Cinnamon Swirl Bread

I am such a victim of marketing. Every year about this time, I get completely sucked in by all the seasonal magazines. You know what I’m talking about. Holiday Baking. Christmas Cooking. So-and-so’s Best Christmas Ever!!! Anyway, I’ve already bought four or five of these. This recipe comes from Better Homes and Gardens Christmas Baking. There is a section entitled “Nut Breads for Giving” that includes several recipes that all look divine.

I know it’s not exactly Christmas yet, but I do like to get an early start. Otherwise, I wouldn’t get everything baked that I want to try out. This is such a simple recipe – very straightforward. I did use Penzey’s Vietnamese cinnamon, which is a bit stronger than traditional cinnamon. If you don’t own some of their cinnamon, go make your order right now. Worth every penny.

This bread is all a quick bread should be. Quick. And delicious. It would be excellent for breakfast, with coffee, or for dessert. The cinnamon pecan streusel that is swirled through the bread is wonderful. I think I could just eat that by itself. Also, if you like to underbake things a bit like I do, then your bread will be nice and gooey. Get a fork or resign yourself to sticky fingers.

Cinnamon Swirl Bread

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 50 minutes

Cinnamon Swirl Bread


    For the swirl:
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped pecans, toasted
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • For the bread:
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1/3 cup cooking oil


Preheat oven to 350°. Grease/flour/spray the bottom and sides of a 9″x5″x3″ loaf pan.

To make the swirl, combine 1/3 cup of sugar, pecans, and cinnamon. Set aside.

Combine 1 cup of sugar, flour, baking powder, and salt. In a separate bowl, beat egg. Then, stir in milk and oil. Make a well in the flour mixture and add the egg mixture. Stir just until mixed. Do not overmix.

Pour half of the batter into loaf pan. Sprinkle with half of the cinnamon mixture. Repeat. With a wide rubber scraper or spatula, swirl mixtures together with a down and up circular motion.

Bake for 40 to 50 minutes or until done. Cool in pan for about 10 minutes. Then, cool completely on a wire rack.


Recipe adapted from Better Homes and Gardens.

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  1. rachel November 2, 2006 Reply

    Yum! pretty picture!

  2. Hilary November 2, 2006 Reply


  3. Robyn November 2, 2006 Reply

    That looks delicious! Great photo :)

  4. Nicole November 2, 2006 Reply

    Jennifer I LOVE the photo! I am so jealous of your site! I think it’s great that you have printable versions of your recipes…someday I hope to do the same thing (if I can find someone to do everything for me!). Please don’t ever stop baking :-)

  5. jennifer November 2, 2006 Reply

    Thanks, guys! I assure you, Nicole, that I will not be allowed to stop baking any time soon. My family and friends would be most unhappy. Who doesn’t like free baked goods?!?

  6. Lauren November 3, 2006 Reply

    I too am a sucker – I have about 3 so far… and counting!

    This looks fabulous. I have to go re-read the ones I have.

  7. peabody November 3, 2006 Reply

    I always buy those things too but sometimes they do have really good stuff…your cinnamon bread for example looks wonderful.

  8. Ivonne November 4, 2006 Reply

    I know exactly how you feel about the marketing that takes place at this time of year. No matter how I try to resist, I always ending buying the magazines!

    When I saw this photo on Flickr, I couldn’t wait to read your post about. As always, a beautiful creation!

  9. Ari (Baking n Books) November 9, 2006 Reply

    I love pretty much anything with cinnamon in it. There’s just something about that way it tastes and smells that is so comforting and homey. :)

  10. Beth November 9, 2006 Reply

    I’m a sucker for those magazines too! I bought a Cookie one, and then the Cooks Illustrated Holiday Edition. And then when I was feverishly going through it, I realized that all of the recipes were already in my “Best Recipes” Cookbook from Cooks Illustrated. Take $7 and throw it down the toilet. Oh well!

  11. ELEANOR March 3, 2008 Reply

    where can I buy this?

  12. Carolyn April 28, 2008 Reply

    I’m so excited! I’ve got mine in the oven right now! It smells amazing!!

  13. jennifer April 28, 2008 Reply

    Carolyn, I hope you like it! I remember it fondly. 😉

  14. This was really good. I especially like the gooeyness of the cinnamon swirls.

  15. jennifer May 15, 2008 Reply

    Rachelle, I’m glad you liked it!

  16. Hannah August 12, 2008 Reply

    This looks really good!

  17. jennifer August 12, 2008 Reply

    Thanks, Hannah.!

  18. Julie C. October 21, 2009 Reply

    Wow, this looks great – makes my old recipe not look so appetizing! I was wondering how many loaves your recipe will make? Thanks!

  19. Memoria January 14, 2010 Reply

    I just made this. It is very good. I thought that I had made a mistake when I encountered the gooey part in the center. I just re-read your post and realized that I’m supposed to embrace that part haha. Thanks for another great recipe!

  20. E January 14, 2010 Reply

    I made this today. I didn’t have pecans so i used apples instead. It was delicious! People thought it was store-bought!! I can’t wait to try the actual pecan cinammon swirl bread! :)

  21. Love this bread! I made it last weekend to take to sunday school and it was a big hit. I made it with walnuts though, because that’s all I had. I already want to make it again.

    Posted about it here if anybody’s interested:

  22. Brian July 9, 2012 Reply

    I thought the “bread” part of this dessert was horribly bland. I even added vanilla extract to my batter, and that didn’t help. Maybe swapping out the oil for butter would help it. I will not make this again. There are much tastier recipes for quick breads out there.

  23. Eliza August 28, 2012 Reply

    I have to agree with Brian. Even with switching out the oil with butter and adding vanilla, the bread was very bland. I’ll wrap it up and let it age a bit, maybe it will improve. If I was going to make it again, I would add another egg, adjusting the flour accordingly. Too bad, really, because the bread IS quite pretty. But with the price of pecans, just not worth it.

  24. lori August 11, 2014 Reply

    Could you substitute coconut oil for the fat in this?

    • Author
      Jennifer McHenry August 11, 2014 Reply

      Hi, Lori. I’ve not tried it, but you should be able to substitute coconut oil for the oil in the bread without any adjustments.

      • M July 16, 2015 Reply

        Any chance of preparing this a day in advance and baking in the oven when ready to be baked?

        • Author
          Jennifer McHenry July 16, 2015 Reply

          I wouldn’t. Quick bread batters usually need to be baked as soon as they’re mixed.

  25. Jessica October 6, 2014 Reply

    I just made this with kids and it is so easy and turned out great! I love the recipe!

    • Author
      Jennifer McHenry October 7, 2014 Reply

      That’s great to hear, Jessica! I just love all that cinnamon!

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