This moist Vegan Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Bread combines the warming flavors of pumpkin spice with the richness of chocolate for a tender, comforting, lightly sweet slice that you are sure to "FALL" in love with!
Why You'll Love This Recipe
This Vegan Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Bread recipe is everything you’d expect in an autumn quick bread and more.
WHOLESOME INGREDIENTS - This pumpkin bread recipe has been specifically developed to use more wholesome ingredients like whole wheat pastry flour and coconut sugar, while avoiding the use of vegetable oil or processed vegan butter.
SIMPLE - Mix the dry, mix the wet, mix them together, then bake. No fussy techniques here.
COMFORTING - The warm coziness of the pumpkin pie spice permeates this loaf and is like getting a hug with every bite.
GREAT ANY TIME - Is it breakfast? Is it dessert? Who cares! This chocolate chip pumpkin bread holds its own any time of the day, whether that's at the breakfast table, as a take-along snack, or as a lightly sweet dessert.
Ingredients + Equipment
Here's a quick run-down of everything you'll need to make this recipe. See recipe card for specific quantities and detailed instructions.
Pumpkin puree - Opt for a canned puree where 100% pumpkin is the only ingredient. Do not use canned “Pumpkin Pie Filling” as that has been flavored and sweetened. Homemade pumpkin puree tends to be too watery, so I recommend canned.
Unsweetened plant milk + Apple cider vinegar - Mixed together, these will make a thick mixture resembling buttermilk. I recommend choosing a plant milk that has some natural fat in it like soy, almond or cashew for best results.
Whole wheat pastry flour - This is my go-to flour for so baking applications. It has a light texture like All Purpose flour while retaining the nutritional value you’d expect from a whole grain flour. Substitute with all purpose flour if needed, as regular whole wheat flour will make the bread too dense.
Coconut sugar - Coconut sugar is the dehydrated sap of the coconut palm and has a slightly nutty and caramel-y flavor that nicely complements the chocolate and warming spices in this pumpkin bread. Substitute with brown sugar for a similar flavor profile.
Pumpkin pie spice - Some would say it simply isn’t fall without pumpkin spice! Use any store-bought spice blend or make your own. See the recipe card for DIY instructions.
Baking powder + Baking soda - These are our raising agents and they work in different ways so it's important to include them both.
Vanilla extract + Salt - These are our enhancers. Vanilla adds a subtle sweetness. Salt balances and melds flavors as well as contributes to the overall rise of the pumpkin loaf.
Chocolate chips - I prefer to use mini chocolate chips because of how evenly they distribute throughout the batter. For a delicious variation, substitute finely chopped pecans or walnuts for the chocolate chips.
See recipe card for specific quantities and detailed instructions.
You'll need a 9"x5" (23x13 cm) loaf pan and a sheet of parchment paper to make this pumpkin bread.
To make this vegan chocolate chip pumpkin bread, we follow the standard steps for making a Quick Bread: Mix the dry, Mix the wet, Mix them together, Bake. Easy!
This is an overview of the process. Full instructions are in the recipe card.
You'll start by preheating your oven, preparing your loaf pan, and mixing the apple cider vinegar and plant milk together. This will be your buttermilk. Set it aside to thicken.
Sift together the flour, sugar, pumpkin spice, baking soda, baking powder & salt.
In a separate bowl, whisk together the pumpkin puree, yogurt, vanilla extract, and the buttermilk mixture you made a few minutes ago.
Your wet mixture should be well blended.
Add your wet + dry ingredients together and hand mix with a rubber spatula or wooden spoon.
When just a few dry spots remain, add ½ cup of chocolate chips (or nuts) and finish mixing. Stop mixing as soon as the batter is uniformly combined with no dry spots.
Move the batter into your prepared loaf pan. Those parchment handles are going to come in "handy" later!
Spread the batter evenly in the pan and top with the remaining 2 Tablespoons chocolate chips.
Bake at 350F (180C) for 50-55 minutes until a wooden skewer comes out clean (chocolate is okay, but we don't want any batter stuck to it).
Allow the chocolate chip pumpkin bread to cool on a rack for about 20 minutes while still in the pan. The cooling process helps to stabilize the pumpkin bread. If we remove it from the pan too early, it may crack.
After about 20 minutes, carefully lift the loaf from the pan with the parchment handles. Set it back onto the cooling rack (with the parchment still under it) and allow it to cool FULLY before cutting for best results.
Once the pumpkin loaf has completed cooled, use a serrated knife to cut slices. You can enjoy it plain or topped with your favorite non-dairy cream cheese.
Wondering about variations? Try substituting finely chopped pecans or walnuts for the chocolate chips (or use half nuts, half chocolate). Add 2 Tablespoons maple syrup to the wet ingredients to make up for the loss of sweetness the chocolate adds.
Canned Pumpkin - Wondering if you can use fresh, homemade pumpkin puree instead of canned? I do not recommend it. Fresh-made purees lack the consistency of sweetness and moisture content that we get with canned, and may be too wet to use for baking. Save the fresh purees for soups or other applications where we aren't depending on the chemical reactions of science for our final result. This is a great article on why it's better to use canned pumpkin for baking.
Whole wheat pastry flour - I could sing the praises of this type of flour all day long, but I know not everyone wants another bag of ingredients in their cabinet. Use all purpose flour instead as it performs similarly in baked goods. This recipe has not been tested with any other flours, and has not been tested gluten-free as of yet.
Coconut sugar - Use brown sugar instead for a similar flavor profile.
Non dairy yogurt - I have substituted yogurt with dairy-free sour cream with success.
Store at room temperature in a tightly sealed container for up to 3 days at room temperature, or 5 days in the fridge. I find using a storage container helps the pumpkin bread retain more moisture than wrapping it in foil, plus the chocolate chips don't get squished - win, win!
To freeze, I recommend wrapping individual slices in plastic wrap, then putting them in a freezer bag for extra protection. Remove portions as you need them, and allow to thaw in your lunchbox or in the refrigerator before eating. You can also warm them in 10-second bursts in the microwave.
You May Also Like
Want more secretly healthy chocolate recipes in your life? Give these Chocolate Cherry Overnight Oats a try and revel in eating chocolate for breakfast!
Just want more desserts?
Try this Easy Plum Compote Dessert Sauce for a fancy-sounding but incredibly easy way to dress up your ice cream.
Prefer chocolate? This Chocolate Dessert Hummus is surprisingly versatile and absolutely loved by kids!
This pumpkin bread is oil-free with the exception of the chocolate chips which contain cocoa butter (the fat extracted from the cacao bean). For a 100% oil-free bread, use nuts instead of chocolate chips and make sure you are using a yogurt with no added oil.
Vegan Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Bread
- 1 9"x5" loaf pan
- parchment paper
- ½ cup (118 mL) plant milk at room temperature such as soy or almond
- 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
- 2 cups (260g) whole wheat pastry flour or all purpose flour
- ¾ cup (145g) coconut sugar or brown sugar
- 1 Tablespoon pumpkin pie spice store bought or homemade, see below
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 cup (244g) canned 100% pumpkin pureee not pumpkin pie filling
- ⅓ cup (76g) plain, unsweetened yogurt or vegan sour cream
- 2 Tablespoons maple syrup, optional for extra sweetness recommended if you use nuts instead of chocolate chips
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ½ cup (120g) + 2 Tablespoons (30g) mini chocolate chips, divided or substitute with finely chopped pecans or walnuts
Homemade Pumpkin Pie Spice Blend - Makes 1 Tablespoon
- 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon ground ginger
- ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
- ¼ teaspoon ground cloves
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F (180C).
- Spray a 9”x5” loaf pan with cooking spray. Line the long sides and bottom with a piece of parchment paper and press it onto the cooking spray so it stays put. Be sure the paper is about 1” higher than the sides of your pan. You will use this as your handle to remove the loaf from the pan later without getting your hands covered in chocolate chips.
- Make the vegan buttermilk: Mix together the plant milk and apple cider vinegar and set it to the side to thicken.
- In a medium bowl sift together the flour, coconut sugar, pumpkin pie spice, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the pumpkin puree, yogurt, maple syrup (if using) and vanilla with the buttermilk mixture made earlier.
- Add the dry mixture to the wet ingredients and hand stir with a rubber spatula or wooden spoon. When nearly all the dry ingredients have been incorporated, add ½ cup mini chocolate chips (or nuts) and stir just until there are no dry spots remaining. Do not overmix.
- Transfer the thick batter to the prepared loaf pan and smooth the top with a rubber spatula. Sprinkle the remaining 2 Tablespoons of chocolate chips on top.
- Bake in the preheated oven for 50-55 minutes or until a wooden skewer comes out clean of batter. It’s okay to see melted chocolate on the skewer, we just don’t want any wet batter or on it.
- Remove to a cooling rack and allow to cool for about 20 minutes before carefully lifting the loaf out of the pan with the parchment paper handles. Allow to cool on the rack completely before cutting for best results.
- Enjoy a slice plain or with your favorite non-dairy cream cheese. Store leftovers in a tightly covered container at room temperature for best moisture retention.
Enjoy this little slice of fall! If you make this vegan chocolate chip pumpkin bread recipe, please share a photo on Instagram and tag me @culinary_kindness. I'd love to see your creations and would be especially grateful if you would also leave a star rating and comment on the recipe. Thanks so much!
This recipe has not yet been tested with a gluten free flour so I can't say for sure. If you try it, be sure to use a 1:1 flour substitute as it will contain binders like xanthan gum to help hold the bread together. Try King Arthur or Bob's Red Mill 1:1.
Not usually. Most commercial chocolate chips contain cocoa butter. Cocoa butter is the yellowish-white fat that has been extracted from the cacao bean. It is solid at room temperature, but it is an oil. In fact, it also goes by the name "Theobroma Oil".
If you avoid all free oils, then you probably won't want to put cocoa-butter-containing chocolate chips in your pumpkin bread. Use the option for nuts instead.
YES! I loved this. I used the pastry flour, brown sugar, and vegan sour cream options. Oh - and the extra maple syrup. It was perfect! Sweet enough but not too sweet. It was nice and soft. So good! Will definitely make again.