Harvest Pumpkin Bread (Paleo, Gluten Free, Dairy Free)

Ah, friends, it really does feel like autumn is upon us. The air is more crisp, the days are growing shorter, and as I drive through my city, the leaves have begun to turn their golden yellow and rich amber colours. That happens a bit earlier up north here where I live, and I don’t mind it one bit. You’ve probably read from me a couple times now that I will take all of the cooler, overcast weather I can get. Rather than feeling motivated when the weather becomes warmer and sunny in the spring, I find my boost of productivity when the opposite occurs. I’ve had home organization and cleaning projects on the go, and have found myself getting out and about much more now that the new season is imminent. However, my favourite time is still a cozy day at home, with my lamps and candles on, good music, and baking some sort of yummy goodies (and sneaking time here and there to do some reading, of course!).

I know that this is not a food blog at all, but when I happened upon a lovely autumn-themed loaf pan at my local HomeSense the other day, and made a delicious pumpkin bread, I felt compelled to share it with you. If not only for the prettiness, for my love of pumpkin treats in the fall.

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I have eaten gluten and dairy free, and mostly paleo, for the past 3 or so years, and even prior to that have been on the “clean eating” train for several more years – probably close to 7 total. I say “mostly”, because at this point my eating doesn’t necessarily fall neatly into a specific label. I am gluten free, and I don’t eat a lot of grains, but will occasional have quinoa, rice, or even chickpeas – and that is not paleo. I eat dairy free in general, but I do use grass fed butter for some cooking or baking – so not completely dairy free, I suppose. It’s not 100% paleo, not quite ancestral, so I don’t really know what it is, haha. Overall, I just try to eat as clean as possible, but allow myself moderation when it comes to a strict dietary label so that I don’t feel overly stressed with my food choices to the point of having it consume my entire life & thoughts, and a lot of enjoyment with that – which it definitely has in the past. Even still, I do feel passionate about what we put into our bodies, and that making clean choices as a whole will serve us so well for our lives, and the lives of our families.
Anyways, I find with this style of eating, it pushes you to be more creative in the kitchen with what you use. I find with both cooking and baking, that if you do it enough you begin to understand the general idea of what you need to make a simple recipe – such as a loaf, muffins or cookies for baking. So though I am by no means a chef or professional baker, I have begun to compile recipes over the last couple of years that I have experimented with and found to be good, and this is one of them. If you happen to try it, please let me know in the comments below!

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This baked good is not very sweet, which is why I have chosen to call it a bread, as it is more bread-like, than it is a traditional loaf or cake. It has just a hint of pumpkin flavour, warm spices and mild sweetness to it. Once you are ready to eat this, you can either warm it up and put a bit of grass fed butter on it like my husband does, or you can pair it with a drizzle of my maple glaze for more of a dessert-like treat. I will also put that below.

Either way, my hope is that as you set yourself to making this, you do so with a mindfulness that will lead to enjoyment of your time in the kitchen. That you perhaps light a candle like I do, turn on some music with autumn vibes, and allow yourself to embrace the fulfillment that comes with knowing your hands are working to create something that will nurture yourself and your family.

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harvest pumpkin bread

Ingredients:

3 eggs
3/4 cup pumpkin purée (organic is best)
1/3 cup full fat coconut milk
1/4 cup maple syrup*
1/4 cup coconut sugar (*or if omitting coconut sugar, use 1/3 cup of maple syrup)
2 tsp pure vanilla extract (once again, organic is best, but not necessary)
1 & 3/4 cup almond flour
1/4 cup arrowroot starch
1 tbsp coconut flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tbsp pumpkin pie spice
1 tsp ground cinnamon (Ceylon cinnamon is best)
1/4 tsp all spice
1/4 tsp fine ground sea salt (I use Celtic sea salt or Himalayan sea salt)

Instructions:

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees

Brush a bit of melted, grass-fed butter into the loaf pan, and then gently sift some arrowroot starch onto pan so it is lightly, but fully covered. This step is so that your loaf comes out clean! This is mostly necessary if you use a pan like I did, where you want all of that pretty detail to show. If you have a regular loaf pan, you can alternatively line the pan with parchment paper.

In a large mixing bowl, whisk together all of the wet ingredients.

In a medium mixing bowl, stir to combine all of the dry ingredients.

Slowly add your dry ingredients to the wet ingredients – folding in a bit at a time, rather than all at once – mix until just combined.

Transfer the mixture to your loaf pan.

Bake the bread for around 1 hour (depending on your oven), or until a toothpick in the middle comes out clean. Let the bread stand in the pan for about ten minutes prior to removing. If you just used parchment paper, you can gently lift it out of the pan and place it onto a cooling rack. If you floured the loaf pan,  place the cooling rack upside down onto the top of the loaf pan, and gently turn it over. Then slowly lift the pan off of the bread. Allow your bread to cool for an hour or two before slicing.

Maple Glaze:

1 cup powdered maple sugar*
1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
1 tbsp almond or coconut milk

*You can also use 1 cup of organic powdered icing sugar and 1 tbsp of maple syrup.

Whisk together and enjoy!

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I truly hope that you enjoy this recipe. I know it is much different than my usual posts, but I felt that with my recent expansion into discussing homemaking more broadly than just decor on my last few blog posts, that an autumn recipe fit within that realm! If you do make this harvest pumpkin bread, feel free to let me know what you thought, and what you enjoy about the process of baking and creating food for yourself and those you love!

Thanks for stopping by.

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