My name is Ashley McLaughlin and this is my blog, Edible Perspective. To learn more about my journey head on over to my about + FAQ pages. I'm thrilled that you stopped by. Enjoy!


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pumpkin spice mandel bread

This year would not be complete without at least a few batches of mandel bread

pumpkin spice mandel bread // edible perspective

We never had a huge holiday cookie bake-fest growing up but there were definitely a few treats that always seemed to be floating around this time of year.

Mandel bread was a tradition with my mom’s side of the family and molasses cookies were from my dad’s family.  He still makes them every year and ships them all over the country to our family.  And my uncle and aunt usually have a big mandel baking day once a year as well. 

I have such vivid memories from these days, as I’m sure many of you can relate to, and love trying to keep the tradition going in my own kitchen.

pumpkin spice mandel bread // edible perspective

I wanted to get a little fancier than the standard plain flavor this year, so of course my mind immediately wandered to pumpkin spice.

pumpkin spice mandel bread // edible perspective

With just a little pumpkin puree but a lot of spice I was thrilled with how these turned out.

pumpkin spice mandel bread // edible perspective

If you’ve never had mandel bread, it is similar to biscotti. But in my opinion, better!

They look unassuming but are quite addicting.

Crunchy, spiced, and slightly sweet.

pumpkin spice mandel bread // edible perspective

Print this!

Pumpkin Spice Mandel Bread [yields 48-60 pieces] adapted from gluten free mandel bread

  • 2 1/2 gluten free oat flour
  • 6 tablespoons sweet rice flour
  • 1 cup + 2 tablespoons almond meal
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 cup pure cane sugar
  • 1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons sunflower oil
  • 2 tablespoons pumpkin puree
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon all spice
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon clove
  • 3/4c chopped walnuts
  1. Preheat your oven to 350*F and grease [or line with parchment] 2-3 cookie sheets.
  2. Sift the oat flour + sweet rice flour together in a bowl, then stir in the almond meal.  Set aside.
  3. In a large bowl, stir the eggs together with a large wooden spoon.
  4. Stir in the sugar.
  5. Stir in the oil + pumpkin puree.
  6. Stir in the vanilla.
  7. Stir in the baking powder, cinnamon, ginger, all spice, nutmeg, and clove.
  8. Add about 3/4 of the flour mixture and stir until just combined, then add more as needed to thicken the dough.  The texture should be spreadable with a knife, so it can be formed into a large oval on the pan.  Not as thick as chocolate chip cookie dough, but not pourable.  You will most likely use all of the flour.
  9. Gently fold in the walnuts, then portion out into 3 equal piles of dough on the baking sheets. 
  10. Shape the dough into an oval, with a knife or spatula, approximately 1/2” thick, 5-6” wide, and about 8-9” long. Leave about 2-3” spacing.
  11. Bake for about 30min, until the edges are golden brown.  The middle will feel slightly soft to the touch.
  12. Carefully [hot!] slice down the center, and then make perpendicular cuts about 1-1.5” wide.  They will quite be fragile at this point.
  13. Turn up on their sides and bake for 5 minutes.
  14. Let rest for 5min, then transfer to a cooling rack until fully cooled and hardened.

notes:  For high altitude, set your oven to 365*F and use 1 1/4t baking powder.  These freeze extremely well [for months] loose in freezer bags.  If you leave out the walnuts you may need to add 1T extra oat flour, since the walnuts soak up some of the moisture.  If your dough is not thick enough, add 1T more oat flour at a time, stirring gently.

[non-gluten free mandel bread // vegan + gluten free mandel bread]

pumpkin spice mandel bread // edible perspective

For the entire afternoon my kitchen smelled like home.  It was warm and comforting.  And even though I baked all alone, it reminded me of the memories I hold so close + cherish most about this time of year.


Reader Comments (17)

These cookies look delicious! Your vegan mandel bread recipe has been on my to-make list for a long time. I think I'll start there, and maybe use it as a guide to veganize these. Biscotti has always been my favorite cookie. If these are even better, I'll have to hide them from myself!
December 28, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKerry
Mmmm looks delicious!!
December 28, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKatie @ Talk Less, Say More
I've never heard of mandel bread. Looks interesting, thank you for sharing!
December 28, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterRed Star to Lone Star
Love that first shot! Your photos always impress me, friend : ) By the way, I owe you an email!
December 28, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterdana
What a special recipe! And how cool that you found a way to put your own spin on it. I've never heard of mandel bread before, but the way you describe it (biscotti but better, lol) is pretty appealing ;)
December 28, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKatie @ Blonde Ambition
I grew up eating mandel bread, but our always had a jam filling, which I've never seen elsewhere. Maybe we were just weird. Your spiced mandel bread looks lovely, and since the holiday are not yet over, I think I'll have to veganize a batch like Kerry!
I've never heard of Mandel bread and I am so interested in making these!
I've never heard of Mandel bread before, I am intrigued. Plus, anything with pumpkin is always fabulous!
December 31, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterHerbivore Triathlete
@Dana - Thanks, love. Oh, no worries at all on the email!

@Katie + Christina + Herbivore - Mandel bread [mandelbrodt] is a Jewish cookie. You don't come across it at bakeries too often, but it needs to become more popular! ;)
December 31, 2012 | Registered CommenterAshley
I've never heard of mandel bread, but I love biscotti so I'm sure I'd love these...especially pumpkin spice. I adore pumpkin spice anything!
Hi Ashley! These look AWESOME! I know you specifically list almond "meal", but would almond "flour" be okay as a substitution? I bought a big bag of blanched almond flour from Honeyville, and I'm not sure how it differs from meal in cooking. Thanks!
January 20, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterKate
@Kate - Hi Kate! Almond meal is made from whole, raw ground almonds, which includes the brown skin on the almond. This flour is a very soft but a bit more fibrous. Almond flour is made from blanched almonds, not including the skin. Almond flour yields a more delicate texture and is typically better suited for cupcakes and cakes. I've never had a problems subbing blanched almond flour when almond meal is called for. However, when almond flour is called for, I typically don't sub almond meal as it will change the texture a bit and not be as light/delicate. Hope that helps!
January 20, 2013 | Registered CommenterAshley
Thank you for your quick reply! I just made them using the almond flour, and they turned out great!! I loved them!
January 20, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterKate
@Kate - So glad to hear!! :)
January 21, 2013 | Registered CommenterAshley
Is there any way to make this mandel bread with xylitol or stevia?
January 31, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterSuzanne
@Suzanne - I'm not sure at all, as I don't use either one of those sweeteners. Try googling how to sub stevia in baked good recipes.
January 31, 2014 | Registered CommenterAshley
Actually, you can scratch xylitol - it's not an ingredient I will be using. Hoping for the stevia though!
January 31, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterSuzanne

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