Easy Holiday Quick Bread Recipes

Quick breads are a quick, easy accompaniment to any holiday meal.

For the best-tasting holiday quick breads, here are some helpful hints:

- Only grease the bottoms of the loaf pans or the sides of the bread will pull away from the sides of the baking pan.

- Bake in the center of the center rack of the oven.

- When adding liquids to the dry ingredients, stir only until dry ingredients are moistened. Batter will be lumpy.

- Quick breads can be made ahead and frozen from 1 to 2 months.

Cranberry Pumpkin Bread

2 eggs, beaten slightly
2 cups sugar
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 cup canned pumpkin
2 1/4 cups flour
1 cup chopped cranberries
1 tablespoon pumpkin pie spice
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine eggs, sugar, vegetable oil, and pumpkin, mixing well. Combine flour, pumpkin pie spice, baking soda, and salt in a large bowl. Make a well in the center of the batter and add the pumpkin. Stir in cranberries. Spoon batter into 2 greased and floured loaf pans. Bake for 1 hour.

Cranberry Bread

2 cups flour
1 egg
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 cup cranberries, sliced
1 cup sugar
1 cup nuts, chopped (optional)
2 tablespoons butter
1 teaspoon baking soda
Juice and rind of 1 orange
1/2 teaspoon salt

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Add water to orange juice to make 3/4 cup liquid. Mix all ingredients together and pour into a greased loaf pan. Bake for 30 minutes.

Pumpkin Bread

5 cups flour
4 cups sugar
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
4 eggs
1 cup vegetable oil
1 large can pumpkin
2 cups nuts (optional)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, mix together vegetable oil, sugar, and eggs. In another bowl, mix together flour and baking soda. Add flour and pumpkin alternately to the egg mixture. Add nuts. Pour into 2 greased loaf pans. Bake for 1 hour.

Apple Bread

3 cups flour
2 cups sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
2 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 1/4 cups oil
2 apples, chopped
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup chopped nuts (optional)
1 teaspoon baking soda

Preheat oven to 300 degrees. In a large bowl, mix together all ingredients until well blended. Pour batter into 2 greased loaf pans. Bake for about 1 hour.

Rachel Paxton is a freelance writer and mom who is the author of What's for Dinner?, an e-cookbook containing more than 250 quick easy dinner ideas. For more recipes, organizing tips, home decorating, crafts, holiday hints, and more, visit Creative Homemaking at http://www.creativehomemaking.com.

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