Apple, Walnut and Cream Cheese Bread

I try as hard as possible to hang on to summer; one last dinner on the patio, one last walk through the perennials…but today it’s becoming clear I had better get ready. It’s a nice sunny day outside but there is definitely a chill in the air, my feet are freezing (socks…really, is it that time already?) and it’s definitely time to think of all things warm and spicy. This recipe does that for me; the smell of apples, cream cheese and spices in this bread are permeating my kitchen while I write and are just absolutely perfect for a fall day. With friends coming for coffee in a bit; this is the perfect accompaniment!

I’ve had this recipe on a card in a recipe binder I’ve had since before I had children; I think it came from my grandmother who also had it on a card in her recipe file. I’ve made assorted adjustments along the way; adding cream cheese and walnuts was done a couple of years ago when I started making it as part of my holiday gift baskets…why not go over the top a bit for friends and family who look forward to that gift basket more than anything I could ever buy them?

I wished I loved the photo more but in Denver, despite making some subtle changes to the recipe (I never revise recipes on the blog for altitude; I make adjustments from what is listed); it’s always a challenge to NOT have a cake or bread cave in the center. Even if I think I’ve finally found that perfect balance of leavening vs flour, no matter, it can happen anyhow! So, I’m used to it as are the people who come to literally break bread with me and all that matters is that is it unbelievably good and a perfect use for the bounty of apples during this fall season.

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Apple, Walnut and Cream Cheese Bread

Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time50 mins
Calories:
Author: Creative Culinary

Ingredients

For the Bread:

  • 4 oz butter
  • 4 oz cream cheese
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • ¾ cup granulated sugar
  • ¾ cup brown sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 3 Cups of flour
  • 2 tsp of baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 ½ tsp cinnamon
  • ½ tsp nutmeg
  • 4 Cups apples peeled, cored and chopped, I like big pieces about 1/2 by 1/4 inch or so.
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts toasted

For the Topping:

  • ¾ Cup flour
  • ¼ Cup sugar
  • 1 ½ teaspoon of Cinnamon
  • ½ tsp nutmeg
  • ½ cup butter softened

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350.
  • Butter two standard bread loaf pans.
  • Peel, core and slice the apples. Cut into good-sized chunks, about 1 inch in size.
  • Cream the butter and cream cheese until thoroughly blended.
  • Add the vanilla and sugars and beat until light and fluffy.
  • Add the eggs one at a time until thoroughly incorporated.
  • Combine the flour, baking soda, salt and spices with a whisk and add to the mixture a cup at a time and beat until just smooth. The resulting batter will be very thick.
  • Fold in the chopped apples and walnuts and mix by hand so the apples do not get broken up. Divide the mixture between the two pans.
  • To prepare the topping, combine flour, sugar and spices in processor or bowl. Pulse or cut the butter into the mixture with a fork until all ingredients are moist and crumbly. Sprinkle equal amounts of topping on each loaf.
  • Bake for 50-60 minutes; test with a toothpick. Remove and place on a cooling rack. Let cool for 5 minutes before removing from the pans; this is a VERY moist dough and I've found it helps to make a day ahead and let cool thoroughly before handling.

Notes

I love having the apple pieces be a good size, it can make for a less than perfect slice when cutting the bread, but I think it's worth it to bite into nice size apple chunks!

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23 Comments

  1. This was good, but was on the dry side and more bread like, definitely not moist. The crumb topping was not sweet like others I’ve made in the past. This bread was good when heated and my favorite jam on it, with a cup of coffee or tea. Not sure I’d make it again since I enjoy super moist quick breads. It’s great if you prefer something more bread like.

  2. I’m pretty sure I’d never get the hang of high altitude baking…especially since my cooking all occurs at an altitude of, literally, 0. Love the crunchy topping on this. Just add a cup of coffee and get out of my way….

  3. I love to dig out those old recipe cards and give them a shot. Often they’re the best ones, right?? This looks great. I can’t imagine trying to navigate the perils of baking at high altitude!

    1. If it was my Grandma’s…it was always good! I’ve been going through a bunch of seldom used recipes I’ve had around for years in a binder I don’t even think of anymore. Have to make some of these forgotten dishes but also very glad I don’t have to deal with writing down recipes anymore, for myself or friends.

  4. I wish I had recipes handed down like this- there is just something so comfortingly nostalgic about making them. My parents never cooked, and everything got left by the wayside when my grandparents died, so now it’s only the stuff of myth…

  5. Great looking recipe Barb! I like your link to high altitude baking issues. I pretty much stopped baking when I moved here due to flops in the kitchen. Yup, it’s getting to be pretty chilly in the mornings. And I’m just glad to hear that you can walk through those flower beds. Sounds like you’re on the mend.

  6. The picture is perfect if it dragged me over here just to lick the screen! And isn’t that the point of photographing food? Looks heavenly and so comforting and perfect for autumn. I can imagine how nice the house smelled when this was baking! Scrumtpious, Barbara, my kind of cool weather baking and snack!

  7. Oh, I love the cream cheese in the bread, a must try! I am sad about the weather changing, had to give up my sandals, it seems like we got cheated out of summer this year.

    1. I’ve made so many things; I’m hoping my tree is done now. Have about enough left for one more thing and think it will have to be a Tarte Tatin; need to know I have company coming or I would just sit with one of those and a spoon and do dinner. Alone. Not kidding.

  8. Oh my. I’ll never lose any weight if you don’t quit publishing this kind of stuff! You can’t just expect me not to try this recipe! Apples and walnuts. I’m sold. First day of even thinking about sock weather here, and I’m so looking forward to it!

    I look forward to being in AZ and closer to CO. Maybe just maybe, we’ll meet up!

  9. I’ve had my socks on for over two weeks now and late this afternoon while walking the dog a few snowflakes were actually falling. Brrr. This bread of yours would have been so enjoyed had it of been waiting for me when I got home. It looks like it would be delicious. Will have to bookmark this page for sure and give it a try. I love giving gifts of home-made breads and loaves. Thank you for sharing your (and your grandmother’s) recipe.

  10. This really does look like Fall! I love the big apple chunks and the crunchy topping. Next time you have an extra loaf, I will have to stop by for that cup of coffee. BTW, as you know, I am very familiar with the baking issues at high altitudes. It does always seem to stay mushy in the center and not rise as high no matter what, but I bet that bread is still just as tasty! 🙂

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