Kale and Cheese Quick Bread

This slightly sweet kale bread was made for this week’s reddit 52 weeks of baking challenge. It’s quick bread week, and I predict that we will see a lot of banana breads. I was actually planning to make a banana bread too until I realized that a kale bread would an easy stand-in for a copycat babka that a friend has asked me to make.

Don’t get fooled by the kale in this slightly sweet kale and cheese quick bread. There’s very little else healthy about it.

Grated cheese and kale for the kale quick bread

Ratios for baking quick breads and other things

When I was contemplating which quick bread to make, I did a bit of googling and reading. I knew that pound cakes like my chocolate chip loaf cake have a standard formula (one pound each of butter: sugar: eggs: flour). I was unaware that quick breads did as well.

the loaf of slightly sweet cheese and kale bread, three slices, and a knife

In his book (Ratio), Michael Ruhlman describes the ratio for quick breads. By weight, it’s two parts flour: two parts liquid: one part egg: one part butter. One more reason to get a kitchen scale!

The Food Network has gone away from these ratios and created a mix-and-match formula that anyone can use to create their own quick bread recipes. Scroll down to check out their list of 50 quick breads – I think I might want to bake everything on that list.

FAQs about this sweet kale bread recipe

What cheese should I use for this quick bread?

Feel free to use any hard cheese like cheddar, Monterey Jack, Parmesan, etc.

Can I substitute other greens for the kale?

Sure. This quick bread would work with spinach or most any other herbs.

I don’t have buttermilk. Is there a substitute?

You could replace the buttermilk with yogurt or milk. Just don’t be put off by the fact that the batter seems too stiff. I promise that it turns out right in the end.

How would you serve this kale and cheese loaf?

With the butter and the gruyère and the salty parmesan, this quick bread would be a great accompaniment to a pre-dinner martini. Or have it for breakfast with scrambled eggs.

Do I need to adjust the baking time if I bake two loaves?

No. You only would if you made it as one big loaf. Or reduce it if you’re making small ones or turn this recipe into kale muffins.

My garden is overflowing with kale. Could I freeze the kale and make this loaf in the winter?

Greens don’t freeze particularly well straight. It would be better to make this recipe and freeze the loaf. Once it cools, double wrap it in plastic wrap, put it in a freezer bag, and remove all the air. It will keep in the freezer for about three months.

unbaked cheese and kale bread batter in a loaf pan
the baked kale and cheese quick bread in the loaf pan

Kale and cheese quick bread

Author uglyducklingbakery


  • 2 cups (250g) bleached, all-purpose flour plus more for dusting the loaf pan
  • 1 tbsp granulated sugar
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 8 tbsp unsalted butter, melted plus more for greasing the pan
  • ½ cup buttermilk
  • 2 eggs
  • 4 oz hard cheese (e.g. gruyere, cheddar, or swiss), shredded
  • ½ cup chopped kale (about two large leaves) stems removed and discarded
  • 1 oz parmesan cheese, grated


  • Preheat the oven to 350°F.
  • Butter and flour an 8 1/2 x 4 1/2 in loaf pan.
  • In a large bowl, mix together the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
    2 cups (250g) bleached, all-purpose flour, 1 tbsp granulated sugar, 2 tsp baking powder, 1/2 tsp baking soda, 1 tsp salt
  • In a small bowl (or in the measuring cup for the buttermilk), combine the buttermilk, egg, and melted butter.
    8 tbsp unsalted butter, melted, 1/2 cup buttermilk, 2 eggs
  • Pour the liquid ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix only until just combined. Do not overmix. It will be quite thick.
  • Add in the shredded gruyere and chopped kale, mix until distributed throughout, and put into the prepared loaf pan.
    4 oz hard cheese (e.g. gruyere, cheddar, or swiss), shredded, 1/2 cup chopped kale (about two large leaves) stems removed and discarded
  • Top with parmesan cheese.
    1 oz parmesan cheese, grated
  • Bake for 40-45 minutes, until the parmesan is golden and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
  • Cool in the pan for 10 minutes and then remove from the pan and cool.

What’s next?

If you make this kale and cheese quick bread recipe, please comment here or share a pic with me on Instagram!

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Previous challenges:
Week 1: New Year new recipe – blueberry galette
Week 2: seasonal – Smitten Kitchen’s grapefruit pound cake
Week 3: Great British Bake Off – Kate’s sticky toffee apple caramel cake
Week 4: Australia – sausage rolls
Week 5: bite sized – cookies
Week 6: Chinese New Year – mushroom bao
Week 7: new tool – baguette baker
Week 8: chocolate – chocolate peanut butter bonbons
Week 9: timed bake – under 1 hour! chocolate chip scones
Week 10: allergy/diet restriction – macarons

Next week: signature bake

a dinosaur cookie jar standing on top of a slice of kale and cheese quick bread with quick bread written in colorful letters on the side


  1. Your bread recipe sounds amazingly delicious, and I can almost guarantee it will be a massive hit with my family. Have a wonderful weekend! I’m looking forward to your new News Letter!
    Heidy M

  2. This cheesy kale bread looks delicious. Love cheesy breads. I never knew about quick bread ratios as well. Thanks for sharing

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