Cookin’ with Kids: Healthier Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Bread

This chocolate chip pumpkin bread is fun and easy to make with kids, but that’s not even the best part. You can use the WHOLE CAN of pumpkin in this recipe! There will be no partial cans of pumpkin puree, forgotten and moldy at the back of your fridge! I know you are the only person in your family who ever cleans out the fridge.

Solidarity, sister. I just saved you one can to sniff when that day comes.

Since this bread is made and devoured by my kids every fall, I have experimented with switching out some ingredients to make it healthier. The resulting recipe has much less sugar, most oil swapped for applesauce, and more whole grains – but it’s still moist and delicious!

Cookin' With Kids: Healthier Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Bread

Before you get started, grab your little helper(s) and get your pans ready. My mom taught me this wax paper trick to keep the bottoms from sticking:

Cookin' With Kids: Healthier Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Bread

Fold wax paper and trace around the bottom of your pan with the edge of a scissors.

Cookin' With Kids: Healthier Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Bread

Cut out what you traced and lay it in the bottoms of your pans. One of your little ones could easy do this part and practice scissor skills. There’s no need for perfect cutting here! Just spray the inside walls of the pan with baking spray and you are ready to begin!

Cookin' With Kids: Healthier Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Bread

This is the perfect recipe to make with more than one little helper. You mix the wet and dry ingredients in separate bowls, so each child gets their own bowl to mix. When my third helper needs a job, she gets to mix them all together or stir in the chocolate chips.

Cookin' with Kids: Healthier Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Bread

When baking with chocolate chips, we have a fun house rule: Each kid gets their own little pile of chocolate chips to eat, but they must count them before eating. If they want everyone to have an equal amount of chocolate chips, they need to figure out who has the most. In addition, they need to tell me how many more chocolate chips each child needs. It’s also a great way to practice counting by twos or fives. You can bet they are very motived to get it right, too!

Math is always better with chocolate.
Recipe Card

Print Recipe
Healthier Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bread
  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Prepare pans. You'll need 2 loaf pans or 8 mini-loaf pans. In one bowl, beat sugar and oil. Add in pumpkin and eggs. In another bowl, stir all dry ingredients except chocolate chips. Stir the pumpkin mixture into the dry mixture in two separate additions. Mix in chocolate chips. Divide batter equally between pans. Bake until toothpick tester comes out clean. This takes a little over an hour with the large loaves and a little over 30 minutes with mini-loaves. Turn loaves onto racks to cool completely.
  2. To freeze: Wrap cooled loaves tightly in plastic wrap, then wrap in aluminum foil.

Cooking and baking with kids is a fun way to learn together while making precious memories. Yes, it will take longer with kids. Yes, there will be a bigger mess to clean up, but doing dishes is an important part of the process as well.

Get those little ones in the kitchen with you and don’t forget to share your favorite fall recipes with us, too!

Have a delicious fall!

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Amy is a North Dakota girl who fell in love with Iowa when she moved to Cedar Rapids as a newlywed in 2006. She's an elementary teacher turned homeschooling mom of twin girls (2011) and a little sister (2014). Her ongoing struggle, is keeping faith at the heart of family life, while still encouraging each of her girls to follow their passions and find their unique gifts. Amy is a lover of words, winter sports, theater, and chocolate. She hopes you find love and encouragement through the posts on CRMoms because mom-ing is always better together.