I go in phases with bananas. I’ve always loved them (hand me a scoop of banana honey ice cream any day and I’ll love you forever… my #1 childhood ice cream), but don’t always buy them. Sometimes I have the patience for them to ripen, and sometimes I don’t. Or, I’ll miss the (banana) boat and they’re ripen too far. In any such case, bananas are always the great back-up fruit that hardly ever goes to waste. Too mushy with too many black spots? For me, it’s usually A) freeze them for future smoothies, and/or B) make banana bread!
My all-time favorite banana bread recipe is this vegan version that I made in 2009 (five years ago! what happened to the time?!?). I actually think it’s my most popular recipe post yet. Molasses and applesauce do something magical to that banana bread, I’m not sure exactly why. It is still the best in my book. But sometimes I’m too lazy to hunt for the applesauce containers at the far back corners of my cupboard. SOMETIMES. And last week was one of these “sometimes” moments. So I googled a moist, simple banana bread and this is what I got. Very basic and to the point. I usually like some chocolate chips added in, sometimes a few walnuts, but that particular day I just wanted it plain jane.
It turned out wonderfully, despite the toothpick batter testing foolery. Suggested baking time is 45 minutes to 1 hour, and I think I took it out too soon. The browned top always gets me. But the outside edges were delicious. It’s hard to screw up banana bread, ya know? I just make sure to add a bit more cinnamon than called for, plus some nutmeg (nutmeg forever and always). A little ground allspice, ginger and cardamom never hurt, but I just stuck with two spices this round. Anywho, here is my adaptation to Flour’s Famous Banana Bread recipe!
THE SIMPLEST BANANA BREAD
- 1 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1/3 cup dark brown sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1/2 cup canola oil
- 3 very ripe bananas, mashed
- 2 tablespoons greek yogurt or sour cream
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- optional: walnuts, chocolate chips, etc
- Set oven to 350 degrees F. Line the bottom of a 9×5 loaf pan with parchment paper.
- In a medium bowl, stir the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt together with a whisk.
- In a separate large bowl, beat the sugars with the eggs until light and fluffy. Drizzle in the oil. Add mashed bananas, greek yogurt, and vanilla.
- Fold the dry ingredients into the wet. Add your nuts or chips now if using.
- Pour into the lined loaf pan and bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour.