I have been hunting for the perfect whole wheat banana bread recipe lately. The first was too sweet to stick with me from breakfast to lunch; the second was dry and lacking in flavor.
This banana bread recipe is just right: 100% whole wheat, naturally sweetened with honey, with a light, decadent crumb. Plus it is a cinch to mix together and only requires one bowl. My search is over!
- ⅓ cup melted coconut oil or extra-virgin olive oil
- ½ cup honey
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup mashed bananas
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon, plus more to swirl on top
- 1¾ cups whole wheat pastry flour or regular whole wheat flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda*
- ¼ cup hot water*
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit (165 degrees Celsius) and grease a 9×5 inch loaf pan.
- In a large bowl, beat oil and honey together. Add eggs and beat well.
- Stir in bananas and vanilla, then stir in the salt and cinnamon. Lastly, stir in the flour, just until combined.
- Add baking soda to hot water, stir to mix, and then mix briefly into batter until it is evenly distributed. Spread batter into the greased loaf pan.
- Sprinkle with cinnamon and swirl with a toothpick or the tip of a butter knife for a pretty marbled effect.
- Bake for 60 to 65 minutes. Be sure to check that the bread is done baking by inserting a toothpick in the top. It should come out clean. Let the bread cool in the loaf pan for 5 minutes, then transfer it to a wire rack to cool for 30 minutes before slicing.
- Adapted from Pedgi at Allrecipes.
- I love baking bread in my Le Creuset stoneware loaf pan so much that it deserves a mention. The loaf pan is non-toxic, heats evenly and cleans easily. Highly recommended!
- *Update 10/13/14: After several years of being baffled by the hot water/baking soda trick, I can now definitively report that it's an unnecessary step. If you prefer, you can just stir in ¼ cup water or milk (any kind) into the oil/honey/eggs and whisk the baking soda in with the spices. I'm leaving the recipe as is because I know so many of you love it as written!
- Need to omit the eggs? I've heard from other commenters that flax eggs/chia eggs work well as replacements for the eggs. One commenter even said the bread turned out well when she forgot the eggs!
Since I live by myself, I like to bake a big loaf of banana bread and freeze it for later. Once the bread has cooled, I slice it and store the slices in a freezer bag. When I’m ready to eat it, I just throw a frozen slice in the toaster. My homemade breakfast or snack is ready in minutes!
How do you like your banana bread? For some extra protein, I like to top it with pecan butter or peanut butter. If I’m feeling indulgent, I’ll add honey, butter, Nutella or maple cream cheese. Huzzah!