Banana bread is a superfood. Not in the instagram yoga-mum sense of the word, but in the way that everyone loves a good banana loaf (unless you dislike bananas) and it makes you feel amazing. I can promise you that I have made friends solely through the production and sharing of this banana bread. Its warmth and soft texture makes it perfect for autumn and winter, but this lighter version makes sure it’s not too stodgy and unhealthy. The wholemeal flour increases the fibre and nutrient content, and the date syrup (or alternative) ensures no refined sugars are used.
It’s not totally good for you as such, and doesn’t taste at all like it is (like all the best desserts), but it’s a huge improvement on the traditional recipe (which uses butter, white flour and sugar) and is so delicious it’s suitable for everyone! When I asked my friends, they said it didn’t taste like a healthy dessert, and didn’t have that weird texture too many sugar-free desserts have.
Macros: 244 calories, 13.7g fat, 26.5g carbs, 4.1g protein.
This isn’t vegan or gluten free, but can be made both! See *notes at the bottom for ingredient substitutions.
Ingredients (serves 10):
- 25g coconut oil
- 100ml vegetable oil
- 1tsp vanilla essence
- 150g light brown sugar
- 2 eggs (or 1tbsp almond butter)
- 2 large bananas (or three small ones)
- 75ml milk of choice
- 1 tsp Cinnamon
- 1tsp baking soda
- Pinch of salt
- 200g flour of choice (I use 100g wholewheat and 100g white)
- Optional: nuts, dark chocolate
- Pre-heat the over to 180 degrees Celsius and line a loaf tin with baking parchment
- Heat up the coconut oil if it is solid
- Add the coconut and vegetable oils with the vanilla essence to a bowl and mix until combined
- Beat in the eggs and sugar
- Mash the bananas and add to the mix
- Add the milk, baking soda, cinnamon and salt to the bowl and mix everything together
- Add the flour slowly and fold in to the liquid mixture using a large wooden spoon
- Add any extras you want at this point and fold in
- Pour into the loaf tin, and top with cinnamon, or, if you’re feeling decadent, with brown sugar (this creates a crunchy top)
- Bake in the oven for 1h (insert a toothpick/knife into the centre after one hour – if the cake is done, it should come out clean)
- Leave to cool in the tin until the tin is cool. Remove from the tin and leave to col completely on a wire rack before cutting.
Oils: It is possible to use 125ml coconut oil here. However, my aim to is make this affordable for everyone, and coconut oil is not known for being super cheap 😉 But do feel free to switch up ingredients as you like! Coconut oil is better for you, and doesn’t taste at all in this recipe – vegetable oil is a little more processed but works perfectly fine. Don’t use olive oil unless you love the taste in your cakes – it overpowers the bananas!
Bananas: Try to use ripe to over-ripe bananas. I always have a stash in my freezer that I freeze as soon as they become over-ripe. They are perfect for this recipe (and a million other things, such as my carrot cake smoothie bowl recipe).
Syrups: Date syrup is really sweet, which means you don’t have to use too much to get the sweetness required in this recipe. You can cut down on the amount of syrup used here if you’re sugar sensitive – 75g works well. Lighter syrups such as agave work well too, or you can use everyday honey or maple syrup.
Protein: If you want this as a post-workout snack, try adding 2 scoops of unflavoured protein powder to the mix.
Vegan? Use flax eggs or other egg substitute, and make sure to use dairy-free milk. My favourites are hazelnut milk and coconut milk.
Gluten free? This recipe works fine with all-purpose gluten free flour, and although I haven’t tried it, I’m sure buckwheat flour would work fine too!
Let me know what you think in the comments below, or if you made any ingredients substitutions that you think work well! 🙂