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Healthy Banana Bread

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Made with whole wheat flour, unsweetened apple sauce, and half the sugar, this Healthy Banana Bread is a true treat. It’s quick and easy to prepare and makes for the perfect healthy snack or breakfast.

Overhead view of two slices of healthy banana bread

Easy & Healthy Banana Bread

We’re a huge fan of banana bread in this house and I make my moist banana bread recipe at least once or twice a month. (Mostly when I realize we never got around to eating the ripe bananas on the counter!)

Today’s recipe is adapted from that beloved recipe, with just a few twists to make it a bit healthier. Since I found myself enjoying a slice for breakfast on the go more often than I’d like to admit, I figured that I might as well make it as healthy as possible – without compromising the flavor or the moist texture.

One thing to note about this banana bread, and any banana bread recipe, is that you definitely want to use ripe bananas. The riper they are, the better flavor the bread will have. It will also stay soft and moist for even longer.

This recipe comes together so easily. I love making this healthy banana bread together with my toddler. He has a blast helping in the kitchen and then we both get to enjoy a healthy snack after.

Front view of a slice of banana bread

Why Is This Banana Bread Healthier?

So, what makes this banana bread healthier than my original banana bread recipe? There are a few things…

  • Less oil and butter. I swapped out most of the oil and butter for unsweetened apple sauce and a touch of olive oil.
  • Less sugar. I also reduced the sugar by half and added some maple sugar as a natural sweetener.
  • Swapped the flour. I also swapped out the all-purpose flour for whole wheat flour.

Ingredients You’ll Need

This healthy banana bread recipes is made with pantry staples, plus the recipe swaps mentioned above.

  • Bananas – You’ll need about 3 medium bananas or 1 1/4 cup mashed bananas. Be sure to use ones that are extra ripe for the best flavor.
  • Unsweetened apple sauce – Helps to keep the bread extra moist.
  • Olive oil – Replaces the butter in a traditional banana bread recipe. You can also use coconut oil or vegetable oil.
  • Maple Syrup- This adds a little bit of sweetness to compensate for the reduced sugar
  • Eggs
  • Milk
  • Pure vanilla extract
  • Light brown sugar
  • Whole wheat flour – You can also use regular all-purpose flour.
  • Baking soda & baking powder
  • Salt
  • Cinnamon
  • Chopped nuts – Optional.
Angled view of a loaf of banana bread

How to Make Banana Bread

This healthy banana bread is super easy to make. A great recipe for getting the kids involved!

  1. Combine the wet ingredients. Mash the bananas. Combine with the all the wet ingredients.
  2. Add the dry ingredients. In a separate bowl, whisk the dry ingredients. Add to the wet ingredients and beat until it just starts to combine. Stir in the nuts and finish mixing the batter by hand to ensure it’s well combined.
  3. Bake. Bake for 50 to 60 minutes. Cool in the pan for 30 minutes then cool completely on a wire rack.
A loaf of healthy banana bread with one slice cut off

Recipe Tips for Success

Here are a few things to make this banana bread recipe even easier.

  • Use parchment paper. Lining the pan with a piece of parchment paper will make it so easy to remove this bread from the pan.
  • Prevent the bread from burning. If the top of the bread to browning too fast, tent with aluminum foil after about 40 minutes.
  • Make sure the bread is fully baked. Test the bread in several spots to make sure it’s baked through all the way, the toothpick should be clean, with no crumbs sticking to it or wetness.
  • Add your favorite mix-ins. The chopped nuts are a completely optional mix-in. If desired you can also stir in some chocolate chips or dried fruits.

Serving Suggestions

There’s nothing quite like a warm, freshly baked slice of banana bread. Personally, I think this can be served as breakfast just as easily as it can be served as a snack.

Enjoy a slice as-is or add a little bit of butter to a warm slice. You can also add a layer of peanut butter to make it a heartier treat.

Overhead view of slices of healthy banana bread

How to Store Leftovers

You can store this banana bread at room temperature or in the fridge. At room temperature, it will last for 3 days in an airtight container. Placing it in the fridge extends the shelf life to 6 days. I love having an extra slice or two around so that I can grab and go on busy mornings.

Can I Freeze This?

Absolutely. This banana bread will last for up to 2 months when frozen.

Allow the bread to cool completely then wrap in one layer of plastic wrap and a layer of aluminum foil. Thaw on the counter before enjoying – it will take about 12 to 24 hours to thaw completely. Alternatively, you can also freeze individual slices of the bread, which will thaw overnight.

More Homemade Bread Recipes:

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Front view of a slice of healthy banana bread

Healthy Banana Bread

  • Author: Julianne Dell
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 50-60 minutes
  • Total Time: 16 minute
  • Yield: 10 slices

Description

Made with whole wheat flour, unsweetened apple sauce, and half the sugar, this Healthy Banana Bread is a true treat. It’s quick and easy to prepare and makes for the perfect healthy snack or breakfast.

Ingredients

  • 1 ¼ cup mashed banana (about 3 medium bananas)
  • 2 large eggs
  • ½ cup (4oz) unsweetened apple sauce
  • 2 tablespoons (30ml) olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons (30ml) maple syrup
  • 2 tablespoons (30ml) milk
  • 1 teaspoon (5ml) pure vanilla extract
  • ½ cup (110g) light brown sugar, packed
  • 1 ¾ cups (245g) whole wheat flour
  • 1 ½ teaspoons baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • ½ cup chopped nuts (optional)

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F: Generously grease a 9×5-inch loaf pan and set aside. Line the pan with parchment paper if desired.
  2. Peel and mash the bananas with a potato masher or fork.
  3. Combine the wet ingredients: Combine the bananas with all the wet ingredients: eggs, apple sauce, oil, maple syrup milk, and vanilla extract. Beat all the ingredients together until well combined. Add the sugar and beat until incorporated.
  4. Combine the dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl: flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt and cinnamon. Whisk to combine. Add the dry ingredients to the bowl and beat just until it starts to combine then add the nuts. Stir the mixture with a spatula to finish incorporating the flour.
  5. Bake at 350°F for 50-60 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Cool in the pan for 30 minutes and then transfer to a wire rack to cool.
Nutrition Information:
1 slice
219
14.8 g
324.8 mg
8.3 g
34.2 g
3.8 g
5 g
37.3 mg
  • Category: Bread
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: easy healthy banana bread, healthy moist banana bread, homemade banana bread

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