Add this whole wheat chocolate chunk fig bread to your meal prep menu so you’re set with a satisfying snack or on-the-go breakfast throughout the week. Made with mission dried figs, dark chocolate and whole wheat flour, this quick bread recipe is a smart food choice for the whole fam. This recipe is a collaboration with Bob’s Red Mill and Valley Fig Growers. I received compensation, but all opinions are my own.
In our household, we thrive on meal prep. It keeps us on track to eat balanced meals throughout the week, it keeps us from wasting food, and it keeps us from having to think about what to eat for lunch or dinner throughout the week when our lives already are filled with so much thinking.
But when it comes to breakfast or snacks? In those categories, I often fall short. So, with the start of a new year and in an effort to set my family up for success, one of my goals for 2019 is to incorporate breakfast and snack time into my weekly meal prep so we’re not all left with frozen waffles or bland peanut butter toast as our only options.
WHY QUICK BREAD RECIPES ARE GREAT FOR MEAL PREP
When Bob’s Red Mill and Valley Fig Growers invited me to join them in their #MealPrepMonday campaign to set SMART (Specific Measurable Achievable Relevant Time Bound) goals, I jumped at the opportunity to make my meal prepping ways work smarter, not harder. And when I landed, this tasty whole wheat chocolate chunk fig bread was the first recipe to come to mind.
What’s so great about this quick bread recipe, you ask? Well, let me tell you. This bread is chock-full of sweet mission dried figs, melty dark chocolate chunks, crunchy walnuts and Bob’s Red Mill organic whole wheat flour, truly one of my favorite flours with which to bake. It’s hearty, full of nutritious ingredients, delicious and filling — all of the requisites in our family for the best breakfast or snack. I can give a slice of this bread to my kids knowing they’ll be full, happy and fueled for the morning or afternoon, and I can crush my meal prep goals at the same time. WIN.
HOW TO BAKE THE BEST-EVER WHOLE WHEAT CHOCOLATE CHUNK FIG BREAD
A few tips for baking this bread successfully as part of your meal prep:
1. Make sure the bread is completely cooled before storing it. If the bread isn’t completely cooled before storing, it can leave you with a soggy top, and that’s just sad for everyone.
2. To store this bread at room temperature, place it in a sealed container or a resealable plastic bag with a layer of paper towel on both the bottom and top. The paper towel will absorb any excess moisture from the bread so it stays fresh, not soggy. You can store the bread this way for up to 3 days.
3. If you’re planning to freeze this bread (or want to keep it longer than 3 days), cover the entire loaf with plastic wrap, then foil. It will store well for up to 6 months this way.
4. Make a double (or triple!) batch! Freeze the extras, and when you eat all of the fresh bread, thaw the frozen one, covered, at room temperature and you’re all set for more yummy bread.
Friends, if part of your goals for 2019 is meal prep, make this whole wheat chocolate chunk fig bread a part of it, too. It’s become a mainstay in our kitchen as an easy breakfast or mid-day treat (or after-dinner treat on the couch while catching up on Netflix, let’s be honest), and I have a hunch it’ll quickly become the same for you, as well.
- 8 Blue Ribbon Orchard Choice or Sun-Maid California Mission Dried Figs, halved, plus 2 cups California mission dried figs, coarsely chopped
- 1¼ cups Bob’s Red Mill organic whole wheat flour
- ¾ cup all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ⅔ cup semisweet chocolate chunks
- ⅓ cup chopped walnuts*
- 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled
- ¾ cup packed brown sugar
- ⅔ cup buttermilk
- 1 egg
- Heat oven to 350°F. Line a 9x5-inch loaf pan with parchment paper; spray bottom only with cooking spray.
- Place 8 halved dried figs in a small bowl of very hot water (this helps to keep the figs from burning when baking on top of the loaf in the oven).
- In a large mixing bowl, whisk flours, baking powder, baking soda and salt until well mixed. Stir in remaining 2 cups dried figs, chocolate chunks and walnuts until coated in flour mixture.
- In a separate small bowl, beat butter and brown sugar with a fork until well mixed. Beat in buttermilk and egg until smooth. Pour wet ingredients into dry ingredients; stir with wooden spoon or spatula until mixture is just combined.
- Spoon and spread batter evenly into prepared loaf pan. Place halved figs, cut side-up, on top of loaf, lightly pressing into batter. Bake 1 hour to 1 hour 15 minutes until loaf is a deep golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
- Cool loaf in pan 10 minutes, then remove from loaf pan and transfer to cooling rack. Cool completely before slicing, about 1 hour.
- *NOTE: You can swap the walnuts for more chocolate chunks, if desired, or toast the walnuts prior to stirring into the batter. To toast, heat a small skillet over medium-low heat and stir the walnuts in the skillet constantly until fragrant and lightly browned. Cool slightly before adding to the batter.