The holidays have passed, and the unofficial pumpkin season is winding down. But that doesn’t mean you have to abandon pumpkin bread! Canned pumpkin is available year round, and it’s easy to turn that classic pumpkin bread into a better-for-you loaf that you can enjoy any time. This is our favorite dairy-free healthy pumpkin bread recipe that is nutritious enough for breakfast. It also happens to be naturally free of eggs, nuts, and soy, and it’s plant-based.
Healthy Pumpkin Bread that’s Moist, Tender, and Just Sweet Enough
I do love pumpkin bread. But most recipes are a little too indulgent to enjoy often. So I decided to create a dairy-free healthy pumpkin bread recipe that’s whole grain, lower in sugar, and melt-in-your-mouth tender. I like it for breakfast or with afternoon tea. It’s amazing slathered with nut butter, seed butter, chia jam, or buttery spread. I originally posted this recipe over five years ago, but have since updated it with nutrition facts, added notes, and the following FAQs.
Is there a Substitute for the Flaxseed?
You can use chia seed instead. Use an equal amount of chia seeds or chia seed meal in place of the flaxseed meal.
Can I Use Eggs Instead of Flaxseed?
I haven’t tested it, but if you are okay with eggs, it should work just fine. Omit the flaxseed and add 2 eggs with the wet ingredients. You might also need less milk beverage. I would add milk beverage as needed for a thick batter that’s a little bit thinner than pudding.
I Don’t Have Vanilla Milk Beverage. Should I Add Vanilla?
You can use plain milk beverage or water and add 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract. If you don’t have any vanilla, don’t worry. It will still be tasty!
What Oil Do You Recommend?
Your favorite baking oil should work great! I typically use extra-light olive oil (not extra-virgin) or grapeseed oil. But it’s up to you! Most neutral-tasting oils are seamless in this healthy dairy-free pumpkin bread. If you opt to use coconut oil, make sure your ingredients are all at room temperature. If any ingredients are cold, the oil will bead up. It begins to solidify once it hits the cold. If this happens, just mix! Your mixer should heat it up enough.
Can I Use Dairy-Free Butter Alternative instead of Oil?
Yes, you can! You can either use melted buttery sticks or spread, or cream softened butter alternative with the sugars and then blend in the other wet ingredients. The latter will make it a little more cake-like.
Special Diet Notes: Healthy Pumpkin Bread
By ingredients, this recipe is dairy-free / non-dairy, egg-free, nut-free, peanut-free, soy-free, vegan, vegetarian, and plant-based. I haven’t tested this recipe without gluten, but let me know if you do try it gluten-free! If you need a gluten-free classic pumpkin bread, see my Perfect Pumpkin Bread for All recipe.
- 2 cups white whole wheat flour (see Flour Note below)
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg or allspice
- ½ teaspoon baking powder (omit over 4000 feet for higher altitude)
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ⅛ teaspoon ground cloves
- 1½ cups pumpkin puree
- ½ cup maple syrup (can sub honey)
- ⅓ cup coconut sugar (for less sweet) or firmly packed brown sugar (for more sweet)
- ¼ cup ground flaxseed or flaxmeal
- ¼ cup oil
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ⅔ cup unsweetened vanilla dairy-free milk beverage
- ½ cup optional add-ins (raisins, dairy-free chocolate chips, chopped nuts, dried cranberries, etc)
- Preheat your oven to 350ºF and grease four mini loaf pans (5x3-inch each) or one 9x5-inch loaf pan. Flour the inside bottom(s) of the loaf pan(s) or line the bottom(s) with parchment paper overhanging on each long side.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg or allspice, baking powder (if using), salt, and cloves.
- In a large mixing bowl, beat the pumpkin puree, maple syrup, sugar, flaxseed, oil, and vanilla with a hand mixer until smooth.
- Add the dry mixture and milk beverage to the pumpkin mixture and stir just until combined. Do not over-mix. Fold in the optional add-ins (if using).
- Scrape the batter into you prepared loaf pan(s) and level the batter out.
- Bake for about 35 minutes if using mini loaf pans, 50 to 60 minutes if using a full-size loaf pan, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of a loaf comes out clean.
- Let the bread cool for 15 minutes in the pan(s) before turning it out to a wire rack. Let the bread cool completely before slicing.
This pumpkin bread looks perfectly moist and totally delicious! Thanks for including a gluten free option!
This is so perfect for fall baking! Bring on all of the pumpkin recipes!
Right? I pretty much wait for pumpkin season all year.
Can’t go wrong with a good pumpkin bread! I always love trying different recipes 🙂
Me too, I’ve made a ton of them!
Oh, I LOVE pumpkin bread! This one looks so moist and delicious. And I love that it’s vegan! Can’t wait to try this for the holidays!
Why wait for the holidays? This is a breakfast-worthy one!
I love your the idea of using mini loaves Alisa. Now I have another reason why I need to buy some ?
I’m ALL about the mini loaves Nicole 🙂
Love how perfect this is for fall! Pumpkin bread is a fave of mine this time of year, but I haven’t had a chance to make it yet. I’ll definitely have to try out your recipe! YUM!
Yep, you better get on that 🙂
I love pumpkin bread! I love that is can be healthy for me too!
I am SO about healthier quick bread. Not a fan of the really sweet ones.
Pumpkin bread is a staple of the season. I haven’t made any yet this year, but now I can’t wait to start baking!
I bet you will bake up some amazing variations Jenn.
it still looks tender for sure! I still need to find Ripple… haven’t tried it yet but I really want to! and this bread is on the list to try too…
I’ve seen it at Target and Whole foods!
I wasn’t a pumpkin person but you are making me be one with that!! yumm
Pumpkin can actually be finicky in baking, so I could see that.
It still feels like summer here too, but pumpkin bread is the best! Can’t wait until it cools down a bit to make some!
The weather is all over the board this year! But I see some leaves turning.
This looks so great. I love that you focused on healthy ingredients that can be enjoyed more often. Beautiful photos as always.
Aw, thanks Lindsey.
That pumpkin bread looks like it’s a mile high with the perfect crumb! Love that it’s healthier!
It really does rise well and the crumb is so indulgent!
I’m not a big baker unless it’s fall. And this recipe is clearly just what I need to kick off baking season with!
I think so – enjoy Lorie!
MMMM, love me some pumpkin bread! Tis the season I guess. This looks super moist and delicious.
It’s just right I think! Tender, but not overly moist and “wet” like so many pumpkin recipes can be.
I agree, a lot of sweet breads are almost too sweet. Looks like this is the perfect combo!
Glad I’m not alone Rachel!
I am Allergic to wheat ….can I substitute with ? Appreciate ur input 😉
Hi Tara, see the Special Diet Notes above the recipe. I always include that section, which discusses options like gluten-free / wheat-free.
I love that this is a healthier version. It means we can eat more of it! 😉
I would love this for breakfast with some of my homemade butter!
That’s the way I think of it, too! 🙂
I haven’t tried Ripple yet. I’ll have to to see if they have it in our area. This pumpkin bread looks perfect!
I really enjoy it in baking Chrystal – worth trialing since you are so into baking!
It still feels like prime summertime around here, since it always seems to come while the rest of the country starts reaching for sweaters, but this pumpkin bread is definitely my jam no matter the weather. I would gladly crank up the oven even in the middle of a heat wave to make it!
Wow, really?! We’ve actually had snow up here! It’s been so darn cold. We went from 90 degree highs to 50 degree highs overnight. I’m so jealous! But I agree, pumpkin is an anytime enjoyment 🙂