There's something truly comforting about the aroma of freshly baked goods wafting through the kitchen. And when it comes to classic homemade treats, few can rival the allure of a perfectly baked banana walnut bread. This delightful creation combines the natural sweetness of ripe bananas with the satisfying crunch of walnuts, resulting in a moist and delicious banana bread that's impossible to resist.
Whether you're an experienced baker or a novice in the kitchen, making banana walnut bread is a delightful adventure that brings joy to both the creator and those lucky enough to taste it. So, if you're ready to embark on a baking journey that tantalizes the taste buds and fills your home with a comforting aroma, then let's dive into the wonderful world of making banana walnut bread.
In this blog post, we'll take you through a step-by-step guide on how to make delicious banana walnut bread right in your kitchen, along with the best banana bread recipe. We will also share some tips and variations you can make to help you personalize your creation.
Healthy Banana Walnut Bread
1 hour and 25 minutes
1. Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C). Grease a 9x5-inch loaf pan or line it with parchment paper.
2. Whisk together the whole wheat flour, baking soda, salt, and ground cinnamon in a medium-sized bowl. Set aside.
3. Combine the melted coconut oil and maple syrup (or honey) in a large mixing bowl. Mix well.
4. Add the eggs to the coconut oil and maple syrup mixture, one at a time, beating well after each addition.
5. Stir in the mashed bananas, unsweetened applesauce, almond milk, and vanilla extract until well combined.
6. Gradually add the dry ingredients to the banana mixture, stirring until just combined. Avoid overmixing to prevent a dense texture.
7. Gently fold in the chopped walnuts, reserving a small amount for sprinkling on top if desired.
8. Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan, spreading it evenly. If desired, sprinkle the reserved walnuts on top for added texture.
9. Bake in the preheated oven for approximately 50-60 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Adjust the baking time as needed.
10. Once baked, remove the pan from the oven and allow the banana walnut bread to cool in the pan for about 10 minutes. Then transfer it to a wire rack to cool completely before slicing.
11. Slice and enjoy the healthy banana walnut bread as a guilt-free treat. It makes a delicious breakfast or snack option.
Ripe Bananas: Use ripe bananas with brown spots on the skin. They are sweeter and easier to mash, providing more flavor and moisture to the bread.
Whole Wheat Flour: Whole wheat flour adds fiber and nutrients to the bread. Be sure to spoon and level the flour when measuring, rather than packing it into the measuring cup, to avoid a dense texture.
Coconut Oil: Melt the coconut oil before adding it to the batter. If the weather is cold and the oil solidifies, warm it up gently until it liquefies again.
Natural Sweeteners: Opt for pure maple syrup or honey instead of refined sugar. They add natural sweetness and moisture to the bread. Adjust the amount based on your desired level of sweetness.
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 13.1g
Saturated Fat 5.7g
Total Carbohydrate 35.8g
Dietary Fiber 2.5g
Total Sugars 13.6g
Vitamin D 3mcg
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calorie a day is used for general nutrition advice.
Mixing the Batter: Mix the wet and dry ingredients until just combined. Overmixing can result in a denser texture. It's okay if the batter appears slightly lumpy due to the mashed bananas.
Chopped Walnuts: Toasting the walnuts before adding them to the bread can enhance their flavor. Spread them on a baking sheet and toast in a preheated oven at 350°F (175°C) for about 5-7 minutes or until fragrant. Allow them to cool before chopping and folding them into the batter.
Baking Time: Keep a close eye on the bread during baking, as oven temperatures may vary. Start checking for doneness around the 50-minute mark by inserting a toothpick into the center. The bread is ready if it comes out clean or with a few crumbs.
Cooling and Storage: Allow the bread to cool in the pan for about 10 minutes before transferring it to a wire rack, this helps prevent it from sticking to the pan. Once completely cooled, store any leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator to maintain freshness.
What Ingredients You Will Need To Make This Banana Walnut Bread Recipe
Whole Wheat Flour
Whole wheat flour is made by grinding the entire wheat grain, including the bran, germ, and endosperm. It is higher in fiber, vitamins (such as B vitamins), minerals (such as magnesium and zinc), and antioxidants than all-purpose flour. Using whole wheat flour adds nutritional value and a slightly nutty flavor to the bread.
Baking soda, also known as sodium bicarbonate, is a leavening agent commonly used in baking. When combined with acidic ingredients like mashed bananas, it produces carbon dioxide gas bubbles, which help the bread rise and become fluffy.
Salt is a common ingredient used in baking to enhance the flavors of other ingredients, and it balances the sweetness in the bread and helps bring out the natural flavors.
Ground cinnamon is a warm and aromatic spice that adds a distinct flavor to the bread. Beyond its delightful taste, cinnamon has potential health benefits, such as anti-inflammatory properties, improved blood sugar control, and antioxidant effects.
Coconut oil is a plant-based oil that is solid at room temperature. It contains medium-chain fatty acids, which are metabolized differently than long-chain fatty acids found in animal fats. While it is a source of fat, coconut oil is considered a healthier option due to its unique composition. It adds moisture and richness to the bread.
Pure maple syrup, honey, brown sugar, coconut sugar, and dates sugar are natural sweeteners that can replace refined sugar in baking. They provide sweetness and moisture to the bread while also imparting their own unique flavors. Compared to refined sugar, they contain some nutrients and have a lower glycemic index.
Eggs play multiple roles in baking. They act as a binding agent, helping to hold the ingredients together and create structure in the bread. Additionally, eggs contribute to the moisture and richness of the final product.
Ripe bananas are an essential ingredient in any banana bread recipe, and this banana walnut bread recipe is no exception. Banana bread recipes are a way to use ripe or overripe bananas that otherwise will get tossed away. They add natural sweetness, contribute moisture, and help keep the bread tender. Bananas are also a good source of potassium, fiber, and various vitamins, such as vitamin C and vitamin B6.
Unsweetened applesauce is a fantastic substitute for part of the fat content in baked goods. It adds moisture, natural sweetness, and tenderness to the bread. Using applesauce reduces the overall fat content while maintaining a delicious flavor and texture.
Almond Milk (or any plant-based milk)
Almond milk or other plant-based milk alternatives serve as a dairy-free liquid component in the recipe, adding moisture and contributing to the bread's tenderness. Plant-based milk options are suitable for those with lactose intolerance or following a vegan lifestyle.
Vanilla extract is a common flavoring ingredient in baking. It adds a pleasant aroma and enhances the bread's overall taste, providing a hint of sweetness and complementing the other flavors in the recipe.
Walnuts are nutritious nuts that add texture, crunch and a rich nutty flavor to the banana walnut bread. They are a good source of healthy fats, including omega-3 fatty acids, and provide additional nutrients like protein, fiber, vitamin E, and minerals. If walnut is not your favorite, you can swap it with another type of nut or a blend to make banana nut bread. For the banana nut bread recipe, you can follow the same as above and just swap the walnut.
How To Elevate This Banana Bread
Add Chocolate Chips
For a delightful twist, fold in a half cup or more of dark or semi-sweet chocolate chips into the batter. The melted chocolate will create pockets of gooey goodness throughout the bread.
Enhance the flavor profile by adding the zest of an orange or lemon to the batter. The citrus notes will complement the sweetness of the bananas and add a refreshing twist.
Drizzle a simple maple glaze over the cooled banana walnut bread. Mix together ½ cup of powdered sugar, 1-2 tablespoons of pure maple syrup, and a splash of milk until smooth. Adjust the consistency to your liking by adding more powdered sugar or milk.
Sliced Bananas on Top
Before baking, place thin slices of banana on top of the batter. They will caramelize and create a visually appealing and flavorful topping for the bread.
Sprinkle some toasted coconut flakes on top of the batter before baking. It adds a tropical touch and a delightful crunch to each bite.
How to store leftover banana bread
Store the bread in an airtight container or wrap it tightly in plastic wrap. It can be stored at room temperature for a few days or refrigerated for longer shelf life. You can also freeze individual slices for later enjoyment.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Can I make this recipe vegan?
Yes, you can adapt this homemade banana nut bread recipe to be vegan by replacing the eggs with flax or chia eggs (made by mixing ground flaxseeds or chia seeds with water). Substitute plant-based milk for regular milk, and use a vegan butter substitute or coconut oil. Ensure all ingredients are vegan-friendly.
Can I make this recipe gluten-free?
Yes, you can use gluten-free flour like almond flour or gluten-free all-purpose flour instead of whole wheat flour. Additionally, ensure that all other ingredients used are gluten-free and suitable for your dietary needs.
Although I have not tried the gluten-free version of this recipe, the result may taste a little different.
Can I use a different type of oil instead of coconut oil?
Yes, you can use other healthy oils like olive oil or avocado oil as a substitute for coconut oil. Choose an oil with a mild flavor to avoid overpowering the taste of the bread.
Can I add other ingredients like chocolate chips or dried fruits?
Absolutely! You can personalize your banana walnut bread by adding ingredients like dark chocolate chips, raisins, cranberries, or shredded coconut. Just be mindful of the quantities to maintain a balanced texture.
How to ensure the banana bread comes out moist?
Mixing the ingredients until just combined can ensure the results of moist banana bread. Overmixing can develop the gluten in the flour, resulting in a denser texture. Mix until there are no dry flour pockets, but a few lumps from the mashed bananas are okay.
Incorporate unsweetened applesauce into the recipe. Applesauce helps retain moisture in baked goods and can replace part of the fat content, and it also adds natural sweetness and contributes to a moist texture.
Whether using coconut oil or another type of oil, make sure you use the specified amount in the recipe. Fat helps keep the walnut banana bread moist and tender.