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Praline-Apple Bread Recipe

It’s got apples and it’s got pecans… must be a southern recipe right?  You’ll have a hard time remembering that this is bread and not cake.  It’s just that delicious.  If the Granny Smith Apples and the Pecans don’t get you….the Praline Topping will.  And, it doesn’t contain any oil or butter in the batter.  Sour Cream is the secret ingredient that makes this cake moist.  Serve it up for breakfast or anytime….you’re going to bake this one often.

Praline-Apple Bread Recipe:

This recipe is adapted from a recipe that I received via email recently.  It came in a newsletter article and the picture that was with it was all it took to encourage me to give it a try.  I just hope that one day my photography here on Taste of Southern will reach that level and encourage you to give our recipes a try.

Bread of almost any kind is my weakness.  I’ve always loved bread and guess I always will.  Of course, when you start adding things like Granny Smith Apples and Pecans, I start thinking it’s more cake than bread.  You will too once you give this a try.  The recipe is pretty quick and easy to do and, if you don’t like the Granny Smiths, substitute it with your favorites.

We’re at the end of our 2012 Independence Day week of celebrations but, this is one more All-American type of cake…I mean…bread.  Plus, it doesn’t contain any type of shortening or butter in the bread itself.  Sour Cream is the secret ingredient that makes this one moist.  The only butter you’ll find is the little bit you’ll need to make the Praline Topping.

This bread would be great to give as a gift any time of the year.  Who doesn’t love homemade bread right?  Or, slice it up and sell it during your fundraiser or garage sale.  I even thought about slicing it up and THEN coating each slice with drizzles of the Praline topping.  Cool huh?

So, let’s just jump right in and get started baking up something fresh from the oven OK?  In other words….Let’s Get Cooking!

Praline-Apple Bread Recipe:  You’ll need these ingredients.

If you’re using whole pecans…you’ll need to chop them up for the recipe.  Chop up the one whole cup then divide it into two portions of 1/2 cup each.

Take one of the 1/2 cup portions and spread them out in a shallow pan.  Don’t grease the pan, they’ll be fine.

Preheat your oven to 350º:  When it’s up to temperature, place the pecans inside.  Let them bake for 4 minutes then give them a quick stir.  Bake them another 4 minutes or maybe even less.  They just need to be slightly toasted.  Don’t burn them.

Remove the toasted pecans from the oven and set them aside for now.

Grab a medium sized mixing bowl and add the 8 ounces of Sour Cream.

Add the Sugar right in on top of the Sour Cream.

Crack open two large eggs and drop the whole insides right in the bowl.

Use your hand mixer set on LOW speed and beat the ingredients together just to the point of having them all incorporated.

Just give it all a good mix and set it aside.

You’ll need another mixing bowl for the dry ingredients.  Get one a little larger this time.  Add in the flour.

Add in the Ground Cinnamon.

Add in the Ginger.  Some Nutmeg or even some Apple Pie Spice would probably be good.  I’m gonna try that next time I think.  I just didn’t have either one on hand today.

Add in the Baking Powder.

Add in the Baking Soda next.

Add the Salt.

Mix all the dry ingredients together very well.  I’m not sure as to why I didn’t sift all these together.  I thought about it once I think but then moved on.  You could certainly do it if you like.

Core the apples.  This was the first time in all my life that I’ve used an apple corer.  I picked this one up for a dollar bill at a local Auction House recently.  It did a great job.  I’m sure it will have a useful purpose one day but, I’ll probably just go back to the paring knife next time.  Sorry.

Peel the apples.  I guess I got carried away with the Apple corer.  I ended up doing three but as it turns out….one apple would just about be enough for the recipe.  They were a bit on the larger side.

You can chop up the apples as fine as you want.  I sliced mine and then sliced them again.  Diced would be good as well.

Now, take the wet ingredients and pour them into the dry ingredients.

Use your hand mixer again and set it on LOW speed.  Incorporate the dry and wet ingredients together.

Don’t forget to scrape down the sides of the bowl and get all the flour mixed in.

Add the toasted Pecans to the batter.

Add in the chopped Apple pieces.

Use a large spoon and gently fold the Apples and Pecans into the batter.

Spray up a 9×5 inch loaf pan.  Or….rub it with some cooking oil or butter.  Just be sure to coat the bottom and sides well.

Sprinkle in some flour…straight out of the bag.

Take the pan over to your trash can and just turn it all around and let the flour coat all of the sides.  Gently tap out any excess flour.  Then, take a paper towel and wipe off the top rim of your loaf pan.  We don’t want that stuff to burn around the top edges and have to scrub it off later when it’s time to wash it.

Add the batter mixture to the loaf pan.  I like my older mixing bowls but they can sure get heavy.  I couldn’t hold it with one hand, scrape out the batter with the other…and….take a picture of it at the same time.  Still, you can see that I did manage to get the batter into the loaf pan.  Use the back of your spoon and gently spread the batter out to the sides and corners of the pan to make it all level and even…and pretty.

Take the remaining Pecans and sprinkle them over the top of the batter.  These will get plenty toasty in the oven so they didn’t have to be toasted earlier like the first 1/2 cup we used.

Use your fingers or the back of a clean spoon and gently press the Pecans down into the batter a little.  This will help hold them to the bread once it bakes….otherwise…they would probably just all fall off.

Bake at 350º for about 30 minutes….then lightly cover it with a tent of Aluminum Foil.

Place the loaf pan in your Pre-heated oven.  Sit the pan in the middle of the oven on a rack set to about middle ways also.  Let the batter bake for about 35 to 45 minutes and then check on it.  At that point, I turned my loaf pan around and I covered the pan lightly with a tent of Aluminum Foil.  The pecans will over bake if you’re not careful.  Nobody likes burnt pecans so watch them closely.  You’ll probably smell them once they start to burn.

Re-Enactment:  This re-enactment shows you how to place the tent of Aluminum Foil over your loaf pan.  Just lightly drape it over the pan.  What?  You’ve seen re-enactments on TV lots of time…..they use them in news stories, police stories….all kinds of things.  Why so surprised?  OK…I just didn’t want to get my camera all down and inside the oven.  It’s almost 100º outside today and I’m trying to keep cool.  (Smile)

Let the bread bake about another 30 minutes, then test for doneness.

Total Baking Time:  This bread will need to bake for just about one complete hour…start to finish.  Be sure to keep a watch on it carefully.  When you think it’s about done, use a toothpick or wooden skewer to test for doneness.  Insert the toothpick or skewer into the thicker part of the bread and pull it back out.  If it comes out clean…’s done.  If you find particles clinging to the probe….let it bake a few minutes longer.  When it’s done, remove the pan from the oven.

Remove the bread from the oven and set the pan on a wire rack if you have it.  If not, set it on a folded towel.  Let it rest here for 10 minutes.

After 10 minutes, carefully roll the pan over and the loaf should fall right out.  If it doesn’t, turn it upside down on the rack and gently tap the bottom so it will release.

While the bread is cooling on the rack….measure out the ingredients for the Praline Topping.  You need 1/4 cup of packed Brown Sugar and 1/4th cup of Butter.  Remember, when measuring Brown Sugar, you need to PACK it into the measuring cup.  You don’t have to get really carried away with it….just pack it enough so you could turn it out and it would hold it’s shape….like I’ve done above….just so you can see how it’s done.

Place the packed Brown Sugar and the Butter into a sauce pan over medium heat.  This will happen really quick so don’t walk away.  Start stirring and let the mixture come up to a low boil.  Let it boil for ONE MINUTE and then remove from the heat.  You don’t want to overcook the sugar or it will burn…really quick.  Just saying.

Drizzle the Praline Topping over the top of your loaf.

You could certainly leave the topping off all together if you wanted too but, you’ll be missing the best part.  Trust me.

Let the bread cool completely before cutting and serving.  Well, at least try to.  It’s even BETTER the next day if you can wait that long.

As we said, this recipe is adapted from an email we received recently.  You can view the original recipe here.

The recipe says this bread freezes well.  I haven’t actually tried that yet.  If that’s your intentions, its suggested that you wrap the completely cooled loaf in plastic wrap first…then wrap  it in Aluminum Foil before placing it in the freezer.  It should keep well for up to 3 months.


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