Lemon Blueberry Bread
Bright and fresh lemon blueberry bread studded with juicy, plump blueberries and a hint of lemon zest. This blueberry bread is really just an excuse to eat cake for breakfast!
You guys! I finally got it right. This blueberry bread has had me going crazy this past week. With the weather being so dreary here the last couple of days and and constant fails in the kitchen with this blueberry studded breakfast cake, I was just about to give up on this little patch of sunshine.
While I know the north has been having some really chilly days (think I heard -30 wind chills in Chicago earlier this week <– yikes), the south has also had their share of what is considered ‘cold’ here. I think we’ve been in the high 20s and 30s all week. And though I absolutely love the cold weather, I hate being cold. I’m going to be diving into this sunshine-loaded, springtime-flavored lemon blueberry breakfast cake all week long. No shame in my game.
Do you guys remember me complaining about this blueberry bread driving me crazy the other day? It drove me NUTS. Absolutely bonkers. And mostly because i’m a perfectionist who refuses to eat bad bread (<– i’m also someone in denial, calling this cake, ‘bread’. But ‘bread’ just makes it sound so much healthier 😀 )
Anees, my chocolate-loving husband, usually only cares for desserts with chocolate. He tried my blueberry snack cake and said that it was super moist, almost like a sponge cake. His favorite part? The combination of lip-smacking cake with the sweet icing on the top. He said it was reallllllly good. My husband doesn’t say desserts are reallllly good, unless chocolate is involved. I’ll take this as an accomplishment 😉
Let’s talk blueberry cake. I mean bread. Blueberry bread.
There are two main superstar ingredients to this bread.
Ingredient 1: Lemons. We’re using both lemon juice + lemon zest in this recipe. Make sure you’ve got a few good lemons on hand. I had a huge lemon which gave me the 3 tablespoons of juice I needed for this recipe. But depending on the size, you may need 2-3. When you’re at the store, look for lemons that are heavy for their size. This usually means they’re extra juicy on the inside.
Ingredient 2: Blueberries. I used fresh blueberries for this recipe. Even though i’ve done my research and there are loads of recipes that are very similar to mine on the internet that allow you to use frozen berries, I rarely have good luck with frozen berries *pouty face*. I have not tried making this cake with frozen blueberries but I don’t see why it shouldn’t work. Make sure you don’t thaw the berries though. If you are a brave soul willing to try it, please let me know your results. I’d love to be able to say this blueberry bread works with frozen berries.
My secret to moist, tender blueberry bread?
1.) Using buttermilk. Buttermilk is known to provide exceptional moisture in almost all baked goods. The result: you’re left with tender crumbs of lemon flavored poundcake <– that’s usually not the case with most lemon flavored cakes! If you don’t have buttermilk, just make it at home. All you need 1/2 cup of milk + 1/2 tablespoon of vinegar + 5 minutes of resting time.
2.) Melted butter: most recipes use the ‘creaming method’, which is when you use room temperature butter and cream it together with the sugar, this creates air bubbles in the butter and you end up with extra volume, found in most cakes. The melted butter method doesn’t allow you to get air bubbles, and the water in the butter (its naturally there) allows some gluten development when you mix in the flour mixture which creates a slightly chewy and softer texture. <– so technically it IS bread 😉
The icing on this blueberry snack cake is my favorite part. Since the blueberry bread isn’t super sweet, it’s the perfect compliment. The icing is a simple 1/2 cup of powdered sugar with 1-2 tablespoons of half and half (milk is fine too) along with 1 teaspoon of lemon juice. But make sure to let the blueberry loaf cool before icing it, otherwise, it may become a glaze.
For all those suffering from this cold weather who need a little vacay to a warm and sunny place, this lemon loaf studded with blueberries will take you there.
PS. A good cup of coffee is this breads best friend.
- 5 tablespoons salted butter, melted
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 3 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon lemon zest
- 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour + 1 tablespoon
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup buttermilk (see note)
- 1 cup blueberries
- 1/2 cup powdered (confectioners') sugar
- 1-2 tablespoons half and half (or milk)
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice
- Position an oven rack near the center of the oven and preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Using butter or cooking spray, grease the inside of a 9x5 loaf pan, set aside.
- In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the melted butter, sugar, eggs, vanilla extract, lemon juice, and lemon zest together until combined about 2-3 minutes. In a separate bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, and salt. Stir the flour mixture into the egg mixture alternating with the buttermilk, starting and ending with the flour mixture. In a separate bowl, toss the blueberries with 1 tablespoon of flour, fold into the batter. Pour the batter into prepared loaf pan.
- Bake for 50-55 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Cool bread in loaf pan on wire rack for one hour.
To make the icing:
- In a small bowl, combine the powdered sugar, along with 1 tablespoon of half and half and the lemon juice. Mix together using a spoon, if the icing is thick, add the second tablespoon of half and half. Drizzle onto the loaf cake as desired.
- To make your own buttermilk: combine 1/2 cup of milk + 1/2 tablespoon of vinegar and allow to sit for 5 minutes.
- I have not tried using frozen blueberries in this recipe before. My research of other recipes that are similar to mine, says that frozen unthawed berries should work fine, but since I have not tried it, I cannot say whether it will or not.