Apples and blueberries found their way into a beautiful golden quick bread that is moist, delicious, full of juicy berries, and crunchy pecans. A healthier loaf cake that can be frozen too.
This post has been updated with new images and text, but the recipe remains the same.
If you need a not-too-sweet snacking cake this is it.
Each bite has juicy blueberries bursting and crunchy pecans. It doesn't even need a dusting of powdered sugar.
With a muffin-like consistency due to the applesauce, it's easy to put together and kinda makes me feel healthy. Must be that whole wheat flour in the batter.
- Oil - it's used as a replacement of butter and it makes batters very moist. Sunflower and canola are, in my opinion, the most neutral ones in flavor, but I sometimes use olive oil, and you can use coconut. It's a small amount.
- Whole wheat flour - I use a superfine flour, one that is pretty much like all-purpose flour consistency-wise. If you use coarser flour the crumb will be different. So keep that in mind. It gives this cake a wonderful earthiness and 'healthy' feeling.
- Applesauce - it adds moisture without the calories. You can use my recipe for homemade applesauce, store-bought, or even grate an apple or two with a fine-holed grater.
- Blueberries - use either fresh or frozen (straight from the freezer). You can replace them with raspberries, but blueberries work better I think.
- Pecans - they give the cake a wonderful crunch. You can also use walnuts or other nuts like almonds and hazelnuts.
Tips & tricks
- Pan size - this recipe can be made in one loaf pan as I did here, in muffin cups, mini loaf pans, or even as a sheet cake.
- Decoration - I like to add a row of pecan halves and sprinkle with a tablespoon of brown sugar before baking (image below). You can omit it of course.
- Keeping - always wrap it in plastic to ensure it stays moist. It lasts for a few days at room temperature as long as it's not hot. Apples ferment at some point so keep this in mind.
- Freezing - wrap it well and freeze it for 1 month. I cut it before and then toast individual slices.
- Spices - add any other spice you like, ground cinnamon always works with these flavors.
It's the kind of not-too-sweet loaf that appeals to everyone, good as a snack, with a cup of coffee, tea or to give as a gift.
You can substitute pear puree for the apple.
Also, this recipe is easily doubled. Maybe eat one and freeze the other?
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Blueberry Pecan Applesauce Loaf
A golden loaf full of juicy blueberries, crunchy pecans, and applesauce. So moist and delicious for breakfast or to snack on.
- Total Time: 1 hour
- Yield: 1 loaf
- ¾ cups (85g) pecans, lightly toasted if you want to
- 1 cup fresh or frozen blueberries (I used them frozen, directly from the freezer)
- 1 cup sifted all-purpose flour
- ½ cup superfine whole wheat flour
- ½ tablespoon baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon baking soda
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon mace or freshly grated nutmeg (optional)
- 1 egg
- ¼ cup of vegetable oil
- ½ cup + 1 tablespoon sugar
- ½ cup unsweetened applesauce (I use my recipe for homemade applesauce), or finely grate a peeled apple until you have ½ cup
- 2 teaspoons lemon juice
- Reserve a few pecans for the top of the loaf, and finely chop the rest.
- Preheat oven to 350º.
- Butter or spray 1 medium loaf pans (9x3 inches)
- Sprinkle with ground nuts coating evenly. Or dust with flour or fine dry breadcrumbs.
- Remove and reserve 1 Tbs of the flour.
- Sift remainder white flour, whole wheat flour, baking powder, salt, and spice. (I measure the dry ingredients and then sift them directly over the egg mixture).
- In a large bowl beat together eggs, oil, and ½ cup sugar.
- Add applesauce and lemon juice and mix well.
- Add dry ingredients without beating too much.
- Mix blueberries with the tablespoon of flour and add to the egg mixture.
- Add chopped pecans and mix.
- Pour this batter into the prepared pan, smoothing top.
- Sprinkle with any remaining ground pecans and 2 Tbs sugar, and arrange whole pieces decoratively on top if you want.
- Bake for 45 to 55 minutes, until a tester comes out clean.
- Cool on a wire rack for 15 minutes, then unmold and let cool completely.
Pan size - this recipe can be made in one loaf pan as I did here, in muffin cups, mini loaf pans, or even as a sheet cake.
Decoration - I like to add a row of pecan halves and sprinkle with a tablespoon of brown sugar before baking. You can omit it of course.
Keeping - always wrap it in plastic to ensure it stays moist. It lasts for a few days at room t° as long as it's not hot. Apples ferment at some point so keep this in mind.
Freezing - wrap it well and freeze it for 1 month. I cut it before and then toast individual slices.
Spices - add any other spice you like, ground cinnamon always works with these flavors.
You can substitute pear puree for the apple.
Also, this recipe is easily doubled. Maybe eat one and freeze the other?.
- Prep Time: 20
- Cook Time: 40
- Category: Loaf cake
- Method: Baking
- Cuisine: American
- Serving Size: ⅛
- Calories: 282
- Sugar: 16.3 g
- Sodium: 235.6 mg
- Fat: 14.6 g
- Carbohydrates: 36.5 g
- Protein: 4.4 g
- Cholesterol: 23.3 mg
Keywords: applesauce blueberry bread
Adapted from Cakes, by Maida Heatter
Cookin' Canuck says
How perfect that this is not too sweet and that you worked in whole wheat flour.
I love sweet bread so much! Your bread with applesauce and blueberries would be perfect, a perfect traveling treat too:-) Hugs, Terra
Mary Hirsch says
Paula, this combination looks really, really delicious. I love fruit breads like this - any flavor is fine with me - but this looks a little healthier than most. You're right, a good gift.
Paula, ah, the delicious pecans again (I am reading "upside down"). And I love the addition of homemade unsweetened applesauce, makes for very moist baked goods - presentation is wonderful!
Love how you used the pecans to help determine slice width.
Rhu and Sam says
What a great combination of flavours! I wish I had a piece of this lovely cake for breakfast tomorrow...
Maida Heatter is a favorite of mine. I also have her cookie cookbook with many well worn pages. Your freezer is a treasure trove of sweet delight! Blueberries! A fabulous cake!
Paula, This is an incredibly lovely cake! I could use a piece right now with my afternoon tea! Have a great weekend!
Guru Uru says
Mmmm I can imagine eating the entire loaf 😀
Choc Chip Uru
Carol | a cup of mascarpone says
Paula, this is stunning! I adore the shape in the long, slender pan! I have never seen one like that before - love the pan, and love the bread even more!!!