Classic banana bread that’s so moist, tender, the perfect level of denseness and filled with the big banana bread flavor thanks to lots of bananas, nutmeg and cinnamon.
If you’re anything like me, you come back from grocery shopping only to realize you have 2 cartons of eggs, no butter, 3 bags of chocolate chips and nothing to make for supper. No matter how organized I try to be, I always forget something and buy something I didn’t need.
Recently, we’ve been over buying bananas – so now there’s a stock pile overripe bananas in our freezer. Which is a pretty delicious predicament to be in – since the solution is making banana bread.
This particular banana bread is a classic. It’s so moist, springy, big on banana flavor and has the softest crumb. Sometimes I find banana bread can taste bland, or be tough. But not this recipe. It’s all the kinds of delicious that banana bread should be.
The secrets to its moist texture and tender crumb are quite simple. First, there’s 2 eggs and 1/4 cup greek yogurt in the batter. I had honey greek yogurt on hand, but you could use plain, vanilla or even sour cream. Eggs are great for adding moisture and yogurt acts as the ultimate shield against dry baked goods. Then to keep the crumb tender and not the least bit tough, be VERY careful not to overmix your batter. Have all your ingredients at room temperature so they’re easier to combine.Then when you add your dry ingredients to your wet, fold them in very gently with a large rubber spatula or wooden spoon until just mixed – a few lumps are totally ok.
Now for the big flavor? First lots of bananas – the more ripe the better. I also use just brown sugar to give a deeper, caramelly taste. Then lots of vanilla, cinnamon and nutmeg. The vanilla and spices complement the banana so well without turning the recipe into a spice cake. There’s so much flavor that I didn’t miss having chocolate chips, nuts or fruit one bit. The banana bread really shines on its own.
The only downside of banana bread is that you’ll have to wait awhile for it to bake – 50 minutes to 1 hour – sigh. Mine took exactly one hour. If you notice the top getting too brown as it’s baking, you can tent a piece of aluminum foil to cover the top for the last 10-15 minutes. Your kitchen will smell absolutely DIVINE as you’re waiting. Seriously delicious.
This banana bread is a definite classic – big banana taste, super moist, not the least bit tough. I love it for breakfast, mid day snack or dessert!
What are your favorite ways to use brown bananas? I’m already dreaming of new banana bread recipes. Peanut butter banana bread… adding butterscotch chips…. banana bread of the chocolate variety!
- 1 and 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 and 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
- 1 and 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/3 cup unsulted butter , room temperature
- 3/4 cup packed brown sugar , light or dark (I used dark)
- 2 large eggs , room temperature
- 2 teaspoons vanilla
- 1/4 cup Greek yogurt room temperature (or sour cream)
- 3 very ripe bananas , about 1 and 1/2 cups mashed
Preheat the oven to 350F degrees. Line with parchment paper or grease and flour a large 9 x 5 inch loaf pan and set aside.
In a medium bowl whisk together the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt. Set aside.
Using a hand held or stand mixer on medium speed, cream the butter and sugar together in a large bowl (about 1-2 minutes). Add in the eggs and vanilla and continue mixing until combined (about 30 seconds).
Turn off the mixer and scrape down the sides. Using a large rubber spatula or wooden spoon, fold in the yogurt and mashed bananas until incorporated. Then carefully fold in the flour mixture until just combined.
Pour the batter into your prepared loaf pan and bake for 50 minutes to 1 hour. The edges should be just starting to pull away from the sides and an inserted toothpick should come out clean. If the top is starting to brown too much before its finished, cover loosely with aluminum foil and continue baking.