Banana Bread is a deliciously easy treat to prepare and is a fantastic snack to take to school or to work the next day. It works best with overripe bananas, which makes it the perfect way to use up those excess bananas you would usually throw away. Bananas add moisture and natural sweetness to cakes, which means you can significantly reduce the amount of sugar and oil. For our Banana Bread we love the addition of coconut for both the added taste and added health benefits. Instead of using butter, we use coconut oil, and instead of sugar we use the sweetness from bananas and pitted dates. As an icing sugar, we use whipped coconut cream with vanilla extract and coconut chips to garnish. To make our banana bread gluten free, we substitute all purpose flour for coconut flour. This increases the fibre content of our bread and gives a consistent coconut undertone. However, we limit the amount of coconut flour we use as coconut flour tends to suck up liquid 3-4 times more than other flours. Its important to maintain moisture in a banana bread loaf otherwise it will end up dry and doughy. To serve, we suggest toppings including jam, sliced banana and strawberries, lemon curd or macadamia nut butter. This recipe is a delicious treat without the guilt!
Makes 1 loaf
400 g (4-5) ripe bananas
6 free range eggs
4 fresh pitted dates (see notes)
2 teaspoons vanilla extract or 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
1/4 cup coconut oil
half teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 cup coconut flour
200g chilled coconut cream (1 tin can)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract or 1/2 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
150g coconut chips or flaked coconut to garnish
** Optional – Add in a handful of walnuts to the mix for an extra crunch.
- Preheat your oven to 170 degrees C.
- In a large mixing bowl, combine dates, oil, vanilla, and eggs. With an electric beater, mix until creamy and combined. Don’t over mix.
- In a separate bowl, mash up bananas with a fork until there are no more chunky bits.
- Add the banana to the wet mix and stir well with a wooden spoon.
- Add the coconut flour, cinnamon and baking powder and continue to mix through with your spoon.
- Leave to sit for 10 minutes to allow the coconut flour to expand.
- With extra coconut oil, lightly grease one loaf tin and then line with baking paper.
- Spoon batter into the loaf tin. Slice 1 banana longways and place both sides on top of the wet mixture. You can also add coconut flakes at this stage.
- Bake for 50 – 55 minutes
For the Topping:
- Take your can of chilled coconut cream and carefully scoop out the thick cream from the top layer and add it to a large mixing bowl. Save the milky coconut water for another use such as smoothies or icy poles.
- Add in the vanilla and then whip with an electric beater until light and thick
- Set aside until the cake is cool, then cover with coconut cream and decorate with coconut chips
- Cover the top with foil if it looks as though it is over-browning in the oven. While a crispy top can be delicious, we find usually over browning the top tends to dry out the rest of the cake.
- Remove from the oven and allow to cool before removing the loaf from the tin.
- Keep in the fridge covered for up to 1 week. The cake freezes well too for up to 1-2 months.
- Ripe bananas are highly recommended for their moistness and sweetness.
- Ensure you chill the coconut cream before whipping. This helps to separate the cream with the liquid and will ensure you have a thick cream to top the cake.
- The coconut cream will slightly melt if the cake is still warm. This can be equally delicious. However, if you prefer a thick cream topping allow the cake to fully cool before application.