I have a problem. Maybe you have this problem too. It goes a little something like this: buy too many unripe bananas at the store; take home and set in a fruit bowl to ripen; all ripen at the same time; bananas coming out my ears; get tired of eating bananas; promptly forget about bananas and eat other fruit instead; bananas become overripe and almost gross-looking; certainly won’t eat bananas now; shove in freezer and forget about it completely. Repeat process next week.
And it certainly doesn’t help that every time my kids see bananas, they shout in their best Minion voice, “Bananas!” Help me, please. So when I opened the freezer last week and a few frozen bananas fell out onto the floor because I have too many shoved in the freezer, I realized I needed to do something about it. Hence, banana bread. I have posted another banana bread recipe here, and I think I talked about my problem then also–bahahah! (If you’re looking for banana dessert recipes using very ripe bananas, try banana cake or banana cupcakes with cream cheese frosting. You can’t go wrong with either of these!)
I put the bananas whole in the freezer. No need to peel, cut up, or put in a freezer bag. When I’m reading to make something with it, I place it in a bowl on the counter to let it thaw, about 10-15 minutes. Then I peel it and mash it and am ready to use it.
This banana bread recipe is a bit healthier than traditional banana bread because it uses whole wheat flour instead of all-purpose flour, honey to add sweetness and cut down on the sugar, and yogurt to add moisture. I like adding toasted nuts, but you can omit it if that’s not your thing. Either way, you can feel good about eating this. Your tastebuds will thank you too. Enjoy! xoxo
Healthy Banana Bread
2 sticks unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled
¾ c packed dark brown sugar
¼ c honey
2 large eggs
3 very ripe bananas, mashed
2 c whole wheat flour
1 ½ t baking soda
½ t salt
½ c plain yogurt (NOT non-fat) or low-fat sour cream
½ c walnuts or pecans (optional)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a loaf pan with parchment or wax paper; set aside. Place the nuts on a cookie sheet and toast in the oven for 7-9 minutes, until fragrant. Set on a cooking rack to cool. Once cool, chop in small chunks.
While the nuts are cooling, gently whisk the butter, brown sugar, and honey in a large bowl until it is all incorporated. Add the eggs and bananas, mixing until it is almost fully incorporated. In a separate bowl, mix the flour, baking soda, and salt. Working alternately with the flour mixture and the sour cream or yogurt, add about ⅓ of the flour mixture, folding it into the batter. When there are no traces of flour, add small dollops of the sour cream or yogurt. Do this two more times. Fold in the toasted nuts.
Pour into loaf pan and bake for 70-75 minutes, or until a toothpick entered comes out clean. Place on a wire rack to cool completely before pulling out of pan. Serve warm or at room temperature.
(Any unused bread can be stored in foil or plastic wrap, at room temperature, for up to two days.)
adapted slightly from Butter Sugar Flour Eggs by Gale Gand