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Kefir Pumpkin Quick Bread

We hope you’ve enjoyed our Thanksgiving series so far. We’ve had a great time coming up with these recipes and look forward to any feedback you have (and leftovers). Our third and final new Thanksgiving recipes turned out to be the fan favorite in the Lifeway Kitchen. As comes with the end of every meal, we’re finishing this series off with dessert.

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What would a thanksgiving feast be without a dessert? Not a feast we want to attend, that’s for sure. At the same time, we value our health (and our waist lines). With that in mind, we came up with a dessert we could feel good about eating, and feel good after eating. We’re calling it our kefir pumpkin quick bread (clever, we know). Instead of being laden with excessive amounts of refined sugar, refined oil and general nonsense, this bread is full of generally good for you ingredients while still being downright tasty.

To keep calories in check, we substituted a stevia for baking blend for the sugar, which has already been reduced from traditional numbers thanks to the use of ripe bananas. Molasses offers an iron boost, and the pumpkin puree adds moisture, even more iron, potassium and fiber. As it’s not overly sweet, it’s good for everyone (and perfect for the next morning). Feel free to add in any additional nuts or seeds to your liking.

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Kefir Pumpkin Quick Bread

  • 1/2 cup Lifeway Lowfat Plain Kefir (at room temperature)
  • 1/2 Tbsp molasses
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • 2 large ripe bananas
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 eggs (at room temperature)
  • 2 Tbsp melted coconut oil
  • 1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 Tbsp pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup stevia baking blend
  • Pepitas for garnish

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F with a rack placed near the lower third of the space. Grease a 9 x 5 inch bread pan with non-stick cooking spray or oil. Set it aside.

In a medium bowl, smash the bananas until it reaches a puree texture. Add eggs and whisk until well combined. Add kefir, vanilla, pumpkin, molasses and coconut oil and mix until combined.

In a large bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, sugar, salt and spices. Slowly add the wet ingredients to the dry and mix until combined (careful not to over mix – a few lumps are ok).

Pour batter into the prepared bread pan. Sprinkle the top with pumpkin seeds and additional cinnamon or pumpkin pie spice, if you’d like. Bake for 55-65 minutes. After the first 30 minutes, cover the top with foil to prevent excess browning and burning. After 55 minutes, insert a toothpick into the center of the bread to test for doneness. It should come out clean. If it doesn’t return the pan to the oven and check every five minute until the bread is completely cooked.

Remove the pan for the oven and allow the bread to cool in the pan on a wire rack before removing. Enjoy smothered with butter, whipped cream cheese or spread of your choosing!

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