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How to Convert Muffins to Bread (and Bread to Muffins)

You just need to know a few simple tips to be able to convert muffins to bread and bread to muffins!

How to Convert Muffins to Bread and Bread to Muffins

Have you ever had a great recipe for muffins but wanted to bake a loaf instead? How about the other way around? Luckily, there’s not really a difference in the batter from the recipes for traditional muffins versus a loaf of quick bread.

You can easily switch back and forth on your favorite recipe and bake in whichever form you prefer. To do that, there are just a few things to consider and adjust to have you baking muffins and quick breads like a pro!

In the photo above, you’ll see a favorite muffin recipe, Chocolate Chip Muffins, in both muffin and loaf form. It bakes beautifully either way, giving you some flexibility for serving or sharing a tasty treat. Below, you’ll also find some other recipes that will convert easily.

slices of Cinnamon Swirl Bread
Cinnamon Swirl Bread

Now, let’s talk muffins and quick bread loaves!

Choosing Pans for Muffins and Quick Breads

The right pan, of course, depends on the volume of batter the recipe makes. I don’t usually keep exact measurements of batter, but it’s easy to know from the yield of the recipe how to make the change to muffins or loaves.

For a recipe that makes 12 standard muffins, you’ll get 1 standard loaf. Let’s start by qualifying what “standard” means. A standard muffin pan has 1/2-cup capacity cavities. Mini muffin pans have a smaller capacity, while jumbo muffin pans have a larger capacity. (We’ll talk more about those another time.)

As for a standard loaf pan, you may get different answers depending on the source. Some consider a 9″x 5″ standard, while others opt for 8 & 1/2″x 4 & 1/2″. I usually use a 9″x 5″ pan, which is what I specify in most of my quick bread recipes. If your pan is the smaller version of standard, then just be careful not to overfill your pan. Stick to the rule of filling your pans 3/4 full, and you’ll be fine almost all of the time.

These are the pans I have and most often use:

Pineapple Coconut Banana Nut Muffins
Pineapple Coconut Banana Nut Muffins

Converting Muffins to a Loaf of Quick Bread

Muffins generally bake at higher temperatures than a loaf of quick bread, so you’ll want to lower your oven’s temperature to make your muffin recipe in loaf form. In most cases, you’ll need to set your oven 25-50°F lower than the muffin recipe recommends. You generally can’t go wrong with 350°F, but that’s not a hard and fast rule because there are just so many muffin recipes out there.

As for the time it takes to bake a loaf versus muffins, that will need to increase to bake the larger, thicker bread thoroughly. The exact time your bread will need will vary depending on the recipe, but aim for somewhere in the 45-60 minute range when baking at 350°F.

Take a peek through the door at 45 minutes and reassess that time estimate. When it looks done according to the visual cue the recipe gave you (lightly browned, for instance), try the toothpick test to see if your bread is ready. The recipe should tell you whether you’re looking for the pick to come out clean, with a few moist crumbs, or some other test.

Ginger Pear Bread
Ginger Pear Bread

Converting a Loaf of Quick Bread to Muffins

To make muffins from a quick bread loaf recipe, you’ll use the same approach as above, but in reverse. Start by raising the oven temperature by 25-50°F. That will usually put you in the 375-400°F range. Again, that’s a general rule that can vary depending on the specific recipe. I’ll also mention this quick reminder that you’ll get taller muffins at a higher temperature.

And as you might expect, those muffins will bake faster than a quick bread loaf. At 375°F, most muffins will take 23 to 28 minutes. At 400°F, expect your muffins to bake in 20 to 25 minutes. As you approach the low end of those time estimates, look through the oven door and you’ll be able to make a more accurate estimate.

Quick and Easy Blueberry Muffins
Quick and Easy Blueberry Muffins

With these tips, you’ll be able to convert your favorite muffins to loaves and vice versa. Keep in mind that these are general guidelines, but these tips will get you on the right path for baking your best muffins and quick bread loaves. Then use your best judgment to make any further adjustments.

Now that you’re ready to bake, take a look at some muffin recipes and quick bread loaf recipes to get some baking inspiration!

Get my new eBook today! 14 Muffins and Quick Breads

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    19 Comments on “How to Convert Muffins to Bread (and Bread to Muffins)”

  1. I cannot tell you how long I’ve been waiting for these instructions! I much prefer baking (and eating) a quick bread to muffins and am delighted with your thorough instructions. Thanks a heap!

  2. Thank You for sharing this.  I prefer the quick breads over the muffins.  

  3. I have a set of Pans that is 2 x 4. I want to use instead of the 9 x 5 pan. Would the same conversion work like the muffins? 

  4. Thank you so much! I’m going to try my lemon loaf to jumbo muffins recipe now!

  5. I just made the cinnamon swirl loaf for Mother’s Day, and it was the biggest hit!!! Love it!!
    Thank you!!

  6. Thank you!  I always wondered how you convert muffins into a loaf bread.  

  7. Thank you so much for this valuable information! I am left puzzled however, about standard muffin tins having a capacity of one cup. Mine are half cup…?

  8. super-duper helpful, thanks for this post!

  9. Thanks so much! So helpful! 

  10. Jennifer, 

    Thank you for the easy conversion from muffin to quick bread times and pans.  So helpful!   

    I was hoping to also see how to adjust the actual recipes from muffin mix to quick bread.  What ingredients to adjust and what ingredients (if any to omit or add).  I did not see this on your page and it left me very frustrated!  

    The muffin recipe I would like to make as a quick bread calls for the following dry ingredients: 
    3/4 cups of A P flour
    1/2 cups of wheat flour 
    1 teaspoon of baking soda
    1/2 teaspoon of salt
    1/2 teaspoon each — ground cinnamon and ground cardamom
    1/4 cup granulated sugar

    For a quick bread, do I need to adjust the baking soda amount and add baking powder for leavening/rise? 

    Please, any help you can give would be greatly appreciated!!

    Thank you! 
    E, Callahan

    • Hi, Ellen! To convert from muffins to a loaf, you shouldn’t need to change a muffin recipe unless you need to scale it to fit your loaf pan. The only thing that should change is the baking time and possibly the oven temperature as described in this post. Best of luck!

  11. Thank you so much for the conversion from quick bread to muffins. I have a Pumpkin Bread recipe I have been making for 40 yrs. and now I live in a senior residence and would love to make it into the muffins since we are mostly single and and this will make it easier to share with all my neighbors. Which are many.

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