Peppery Cheese Quick Bread

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Laden with bits of black pepper and plenty of cheddar cheese, Peppery Cheese Quick Bread is savory, cheesy, and absolutely delicious! This zesty loaf makes a great dinner or appetizer bread.

Since this homemade bread is made without yeast, so it’s super easy to make. Bake a loaf of Peppery Cheese Quick Bread to slice and serve warm with your favorite homemade soup for a cozy, delicious meal.

This bread isn’t dense enough to hold up for sandwiches, but the leftovers are super yummy toasted and served with butter. Truth be told, I could probably eat half the loaf all on my own!

cheese bread loaf slices on a wooden board

Peppery Cheese Quick Bread

This easy quick bread recipe has been popular around my house for almost 20 years. When a recipe sticks around that long, you know it’s got to be a good one!

I started making Peppery Cheese Bread when it first appeared in an issue of Southern Living magazine way back in 2004. It immediately became a family favorite!

The texture of this bread is similar to a muffin, only denser. The recipe is made from regular pantry ingredients and is quite versatile.

If you don’t have Greek yogurt, use sour cream. If you don’t have self-rising flour, use all-purpose. If you don’t have spicy mustard, use regular. Basically, you can’t mess it up!

cheese bread loaf ingredients


  • Self-rising flour — may substitute the equal amount of all-purpose flour plus 1 teaspoon baking powder, 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt, and 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • Sugar
  • Cheddar cheese — I prefer a sharp cheddar
  • Green onions or scallions
  • Coarse-ground black pepper — or freshly ground black pepper
  • Stone-ground spicy mustard
  • Plain Greek yogurt — may substitute sour cream or buttermilk
  • Milk — whole or low-fat
  • Eggs — lightly beaten
  • Canola Oil — may substitute vegetable oil or coconut oil
making batter for cheese bread in a glass bowl

How to make black pepper cheesy quick bread

  1. Preheat the oven and lightly grease a loaf pan (see tips below).
  2. Combine the dry ingredients (flour, sugar, pepper, and diced green onions) in a large bowl, and in a separate bowl combine the remaining wet ingredients.
  3. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients, and stir in the wet ingredients just until moistened (again, see the quick bread tips below).
  4. Spoon the batter into the loaf pan and bake for 45 to 50 minutes.
unbaked cheese bread batter in a loaf pan

Basic quick bread tips

  • Always preheat the oven before baking the loaf to ensure a good rise.
  • Bake the loaf on the middle oven rack for even cooking.
  • Like with muffins, it’s important to only stir the ingredients until the dry ingredients are just moistened. A few lump in the batter is actually desirable. Stir the batter too much and the bread texture will be chewy and tough.
  • Grease the loaf pan on the bottom and only 1/2 inch up the sides. I also like to place a piece of parchment paper cut to size in the bottom of the pan for guaranteed easy removal.
  • Watch that the bread doesn’t brown too fast on the top. Check it a few minutes before the baking time is up and cover loosely with foil if needed.
  • Check for doneness by inserting a wooden toothpick near the center of the loaf. It should comes out clean without any crumbs.
  • Cool the quick bread for 10 minutes before removing from the pan.
  • Slice quick bread with a long serrated knife to avoid crumbling.
cheese bread loaf in pan on wire rack

How to know if this quick bread is done?

The outside crust of Peppery Cheese Bread should get golden brown. To test if the loaf is cooked all the way through, insert a wooden pick into the center. When the pick is removed, it should come out clean without any wet crumbs.

How many can one loaf serve?

A loaf of Peppery Cheese Quick Bread should yield 10 slices. How many you can serve with one loaf will depend on the will power of any carb lovers you may be serving!

Recipe variations

  • Toss a diced and seeded jalapeño pepper and a clove of minced garlic into the batter to kick this bread up a notch.
  • If you have them on hand, try adding a tablespoon of chopped fresh herbs, like rosemary or thyme.
  • Add 6 – 7 crisp-fried and crumbled slices of bacon to the batter to make bacon cheddar bread.
  • Use a mixture of cheeses, like half sharp cheddar cheese and half smoked gouda, to suit your personal tastes.
cheese bread loaf slices on a white plate

Besides today’s cheesy loaf, here are a few of my other favorite homemade breads to serve when we have soup or chili for dinner:

Serving suggestions

A thick slice of Peppery Cheese Quick Bread toasted and smeared with softened butter and a sprinkle of Parmesan cheese makes a delicious appetizer.

This cheesy bread is also delicious with a steamy bowl of vegetable soup, taco soup, or old-fashioned potato soup.

cheese bread loaf slices on a wooden board

Peppery Cheese Quick Bread

With just the right amount of spice, Peppery Cheese Bread makes a great compliment to red bean chili or taco soup.
4.50 from 2 votes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 50 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Course Bread
Cuisine American
Servings 10 servings
Calories 304 kcal


  • 2 ½ cups self-rising flour
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 2 teaspoons coarse-ground black pepper
  • ¼ cup thinly sliced green onions
  • 2 large eggs lightly beaten
  • 1 8-oz. container plain Greek yogurt
  • 1 cup shredded sharp Cheddar cheese
  • ½ cup canola oil
  • ¼ cup milk
  • 1 tablespoon spicy brown mustard


  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Lightly coat a 9- x 5-inch loaf pan with cooking spray.
  • In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, black pepper, and green onions.
  • In another bowl, combine the eggs, Greek yogurt, cheese, oil, milk, and spicy mustard.
  • Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients, then add the wet ingredients, stirring just until moistened. The batter will be thick.
  • Spoon the batter into the prepared loaf pan and bake for 45 to 50 minutes, until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean.
  • Cool the quick loaf in pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes, then transfer from the pa to the wire rack to cool completely.


Original recipe by Southern Living, December 2004.
Instead of self-rising flour, you may also substitute the equal amount of all-purpose flour plus 1 teaspoon baking powder, 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt, and 1/2 teaspoon baking soda.


Serving: 1gCalories: 304kcalCarbohydrates: 31gProtein: 8gFat: 16gSaturated Fat: 4gPolyunsaturated Fat: 12gCholesterol: 50mgSodium: 392mgFiber: 1gSugar: 6g

Life Love and Good Food does not claim to be a registered dietician or nutritionist. Nutritional information shared on this site is only an estimate. We recommend running the ingredients through an online nutritional calculator if you need to verify any information.

Keyword black pepper, cheddar cheese, quick bread, scallions
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was.

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  1. 4 stars
    The flavor of this bread is rather good, but the cooking time was too long, at least for my oven. I should have began checking it after 35 minutes. Next time ….

  2. Any suggestions on making this ahead of time and freezing it? I’ve got about 30 family coming into town and am trying to plan meals ahead of time.

    1. Liz, This bread will freeze well. Bake and let cool completely, then wrap tightly in a layer of plastic wrap and place in a resealable freezer bag. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator, then wrap in aluminum foil to reheat the entire loaf in a 350-degree oven, or slice and toast.

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