Pillsbury Bake-Off Countdown: Lemon-Poppy Seed Pull-Apart Bread

CakeSpy Note: The Pillsbury Bake-Off is coming in November! Since I so deeply loved attending the 45th Bake-Off as well as the 46th Bake-Off, I thought I would get you excited the 47th one early by sharing all of the sweet recipes in the running. I will focus on sweets! You can follow them by clicking the bakeoff tag below to see the recipes posted so far.

I'm sorry, but there's a town called Mound, Minnesota? If I ever went there I'd only eat Mounds candy bars, I can promise you that.

Luckily, Cathy Wiechert of Mound, Minnesota has moved beyond the candy bar to this tasty lemon-poppyseed pull-apart bread, which is her entry in this year's Bake-Off. Good luck, Cathy!

Lemon-Poppy Seed Pull-Apart Bread

  • Prep Time: 20 Min
  • Total Time: 1 Hr 25 Min
  • Makes: 8 servings


  • 2/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon poppyseeds
  • 1 large lemon (1 tablespoon grated peel and 1 to 2 tablespoons juice)
  • 3 tablespoons plus 1 1/2 teaspoons butter, softened
  • 1 can Pillsbury Grands! Flaky Layers refrigerated buttermilk biscuits (8 biscuits)
  • 1 tablespoon cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar


  1. Heat oven to 350°F (325°F for dark or nonstick pan). Spray 9x5-inch loaf pan with non-stick cooking spray. Line pan with parchment paper, allowing paper to hang 2 inches over long sides of pan.
  2. In small bowl, mix granulated sugar, poppy seed and lemon peel. In small microwavable bowl, microwave 3 tablespoons butter uncovered on High 20 to 25 seconds or until melted. Separate dough into 8 biscuits.
  3. Separate each biscuit into 2 layers. Brush both sides of each biscuit layer with melted butter, then dip into poppy seed mixture. Starting at one short end of pan, place biscuit layers on their edges, just touching each other, until pan is loosely filled. Sprinkle any remaining poppy seed mixture between biscuits.
  4. Bake 30 to 45 minutes or until golden brown. To prevent excess browning, loosely cover with foil, if necessary. Cool 10 minutes; remove from pan to cooling rack, using parchment paper as handles. Cool 10 minutes.
  5. Meanwhile, in small bowl, beat remaining 1 1/2 teaspoons butter, the cream cheese, powdered sugar and lemon juice with electric mixer on medium speed until smooth and drizzling consistency. Drizzle glaze over pull-apart bread. Serve warm.

Straight-Up Simple: Amish Pumpkin Bread Recipe

Pumpkin bread

I suppose I'd better just say it: there is absolutely nothing remarkable about this pumpkin bread.

But--hear me out--it is in that unremarkable nature that it is simply sublime.

Listen, I know we're in the Age of the Cronut, the Oreo-stuffed cookie, and heck, I'm even the one who shared a lot of this type of recipe with the world--Cookie Cake Pie, Cadbury Creme Eggs Benedict, and so on. So I realize that this may be surprising, coming from me.

But sometimes, plain and simple is absolutely the best. When I discovered this pumpkin bread recipe in Simply Delicious Amish Cooking (recipes from, of all things, the Amish population of Sarasota, Florida--no, really), I made a conscious decision to not mess with the recipe at all--that meant not substituting butter for the oil, no adding chocolate chips or nuts--just baking the straight-up bread, plain and simple.

Breakfast of champions

Simple doesn't mean that a recipe has to be devoid of joy. The batter came together in minutes, and then for more than an hour, my house was filled with the warm aromas of pumpkin and spice. Forget yoga, meditation, or therapy--this is truly calming and soothing stuff, just living in the aroma of pumpkin bread baking. 

Pumpkin breadPumpkin bread

The bread came out perfect. It doesn't have a flavor that zings the taste buds, but it tastes earthy, spicy, and sweet. It's satisfyingly dense. It plays well with other flavors--over a few days, I tried it plain, with chunky peanut butter on top, and warm with butter gently melting on top with a sprinkle of cinnamon. All variations were highly delicious. 

Don't make this bread if you're looking for a flashy dessert. But do make it if you want something cozy, calming, and delicious.

The only thing I changed was the pans--I don't have two loaf pans, so I baked the bread in one 9x9-inch pan filled 2/3 full, and the rest as little pumpkin bread cupcakes. The cupcakes baked for 30 minutes, the bread was right on the mark for 60 minutes in my kitchen.

Oh, I lied. I also used one 15-ounce can of pumpkin, because no way was I going to open another can just to use one ounce. It worked fine. 

Pumpkin bread

Pumpkin bread

Pumpkin Bread

From Simply Delicious Amish Cooking: Recipes and stories from the Amish of Sarasota, Florida by Sherry Gore

Makes two loaves

  • 3 1/2 cups flour
  • 3 cups sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 3 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 3 teaspoons nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 2/3 cup water
  • 2 cups canned pumpkin


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Combine dry ingredients (through the ginger) and mix well. Add the 4 moist ingredients. Mix well. Pour into 2 bread pans. Bake 1 hour or until done. This bread freezes really well.