1) Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly grease an 8 1/2" x 4 1/2" loaf pan (if you're making the plain version of the bread); or a 9" x 5" inch loaf pan (if you're adding chocolate chips and/or nuts).
2) In a large bowl, stir together the oil, sugar, eggs, pumpkin, molasses, pumpkin pie spice, and vanilla.
3) Add the baking mix, stirring to combine.
4) Mix in the chips and nuts, if you're using them.
5) Spoon the batter into the prepared pan. Sprinkle the top of the loaf with coarse sparkling sugar, if desired. Allow the batter to rest for 10 minutes before baking.
6) Bake the bread for 45 minutes, then tent with a piece of aluminum foil and continue to bake for an additional 20 to 30 minutes, or until a cake tester or toothpick inserted in the center of the loaf comes out clean. A digital thermometer inserted into the center of the loaf should register about 208°F.
7) Remove the bread from the oven, let it rest in the pan for 10 minutes, then turn it out onto a rack to cool completely. Well-wrapped, this loaf will stay moist for several days.
Yield: 1 loaf, about 16 slices.