Prep 20 mins
Cook 1 hr
Low Fat, Low sugar banana bread. Keep in mind this makes two full loaves! I was making Tracy H.'s 'The Best Banana Bread' for two years and I absolutely love it...but I decided to sub out some ingredients to make it easier on my hips and better for the kids too. Problem is, my private notes section took up half the page! So, I decided to post this recipe which is a healthier spin off of The Best Banana Bread. Thanks, Tracy H. for the inspiration. By the way, this loaf is a moist, denser texture. If you want it to rise a little more and be more cakey in texture (it will still be a little dense) then just add 1/2 tsp of baking powder to the dry ingredients. You will see baking powder as an optional ingredient.
- 1⁄4 cup butter, softened but not melted
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1⁄2 cup dark brown sugar, packed (as sweet as 1 1/2 cup of white sugar)
- 3 bananas, blackened
- 2 eggs (or egg beaters substitute)
- 2⁄3 cup unsweetened applesauce (or 2 individual unsweetened applesauce containers)
- 1⁄2 cup 1% fat buttermilk (or use sub below in directions)
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 1⁄2 cups white whole wheat flour
- 1⁄2 cup white flour
- 1⁄2 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon wheat germ (I like the honey flavor)
- 1⁄2-1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips (I use the Nestle brand of minis because they don't sink to the bottom of the bread)
- 1⁄2 teaspoon baking powder
- If you don't have buttermilk then first put 1-2 tsps of vinegar or lemon juice in the bottom of the measuring cup and add 1/2 cup of milk. By the time you need it for the recipe it should have thickened enough to pass. I have used real buttermilk and the sub and both always turn out great. You can also sub sour cream or vanilla yogurt.
- Cream butter, vanilla and sugar by hand.
- Coarsely mash bananas and add by hand to butter mixture.
- Add eggs, applesauce and buttermilk to mixture.
- Mix all dry ingredients (flours, salt, baking soda and wheat germ and baking powder if using) in a bowl with a whisk or fork. By hand, add to banana mixture only enough to moisten the dry ingredients. Don't overwork the flour or it will result in rubbery bread!
- Stir in chocolate chips very gently as little as possible to incorporate.
- Whatever your pan preference, grease or spray with nonstick only the bottom and lower bottom edge so the bread will rise as fully as possible.
- Bake at 350°F for 45-1 hour and do a toothpick test (but keep in mind the chocolate chips will remain moist) to see when yours is done -- all ovens are different!
- This will make 2 full size loaves and I slice each loaf into 10 even slices. It also made mini loaves, muffins and mini muffins well, but I had to adjust the cooking time (I don't remember the times on these). All were moist and yummy.
- You can substitute the chocolate chips for peanut butter chips, butterscotch chips or nuts, or raisins, or cranberries without compromising the moistness or flavor of the bread. In fact, I like to combine those substitutions for different flavor combos. This bread is very friendly to adding grated (and squeezed dry) zucchini and carrot! I love giving this bread for gifts and making it for bake-sales and it freezes like a dream so I can prepare in advance for events! Nobody believes it is actually quite good for you (well, all except for the chocolate) and most ask for the recipe.
- Again, I want to thank Tracy H. for her original recipe. When I'm feeling really skinny, I love her bread the best!
Watch these very closely. I would suggest checking them at 40 minutes. Mine were over done by 45. Like another reviewer, we felt the texture was odd. I did use the optional baking powder and 1 cup of mini chips.
I made these hoping for the full banana bread experience... The flavor was great, but the texture was odd and they were very short. I did add baking powder, but it didn't leaven much.
I made these as a thank you to Caryn for adopting me for PAC 2007. Ok, I know I shouldn't say this but these are good! you can't even tell they are healthier for me than regular. I did a few different substitutions because of what I had or didn't have - light brown sugar, reg whole wheat flour, wheat bran, and sour cream in place of buttermilk. I made a half a recipe and made it into muffins. I got 9 out of half the batch. The muffin itself had just enough sweetness to not be overpowering with the chocolate chips in it. I am not a big banana bread fan, but these were good. Thanks, Caryn!