Bishop’s Bread

Recipe by Linda A. Wingfield

Bishop’s Bread–Two Versions (bottom has maraschino cherries; top has craisins; both contain sunflower kernels rather than nuts)–11/22/2018
(Copyright 2018–Linda A. Wingfield)


Linda A. Wingfield
This is a favorite recipe for both Thanksgiving and Christmas, that goes way back into the late 60s in our family. I believe my mom found it in a McCall's magazine, but I haven't been able to corroborate that. I do know that there are similar recipes on the internet, if you Google the name, but so far I haven't found any exactly the same. THIS IS NOT FRUITCAKE.
5 from 2 votes
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Minimum Cooling Time 2 hours
Total Time 4 hours
Course Dessert, Side Dish, Snack
Cuisine Mediterranean
Servings 24 slices


  • 1-1/2 cups sifted flour
  • 1-1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 2/3 cup glazed chocolate chips
  • 2 cups chopped walnuts (or other nuts of your choice)
  • 1 cup halved maraschino cherries (or other candied fruit)
  • 1 cup finely-snipped dates
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 cup sugar


  • Heat oven to 325 degrees F. Grease 10"x5"x3" loaf pan (or 3-4 "tiny" loaf pans) well, then line bottom with waxed paper.
  • Sift flour into bowl, then add baking powder and salt.
  • Stir chips, nuts, dates, and cherries into flour mixture, coating all pieces well.
  • Beat eggs in LARGE bowl. Gradually beat sugar into eggs.
  • Fold flour mixture into egg mixture. Pour entire mixture into prepared loaf pan(s). If you use the "tiny" pans, each one should be filled about 1/2 - 2/3 of the way full.
  • Bake for 1-1/2 hours, or until done (a toothpick inserted into the center should come out ALMOST clean...don't overdo it). Turn loaf (loaves) out of pan(s) onto cooling rack, and cool thoroughly. Wrap well, and store. The Bishop's Bread gains flavor after a day or two of refrigerated storage. It also freezes well.


You can get really creative with this recipe. If you don't like semi-sweet chocolate morsels, try dark ones or milk chocolate ones. Or use things like butterscotch chips or white chocolate chips. If you don't want to use nuts, try things like pumpkin or sunflower seeds (to get a bit of a crunch). For the cherries and dates, try any type of candied or dried fruits.
The main thing you are shooting for is a mix of chocolate and sweet, candied fruit, with none of the liquored-up taste of fruitcake. The texture of the "bread" will also be completely different than a fruitcake texture...more like fruity, nutty brownies.
Have fun, and enjoy!
Keyword Chocolate Chips, Christmas, Maraschino Cherries, NOT Fruitcake, Thanksgiving

Nutrition Facts
(using the ingredients in the recipe, without getting creative, using the full-size bread pan)

24 Servings

Amount Per Serving*

Calories 191.3
Total Fat 9.1 g
…..Saturated Fat 2.0 g
…..Polyunsaturated Fat 4.8 g
…..Monounsaturated Fat 0.9 g
Cholesterol 23.1 mg
Sodium 63.7 mg
Potassium 58.3 mg
Total Carbohydrate 26.5 g
…..Dietary Fiber 1.6 g
…..Sugars 18.6 g
Protein 3.0 g

Vitamin A 0.8 %
Vitamin C 0.0 %
Calcium 2.4 %
Iron 2.6 %

*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

5 Replies to “Bishop’s Bread”

  1. Definitely NOT a fruitcake! Mom and I used to make this every year. It was her favorite. I remember doing nut bread and bishops bread at the same time. My favorite was the nut bread, which was the basic starter recipe before adding all the fruit. Yum!! My favorite part was helping cut the fruit and nuts into bits. Loved the smell!

  2. Yes! I plan to post the “Light Nut Bread” recipe tonight or tomorrow night. It is so easy, and so scrumptious. That recipe was in place long before the Bishop’s Bread, in the family. I believe it was traditional in Mom’s family as she was growing up. I’m pretty sure it came out of the first Betty Crocker cookbook.

  3. Thinking of the grandkids and food sensitivities, I decided to do some of the creativeness with my first batch of Bishop’s Bread this year (I usually do it for both Thanksgiving and Christmas).

    From Amazon, I ordered:

    Two 24-oz bags of Nestle Semi-Sweet Chocolate Morsels

    Two 12-oz bags of Ocean Spray Craisins (Cherry-Juice-Infused)

    Four 8-oz bags of Dole California Chopped Dates

    Four 12-oz bags of 365 Everyday Value, Organic Sunflower Kernels Roasted & Unsalted

    The Craisins and the sunflower seeds will replace the maraschino cherries and the walnuts. I’m thinking those are going to be yummy substitutions…can hardly wait to get the goods (on Tuesday), and begin baking!

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