Apple Oatmeal Quick Bread
A simple apple quick bread, prepared with whole wheat pastry flour, and studded with rolled oats, apple pieces, and toasted walnuts.
Cooking and baking have always been a form of therapy for me.
There is something wonderful about creating something from scratch and knowing it will produce similar results each time. It is familiar and comforting.
Though the warming spices and flavors are well-suited for the fall and winter months, it is perfectly delicious and acceptable all year long.
This Apple Quick Bread is inspired by a Dorie Greenspan recipe that I made all the time growing up.
My version is easier to throw together, offers a more delicate, cake-like crumb (thanks to the addition of whole wheat pastry flour), and uses everyday staples.
Sometimes all it takes is baking up a delicious quick bread – one filled with oats, chopped apple pieces, toasted walnuts, and dusted with crunchy turbinado sugar – to brighten your day.
Tips for Success:
As is the case with many quick breads, this apple quick bread actually tastes better the day or two after baking, allowing you to enjoy it all week long.
Baking Tip: Whole wheat pastry flour is my favorite whole grain baking flour due to its lower protein percentage. Low protein flours are preferable for baked goods, such as quick breads, muffins, cakes, and pancakes, that don’t benefit from increased gluten development.
Flour Substitution Tip: If you can’t find or don’t wish to purchase whole wheat pastry flour, feel free to substitute with equal parts (preferably, by weight) unbleached all-purpose flour.
How to Store Apple Quick Bread
This Apple Quick Bread actually improves in flavor and texture the day or two after baking.
Allow the quick bread to cool completely and store in a large Ziploc bag at room temperature for up to 3 to 4 days. To prevent gumminess on the surface (this occurs due to moisture escaping baked goods) set a paper towel on the top to absorb any moisture.
Though I haven’t tested this, I see no reason why this quick bread couldn’t be frozen for later (wrap tightly in plastic wrap than a layer of foil or sealed Ziploc bag). Thaw at room temperature before serving.
Apple Oatmeal Quick Bread
- 1¼ cups (150 g) whole wheat pastry flour (or unbleached all-purpose flour)
- ½ cup (45 g) old-fashioned rolled oats
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon Diamond Crystal kosher salt
- 1½ teaspoons ground cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
- pinch of ground cloves
- ⅔ cup (130 g) dark brown sugar lightly packed
- 2 large eggs room temperature
- ⅓ cup (80 mL) avocado oil (or vegetable oil)
- ½ cup (115 g) unsweetened applesauce
- ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- zest 1/2 lemon optional
- 1 large apple (7 oz; 200 g) such as Pink Lady, peeled, cored, and chopped into ½-inch pieces
- ⅓ cup (45 g) walnuts toasted and roughly chopped
- 1 tablespoon (15 g) turbinado sugar for sprinkling
- Preheat the oven to 350°F (176°C) with a rack in the center position. Grease a 9-inch x 5-inch (23 x 13 cm) loaf pan with baking spray and line with a parchment paper overhang (*see photo in blog post; this makes it easy to lift and remove the quick bread from the pan after baking). Set aside.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the whole wheat pastry flour, rolled oats, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the dark brown sugar and eggs for 1 minute, or until lightly frothy. Add the oil, applesuace, vanilla extract, and lemon zest (if using) and whisk until smooth.
- Whisk the dry ingredients in the wet ingredients until the flour is just absorbed. Using a spatula, fold in the chopped apple and chopped, toasted walnuts. Transfer to the batter to the greased (and parchment-lined) loaf pan. Smooth the top and tap the loaf pan on a countertop lightly to remove any air bubbles. Sprinkle the turbinado sugar evenly over the top of the batter.
- Bake for 40 to 50 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean (there may be some small moist crumbs from the apples). Place on a rack and allow to cool in the pan for 5 to 10 minutes before removing from the pan.
- Allow to cool before serving (*it is best to use a serrated knife for slicing). Note: Though the quick bread is good the day of baking, I actually prefer the texture and flavor on the second day.
- Storage Tips: Place a paper towel on the surface of the loaf to absorb any excess moisture, wrap in foil, and place in an airtight Ziploc bag or container. Store at room temperature.
Tips for Success:
- How to Toast Walnuts: Spread the walnuts evenly on a small sheet pan and bake for 5 to 10 minutes at 350°F (176°C), stirring them halfway, or until they are golden and fragrant. Watch them carefully. Transfer to a bowl to cool.