The Gift Of Bread: Raspberry Grapefruit Mini Loaves

Inside Raspberry Grapefruit Mini Breads

During the holidays, I like to put my regular bread pans in storage and pull out my mini-loaf pans.  That way, anytime I make bread I have instant gifts and I’m less inclined to personally over-indulge.  And believe me… I am very good at overeating during the holidays.  Sometimes, I’ll wake up and see open Tupperware on the kitchen counter.  What magic elves have been eating my food?  Alas, sometime around 5AM – half-aware and partially dreaming, I stood in the kitchen and finished the Thanksgiving stuffing or drank most of the Christmas eggnog.  Holiday food in reasonably-sized, single-serving portions is a good idea for many reasons.

The loaves you see here are Raspberry Grapefruit Mini Breads.  They have a vanilla cake base that’s loaded with fresh raspberries and brushed with a grapefruit syrup after baking.  Brushing them with a simple syrup helps keep in the moisture so these breads will still be moist and at their best for a couple days after baking.

Raspberry Grapefruit Mini Breads

Almost any quick bread recipe (those not using yeast) can be made into mini-loaves.  It’s just a matter of having the right pans and keeping your eye on the cooking time.  I used raspberries for these loaves, but you could just as easily use blueberries or chopped strawberries.

Ingredients For Raspberry Grapefruit Mini Breads

The ingredients are pretty basic: flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, half and half, grapefruit juice, lemon zest, vanilla, eggs, butter and raspberries.

For ingredient amounts and a printable recipe, click here.

Making Raspberry Grapefruit Mini Breads

The first thing you do for this recipe is make the simple syrup that you’ll use at the end.  All you do is mix some juice with some sugar and cook and stir until it’s evenly clear and slightly thickened.  I used grapefruit juice because I wanted a distinct citrus flavor to complement the berries.  But here, you can play around with other juices to make the breads distinctly your own.

Making Raspberry Grapefruit Mini Breads

Like muffins, most quick breads benefit from a few simple rules: 1) Mix dry ingredients and wet ingredients separately; 2) Use a gentle mixing motion when combining the wet and dry ingredients; 3) Fold in any berries or nuts at the end with a gentle touch; 4) Don’t overfill the loaf pans; and 5) Check your baked goods at least 5 minutes before they’re supposed to be done.

To test if the breads are done, poke a toothpick into the middle of loaf.  If it comes out clean, the breads are done.  Brush the tops with the syrup as soon as you remove them from the oven.  When the loaves are cool to the touch (about 15 minutes later), remove them from the pan and brush each loaf again, this time on all sides with the syrup – including a second coat for the top sides.

Cooling Mini Breads On Wire Rack

If you’re wrapping these as gifts, let them cool 20 to 30 minutes or more so the syrup is completely absorbed.  I find that squares of wax paper and a little twine are all you need to make charming little presents. You can visit your local crafts store for custom labels and festive food wrap if you want to go more crazy.

Wrapping Mini Breads As Gifts

Now, all that’s left is for you to eat some delicious bread and to spread some homemade joy.  Listen as your friends sing, “Wow!  {Your Name Here} is so cool!  He (or she) brought me these delightful, little loaves of bread.  So flavorful!  Boy, oh boy… {Your Name Here} is just about the best person in the whole wide world.”

Anyway, that’s what I imagine my friends say.  That and “Oh no!  Tight pants.  Looks like he’s been eating leftovers in his sleep again.”  (That’s a reference to the first paragraph… If you read so much that you understood that then {Your Name Here} really is super awesome!)

A serving of Raspberry Grapefruit Mini Bread

Happy holidays!  Enjoy the bread!

This post is a companion piece to the following recipe on

Raspberry Grapefruit Mini Breads


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