Last weekend a friend asked me if I ever used my black and spotty bananas to make banana bread. Sure I do! Or… do I? I mean, I sometimes make these chocolate dipped Banana Bread Donuts, and we love whipping up a batch of these Blender Banana Peanut Butter Muffins every now and then. But actual, in-a-loaf-pan, enjoy-it-by-the-slice banana bread? In all honesty, it’s been ages.
I have a go-to banana bread recipe right here on the blog, and I love it and all, but the recipe is nearly 3 years old and I decided it was time to give it a little face lift (loaf lift?). My goal for this recipe was to make it really truly healthy; no sugar, no oil, all whole grains… but also to keep it simple, with ingredients that are easy to find and readily available at most grocery stores. This recipe is also gluten free, soy free, and can be made nut free if you leave out the optional walnuts. A healthy, wholesome, anytime banana bread that’s for everyone.
This banana bread is sweetened entirely with bananas and dates and requires only oat flour. I wasn’t sure if I could pull it off, but after 3 tries I ended up with a moist and just sweet enough bread that is chock-full of banana flavor. You can use either medjool dates or deglet noor dates. I actually used deglet noor, which are less expensive, on the final perfect loaf (pictured in this post). You can use semi sweet vegan chocolate chips; or for a completely sugar free loaf use unsweetened chocolate chips, or skip the chips and use raisins instead.
Working on this new recipe has got me all excited about banana bread again, which is a good thing because I have a freezer full of it now. Hopefully it has inspired you to save those valuable spotty bananas and get baking!
Healthy Vegan Banana Bread – Gluten Free, Dairy Free, Egg Free, Oil Free, Refined Sugar Free
Adapted from my Coconut Buckwheat Oat Banana Bread
- 2 cups oat flour (205g) – I make my own by blending rolled oats in the blender until fine. Measure after blending
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp nutmeg
- 1/4 tsp + 1/8 tsp sea salt
- 3 over-ripe bananas (1.5 cups mashed, 327g)
- 1 cup pitted dates (150g) – deglet noor or medjool
- 2 tbsp dairy-free milk
- 1 tbsp cornstarch + 3 tbsp water (or sub tapioca starch, arrowroot, or flax seeds for the cornstarch)
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 tsp apple cider vinegar
Optional toppings and add-ins:
- 1/3 – 1/2 cup vegan dark chocolate chips, plus a handful for the top
- 1/3 – 1/2 cup chopped walnuts
- handful of oats for the top
- 1 banana, sliced, for the top
Preheat oven to 350 F. Prepare a loaf pan with parchment paper or lightly grease with oil and sprinkle on tapioca starch or other flour (so the bread comes out easily).
If your dates are hard or dry, cover them with hot water for 5 minutes and then rinse and drain well. Combine dry ingredients – oat flour through salt – in a large bowl and whisk together. In a blender, combine the remaining ingredients – bananas through apple cider vinegar – and blend until smooth.
Pour the banana mixture into the dry ingredients and mix with a wooden spoon until just combined. Fold in the optional walnuts and chocolate chips. Pour into prepared loaf pan and smooth out with a spatula. Top with a handful of chocolate chips, oats, and the sliced banana, if desired. Bake for 40 – 45 minutes, or until lightly browned and a toothpick or knife inserted in the center comes out clean.
Cool completely before enjoying. Enjoy within a few days or slice and freeze individually for easier defrosting!
I love to see your beautiful creations! Tag me in your photos and use #feedingyourbeauty. Happy baking!