Chef John's Pumpkin Bread Recipe -
Chef John's Pumpkin Bread Recipe
  • READY IN 18+ hrs

Chef John's Pumpkin Bread

Recipe by  

"This no-knead bread is simple to make, and the addition of pumpkin puree makes it perfect for fall."

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Ingredients Edit and Save

Original recipe makes 1 loaf Change Servings
  • PREP

    10 mins
  • COOK

    50 mins

    18 hrs 30 mins


  1. In a medium bowl, stir together pumpkin puree, 1 cup plus 1 tablespoon of warm water, yeast, salt, and pumpkin pie spice. Mix in flour with a spatula until the dough is fully mixed and all the flour is moistened. Cover bowl with a damp towel, and allow dough to rise for 12-16 hours.
  2. Scrape dough onto floured surface with floured spatula; sprinkle dough with more flour. With your fingers, press dough out into a rough square about 1 inch thick. Fold all four sides of dough in towards center, then turn folded dough over and form into a round loaf.
  3. Generously cover a sheet pan with cornmeal.
  4. Place loaf on prepared sheet pan with seam sides down, dusting top and sides with flour, then place a floured towel over dough. Allow to rise until doubled in size, about 1-1/2 hours.
  5. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F (220 degrees C) and place a pan with 2 inches of water on the bottom rack. Just before baking, make a shallow slice (1/2 inch) across top of dough with a sharp knife.
  6. Bake for 30 minutes in preheated oven. Turn pan around and bake for an additional 20 minutes, or until golden brown. Cool on a wire rack.
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  • Cook's Note
  • For plain bread, substitute more water for pumpkin puree.

Reviews More Reviews

Most Helpful Positive Review
Mar 18, 2012

What a nice bread this is. Really crunchie, chewy crust, airy interior. Beautiful. I could have probably let it rise longer after shaping it into a loaf but the loaf seemed to be spreading rather than rising and I was afraid I would de-gas it when I scored the top. No worries though the loaf really rose nicely in the oven. Follow the baking directions - a friend of mine who made this decided that the baking time was too long and took it out too soon - her bread was a little doughy in the center. This would make excellent bread bowls for chili or stew. I would expect to get 4 individual sized bread bowls from this recipe. Thanks Chef John for another 'keeper' recipe.

Most Helpful Critical Review
Nov 04, 2013

Doughy inside. Very poor.


13 Ratings

Sep 27, 2012

Oh ya, this is a keeper. I used roasted butternut squash from my garden instead of the canned pumpkin. This bread takes very little effort to put together. I made it the night before and baked it the next morning. Easy, easy, easy. The texture of the bread is perfect, the crust has a nice chew. I thought it was one of the best breads I’ve made in some time.

Mar 22, 2012

Delightful artisan bread! It's texture is spot on; chewy crust, substantial bite of the crumb and the consistancy of the dough was beautiful. I only let the dough to rise for one hour, and then continued with the recipe. It's great plain or toasted with cream cheese. Thanks Chef John!

Nov 19, 2013

This was the first recipe I tried with "pumpkin puree" or "pure pumpkin". I wasn't sure what to buy at the store, because all of the cans had photos of pumpkin pie slices on them. Finally after some reading I was able to determine that the ones with less carbs and sugars did not include the pie spices. I've made this at least a dozen times now. Two of those times I doubled the batch, which made it harder and longer to mix by hand. I also placed both dough balls on the same baking sheet, and they fused together during cooking. I got some jokes about the fused appearance, mostly Star Trek references to "mind melding" (because they look somewhat like two brains) and other (somewhat adolescent but funnier) comments about the shapes. The taste of the doubled-recipe was the same, though slicing around the parts that had fused together wasn't ideal. The next time I double it, I think I'll separate into different mixing bowls and different baking sheets. The pumpkin flavor is very subtle, and I find it a pleasant addition. The aroma gets stronger when the bread is sliced and toasted, especially when done on a skillet with a little butter or cooking spray. It never becomes overpowering though. It's been a great hit for adults and kids alike, especially when used for sandwiches, especially grilled cheese sandwiches. Pairs well with cream cheese too.

Nov 03, 2012

This bread is very easy to make and it is wonderful! I made two batches at the same time. Going to make it again today. It's good for soups, stews and sandwiches. Electric knife makes it easy to slice for sandwiches.

Oct 14, 2012

This bread was delicious and very easy to make.

Oct 08, 2012

Incredible bread. Sure it takes a long time, but if you let it rise overnight, that's the bulk of the time. The crust is great! (if you follow his baking tips) and is a great seasonal bread for fall.


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  • Calories
  • 179 kcal
  • 9%
  • Carbohydrates
  • 37.7 g
  • 12%
  • Cholesterol
  • 0 mg
  • 0%
  • Fat
  • 0.5 g
  • < 1%
  • Fiber
  • 1.8 g
  • 7%
  • Protein
  • 5.1 g
  • 10%
  • Sodium
  • 402 mg
  • 16%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.

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