Dense and moist banana bread55

Posted on April 26, 2010 by ChristieBreakfast, Sweet Treats, Vegetarian

banana bread loaf

You know the best thing about this recipe? Actually, there’s two things; you don’t need an electric mixer and you only need one bowl.

So there’s no fancy cooking instruments and less washing up. Sounds like heaven to me, how about you?

My husband adores banana bread and banana cake and raw bananas. Yes, he’s a banana fan. I like sliced banana on my porridge because that’s two healthy things together, although the spoonful of brown sugar probably negates them slightly – but (for me) is a necessary evil.

I don’t have much of a sweet-tooth, but I do have a butter-tooth. Therefore, I indulge in my hubby’s craving for banana bread so I can serve it hot with lots of good quality butter; Harmonie Organic Butter being my current favourite.

banana bread slice

This recipe needs super-duper ripe bananas. The kind of ones that have gone completely black and are attracting fruit flies with a vengeance. The kind that find their way into my fruit bowl when hubby fancies banana bread (I swear he hides unripe bananas in a draw somewhere and then they mysteriously appear, along with his cravings).

The only issue I had was that I was all out of baking powder so the bread didn’t rise very much. It actually tasted very yummy (because it was so moist) but made it more cake-like than bread-like. If you want it to rise more like bread then use plain flour and a teaspoon of baking powder – I’ve made a note in the recipe below.

Don’t forget to slather hot slices with butter and enjoy with a nice cup of tea :)

Happy cooking! Christie x

Banana bread recipe

  • 125g unsalted butter
  • 3 super ripe bananas
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract or paste (only use essence if you’re desperate!)
  • pinch of cinnamon
  • pinch of cloves
  • 1 and 1/2 cups plain flour (I used self-raising flour and no baking powder, that’s why the bread is so flat)
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • pinch of salt
  • handful of raw walnuts, roughly chopped (optional)

1. Preheat the oven to 175C (350F) and line a loaf tin with non-stick baking paper (or grease and flour lightly). I like using baking paper because you can leave some overhanging and then simply lift it out at the end (no mess!).

2. Melt the butter in a small saucepan and set aside to cool slightly. In a large mixing bowl (the only one you’ll use for this recipe!) mash the bananas with a fork. Add the melted butter, sugar, egg, vanilla, cinnamon and cloves and mix to combine.

3. Sift in the flour, baking powder and salt. Mix until just combined, the batter will be quick thick. Scoop into the baking tin and sprinkle with the chopped walnuts, if you’re using them.

4. Bake for 50mins to 1 hour or until a skewer inserted leaves a few crumbs. Remove from the tin and cool on a wire rack (or slice a piece straight away and slather with butter and devour! That’s what I did).

Looking for more cake recipes? Try these:

Orange and almond cake w/ orange syrup (V)
Vegan vanilla sponge cake (V, VG)
Rhubarb and coconut cake (V)
Chocolate and ricotta cheesecake (V)

  • Dillon

    Yum! I love banana bread.

    What do you think is the mark up on a slice of cafe banana bread? I know we all have to make coin but some cafe prices are bananas :P

    • Crystal

      Hi Dillon,

      I live in Bondi, Sydney and I think the going rate for one slice of banana bread is about $4.50. Some cafes provide jam and cream aswell. But not always.

  • Mmmm, I love moist banana bread! I always get so disappointed when I order it in a cafe and it comes out dry and horrible.

  • Great recipe. This one is very simple and looks extra tasty. Great work Christie

  • I always have black bananas that need using up. The walnut topping looks tasty and adds great texture

  • Banana Bread! Hehe yes banana bread must be eaten hot with lots of butter! Though I try and avoid it for health reasons =D

  • Christie, If you’re ever on the Gold Coast you’re more than welcome to drop by with some banana bread ;) I think nuts in banana bread is an absolute must.

  • Lol at the brown bananas mysteriously appearing. Whenever I see brown bananas in the fruit bowl, I know banana bread is a-comin’ :)
    Hehe your banana bread looks so dense and moist, I need a glass of milk just imagining eating it!

  • No mixer? One bowl! Sold!

  • Now I feel like banana bread… I think I might have to make it this weekend! Your’s looks wonderful!

  • Mmmmm I looove banana bread, not just because of the way it tastes, but because it’s a great way to use up bananas I would never eat. I like how you’ve simplified this. I tend not to bake much because of all the bowls and spatulas that need to get washed.

  • what a great looking bread! i have a recipe but has no butter so it really is more like a bread- bread banana bread

    but i can imagine how much niceer it would be with butter like in this recipe….

    now – i used up my fruit fly infested bananas already, will need to go buy a bunch soon so hopefully i can make this on the weekend :)

  • It looks great with the walnuts on top. Your hubby is very clever to hide his bananas like that!

  • Yum! not needing a mixer is definitely a plus! that photo is great!

  • I’ve been on a real banana bread kick lately — make it just about every week now! I’ll be trying your recipe this weekend! yum!

  • Glad you’re loving the banana bread recipe guys! I made it again this weekend and it turned out perfectly again. Hope it works well for you too! ;)

    • guy smith

      I like your recipe. i have a similar one but much denser. It took several dozen tries to perfectly recreate the bananna bread my grandmother used to make. turns out the trick is to use even more bananas and totally eliminate the rising agents. my bread actually shrinks and increases its density to be more like a pudding but boy is it great. also i like to freeze my overripe bananas so they don’t turn to mush on the counter while they wait for me, but do turn to mush as sood as they are peeled amd microwaved back to room temp.

      • Dondi

        Can you share that recipe that was super dense?

  • Beautiful! A perfect slice for my cuppa..

    Congratulation!! take care and looking forward to reading the other blog :-)

  • Mmmmmmm this looks delicious. I love banana cake.

  • Andy

    I assume you are in the UK. It’s interesting that the butter is measured in grams but the flour is measured in cups. ;)

  • Rachel

    Tried out this recipe today, it came out yummily moist and flavoursome :) :) Even A, who adores bagging out my cooking, could not find a problem with this, and finished off a third of the bread by himself :)

    • I’m so glad to hear that Rachel! I’ve always got some bananas frozen and ready to make this ;)

  • I just made this banana bread, and you’re right – it’s wonderfully dense and moist! Thankyou so much for sharing – YUM! xx

    • Hi Michelle – Happy to hear the recipe worked for you! Those bananas were very lucky to be made into that yummy cake ;)

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  • The photos are so beautiful! I love the beautiful floral plate too :-D

    “no fancy cooking instruments and less washing up” – I love it!

  • Zoe Dee

    I made this last week, added some dates macerated in port, cut back on the sugar and upped the flour and baking powder (just to accommodate for the dates) and no nuts. IT WAS HEAVENLY.

    I also made a gluten-free version for my coealiac step-dad and it still tasted amazing, but maybe needed a little more baking powder to combat the gluey texture.

    Thanks, Christie!

    • Hi Zoe, What a great addition! I will definitely try it with dates soaked in port. I’ve never tried making a GF version before – thanks for the baking powder tip – I’ll give it a go! So glad the recipe worked well for you :)

  • sweetee123

    Hey Christie,

    Thanks for the recipe…. The banana bread turned out beautiful and tasty and soft and crunchy at the same time :) I am enjoying hot banana bread with green tea now …. Keep sharing new recipes.. I added some dried figs to the dough and the combination was awesome


    • Hi Sweetee, Thanks for leaving a comment! Dried figs is a fantastic addition, yum! I’m very glad this recipe worked well for you and you’ve got me craving a green tea cuppa now :) Christie

  • Alanna

    Thanks so much for the recipe! I use it almost every week (ensuring some left over bananas are available)! And the recipe is so delicious it always difficult to share. I tried it with home made cream cheese frosting- sensational!

    • Hi Alanna, How fantastic you use this recipe every week! Cream cheese icing sounds like a divine match, I might try that myself. Christie

  • Cheryll

    I love this recipe! Its so easy ! I made it a few times and everytime a sucess ! Thanks for sharing this recipe Christie !

    • Hi Cheryll, You’re welcome! I just love it that it works for you every time! Just what you need when you’ve got super ripe bananas to use up :) Christie

  • Jane

    Does anyone think it’s totally insane to go get my bananas OUT of the kitchen bin right now in order to bake this?

    I swear they’ve only been in there for like half an hour and they are still in their skins – so its surely ok right?

    Who cares – Im off to bake NOW!
    Shhhh dont tell my kids!

    • The skins will keep the germs out Jane! Good luck, would love to hear how it turns out!

  • Sonja

    Thanks Christie! I used the recipe to make muffins – yummo :)

    • Hi Sonja,
      Fantastic! Glad they worked for you on a small scale – I will have to try that next time :)

  • Yum!!! I thought I had the best and easiet banana bread but me thinks I have been trumped! Feel free to try my recipe, I most certainly will be trying yours! xx

  • Jackie p

    Hi – I’m a reader from the US who stumbled upon this recipe after her hand mixer broke! I was super exited to try it, and I followed the recipe to a T above. It turned out to be possibly the worst banana bread I’ve made yet, and I’ll tell you what I discovered is behind that. The salt & baking powder amounts are not proportionate to the amount of regular flour you call for. I’ve consulted several sources, and all say that if substituting AP flour for self rising, you will need 1tsp baking powder and a 1/4 tsp of salt per 1 cup of flour. So for other Americans out there making this recipe, either increase the amount of baking powder & salt if using 1.5 cups of AP flour, or only use 1cup of AP flour for the amount of salt & baking powder listed. Otherwise you will come out with a brick of semi-mushy, tasteless, slighlty banana-y gummy stuff! Happy baking!

    • maybe it was your cooking jackie p ,no one else had a problem with it maybe classes is the aswer for you

  • Sharna

    This looked so yummy-and lo and behold, over ripe bananas are in the fridge and wanting to be used!! Made a gluten free version and used the same quantity of GF plain flour but also added 1/4 cup dessiccated coconut and not quite half a cup of almond meal. This took the glugginess out of the texture but kept it nice and dense. A little extra decadence was some brown sugar sprinkled on top with the nuts. Yummo! And great toasted too!

  • Joey

    Not sure why, but the recipe didn’t really work for me either. I followed the recipe to a tee. Maybe my bananas weren’t big enough (it’s always a bit subjective – 3 bananas, but how big?). I used the plain flour/baking soda version and it didn’t really rise for me either. Oh well, the hunt goes on for another banana bread recipe.

    • Hi Joey, so sorry to hear that! Next time I make it I will measure the bananas in grams and update the recipe. Thanks for your feedback. Christie

  • Chantelle

    Thank you for sharing this receipe it was dense and moist and we loved it! I also added coconut and it went really well with the banana! Delicious!

  • Deb

    I’ve added this recipe to my ‘keep’ list.

    Living in a caravan running on 12V battery power, the use of electrical appliances is not an option. I used one bowl and a fork to mix and one loaf pan to bake.

    Oh, and did I mention that it tastes sooooooo good!

    • HI Deb, WOW! That is so inspirational! I am so glad you could still bake this cake from a caravan – thank you so much for letting me know. Truly amazing! Christie

  • Kathy

    Thanks for this recipe. I have made this countless of time, used both sefl-raising and plain flour too. Sometimes I added choc chips, grated coconut and other type of nuts. This recipe is a keeper!

    Tasted so goooood… =))

    • Hi Kathy – sorry for the late reply. Coconut and choc chips are fantastic additions. So glad you enjoyed it :)

  • Michelle

    I love this recipe! I have made this hundreds of times and I can’t get enough! At one stage I was making it everyday and having to double the quantity because my family and friends would scoff it as soon as it came out of the oven! Thank you for giving us a beautiful recipe that will definitely be passed on to my children :)

    • Hi Michelle, I am so touched! Thank you for coming back and letting me know that the recipe is such a success for you. It makes me very happy to think about all your family tucking into a slice of this daily :)

      • Michelle

        You’re very welcome :) If we manage to have any left over, I heat it up on a cafe grill press and its totally AMAZING! It turns the outside crunchy and its the best next-day food ever :) I wanted to make some yesterday but I ran out of butter from all the friands lol.

  • Julie

    This is my go-to banana bread recipe, I make it heaps! I use wholemeal flour, sometimes coconut oil in place of butter, and lately have varied it with adding cocao nibs and hazelnuts in place of walnuts. Kids, hubby and friends love it. Many thanks.

    • Hi Julie, hazelnuts are my favourite nut and I’ve never added them to this recipe – thanks for the idea! Glad your family enjoys this sweet treat :)

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