I love to make banana bread. The ripe bananas produce a deliciously moist texture that tastes oh so sweet and comforting. It’s perfect to eat as an afternoon snack, or to pop in the kid’s lunch boxes for a special treat.
How to make banana bread
There are plenty of recipes, from ones without eggs, to those that include chocolate chips. If you are looking for an easy recipe I can recommend trying this one.
It is usually only one of those recipes we end up making when I notice the bananas are going a bit spotty in the fruit bowl. Unfortunately, it doesn’t happen that often – bananas are one of those foods that get scoffed pretty quickly in our house, the chances of them having time to ripen up are slim!
Side Note: You might also enjoy my Quick and Easy Banana Muffins
How ripe do bananas need to be?
If a banana is yellow, with a hint of green, and no brown speckles, the chances are it isn’t ripe enough. The browner and more speckled brown the banana is, the riper it will be. Not only will a ripe banana be easier to mash, it’ll also be much sweeter. That’s not to say that you can’t use a less ripe banana, just be aware that it might no be as moist and sweet.
What You Need:
There are many variations, I’ve tried many different combinations and cooking times but have found these ones to produce the best results; (for measurements and full instructions please scroll down to the recipe card at the bottom!)
The bananas I use tend to be medium sized. If you use larger bananas you might find that the bread turns out ‘wetter’ in texture, perhaps even a little soggy. I do sometimes use 2 bananas and it tastes great, but for a more moist result, it’s best to use 3.
Make sure this is at room temperature, or if need be you can melt it. I make it with unsalted butter but you can use salted butter if that’s all you have.
You can substitute the butter for vegetable oil if you prefer. As a general rule of thumb, substitute with 3/4 oil for the amount of butter in the recipe (in the case of this recipe, you’ll put in 90ml of vegetable oil).
I usually make it with brown sugar but it can be made with caster sugar if that is all you have. You can also reduce the amount of sugar in the recipe if you wish, the bananas can provide quite enough sweetness sometimes!
Side Note: if you would rather leave out the sugar you can bake with honey or maple syrup instead.
The eggs are beaten before they are added to the mixture. You can make this recipe without eggs, whether that’s for health reasons, or you just don’t have any eggs available.
What you should know if you don’t include eggs is that the banana loaf will turn out denser and not as moist but it will still be a tasty recipe. Some recipes include applesauce as a substitute or increased bananas. I’ve never made an eggless one before but this one looks pretty amazing if you want to give it a try.
If you don’t have any self-raising flour you can substitute it with plain flour and add in some baking powder. If you have bread flour this can also be used instead, as can whole wheat flour.
If you’ve used any of my other recipes from this blog before you’ll know that I love using cinnamon when I bake! This is an optional extra in the list of ingredients but well worth adding it in. I just stir it into the mixture when I’m sifting the flour in.
You can also experiment with adding in some sultanas, nuts (walnuts are a good option).
If you are baking with kids this is usually where they love to get involved – aside from eating it that is!
If the bananas you are using are ripe enough you will be able to easily mash them using either a fork or a potato masher.
Mixing the butter and sugar together – make sure the butter has been softened, or melted, before mixing in.
Add in the flour, baking powder and cinnamon to the butter and sugar mixture.
Add in the beaten egg, and finally the mashed banana. Stir it, making sure it is well blended. You’re now ready to transfer it to the greased loaf tin before putting it in the preheated oven ready to be baked.
After the cake is ready – between 45 minutes and 1 hour cook time in the oven is recommended for this recipe. Take it out and leave it to cool for around 20 minutes before removing it and leaving it to cool for a little longer on a wire rack before slicing it up ready to eat and enjoy!
Banana Bread Hints and Tips
It’s Soggy/Undercooked on the Inside
At the end of the suggested cooking time use a skewer or sharp knife to insert into the centre of the loaf. If it comes out clean it’s ready.
Make sure you are not using too much banana, sometimes, if you are using larger bananas, the extra will throw out the ratio of the ingredients and leave it with a wetter texture on the inside.
If you feel you are using the right amount of banana, it could be that you need to cook it for longer.
You should cook it for longer but without burning/over cooking the outside. Try covering the loaf pan with some foil and cooking it for a further 10 minutes.
How to keep banana bread moist
If by some miracle you have some leftover to store, you will want to try and prevent it from drying out. If you store it in an airtight container it will last for a few days – don’t put it in a fridge or you will dry it out.
Can I bake banana bread in a round cake tin?
Yes, it can be baked in a cake tin but you may need to reduce the cooking time. This is because the batter will be a lot thinner in depth as it has more space to spread out.
If you are not eating it on the day that it is baked you can lightly toast it and put some spread on it – honey or peanut butter tastes amazing! It also tastes amazing with some cream cheese. It can be left out and stored in an airtight container.
Banana bread lasts up to 5 days outside of the fridge in an airtight container.
Yes. Wait for the banana bread to completely cool down. You can freeze it whole, or sliced. Wrap it in cling film or foil.
You can freeze banana bread for up to 3 months.