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4 Tips for Easy, Moist Banana Bread

Updated on March 17, 2016
vespawoolf profile image

Vespa's recipes have appeared in "Midwest Living" & "Taste of Home" magazines. She belongs to "Cook's Recipe Testers" for Cooks Illustrated.

Easy & Moist Banana Bread
Easy & Moist Banana Bread | Source

Three Easy Tips for Moist Banana Bread

This easy banana bread is also incredibly moist. Banana bread falls into the "quick bread" category of baked goods, so it should be quick and easy. No need to use butter—you can reserve it for cake. Oil actually emulsifies the ingredients which means very moist banana bread.

I inherited this recipe from Opal, my wise mentor and dear friend. At the age of 70 she still worked part-time, cultivated a garden large enough to provide produce for the whole town, cooked three squares and also did her own canning and baking.

Opal taught me to make pies, freezer jam, meatloaf and banana bread. I've since seen similar recipes on the internet, but Opal shared four special tips with me that make moist banana bread every time:

  • Use overly ripe, black bananas (previously frozen are great) for moist bread and plenty of banana flavor
  • Choose oil, not butter, for moist bread (save the butter for cake)
  • Gently fold wet and dry ingredients together with a spatula for tender texture
  • Start checking the bread at 50 minutes. When just a few moist crumbs cling to the tester toothpick, remove the bread immediately. Don't bake it one minute longer.

Stick around after the recipe for an optional streusel topping and some tasty variations. Please check out the Amazon capsule and learn how to turn frozen, ripe bananas into natural and healthy ice cream. Enjoy!


Tips

  • Bananas should be very ripe. Don't use fermented bananas or those with split peels, which could contain harmful bacteria.
  • To store ripe bananas: freeze with or without the peel. Return to room temperature before baking. You'll find previously frozen bananas are easy to work with and produce extra-moist banana bread.
  • A hand or stand mixer will thoroughly puree bananas. This is important for picky eaters who may not enjoy slimy banana chunks in their bread. Thoroughly mashed bananas also make it easier to test banana bread for doneness.
  • Choose oil over butter. Oil emulsifies and coats the flour, preventing it from absorbing too much water which results in dry banana bread.
  • With a spatula, fold dry and wet ingredients together for a tender crumb.
  • If you like nuts, sprinkle them over the top of the bread instead of mixing them into the batter for crunchy texture and toasted flavor.
  • Walnuts are the nut of choice for banana bread, as their slightly bitter taste complements the sweetness of the bread.
  • Try the optional streusel topping for fancy banana bread you can serve for dessert.
  • Use a toothpick to test banana bread for doneness in three places: left, center and right side.
  • Wrap banana bread in plastic wrap while slightly warm to keep it from drying out overnight.


Ugly bananas make moist banana bread
Ugly bananas make moist banana bread
Mash bananas with a mixer and set aside
Mash bananas with a mixer and set aside
Blend oil and sugar
Blend oil and sugar
Add bananas and vanilla
Add bananas and vanilla
Mix in dry ingredients
Mix in dry ingredients
Pour into prepared loaf pan and bake
Pour into prepared loaf pan and bake

Moist & Easy Banana Bread

Prep time: 10 min
Cook time: 1 hour
Ready in: 1 hour 10 min
Yields: 1 loaf
3.5 stars from 40 ratings of Moist & Easy Banana Bread

Ingredients

  • 3 large bananas, very ripe
  • 1/2 cup vegetable or coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup white sugar*
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar*
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 cups unbleached flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt

*total sugar can be reduced by 50%, or 1/2 cup, without affecting the outcome

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Butter and flour the loaf pan.
  2. Mash the bananas with a hand or stand mixer. You should have 2 cups of liquified banana. Set banana aside.
  3. In a medium mixing bowl, combine sugar, oil and vanilla.
  4. Add bananas and mix well.
  5. Incorporate dry ingredients with a spatula, gently folding only until no more flour streaks remain.
  6. Pour batter into prepared loaf pan and bake for 50-70 minutes. Test with a toothpick (in 3 places, especially the center) for doneness. When only a few moist crumbs cling to the toothpick, remove from oven immediately.
  7. Cool in pan for 15 minutes. Invert onto cooling rack and allow to cool.
  8. Wrap tightly in plastic wrap for storage. Banana bread freezes well!

Variations

  • Stir 1/2 cup of dark chocolate chips into the batter for a special treat.
  • Instead of walnuts try pecans, macadamia, cashews or almonds.
  • Add a teaspoon of ground cinnamon or pumpkin pie spice to the batter for Harvest Banana Bread.
  • Try a glaze for an elegant finishing touch. Combine 1 Tablespoon each of milk, lemon juice, rum and cream. Add 1 cup of powdered sugar and whisk until smooth. Drizzle over cooled bread.


Click thumbnail to view full-size
Place ingredients in a mixing bowlCombine with pastry blenderAdd chopped walnutsPour streusel over batter
Place ingredients in a mixing bowl
Place ingredients in a mixing bowl
Combine with pastry blender
Combine with pastry blender
Add chopped walnuts
Add chopped walnuts
Pour streusel over batter
Pour streusel over batter

Fancy Walnut Streusel Topping

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup salted butter
  • 1/4 cup unbleached flour
  • 1/2 cup walnuts, chopped

Instructions

  1. With a pastry blender combine sugar, butter and flour until the mixture takes on a pea-like texture.
  2. Stir in chopped walnuts.
  3. Sprinkle over banana bread batter and pop into hot oven.

Warm Banana Bread
Warm Banana Bread | Source

Comments

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  • vespawoolf profile image
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    vespawoolf 10 months ago from Peru, South America

    I agree FlourishAnyway! Thank you for your comment.

  • FlourishAnyway profile image

    FlourishAnyway 10 months ago from USA

    Glad to see that this made delishably.com, as I love banana bread and your tips are great. I also find that the uglier the bananas (black), the better the bread. It brings out the pungent delightful flavor.

  • vespawoolf profile image
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    vespawoolf 2 years ago from Peru, South America

    Techygran, I'm so glad you're going to make this with gluten free flour! Maybe you could do a Hub on it. Thanks for your comment.

  • techygran profile image

    Cynthia 2 years ago from Vancouver Island, Canada

    vespawoolf: I love the banana bread tips from your mentor Opal, and the idea of a dessert banana streussel! I look forward to trying this using GF flour. Thank you for posting! ~Cynthia

  • vespawoolf profile image
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    vespawoolf 4 years ago from Peru, South America

    GetitScene, I'm glad you like the frozen bananas tip. It's so much easier than dropping everything and making banana bread as soon as the bananas ripen! Thank you for coming by again.

  • GetitScene profile image

    Dale Anderson 4 years ago from The High Seas

    Previously frozen bananas, what an excellent tip! Both my wife and I love banana bread so I will definitely put this advice to good use.

  • vespawoolf profile image
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    vespawoolf 4 years ago from Peru, South America

    janices7, I'm glad you enjoyed browsing this banana bread recipe. I hope you can try it someday! Thanks for coming by.

  • janices7 profile image

    Janice S 4 years ago

    Love the step-by-step instructions with photos. Recipe looks great and I love banana bread. Thanks for sharing!

  • vespawoolf profile image
    Author

    vespawoolf 4 years ago from Peru, South America

    RTalloni, thanks for linking! I'll do the same and check out your banana bread recipe while I'm at it. We do use garbanzo flour and what an interesting idea for banana bread. Thanks for your comment!

  • RTalloni profile image

    RTalloni 4 years ago from the short journey

    This recipe looks so good and your tips are tops. :) Linking to my garbanzo flour banana bread recipe, if you have no objection, with a note on these tips you've shared.

  • vespawoolf profile image
    Author

    vespawoolf 4 years ago from Peru, South America

    sgbrown, I'm glad you enjoyed the photos and recipe! Banana bread is so easy and delicious and there's always plenty fo share with family and friends. Thanks so much for the votes. Enjoy the rest of your weekend!

  • sgbrown profile image

    Sheila Brown 4 years ago from Southern Oklahoma

    This recipe looks so good! I love your tips and your pictures are awesome. The topping sounds delicious too. I love banana bread, but haven't made any for quite some time. I may have to remedy that right away! Voted up, useful and sharing! :)

  • liesl5858 profile image

    Linda Bryen 4 years ago from United Kingdom

    Thank you vespawolf.

  • vespawoolf profile image
    Author

    vespawoolf 4 years ago from Peru, South America

    liesl, thank you for dropping by! Yes, this banana bread is easy and delicious. Please ask if you need metric conversions for your baking endeavors. Have a great weekend!

  • liesl5858 profile image

    Linda Bryen 4 years ago from United Kingdom

    I love bananas, thank you vespawolf for your great hub for banana bread I might have a go at baking. It looks very tasty.

  • vespawoolf profile image
    Author

    vespawoolf 4 years ago from Peru, South America

    AliciaC, I hope you have a chance to try one of the banana bread variations! Of course, plain ol' banana bread is also delicious. Enjoy and thanks for your comment.

  • AliciaC profile image

    Linda Crampton 4 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

    I love banana bread and I love moist cakes, so this recipe is ideal for me. Thank you for the hints for how to keep the bread moist. I love the sound of the rum and cream topping, too!

  • vespawoolf profile image
    Author

    vespawoolf 4 years ago from Peru, South America

    DDE, this banana bread is a great way to use up leftover, overly ripe bananas. Hope you can try it sometime!

  • DDE profile image

    Devika Primić 4 years ago from Dubrovnik, Croatia

    Sounds such a treat with banana, a simple recipe and would love to try.

  • vespawoolf profile image
    Author

    vespawoolf 4 years ago from Peru, South America

    SuzieHQ, thanks so much for your support, votes, share and pin! This is our favorite banana bread and, as you say, the oldies are the goodies. Enjoy!

  • Suzie HQ profile image

    Suzanne Ridgeway 4 years ago from Dublin, Ireland

    Hi vespa,

    DELICIOUSNESS in bucket loads here!! Yummy factor for sure - I love banana bread, can't believe I missed this gem! It sounds heavenly and I have to try this!! Loved your story about Opal, the oldies are the goodies they say and when it comes to baking those pearls of wisdom are hard to beat! Thanks for bringing us this fab recipe that looks so tasty and easy to do.

    All the votes here, shared and pinned!!!

  • vespawoolf profile image
    Author

    vespawoolf 4 years ago from Peru, South America

    PeggyW, thanks for the kind words and votes! Banana bread is a great old standby that never disappoints. All of our Peruvian friends love it, and a couple of our friends now sell it in their bakeries. That makes it an international favorite. : )

  • Peggy W profile image

    Peggy Woods 4 years ago from Houston, Texas

    You always do such a lovely job with your recipes and this one is no exception. It has been a while since I have baked or eaten a slice of homemade banana bread. I liked your alternative tips like adding some pumpkin pie spices to it. Thanks! Up votes!

  • RobinGrosswirth23 profile image

    Robin Grosswirth 4 years ago from New York

    Yummy!

  • vespawoolf profile image
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    vespawoolf 4 years ago from Peru, South America

    DeborahNeyens, your banana cupcake sounds wonderful! Banana bread is much denser than banana cake. I'll have to work on a recipe for banana cupcakes now that you've mentioned it! Thanks for your meaningful comment.

  • DeborahNeyens profile image

    Deborah Neyens 4 years ago from Iowa

    I love banana bread and this recipe sounds delicious. Your tips are really useful, too. We have a new cupcake bakery in town and I got a banana cupcake there last week. It was one of the best things I have ever eaten and I can't stop thinking about it! It was not like banana bread, which was what I was expecting, but lighter and moister like cake.

  • vespawoolf profile image
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    vespawoolf 4 years ago from Peru, South America

    Lemonkerdz, I also prefer ultra ripe bananas. Thanks for the freezing tip, vote and comment!

  • vespawoolf profile image
    Author

    vespawoolf 4 years ago from Peru, South America

    DeniseHandlon, this is a foolproof recipe and I find it always turns out moist, tender bread. I just made two loaves yesterday. : ) Thanks for your votes and comment! I really appreciate it.

  • lemonkerdz profile image

    lemonkerdz 4 years ago from TRUJILLO, PERU

    Love your easy to follow banana bread recipe & nice clean fotos. i found that freezing bananas and then using them defrosted has good results of adding more moistness and ultra ripe bananas add more sweetness without using more sugar. Voting up

  • Denise Handlon profile image

    Denise Handlon 4 years ago from North Carolina

    I love banana bread and often find that the recipe I use seems to end up with dry bread. I'll be sure to try your recipe and awesome tips. Thanks Vespa. UP/U/A and sharing.

  • vespawoolf profile image
    Author

    vespawoolf 4 years ago from Peru, South America

    MamaKim, you're the sweetest Hubber ever. : ) Thanks for the votes!

  • Mama Kim 8 profile image

    Sasha Kim 4 years ago

    Beautiful hub! Love all your pictures and tips... you are one smart baker! ^_^ voting a whole bunch!

  • vespawoolf profile image
    Author

    vespawoolf 4 years ago from Peru, South America

    Sarahshuihan, Opal is a real gem. Thank you for taking the time to comment!

  • sarahshuihan profile image

    Sarah 4 years ago from USA

    This looks yummy! I wish someday to have someone as cool as Opal teaching me how to make stuff like this! Great hub!

  • vespawoolf profile image
    Author

    vespawoolf 4 years ago from Peru, South America

    Dhannyya, enjoy the banana bread! It really is delicious and easy to make. Thank you for coming by!

  • vespawoolf profile image
    Author

    vespawoolf 4 years ago from Peru, South America

    RajanJolly, banana bread seems to be a popular treat all over the world. I often make it here in Peru and most everyone who samples it asks for the recipe. Thank you for your vote and share!

  • dhannyya profile image

    dhannyya 4 years ago

    wonderful recipe dear..i wanna try this weekend

  • rajan jolly profile image

    Rajan Singh Jolly 4 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA.

    Very interesting and useful recipe. I love banana bread and these tips should aid in making moist banana bread. Voted up and shared.

  • vespawoolf profile image
    Author

    vespawoolf 4 years ago from Peru, South America

    Chitrangada Sharan, I'm glad you enjoyed this hub. Banana bread is quite easy and popular, too. Enjoy!

  • ChitrangadaSharan profile image

    Chitrangada Sharan 4 years ago from New Delhi, India

    Looks delicious, with easy to follow instructions. The photographs are quite helpful. Definitely going to try it.

    Thanks for sharing this yummy recipe.

  • vespawoolf profile image
    Author

    vespawoolf 4 years ago from Peru, South America

    JamieBrock, this is a great way to satisfy a sweet tooth with little time and effort. Enjoy! Thanks for the vote and share.

  • Jamie Brock profile image

    Jamie Brock 4 years ago from Texas

    Wow, wow, WOW! This banana bread sounds and looks amazing. Thank you for the useful tips.. I think I am going to try to make this very soon! My mouth is watering..lol! Great hub, voted up, useful.. thank you for sharing :)

  • vespawoolf profile image
    Author

    vespawoolf 4 years ago from Peru, South America

    Billybuc, I really appreciate all your efforts to make us look within ourselves and become better people. Thanks so much for your kind words! We hope you and Bev have a wonderful day and thank you for coming by. : )

  • vespawoolf profile image
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    vespawoolf 4 years ago from Peru, South America

    Penelope, thank you for your kind words! I really appreciate your spelt recipes as a healthier alternative to wheat flour. I wish it was available here! Sometimes I use a combination of corn flour, rice flour and soy flour instead of the unbleached. Banana bread can be a little finicky, and a lot depends on oven temperature. Thanks so much for the share and pin, too. Have a wonderful day!

  • billybuc profile image

    Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

    I love banana bread and this looks delicious. Happy New Year and thank you for your friendship.

  • GoodLady profile image

    Penelope Hart 4 years ago from Rome, Italy

    Slightly jealous (joking!).

    I just made my foolproof banana bread which is a lot like yours except I use spelt flour and for the first time in my life it was burned when I checked it! I had to remove the lovely crust to save. It. Then I see your wonderful hub which is perfect. Love your pics.

    Sharing and voting. Pinned too!

    Happy New Year. Penelope

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