Are you ready for a great foodie start to your Easter morning? This Olive Oil Carrot bread may be for you! It doesn’t have to be Easter morning either it can be any morning. I always love to have something special to nibble on with my boys on special mornings so I associated it with Easter. Plus, Easter…Easter bunny…bunny’s like carrots…carrots on Easter. Doesn’t everyone draw that same conclusion?
Maybe I have been reading my son’s book, Too Many Carrots, one too many times. Seriously, he has been asking me to read it almost everyday. Do your kiddos do that as well? They go through phases where, despite the crazy amount of books on their bookshelves, they will want to read the same two or three books ALL THE TIME. I guess it could be a cool party trick to recite Too Many Carrots or Little Blue Truck from memory. Or, maybe not!
Let’s get back to this super moist but still pleasantly dense olive oil carrot bread. The two obvious main stars, carrots and olive oil, work so well together and give the bread some nutritional boost. I realize olive oil has a stronger flavor than neutral veggie oil, but it works surprisingly well in this bread. Don’t tell anyone, but it is also much healthier. The orange zest and spices of cinnamon and nutmeg help brighten up the loaf with that zing of citrus.
Buttermilk. It was always that one ingredient that I didn’t have on hand to pop into recipes that I decided spontaneously to make. Have you been there as well? You wake up one morning to make perfect pancakes and no buttermilk. Ugh, so frustrating. Not anymore. The ever-so-wise internet has the solution.
As long as you have some milk and lemon juice or vinegar you can make your own buttermilk. Stir in one tablespoon of lemon juice (or vinegar) to one cup of milk and let it sit for five to ten minutes. Viola! Now you have a great homemade substitution for buttermilk.
Why use buttermilk? The buttermilk in this recipe helps to keep the bread moist and light. Since I used 100% whole-wheat flour, the buttermilk helps to prevent it from being too heavy.
While flipping through a baking book, I found another rendition of carrot bread and picked up a great little tip. After I grated my carrots in the food processor, I chopped them into smaller bits. I took the grated carrots out of the processor and plopped them onto a cutting board. Using a knife I coarsely chopped them until I was tired of chopping. This step is not necessary and your bread will still be delicious.
After you get all your ingredients together, you will put them into the bread pan. That’s a bit obvious, I guess. Before you do that, I have one last piece of advice. Lightly grease the bread pan and then line with parchment paper leaving some extra hanging over two sides. This will save you some clean up, which we all would love, right?! The parchment paper will also make it much easier to pull the loaf out of the pan to let it cool.
I hope you enjoy this olive oil carrot bread whether it is with your family on Easter morning or by yourself on a perfectly good quiet Tuesday morning. Please let me know what you think of the recipe by leaving a comment below.
Happy Carroting! (Yes, I did make up that word 🙂 )
Olive Oil Carrot Bread
- 2 cup whole wheat flour
- 2 tsp ground cinnamon
- ½ tsp ground nutmeg
- ¼ tsp salt
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp baking soda
- ¾ c brown sugar
- 1 cup olive oil
- 3 eggs
- ¾ cup buttermilk
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 heaping tbsp. orange zest from ½ large orange
- 3 cups carrots grated
- Preheat oven to 375F. Prep a loaf pan. Either grease the inside of pan or line with parchment paper.
- In medium mixing bowl, combine flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt, baking soda, and baking powder. Whisk together. Set aside
- In a large bowl, whisk together sugar and olive oil. Whisk in eggs, buttermilk, and vanilla extract. Stir in orange zest.
- Slowly fold flour mixture into large bowl of buttermilk mixture. Do not over stir. Gently fold in carrots and raisins.
- Pour mixture into prepared loaf pan. Bake in oven until toothpick comes out clean. Baking time will vary based on oven but keep close eye on it around 40 minutes. Took 60 minutes in my oven.
- Let cool completely before serving.