpkin bread before, since I have never really been into pumpkin things! But last year I tried someone’s recipe for pumpkin bread and I fell in love. Sadly I never got the recipe from them…but today I found yours! It was DIVINE! I made one loaf with Choc. Chips and one without. They were both great. And by the way…whenever my husband goes crazy over one of my recipes and asks, “Where did you get this recipe??”…it’s always from your site. I can honestly say that every recipe I’ve ever made from here (which is a lot) has always turned out great.

    The one we make and eat the most is the oatmeal pancakes. That is something we have at least once or twice a week! Yum!!!!!!! Thank you for your incredible recipes, I am amazed!

    • Mel says:

      Amy – thank you for your sweet comment! I’m thrilled this pumpkin bread met your expectations of the recipe you had lost. That’s wonderful you’ve had such good luck with recipes from here and I hope it continues. Thanks for letting me know!

  32. Camille says:

    Made this today and sure enough, it’s the perfect pumpkin bread recipe – I had waaaay too many pieces! One question: do you flour your loaf pans after greasing? I sprayed my pans pretty generously, and the bottoms still stuck on all 3. I’m thinking I need to find “muffin wrappers” for loaf pans like they use in bakeries.

    • Mel says:

      Thanks, Camille! I usually use the Baker’s Secret cooking spray that has flour in it. It’s amazing and resolves the need to grease AND flour. Before I used that, I would usually only grease the pans because I hate pounding out flour. I don’t remember having any sticking issues but adding the step to flour your pans could definitely help remedy that. By the way, king arthur flour ( has those loaf tin liners you are talking about. I’ve never bought them but I’ve wanted to many times!

  33. Reyna says:

    I made these in mini-muffin form for my Kindergartner’s class Halloween party today. I made them last night, and when I ate the first one out of the oven I thought, “Ehh…not that great.” But I remembered what you said about them being better the next day, so I let them sit a few hours, tried one again and they were way better. Then I tried one this morning and wow! The flavors were so much deeper and richer. They were a HUGE hit. The other moms ate more than the kids and couldn’t stop raving about them! They all asked for the recipe and said I needed to bring them to the next party too. So, once again–thanks Mel for making me look like a super star!

  34. […] the pumpkin muffins, I used this recipe from “My Kitchen Cafe.”  Only instead of making it into loaves, I made 30 muffins.  I […]

  35. Jody, RD says:

    Great recipe! I tweaked a few ingredients to lower the fat. Check it out at my blog

  36. Cindy says:

    This recipe is sooooo good! My whole family loves it! Can’t wait to make it again and share it for the holidays! 🙂

  37. Anissa says:

    I made a double batch of this yesterday. I started to question my sanity when I realized how much dough it made, but luckily it all fit in the largest bowl I had. I made 10 mini loaves with the ceramic loaf pans that are $1 a piece at Michaels and then 2 9×5 loaves. Baked them all at the same time. Came out AMAZING. Seriously, such good bread. I’ve got all my mini loaves frozen and ready to hand out in their little pans for Christmas. 🙂 PERFECT!

  38. Deb says:

    You are my new best friend 🙂 This was delicious! I wish I would have read all the way to the comments at the bottom – I too made a double batch like Anissa and it BARELY fit into my biggest bowl. I made it into 12 muffins and 3 loaves and they were all delicious. I’d probably add some toasted pecans next time just for some more texture, but otherwise not change a thing. Thank you!

  39. Rachel says:

    I tried this today and I’m thrilled with the results! I only have one loaf pan, so I made some muffins too. They’re delish!

  40. Stephen says:

    I made this for a breakfast potluck at my office last week and it was great! The recipe is easy and my coworkers raved about it, thanks!

  41. Haley says:

    I have 2 friends that have wanted me to try chocolate chip pumpkin bread for about 2 years. I gave in after I came across your recipe. I actually baked mine in baby bundt cake pans. They were fantastic! Maybe a new favorite fall recipe! I think maybe next time I will squirt some cream cheese icing in the middle of each cake! Yum!

    Tonight at my house I had a little Mel’s Kitchen Cafe Experiment! I tried 4 of your recipes for our family dinner get together (Grilled Pork Chops {Amazing}, Pumpkin chocolate chip bread {wonderful}, s’more cookie bars {splendid}, & the cheesy cauliflower bake {got rave reviews, but not my personal favorite… next time I want to try it w/o the thyme and maybe more cheese!}) Thanks for helping my plan my dinner tonight! Love your blog!

  42. lindsay says:

    Mel, I am wanting to make this & I recently bought the white whole wheat flour that you mentioned in your oatmeal cookie recipe. I’m wondering if you have ideas for how to sub it for the white flour/ whole wheat flour combo in this recipe. Thanks!

    • Mel says:

      Hi Linsday – you can use the white whole wheat flour for the whole wheat flour called for in the recipe. If you want to sub all the flour with whole wheat flour, you should be able to sub 1:1 the white flour for the whole wheat, but be sure to measure the wheat flour with a lighter hand (don’t compact it into the measuring cup).

  43. Sarah V. says:

    Hello –

    I’d like to try this recipe (looks great!) but I’m wondering if I half it to make just one loaf – will it work? It looks easily halve-able, but sometimes recipes don’t turn out after halving.

    Please let me know. Thanks!

    • Mel says:

      Sarah V. – I’ve never halved the recipe, but I think it should work just fine. You could always make both loaves and freeze one!

  44. Sarah V. says:

    Thanks Mel! I went ahead and tried to halve it, and it turned out great. Only have one loaf pan…so today I’ll make it again:) thanks again for a great recipe and your response.

  45. Andrea says:

    Yum!! I made these tonight and they were delicious! I love the way they make my house smell- so festive. I too used applesauce instead of the oil and cut back to 2 C sugar and they turned out great. Thanks Mel!!

  46. Jess says:

    This is to die for – I made it last night and holy moly it was delicious. I did the same as Andrea and used applesauce instead of oil, and all I could find was pie filling instead of puree and it came out seriously amazing. My husband is loving it!

  47. Promise says:

    I am so in love with this recipe. I made it for my family and they all loved it too. It’s addictive! I used half apple sauce and half oil. I also used Libbys pumkin pie filling but it was just plain pumkin! So yummy 🙂 Thank you

  48. Joni says:

    Delicious! I made this tonight and was not disappointed. Thanks for the recipe 🙂

  49. Jess says:

    I know this was posted last year, but it looks like comments are still being posted. This is a great recipe and taste’s very delicious. I keep having a problem with burning however, and I was wondering if you had any advice. I read the other comments and no one else seems to have this problem and so I’m thinking maybe it’s my high altitude (Utah). The first time I made the bread I made two large loaves and they were burnt on the outside but still doughy on the inside and so I thought I would try them in the 8 X 4 pans the second time, which I did, and they came out totally burnt. I refuse to give up on this because it’s such a great tasting bread, but I wanting it to turn out so I don’t have to cut the crust off, and also so I feel okay about giving it away. I was thinking of baking the larger loaves at a lower temp until cooked thoroughly, and just baking the smaller loaves for less time, but you’re the expert. Do you have any advice? By the way, thank you so much for the time you put into this blog, I’m cooking things I never thought possible!

    • Mel says:

      Thanks, Jess – glad you are enjoying the recipes! If I were you, I’d probably try baking the bread at 25 degrees lower than the recipe states. Are your bread pans dark? That can sometimes make the bread crust darken more quickly. Another idea is once the bread forms the crust on the outside (and before it is overly darkened) you can carefully tent the loaves with foil while they continue baking. Hope you have better luck!

  50. Anna says:

    Silly question here – only have 1 loaf pan, so will have to halve the recipe. I guess I only need to use half the can of pumpkin?

  51. Mel says:

    Anna – yes, if you are halving the recipe, only use half the can of pumpkin.

  52. […] -Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bread- […]

  53. Ava says:

    I’ve made this 3x. I always get huge compliments.
    Sometimes I leave out the chocolate chips.
    Great recipe!

  54. Melanie says:

    My son, age 8, loathes pumpkin. But he eats this bread faster than I can make it. Enough said, right? Four thumbs up!

  55. Morgan says:

    I have recently uncovered a love for pumpkin, and discovered this recipe on foodgawker a couple months ago and fell in love. I decided to make smaller loaves for coworkers, neighbors, and family for christmas and I’m sure it will be a big hit! Thank you so much!

  56. Kristen says:

    thanks! this was delicious! I accidentally added 2tsp of salt so I doubled the whole thing & ended up with A TON OF BREAD. good thing, too, because this is amazing. found the recipe via pinterest & will make it again & again.

  57. […] I had on hand, I decided to make Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bread.  I looked around online and found this recipe. It was so easy to put together and made two loafs – one for now and one to freeze for […]

  58. Casey says:

    I’m new to your blog, but ridiculously excited about trying your recipes! I don’t have whole wheat flour and was wondering if I could do all white flour. Will that drastically change the flavor/texture of the bread?

  59. Mel says:

    Casey – welcome! Yes, you can definitely use all white flour. The wheat flour lends a bit of density and nuttiness but the bread will definitely work out with all white (and will make it even more treat-like!).

  60. Megan says:

    I realize it’s not even close to fall, but I had this one last can of pumpkin hanging around in my pantry and we were running out of breakfast cereal… so I had to make this recipe of course! The loaves baked up beautifully except that they did stick horribly to the bottom, even though I greased it very well. Next time I’ll have to use the flour too- I thought I could get away with it but oh well! It still tastes delicious! Thanks!

  61. […] the workout I was starving so I had half a slice of pumpkin chocolate bread. This held me over nicely until dinner. This is the best recipe I’ve […]

  62. Jenn says:

    Can you substitute applesauce for any of the oil in this recipe???

  63. Mel says:

    Jenn – I think several commenters have tried that same thing so read through the comments for details. I’ve never tried it but usually that substitution works ok (at least for half the oil).

  64. jess says:

    I always use ALL applesauce and it turns out just fine 🙂

  65. Jenn says:

    thanks guys!! Getting ready to make this and wanted to ask – since I’m going to add white chocolate chips I thought I’d do my best to make them as healthy as possible! ROFL!

  66. Jess says:

    Just pulled two loaves out of the oven! So good!

  67. […] Recipe: Perfect Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bread […]

  68. Margaret says:


    I’m eager to try, but confused about whether or not plain pumpkin works as well as puree?


  69. Jessica says:

    I used whatever the Libby’s Pumpkin in a can is 🙂

  70. Jen says:

    FYI, I forgot to put the oil in! It still came out amazing. I think I was rushing to get ready to go to the World Series. Worked out well.

  71. Maggie says:

    Made this the other day as gifts for teachers…I used mini disposable foil pans and got 8 mini loaves from one batch! Perfect for gifts tucked into those holiday treat bags and saved me a lot of time! I ended up baking them for about 20-25 minutes and covered loaves with foil last 5 minutes. Delicious recipe, thank you!

  72. Lorri says:

    There are few foods more comforting than a slice of warm pumpkin bread and this hit the spot today. I know Milwaukee tends to be warmer than other parts of WI so I can’t complain but I still wish Wisconsin would decide to finally let go of winter! I made 3 loaves in 8×4″ pans and they only took 45 minutes.

  73. Kate says:

    I’ve tried quite a few of your dinner recipes and when I was craving pumpkin bread I came straight to your blog.

    This was my first time baking with whole wheat flour and it was delicious! We’ll have to see if my husband approves now. I cut the recipe in half, used slightly more wheat flour and only used 1 cup of sugar. It still tastes great! Thank you!

  74. Meg says:

    Hi Mel:) You have become a house-hold name in our home! My husband, who doesn’t like pumpkin bread and wasn’t exactly looking forward to this recipe coming out of the oven, made these sounds as he tried the bread: Mm. Mmmmm. Mmmmmmmm! He loved it! We know we can always count on your recipes. Thank you!

  75. Karen says:

    Has anyone tried with coconut oil?

  76. Stephanie says:

    I absolutely LOVE this bread! I make it frequently and my whole family loves it, as well as all friends who have tried it. I have the same issue, however, each time I make it and I’m hoping you can help: In order to get the bread cooked all the way through in the middle, the bottom and side edges get way too dark and overdone. I have two types of pans that I use – dark non-stick and glass. This issue happens with either type of pan. I am not in a high altitude area (North Carolina), as I know that can make a difference. Any suggestions? Also, was wondering about making this as mini loaves – if so, how much time do you think the mini loaves would need to bake? Thanks so much! Your blog is awesome and is my go-to source for recipes!

    • Mel says:

      Hi Stephanie – what size are your pans? If you are using the 9X5-inch, you might try using the smaller size (8 1/2 by 4 1/2-inch) – see the note in the recipe. And yes, this works great as mini loaves. I’d check them after 25 minutes.

  77. Sandee says:

    i think ive made this recipe at least three times now this season. we seem to prefer it in muffin form, you know, easier to stuff it in my mouth. reduced the sugar to 2 cups, 1/2 c choc chips and 1/2 c toffee bits. you know i love ya!

  78. Nicole L says:

    Made for the first time…I was out of wheat flour so had to just use all white flour. Yum! Made some mini muffins for my toddler without the chocolate chips and he’s already on his third 😉 I enjoyed my regular-size muffin with the chocolate chips! Thank you for another great recipe! 🙂

  79. Laurie W says:

    This was fabulous. It made one large loaf, 12 muffins, and 4 Texas-size muffins. I now have a replacement for the Trader Joe’s pumpkin bread mix. 🙂 Thanks for another keeper!

  80. Alyssa says:

    It’s like you read my mind! I was so happy to see this recipe, especially since it was exactly what I was looking for! I just finished making banana bread with chocolate chips and I though hm..I should make some pumpkin bread with chocolate chips. My Gramma used to make it and I haven’t had it in years. I figured I’d find a good pumpkin bread recipe on your site but was excited to see you added chocolate chips to it, best way to eat it!!

  81. Bine A says:

    I LOVE it

  82. Bine A says:

    It seems like my post didn’t get posted

  83. Stephanie says:

    I made this conference weekend and I’ll be making it again very soon! We had some new neighbors move in and I think it would make a great welcome gift! Thanks!

  84. Erin says:

    I don’t have whole wheat flour. Can I just add an extra cup of white flour?

  85. Erin says:

    Nevermind! Found the answer. Thanks!

  86. Shirley says:

    I’ve made this twice and my family loves it. The only problem I have is a crunch in each piece like egg shells. It must be the sugar, but the batter is mixed very well. Should I use sugar fine sugar instead of regular? Has this ever happened to you?

  87. Kathryn says:

    I accidentally only used 2 cups sugar when I made this last night. It’s still tasty. This is coming from someone that has a MAJOR sweet tooth. I also sub butterscotch chips for the chocolate and use ginger instead of nutmeg. Yummy!

  88. Davis says:

    I would love to turn these loaves into muffins. How would I do that?

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