pumpkin cream cheese sweet bread.

just a quick post to say…….if you mess up one recipe big time, there is a chance you can transform it into something else completely.

this here was once destined to be pumpkin cream cheese frosting for these chai blondies. when i over-pumpkin’ed the mixture, it was never going to work as frosting because it became super grainy. i was sooo sad even thinking about throwing out a huge mixing bowl of perfectly good stuff….

so i made it into something else!


since this was originally destined for a life as frosting, it was made with a bunch of powdered sugar. it then took a hard right turn at a fork, journeyed through a tunnel, and resurfaced into the light as a fun little pumpkin sweet bread.

to be honest, i’ll probably never make this particular recipe over again, just because it’s a pumpkin bread made with powdered sugar. but, it was very yummy and super moist and good! if you love a sweet bread, this recipe is for you!

here is my regular pumpkin/squash bread recipe that i like the best. you can switch out pumpkin for butternut squash as you desire.


moral of the story is: unless you’ve burned something to a crisp or dropped it all over the floor, chances are you can take a “failed” recipe and give it a new life.

make lemonade from lemons, if you will. 🍋😊


Pumpkin Cream Cheese Sweet Bread

Total Time: 1 hour 30 minutes

Makes: One Loaf


  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter

  • 4 oz. room temperature cream cheese

  • 1 cup pumpkin purée

  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract

  • 1 tsp. chai blend (find recipe in this post) or pumpkin pie spice

  • 1/4 tsp. fine sea salt

  • 3 cups powdered sugar

  • 2 TB heavy cream

  • 1 egg

  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

  • 1 tsp. baking soda

  • 1 tsp. baking powder


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray and line a loaf pan with parchment paper, leaving enough excess paper on the edges for you to be able to grab and lift the bread out of the pan later.

In a large bowl, cream the butter and cream cheese until smooth. Add the eggs & vanilla, mix until combined. Add the pumpkin, chai spice blend and salt, mixing until incorporated. Add the powdered sugar in 1/2 cup increments to slowly combine.

Slowly add the flour and baking powders to the mixture, scraping down the sides of the mixing bowl with a spatula as needed. Lastly, add 2 TB heavy cream or milk and stir.

Spread the batter into the prepared loaf pan and place on top of a baking sheet. Place into the oven and bake at 350 degrees F for 60 minutes.

Remove from oven and let cool 10 minutes. Carefully grab the parchment with both hands to lift the entire loaf out of the pan and onto a cooling rack to cool completely.

Slice and serve with coffee (or something unsweetened, to balance it out)!

Cover with foil or store in an airtight container for 3-5 days.


mexican chocolate zucchini loaf cake.

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wanted to call this "bread," but its pretty much "cake". oh well ;)

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i love me a good mexican chocolate anything. i love the warmth and spiciness of cinnamon or nutmeg, and also...actual spiciness from cayenne! 

this bread cake loaf baby will spice up your life.

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and boy is it riiiiiiiiiiiiiich. 

and dense. and moist. and textured. and delicious! and it's got two bigass zucchinis in it. so it's full of health.

jk. but dzang i love how far those zucchinis take it. they really add to the moist factor.  [yikes....nobody has yet to come up with a better food word for 'moist'?]

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if you're not a fan of spicy foods but enjoy chocolate bread, just omit the cayenne pepper. i think the cinnamon is a must :) maybe throw a dash of nutmeg up in there. 

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also, i am fully obsessed with pepitas on everything. in yogurt, on salads, in pasta dishes, on chocolate bread cakes... 

just over here puttin' some pepita in my stepita. 

Mexican Chocolate Zucchini Loaf Cake

Makes 1 loaf

Total Time: 1 hour 30 minutes


  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 3/4 tsp. fine sea salt
  • 2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper (optional)
  • 1/4 cup milk of choice
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 large egg, room temperature
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar or coconut sugar
  • 4 TB. unsalted butter, browned and cooled
  • 1 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup boiling water
  • 2 medium zucchinis, grated (about 2 cups, loosely packed)
  • 1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips (+ 1/4 cup for loaf topping)

Toasted Pepitas:

  • 3/4 cup raw unsalted pepitas (pumpkin seeds)
  • 1/2 TB. coconut oil
  • 2 tsp. 100% maple syrup
  • 2 tsp. brown sugar or coconut sugar
  • dash of cayenne pepper (optional)
  • 1/4 tsp. cinnamon


Use a box grater or large cheese grater to grate the zucchinis. Spread all the grated zucchini on top of a kitchen towel and between layers of paper towels to absorb the excess liquid. Weigh it down with a cookie sheet to absorb more water. You could also squeeze the grated zucchini in a kitchen towel. 

In a small pan on the stove, melt 4 TB of butter on medium heat. Whisk constantly until foamy. Continue whisking until fragrant and brown bits begin to form (about 3 minutes). When butter begins to brown, remove from heat and continue whisking for another 30 seconds so it doesn't burn. Transfer to small bowl and chill in the refrigerator for about 5 minutes.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray a loaf pan with cooking spray and line with parchment paper with excess paper hanging over the sides so that you can lift the loaf out of the pan after cooled. Spray the parchment as well. 

In a medium bowl, combine the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder & soda, salt, cinnamon and cayenne. In a large bowl, whisk the vegetable oil, egg, and brown sugar or coconut sugar. Stir in the cooled browned butter, vanilla extract, and milk. 

Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and combine. Add 1/4 cup of boiling hot water and stir again. Gently fold in the grated zucchini followed by the chocolate chips. 

Pour the batter into the prepared parchment loaf pan and shake until spread even. Place on a cookie sheet in the oven (set timer for 30 minutes if adding toppings).

While the loaf begins to bake, toast the pepitas on the stovetop on medium heat. Melt the coconut oil, add pepitas, maple syrup, brown sugar, cayenne & cinnamon and toss constantly with a spatula until fragrant and lightly browned/sticky (about 2 minutes). Transfer to a plate and dab the excess oil with a paper towel. 

When the loaf has baked for 30 minutes, remove from the oven and gently press the toasted pepitas and 1/4 cup of chocolate chips into the top of the loaf with a spatula. Return to oven and bake for 20-30 more minutes (total bake time = 50 - 65 minutes).  I baked this loaf for 52 minutes total. Test the center of the loaf with a toothpick to see if it comes clean.

Remove from oven and let cool for at least 30 minutes to an hour. Lift the excess parchment to move the entire loaf out of the pan to slice it. Use a hot, dry knife when slicing (pour boiling water on the knife and dry with a towel). 

Enjoy with coffee or milk! Store at room temperature covered tightly. Eat within 3-4 days.

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