Sunday, December 20, 2015

Healthier acorn squash bread

A slightly healthier version of my acorn squash bread - this contains no oil or butter and uses less sugar than the original! Plus, it features whole wheat flour!

Don't get me wrong. I love sugar and sweets. But sometimes, it just doesn't make sense to eat too much sugar first thing in the morning. I've been on a breakfast baking frenzy lately and have made lots of quick breads for my family.

Several of the recipes I've tried contain a ton of processed sugar. And while I'm not watching my daily sugar intake, I do want to make smart substitutions where it makes sense. I revamped my original acorn squash bread and made it slightly healthier. I swapped the granulated sugar for brown sugar and reduced the amount. I also substituted the oil for unsweetened applesauce and even used whole wheat flour in place of all-purpose.

I'm not claiming that this is health food (it is far from it), but at least it's a bit healthier than the previous acorn squash bread I made. It was still a big hit with my family, and nobody knew about the ingredient substitutions that I had made.

What makes me happy is that when I tell Addie that I am making a pumpkin/squash item, she gets all excited. She now likes squash and associates it with good food, so I'm turning her into a fan. That's worth a million bucks right there.

Healthier acorn squash bread
  • 1 small-medium acorn squash
  • 1 cup light brown sugar
  • ½ unsweetened applesauce
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 and ½ cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • ½ tsp ground clove
  • ½ tsp freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • ¼ tsp salt
Directions
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. 
Cut the squash in half and scoop out the insides with the seeds and stringy stuff.  Put the squash cut sides down on a high sided baking tray and fill the tray with ½ an inch of water.  Roast for 45 minutes to 1 hour, or until the squash is very tender.  Remove from the oven and let the squash cool.  Scoop out the fleshy bits with a spoon puree in a food processor or blender until smooth.  Set aside 1 cup of the puree for the bread. Keep the oven on.

In a medium size bowl, blend together 1 cup of the squash puree, brown sugar, the applesauce, and the eggs.  

In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, spices, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.  Slowly add this to the squash mixture and mix until no longer lumpy.

Grease and flour your bread pan and pour in the batter.  Bake for 45-55 minutes until set.  A toothpick inserted into the center of the bread should come out clean.

Bread should be stored in an airtight container and will last for a few days. It will keep longer in the refrigerator.

Yield: One 9"x5" loaf (about 8-12 servings)

Source: Slightly adapted from my original acorn squash bread

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