Vegan Depression era peanut butter bread is adapted from a 1930s recipe. The recipe features economical, simple ingredients but results in a tasty cake-bread (not too sweet) that is ideal for enjoying with your morning coffee, afternoon tea, or evening snack.
A slice is also perfect for an after school snack coupled with a tall glass of chilled oat milk. Try a slice toasted or grilled and finished off with a slather of vegan butter, the aromas are amazing!
This vegan peanut butter bread can technically be a 5 ingredient recipe as the salt and vanilla is entirely optional.
What does the Depression Era mean?
In 1929 the stock market crashed in the United States and set off an economic downwards spiral that spread around the world and lasted for the next decade! Those 10 years of hardship was termed the great depression.
Many people lost their employment, savings and homes. The cost of living rocketed and so many changes had to be introduced.
One of those was making do and being creative with what food was available.
Hence many depression era recipes were introduced. A few of those depression era recipes are still popular today including peanut butter bread. Peanut butter was easily available during the depression so it made sense to add this ingredient to breads and cakes.
Vegan Depression Era Peanut Butter Bread
Preparing this vegan peanut butter bread is so super simple that it will likely become a staple in your home as it has in mine. It's just perfect for a quick snack or breakfast on-the-go and really tasty with a cup or mug of tea or coffee.
First the oven is set to preheat and a loaf pan prepared. Next plain flour, baking powder, soft light/brown sugar, and a pinch of optional salt is mixed together in a bowl.
Plant milk, peanut butter and vanilla extract (optional) is stirred together either in a small jug or bowl before being poured into the flour mix. Everything is given a good stir.
I find that crunchy peanut butter adds more texture to the bread but of course if all you have is smooth peanut butter use that.
Next the bread mix is scooped and scraped into the loaf pan, with the top levelled down with the back of a spoon or similar.
The loaf pan is placed on the middle shelf of the oven for 40-60 minutes. The exact times will depend on your oven. I have a fan oven and my bread was ready after 45 minutes so check your peanut butter bread after 45 minutes to see how it is progressing.
Simply stick a skewer or similar into the bread to see if it comes out clean. Once baked the peanut butter bread will be risen, light golden and starting to come away from the loaf pan sides.
Allow the bread to cool in the loaf pan for at least 15 minutes before carefully tipping out to cool completely on a wire rack. If you don't have a wire rack simply place on a chopping board or similar.
Be sure and post a comment below and let us know how you got on. All comments and feedback very much appreciated.
How To Prepare Vegan Depression Era Peanut Butter Bread
Recipe Notes And FAQS
Store peanut butter bread wrapped well in greaseproof paper and an extra layer of kitchen foil for up to 5 days. The wrapped bread can also be placed in a tin or other covered container.
Or place in a bag suitable for keeping bread fresh.
This peanut butter bread will be at its freshest for the first couple of days but will still be very enjoyable a few days longer.
To re-freshen staler slices toast on a hot plate such as a flat panini machine, or dry fry pan/skillet.
Or place in a warm oven for a few minutes.
Freeze well wrapped in a layer of greaseproof/baking paper and a second layer of kitchen foil or a freezer-proof bag/wrap, for up to 3-4 months.
Remove the wrappings before defrosting on a chopping board, wire rack, etc.
As this bread is not too sweet it is perfect for breakfast or a quick snack.
Spread with vegan butter, jam, vegan cream cheese or vegan chocolate spread for an after dinner or suppertime treat.
A few topping ideas:
* chopped fruit
* mashed banana
* sliced tomatoes or cucumber
* vegan yogurt
* nuts and/or seeds
* extra peanut butter or a seed butter
* your favourite spread such as jam/jelly/preserve, chutney, vegan chocolate spread, Biscoff, vegan soft/cream cheese, etc.
* a wedge or thin slices of your favourite dairy-free cheese
More Delicious and Easy Vegan Bakes:
Wartime Era Vegan Christmas Steamed Pudding (can also be steamed quickly in the microwave)
The Best Vegan Fruit Loaf Cake Ever (yes really!)
Vegan Traditional Scottish Shortbread Biscuits (crunchy cookies)
Vegan Traditional British Rock Cakes/Buns (perfect for kids to prepare for Christmas Eve/ gluten-free method also provided)
Gluten-Free And Vegan Chocolate Cake (ideal for a celebration cake)
***Click on the US customary button within the recipe for cup measurements***
Vegan Depression Era Peanut Butter Bread
- 1 Ib loaf pan, and greaseproof/baking paper if necessary to line
- Mixing bowls
- wire rack, optional
- 300 grams plain flour all-purpose flour, measurement is before sieving
- 60 grams soft brown sugar light brown
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 135 grams peanut butter ideally crunchy variety for added texture
- 280 ml plant milk such as soya or oat
- ¼ teaspoon salt optional as your peanut butter may be salty enough
- 2 teaspoon vanilla extract optional but adds flavour
Preheat oven to 140 Fan/ 160 Celsius/ 325 Fahrenheit/ Gas 3.
- Prepare a loaf pan by greasing with a little vegan butter, margarine or oil and lining with greaseproof/baking paper. (This step may not be necessary depending on your loaf pan)
- Add the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt to a bowl. Mix.
- In a jug or small bowl mix the peanut butter, milk and vanilla together.
- Scoop the peanut butter mix into the flour and mix until its all combined.
- Add the batter to the loaf pan, smooth down the top.
- Bake for 45-60 minutes, on the middle shelf, depending on your oven. Fan ovens bake faster so check after 45 minutes for doneness. My bread was ready after baking in a fan oven for about 45 minutes.
- Check that the top of the bread is risen, firm and light golden. And a skewer or toothpick comes out the middle clean.
- Allow to cool for at least 15 minutes in the loaf pan before removing to cool completely on a wire rack or even just place on a chopping board.
- Nutritional information is provided for guidance only and is not a strict calculation as ingredients vary.
- Store peanut butter bread wrapped well in greaseproof paper and an extra layer of kitchen foil for up to 5 days. The wrapped bread can also be placed in a tin or other covered container. Or place in a food-grade bag intended for keeping bread fresh.
- To re-freshen staler slices toast on a hot plate such as a flat panini machine, or dry fry pan. Or place in a warm oven for a few minutes.
- Freeze well wrapped in a layer of greaseproof/baking paper and a second layer of kitchen foil or a freezer-proof bag/wrap, for up to 3-4 months.
- Defrost by removing the wrappings and sitting out the fridge until fully thawed to room temperature.
- For a delicious chocolate variation add a handful of vegan chocolate chips to the batter along with the liquid ingredients. Or stud the top of the baked bread with chocolate drops so that they melt slightly in the residue heat.
- The vanilla extract is optional but does provides additional flavour. The salt is also optional and may not be required if salt is already an ingredient within your peanut butter.