Healthy Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bread

Healthy Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bread that's moist, delicious, and packed with pumpkin flavor and is made with healthy ingredients.


Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bread that's made with good for you ingredients but still tastes indulgent, delicious, and has all the pumpkin flavor you want this time of year. You can also enjoy pumpkin season with these Healthy Pumpkin Pancakes and Pumpkin Pie Oatmeal.

It took me quite a long time to come around to pumpkin. I was never much of a pumpkin pie fan and even though I like pumpkin more than I ever have, I am still not a die-hard pumpkin spice fan. However, one major exception to that is pumpkin bread. That I can get behind every time and it's one of my favorite things to eat this time of year. I love the notes of cinnamon and nutmeg and the subtle pumpkin flavor that comes through in every bite. However my bakery obsession definitely packs in the calories, so lately I have been experimenting with making my own lighter version at home.

Healthy Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bread in a pan right out of the oven.

I started with one of my favorite healthy banana bread recipes since, in my opinion, good banana bread and good pumpkin bread are not too far apart. This bread uses a combination of canned pumpkin, banana, and applesauce for sweetness and moisture. It's a really moist, dense bread, which I love. It also needs a touch of honey and maple syrup so it sweet enough and lots of pumpkin pie spice to get all the cinnamon and nutmeg flavor you expect in a pumpkin treat. This is all combined with white whole wheat flour and a good smattering of chocolate chips since pumpkin and chocolate is always a good thing. And let me tell you, the finished bread, it so delicious. We ate the whole loaf in just a couple of days.

Healthy Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Bread sliced and served in a plate.

Is pumpkin bread healthy?

The simple answer is usually not, but luckily, this recipe for pumpkin bread is actually good for you. Most pumpkin bread is packed, I mean packed, with sugar. For example, the pumpkin bread at Starbucks has 410 calories, 15 grams of fat, and 39 grams of sugar in a single slice. In comparison, this healthy pumpkin bread has just 181 calories, 6 grams of fat, and 14 grams of sugar. Plus the sugar in the recipe isn't refined white sugar. It's sugar from bananas, honey, and pure maple syrup. 

So let's talk about what else makes this a healthy pumpkin bread.

  • Pumpkin is packed with beta carotene, potassium, Vitamin C, and it is rich in antioxidants. It is also low calorie and a great source of fiber,
  • White whole wheat flour contains more vitamins and minerals than standard white flour but doesn't have the same strong wheat flavor as standard brown wheat flour. It is made from a different type of wheat plant that is lighter in color and milder in flavor yet still maintains all the great benefits of choosing a whole wheat flour option.
  • Bananas are a great source of natural sweetness, are high in fiber, and can help with digestion from naturally occurring prebiotics. They are also high in potassium.

Tips for Making Healthy Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bread

  • When buying canned pumpkin, make sure to buy plain canned pumpkin without any added sweeteners or spices. It should just be pumpkin puree and not pumpkin pie filling. Canned or homemade squash puree also works.
  • I like to add a banana and applesauce since it adds natural sweetness to the bread. You could replace this with extra pumpkin if you don't want to use banana or applesauce. You will need about 1/2 cup of extra pumpkin puree.
  • If you don't like pumpkin pie spice, you can just use cinnamon instead. This is perfect for people who don't like nutmeg or cloves, which are usually a part of pumpkin pie spice blends.
  • This recipe works great for muffins as well, just cut the cooking time down since muffins will cook a lot more quickly than bread.
  • Chocolate and pumpkin are one of my favorite combinations so I always add chocolate chips. You can leave these out if you want. It will reduce the calories by about 35 calories and points to 5 SP per serving.
  • Get creative and try out other mix ins! You could add nuts, carob chips, chia seeds, hemp seeds, flax seeds, pumpkin seeds, yogurt chips, dried fruit, and more.

Can I freeze healthy pumpkin bread?

If you are lucky enough to have leftovers, this bread freezes well. Make sure to let the bread fully cool before freezing it. Then you can freeze the entire loaf or freeze it in individual portions. I love freezing the bread in individual slices and then grabbing them to throw in school lunches. They will defrost during the day and be ready just in time for lunch.

Healthy Chocolate Chip Banana Bread is moist and delicious.

Here are some of the products I used in this recipe:

  • I like to use white whole wheat flour for baking since it is a healthier, less processed option to all purpose flour but has the same taste in recipes and bakes in the same way.
  • If you are looking at this recipe and it's a time of year it's hard to find pumpkin puree, look online, where you can purchase it year round and usually at a very competitive price.
The Recipe
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Healthy Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bread

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  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1 banana, mashed
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 1/4 cup nonfat milk (or nut milk)
  • 3 tbsp. honey
  • 3 tbsp. maple syrup
  • 2 tbsp. coconut oil, melted
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1.75 cups white whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup chocolate chips

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Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.


Stir together the pumpkin, banana, applesauce, milk, honey, maple syrup, oil, and eggs. Once well combined, add the cinnamon, vanilla extract, baking soda, and salt. Then using a spoon, stir in the flour. The batter doesn't need to be perfectly smooth but try to get out any big chunks. Fold in the chocolate chips, saving a few to sprinkle on top of the bread before baking.


Pour into a bread pan (I used a 9 x 5) sprayed with cooking spray. Bake for 50-60 minutes until a toothpick comes out clean and bread is cooked through.

Nutritional Facts
Serving Size: 1 slice
Amount Per Serving
Calories 181
Calories from Fat 50
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 6g
Saturated Fat 4g
Monounsaturated Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0g
Cholesterol 31mg
Sodium 219mg
Total Carbohydrate 31g
Dietary Fiber 2g
Sugars 14g
Protein 4g

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

The Nutritional Values provided are estimates only and may vary based on the preparation method.

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About the authorMeet Kristen McCaffrey
Hi, I’m the cookbook author, recipe developer, and food enthusiast behind Slender Kitchen. I am obsessed with making healthy food that is easy to prepare and absolutely delicious. Meal planning is my secret weapon and I hope I can make meal time easier for you with our tried and tested recipes and foolproof meal plans. Learn More
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On Healthy Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bread
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September 30, 2021 - 14:18
Add a Rating:
Thank you for this recipe! I didn’t have applesauce so I added more banana but otherwise followed the recipe, and it was great!! I’m wondering for next time, could I sub almond flour to make it even healthier?? Thanks!
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Heather Webber
August 10, 2021 - 14:42
Can this be made into muffins instead of bread?
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Christine Russo
June 10, 2020 - 18:38
i am allergic to coconut is there another oil i can substitute? Thank you!
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August 20, 2020 - 11:53
Any neutral oil, like vegetable or sunflower oil, will work.
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April 8, 2020 - 14:01
Add a Rating:
I cannot believe you don’t have any comments. I made this this morning and it was amazing. It didn’t taste like I had swapped out any unhealthy ingredients for healthier ingredients. Even my five-year-old loved it. Thank you!
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September 26, 2020 - 03:50
I leave this bread. I wanted a pumpkin bread with minimal sugar. This is wonderful. This is my go to pumpkin bread.
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