I was nervous about making this bread because previous attempts at paleo banana bread turned out dry and undercooked at the same time. How does that happen you ask? The middle was undercooked (but moist) while the edges were dry. Like dust. The recipe used coconut flour. I am not bowled over by coconut flour, I will tell you.
Paleo banana bread recipes abound on Pinterest and the internet. None of the pictures I’ve seen look super tantalizing and some don’t even look like banana bread. This reminds me of a funny story.
My first job post-college was in social services. I had a very small team; there were six of us. One of the girls was African and had an African accent when she spoke though she spoke English very well. One day she arrived at work and offered banana bread. I watched my coworkers before me turn down a slice. I thought to myself: Who turns down an offer for banana bread? At any rate when she got to me, I couldn’t say no. Even though when I looked at the slice of bread it looked nothing like banana bread. It looked oddly like sandwich bread. I took a bite and promptly spit it out. It was a savory bread with a hint of banana. I asked Susan what recipe she used and she explained that she didn’t have a recipe for banana bread so she took a recipe for French bread and added banana.
True story. This had my coworkers rolling on the floor laughing. I ended up giving her my mom’s recipe for banana bread; I don’t know if she ever made it.
At any rate, I swear I’ve seen versions of paleo banana bread on Pinterest that look Susan-esque. From those recipes I stayed away! However, I found this recipe at downshiftology and was very hopeful that it would be as the blog promised, super moist. Aside from being moist, I was hoping and praying that the bread would taste like non-paleo bread and have what I would call a “normal” banana bread texture. I had high hopes because the recipe called for a mixture of almond flour and tapioca flour, and I’ve had much success making pancakes with these two ingredients.
I was very relieved to slice into this bread and learn that it looked like “real” banana bread. It tasted like it too! It was dense and moist with no weird texture that often accompanies grain-free recipes. I swear you could pass this off as gluten-full banana bread. Lisa’s recipe is spot on. (Thank you, Lisa!) I gently adapted her recipe (mainly) by adding chocolate chips and slicing the bananas on top. My adaptation is below.
- 3 ripe bananas (medium-sized), mashed
- 2 c. almond flour
- ½ c. tapioca flour
- 1 tsp. baking soda
- 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
- ¼ tsp. salt
- 2 large eggs
- ¼ c. butter, melted
- ¼ c. honey
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- 1/3 c. mini chocolate chips (vegan/paleo friendly), plus additional for topping
- 1 ripe banana, sliced
- coconut oil spray
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees fahrenheit.
- Use coconut oil spray to grease the inside of a loaf pan (8.5 x 4.5 inch) and set aside.
- Mash the bananas with a fork in a mixing bowl. Add the remaining wet ingredients and mix by hand to combine.
- Add the dry ingredients. I like to sift baking soda or baking powder into my recipes because I’ve had powders that have clumped together and ended up biting into a clump of powder in the finished product. It’s gross. Stir until completely combined. Stir in chocolate chips
- Peel and slice the banana and sprinkle across the top of the batter. Sprinkle with additional chocolate chips if desired.
- Cook the banana bread for 50 to 60 minutes. Use a toothpick to test that the banana bread is cooked through. Remove from oven. Let cool completely before cutting. I know this is hard but I swear to you it’s so much easier to let it cool before cutting otherwise the bread kind of falls apart.