A healthy lemon blueberry bread naturally sweetened with maple syrup and topped with a sweet lemon glaze. Made with white spelt flour or gluten-free flour blend for a gluten-free option.
A light and cakey lemon bread that’s bursting with blueberries. It’s the perfect spring or summer treat. It pairs wonderfully with a cup of coffee or tea for a sweet afternoon treat or light summer dessert. I think you’re going to love it!
I wanted to make a dessert bread that was slightly healthier and not overly sweet. The result is this dairy-free lemon blueberry loaf that’s naturally sweetened with maple syrup. While the loaf itself is not a sweet as your traditional loaf cake, the glaze adds an extra layer of sweetness that makes the bread taste extra indulgent. I opted for a low sugar glaze using powdered monk fruit but a traditional glaze is also an option.
It’s a light, sweet, and lemony bread perfect for summer!
lemon blueberry bread Ingredients
These are the main ingredients you need to make this lemon blueberry bread. Keep in mind that these substituting these ingredients may result in a slightly different taste or texture.
- White spelt flour or Gluten-free Flour Blend: To keep the loaf light and cakey, I opted for white spelt flour or a gluten-free flour blend with xanthan gum. These flours work wonderfully. If you can’t get your hands on white spelt flour and don’t need a gluten-free bread, all purpose, white wheat or whole wheat pastry flour should work just fine.
- Avocado oil: Has a neutral flavor that adds healthy fats and moisture, making a tender crumb.
- Maple syrup: Adds a touch of natural sweetness. This bread isn’t super sweet so it offsets the sweetness of the glaze perfectly. Keep in mind, your loaf won’t be as sweet if you don’t add the glaze.
- Eggs: Two eggs are used in this recipe for a cake-like texture. I haven’t tried flax eggs but this could work for a vegan, egg-free option.
- Fresh lemon juice and zest: Lemon provides the main flavor in this loaf. Make sure you use freshly squeezed lemon juice and zest for the brightest flavor.
- Almond milk: This adds moisture while also keeping the loaf dairy-free. You can easily substitute any plant-based milk of choice.
- Blueberries – Adds bursts of flavor and antioxidants. Use fresh or frozen blueberries. Just make sure to toss with flour before mixing into the batter. Any berry would work here!
- Monk fruit – this low-glycemic natural sweetener is a great option for glazes or cutting the sugar in recipes. I typically use this for a glaze or some sweet treats so it doesn’t spike your blood sugar as much. Regular powdered sugar works just fine!
HOW TO MAKE this lemon blueberry bread:
Quick breads are incredibly easy to make. There are just a few simple steps to make this lemon blueberry bread.
- Mix the ingredients: You’ll start by mixing the dry and wet ingredients separately. Then pour the wet ingredients into the dry and fold stir until just combined.
- Fold in the blueberries: First, toss the blueberries with 1 teaspoon of flour. This prevents the blueberries from sinking to the bottom of your loaf. Gently fold in the blueberries. Careful not to over mix!
- Bake: Pour the batter into a parchment-lined or lightly greased 8×4 or 9×5 loaf pan. Bake for 45-50 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. If using a 9×5 loaf tin, your bread may take slightly less time.
- Glaze: Let the bread cool completely before adding the glaze. This is important Mix the powdered monk fruit (lower sugar option) or powdered sugar, lemon juice, and almond milk in a small bowl. Pour the glaze on to the loaf and spread out slightly so it covers the top and just slightly runs down the sides.
WHAT MAKES THIS LEMON BLUEBERRY BREAD HEALTHIER?
This recipe is a healthier version of a classic dessert bread or loaf cake with glaze. It’s still slightly more of a dessert than a whole breakfast bread. Here what makes it healthier:
Naturally sweetened: Maple syrup adds a touch of natural sweetness to the loaf. The bread isn’t overall sweet so keep this in mind if you forgo the glaze. Powdered monk fruit is a natural, low-glycemic sweetener that adds sweetness without spiking blood sugar.
Lower sugar: Most loaf cakes or even quick bread can have 30 grams or more of sugar. Using powdered monk fruit for the glaze keeps the sugar content low while still tasting indulgent. One slice of this lemon blueberry bread only contains 11 grams of sugar. Which is pretty good for a dessert bread!
Flour options – I typically bake with whole grain flours like sprouted spelt or oat, or grain-free options like almond or coconut. To keep this bread light and cakey, I use all purpose, white spelt flour or a gluten-free all-purpose blend. I love baking with spelt flour. It has lower gluten content which makes it easier to tolerate for some people who are more sensitive to gluten. So is it really healthier than wheat flour? Not unless you’re sensitive.
Also, keep in mind that gluten-free bends are similar to all-purpose wheat flour. This doesn’t make them unhealthy but they’re typically lacking fiber and less nutritious than a whole grain flour.
Common Ingredient SUBSTITUTIONS:
Here are a few common substitutions you can make based on dietary preferences:
- Gluten-free: I’ve tried this with a gluten-free blend that contains xanthan gum like Bob’s Red Mill 1-to-1 Gluten-Free Flour. If your gluten-free blend doesn’t contain xanthan gum, make sure to add 1 teaspoon xanthan gum or 2 teaspoons of psyllium husk as a binder.
- Vegan: Flax eggs work in most quick bread. Combine 2 tablespoons of ground flax with 5 tablespoons of warm water to make a flax egg. Sub honey for the maple syrup.
- Dairy-free – use any plant-based milk of choice such as almond, oat, coconut, etc. The high fat content the better.
- Grain-free – I don’t suggest making this loaf with grain-free fours like almond or coconut as they act differently than regular flours.
Other healthier Bread Recipes
If you make these lemon blueberry bread, be sure to leave a comment and rate the recipe below. I’d love to hear from you and it encourages others to make the recipe too.
Healthy Blueberry Lemon Bread
A healthier lemon blueberry bread naturally sweetened with maple syrup and topped with a sweet lemon glaze. Made with whole grain spelt flour or gluten-free flour blend.
- Prep Time: 10 min
- Cook Time: 50
- Total Time: 1 hour
- Yield: 10 slices 1x
For the bread:
2 tsp baking powder
½ tsp sea salt
2/3 cup milk of choice
½ cup maple syrup
1/3 cup avocado oil
¼ cup fresh lemon juice
Zest of 1 large lemon (about 1 tablespoon)
1 cup blueberries
for the glaze:
- 1/2 cup monk fruit or powdered sugar
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
- 2–4 teaspoons almond milk
Preheat oven to 350F. Line an 8×4 inch pan with parchment paper or spray with nonstick cooking spray.
In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt. In a separate bowl, whisk together the eggs, maple syrup, avocado oil, almond milk, lemon juice, and lemon zest until smooth. Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients and mix until just combined. In a small bowl, toss the blueberries with 1 teaspoon of flour. Gently fold in the blueberries. Careful not to over mix!
Pour batter into prepared pan and spread out evenly. Bake for 45-55 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool completely on a wire rack before glazing.
For the glaze: Mix together powdered monk fruit or powdered sugar, lemon juice, and almond milk until smooth. You may need to add in more almond milk to thin out the glaze. Keep in mind, you want a thicker glaze but still pourable. Pour over the top of the loaf and spread towards the sides. Let the glaze firm up slight;y before slicing. Cut into 10 slices.
Store the bread in an airtight container in the fridge for 5 days. The bread can be frozen for 3 months but I recommend freezing without the glaze.
Milk options: the higher the fat content the more tender and soft the loaf will be. I recommend a full fat almond milk, homemade cashew milk or cow’s milk if tolerated.
Spelt flour: sub all purpose, white whole wheat or whole wheat pastry flour. Using a whole spelt or whole wheat flour may require slightly more liquid.
Gluten-free: Make sure to add 1 teaspoon of xanthan gum or 2 teaspoons of ground psyllium husk to the batter if your gluten-free blend doesn’t contain it.
Powdered sugar: You’ll need about ½ cup more powdered sugar to reach the same slightly thick consistency of the powdered monk fruit glaze.
Make into Muffins: Most quick breads can be made into muffins. Simply, pour the batter into a greased or lined muffin tin and bake for 15-20 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean when inserted in the center.
**recipe was updated slightly from the original on 5/4/2023. The orginal recipe called for 1/4 cup oil and 1/2 cup milk.