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Jordan's Chocolate Pumpkin Bread with Cardamom Pepita Streusel

Recipe by: Jordan Smith

Serves 8

Jordan's Chocolate Pumpkin Bread with Cardamom Pepita Streusel
Photo by:  

Asha Loupy

Growing up in Alabama, it was far more likely to have a sweet potato pie on the table around the holidays than to have one made of pumpkin. I didn’t really understand how popular pumpkin pie or pumpkin spice was until I moved to the Midwest for grad school. It seemed like pumpkins were everywhere. You could find them in pies, cupcakes, even ice cream.

It took awhile for me to come around to the idea of pumpkin being so ubiquitous but it was a little easier when I came to understand that it’s really just a great vehicle for warm spices. Cinnamon, ginger, and cardamom pull out some of the earthy and sweet notes in cooked pumpkin. Though this recipe may convert you to team pumpkin, it’s also great and a little nostalgic for me to make it with canned sweet potato purée.

Serve thick slices of this bread with whipped cream, yogurt, or my favorite method of breaking a slice into pieces in a bowl with a splash of milk.

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For the streusel
  • 64g (1/2 cup) raw pumpkin seeds 
  • 60g (1/2 cup) oat flour (I recommend Bob’s Red Mill but homemade with a blender also works)
  • 50g (1/2 cup) rolled oats 
  • 30g (2 Tbsp) sugar
  • 8g (1 Tbsp) Anamalai Cacao
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground Baraka Green Cardamom
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 56g (4 Tbsp) cold cubed unsalted butter
For the chocolate pumpkin bread
  • 120g (1 cup) oat flour (I recommend Bob’s Red Mill but homemade with a blender also works)
  • 50g (1/4 cup + 2 1/2 Tbsp) buckwheat flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon Peni Miris Cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground Makhir Ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground Baraka Cardamom
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 125g (1/2 cup + 1 Tbsp) unsalted butter
  • 150g (1/2 cup + 3 Tbsp) brown sugar 
  • 2 large eggs
  • 225g (1 cup) pumpkin purée
  • 25g (1/4 cup) Anamalai Cacao 


For the streusel
  1. Combine all the ingredients except butter in a large bowl.
  2. Sprinkle the butter into the bowl and rub into the dry ingredients until a crumbly texture forms with pieces ranging in size from small peas to almonds.
  3. If not using right away, keep stored in a covered container in the fridge.

Note: This recipe makes enough streusel for two loaves. Leftover streusel can be stored in the freezer for 2–3 months and used when you bake this again or any time you want to add a warmly spiced, crunchy topping to a loaf cake or batch of muffins.

For the chocolate pumpkin bread
  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F with a rack in the center of the oven. Butter and line an 8 1/2x4-inch loaf pan with parchment paper. 
  2. Combine the butter and brown sugar in a large bowl. Using an electric mixer, cream the butter and sugar together until lighter in color and increased in volume, about 2–3 minutes.
  3. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, add one egg and beat until completely incorporated. Scrape down the sides again, add the second egg and beat until incorporated.
  4. Add the pumpkin purée and beat until mixture is completely uniform.  
  5. In a medium bowl, combine flours and mix well. Set aside 1/4 cup (30g) of the flour mixture. Then, add the baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, ginger, Baraka Cardamom, and salt to the bowl with the remaining flour.
  6. Add the flour and spice mixture to the wet ingredients and fold until no dry patches are left.
  7. Divide the batter into two portions. Fold the reserved 1/4 cup (30g) of flour into one portion and 1/4 cup (25g) cacao powder into the other portion.
  8. Alternating the batters, scoop or spoon 2-3 tablespoon portions into the prepared loaf pan. Drag the blade of a paring knife or skewer through the batter to swirl and partially combine the scoops of batter. Sprinkle half the streusel over the top and press firmly into the batter.
  9. Bake until the top of the loaf has slightly browned and a metal or wooden skewer can be cleanly inserted into the middle of the loaf, about 50–55 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely before removing from the pan.

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