This vegan pumpkin banana bread is soft, fluffy, and perfectly sweet! It is made with a delicious cream cheese filling swirled in and is the perfect fall treat! All you need is 12 ingredients and 20 minutes of prep time.
I really love using pumpkin puree in the fall – try my Vegan Pumpkin Scones, Pumpkin Chia Seed Pudding, or even my Vegan Pumpkin Spice Latte if you do too.
I even use it in savory recipes like Pumpkin Soup and Vegan Thai Pumpkin Red Curry!
It’s such a classic fall flavor, I am definitely team pumpkin!
This pumpkin recipe in particular is no exception.
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
- This bread is indulgent, but not overly sweetened. A great holiday treat.
- It’s made with mainly pantry staples – chances are, you’ve got most ingredients on hand right now!
- The vegan cream cheese filling doesn’t taste vegan! This is non-vegan approved bread.
Ingredients and Substitutions
- pumpkin puree: I developed this recipe with canned pumpkin puree. I have not tested this recipe with homemade pumpkin puree, but it may work.
- mashed banana: This recipe uses about 1 small banana. I do not recommend substituting the mashed banana with additional pumpkin puree as some of the sweetness in this bread comes from the banana.
- vegetable oil: Any neutral oil will work. I do not recommend using coconut oil as it will harden in the batter and greatly effect the texture of the bread. Avocado oil or grapeseed oil would be good substitutes.
- light brown sugar: The perfect compliment to the pumpkin and pumpkin spice! Do not substitute with another sugar, especially not a liquid sweetener as that will make the batter way too moist.
- powdered sugar: This is added to the powdered sugar to the cream cheese to cut the tanginess of the cream cheese.
- vegan cream cheese: I only tested this recipe with Kite Hill cream cheese as it is, in my opinion, the best, most realistic tasting vegan cream cheese available. Do not use Miyoko’s cream cheese – the flavor is really off and not pleasant.
- pumpkin pie spice: I used a pre-made pumpkin pie spice blend! If you want to make your own pumpkin pie spice mix, try this Homemade Pumpkin Pie Spice.
- flax eggs: The egg substitute used in this recipe. I do not recommend substituting with any other vegan egg substitute.
- all purpose flour: The only flour I used to test this recipe. All purpose flour makes for the lightest baked goods! I cannot recommend a substitute at this time.
Step by Step Instructions
Prepare the cream cheese filling and batter
- In a medium sized bowl, beat together the vegan cream cheese and powdered sugar!
- In a separate large bowl, beat together the flax eggs, pumpkin puree, mashed banana, vegetable oil, and brown sugar until smooth.
- Add the all purpose flour, pumpkin pie spice, sea salt, and baking soda to the wet ingredients.
- Mix the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients with a spatula until well combined. Don’t use the beaters for this step – it will over activate the gluten and make a very dense, stretchy batter.
Layer the batter and filling in the loaf pan
- Pour half of the pumpkin banana batter into the bottom of a lightly greased 9×5 loaf pan.
- Add half of the cream cheese filling on top of the pumpkin banana batter. I like to do this in 3 dollops with a 3 tablespoon cookie scoop.
- Spread the dollops out into an even cream cheese layer.
- Swirl in gently with a knife.
- Layer the remaining pumpkin banana bread on top of cream cheese filling layer.
- Add remaining cream cheese filling on top of the pumpkin banana batter. Again, I recommend and like to do this in 3 dollops with a 3 tablespoon cookie scoop.
- Spread the dollops out into an even cream cheese layer.
- Swirl in gently with a knife.
- Bake for 50-60 minutes or until a tooth pick comes out clean (I usually cook for 60 minutes). Allow the bread to cool for at least 10 minutes in the loaf pan, then turn out and allow to cool completely on a baking rack.
- Slice and enjoy!
Yes! This bread is great with or without the cream cheese! If making without, simply just pour the pumpkin banana bread batter into the loaf pan and bake for the same amount of time.
Sorry, no. This recipe requires the powdered sugar and brown sugar. It’s one of my more indulgent dessert recipes. If you’re looking for refined sugar free recipe, try my 1 Bowl Vegan Chocolate Chip Banana Bread or check out my refined sugar free collection of vegan recipes.
Sorry, this recipe has not been tested with gluten free flour. If you choose to experiment with gluten free flours, I’d start with a 1 to 1 gluten free flour. I don’t recommend trying almond flour, coconut flour or oat flour.
Tips for Success
- Use a cookie scoop to place equal dollops of cream cheese filling on the pumpkin banana bread batter to ensure an even layer that’s easy to spread!
- Use Kite Hill vegan cream cheese. It is the best tasting vegan cream cheese available and will yield excellent results.
- Make sure you use the correct amount of banana. If you use too much banana, the batter will be too moist and it will be undercooked in the center.
- To ensure your bread is vegan, use organic powdered sugar and brown sugar. Conventional versions of sugar are typically filtered through bone char to bleach the sugar a pure white.
Vegan Pumpkin Banana Bread with Cream Cheese Filling
What You’ll Need
Vegan Pumpkin Banana Bread
- 2 flax eggs - 2 tablespoons ground flaxseed and 5 tablespoons water
- ¾ cup pumpkin puree - do not use pumpkin pie filling
- 1 small ripe banana - mashed (about ⅓ cup or 5 ounces)
- ½ cup vegetable oil - can substitute another neutral oil (no coconut oil)
- ¾ cup brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 1 ¾ cups all purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon pumpkin pie spice
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ¼ teaspoon sea salt
Cream Cheese Filling
- 8 ounces Kite Hill vegan cream cheese - I don't recommend any other brand of vegan cream cheese for this recipe
- ½ cup powdered sugar
- Preheat the oven: Set oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit and lightly grease a 9×5 loaf pan.
- Prepare your flax eggs: Whisk together 2 tablespoons ground flax seed with 5 tablespoons water. Set aside for 10 minutes, or until gelatinous like egg whites.
- Prepare the cream cheese filling: Add the powdered sugar and vegan cream cheese to a large bowl and beat together until creamy like cream cheese frosting.
- Prepare the pumpkin banana bread: In a large bowl, beat together the flax eggs, pumpkin puree, mashed banana, vegetable oil, brown sugar, and vanilla extract. Then add in the flour, pumpkin pie spice, baking soda, and sea salt. Fold the dry ingredients into the wet with a spatula until combined.
- Layer in loaf pan (see photos in post for step by step process): Smooth half of the pumpkin banana bread batter evenly into the bottom of the loaf pan. Spread half of cream cheese filling on top of batter, then gently swirl cream cheese filling in with a knife. Spread remaining half of pumpkin banana bread batter on top of cream cheese, then layer remaining cream cheese filling on very top. Finally swirl the cream cheese topping into the top of the bread with a knife. I find it easiest to spread the cream cheese filling evenly by first dolloping 3 dollops on, then smoothing out the dollops.
- Bake: Bake loaf for 50-60 minutes on middle rack of oven, or until toothpick comes out clean.
- Cooling: Allow bread to cool in pan for 10 minutes, then transfer to a baking rack to finish cooling. Slice when slightly warm or cool. If you slice the bread when it is still hot it will stick to the knife and will seem undercooked.
- Storage: I recommend storing this in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 4 days. Refrigeration or freezing is NOT recommended.
- Why you do not want to substitute another brand of vegan cream cheese: Most vegan cream cheeses are oil-based or contain a significant amount of oil. When baked, these cream cheeses will completely melt into the batter. This will not only make your bread significantly more moist, you’ll also lose the swirled layers. Kite Hill cream cheese does not contain oil – just fat from nuts. It therefore mimics regular cream cheese when baked and will not melt or separate.
- See photos in post for step by step process of layering batter.
- This bread bakes well without the cream cheese as well if you would like to leave it out.
- If you can’t find pumpkin pie spice at your grocery store, try a homemade version.
- I have only tried this recipe with canned pumpkin puree. If you roast your own pumpkin, the results may differ because it may be more wet or more dry.
- I have not tested a gluten free version of this bread. If you do and have good results, please let me know!
Disclaimer: The Nutritional Information provided for this recipe is only an estimate. The accuracy of the facts listed is not and cannot be guaranteed.
This post was originally published October 21, 2020 and has been republished on October 20, 2021 to include an improved recipe, new photos including step by step process shots, frequently asked questions and tips for success.
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