Banana Walnut Loaf
We always have a lot of bananas around at our house, at all stages of ripeness. I like to eat mine when they're still completely yellow with a little bit of green near the stem. Zoey likes hers when they just start forming brown spots. And we always like to have really ripe ones around for smoothies and banana nice cream. But some always get to a certain point—that dark, mushy stage when they'll fall right off the stem when you pick them up—the point right when they're about to go from being overripe to rotten.
At that point we usually peel and freeze them. But the other day we had three of those uber-ripe bananas in our fruit bowl and I got an urge to make banana bread for a change.
I’ve made a lot of banana bread in my pre-vegan days. I’ve used boxed mixes. I’ve made some from scratch. I’ve tried some recipes with peanut butter, some with pecans and I’ve made tons and tons with chocolate chips. I remember a time in high school when a friend of mine and I were baking banana bread together—we got so aggravated when all the chocolate chips sunk to the bottom of our loaf. We tried again coating the chips in flour, and again baking the banana bread for a few minutes then removing it and shoving in the chocolate chips. Then we realized that the batter was just too thin. I think that’s when we realized that the boxed mixes just weren’t going to cut it anymore and starting making it from scratch. So yea, I’ve definitely made a whole lot of banana bread in my day. So I figured it wouldn’t be too hard to come up with a good vegan recipe for one of my favorite sweet treats.
This was one of those lucky times where a recipe came out earning two thumbs up on the first try. Wooohooo! This banana bread is so fluffy and slightly moist and it’s only lightly sweetened. I love eating banana bread on its own, but sometimes I like to switch it up and spread peanut butter on a slice or toast a couple of slices in a skillet and pour maple syrup on top—so I don’t like my banana bread to be overly sweetened and I can add the extra sweet goodness later on.
If you don’t like walnuts, you can always omit the walnuts in this recipe or substitute them for another kind of nut or even chocolate chips.
|Servings||Prep Time||Cook Time||Total Time|
|2 mini loaves + 4 muffins||10 mins.||35 mins.||45 mins.|
- 3 very ripe bananas
- 2 tablespoons ground chia seeds + 6 tablespoons water
- 1/3 cup coconut oil, melted + more for greasing
- ½ cup packed dark brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 ½ cups all purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ½ cup chopped walnuts
- 1 yellow banana for décor
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Grease 2 small loaf pans or 1 large loaf pan with a little bit of coconut oil. Or, line muffin tins with paper muffin liners.
- Soak the 2 tablespoons of chia seeds in 6 tablespoons of water and allow to rest for just about ten minutes.
- Peel the bananas and place them in a medium mixing bowl and mash them together using a fork—mash them until there are no significant lumps.
- Add to the mashed bananas the chia seed mixture, the coconut oil, the dark brown sugar and vanilla. Whisk together until everything is incorporated.
- In a separate mixing bowl, stir together the flour, baking soda and salt.
- Add the flour mixture to the banana mixture in about three batches, stirring between each batch. Stir together just until the dry mixture is completely incorporated into the wet mixture.
- Add crushed walnuts to the batter and stir until incorporated.
- Pour batter into greased or lined tins and bake until a toothpick inserted into the middle of the loaf comes out clean. The bake times will be approximately 20 minutes for muffins, approximately 35 minutes for small loaves, and approximately 45-50 minutes for a large loaf.