What’s your favorite dessert?
I love many different kinds, but the qualities I love in a dessert is when it’s easy to make, frugal, and allows me to use items in my kitchen I’d otherwise have to toss.
One dessert which meets these criteria is banana bread. It’s a wonderful way to use bananas you’re on the verge of having to toss for being too ripe.
Plus, it’s inexpensive to make. When I was a little girl, my grandmother would make a Hawaiian banana bread.
I no longer have her recipe, but I’ve fiddled around with a traditional banana bread recipe enough to have found a way to recreate something similar.
Here’s how I make a fruity and frugal banana bread:
- 3 ripe bananas
- 2 tablespoons melted butter
- 3 tablespoons applesauce
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ cup honey
- 1 egg
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ½ cup crushed pineapple, drained
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- ½ cup coconut flakes
1. Get Ready to Bake
Before you can begin baking bread, you must preheat the oven. Do this first to keep from having to wait on the oven at a later time when your batter is already mixed.
Preheat your oven to 350°F. Banana bread should be baked in a loaf pan. This is also a good time to grease the pan to ensure the bread won’t stick to it.
When your oven is preheating and the loaf pan has been greased, you’re ready to start the process of making banana bread mixture.
2. Smash the Bananas
You need ripe bananas to make banana bread. When the bananas have become spotty and even soft in some places, they’re perfect for baking bread.
Peel the bananas and place them in a mixing bowl. Use a potato masher to smash the bananas until they’ve become pureed.
When the bananas are smooth, you have the base ingredient of the banana bread ready.
3. Add the Wet Ingredients
It’s important to note, I try to bake on the healthier side and use ingredients I make myself. Therefore, I include partial applesauce in this recipe. It makes the bread moister, in my opinion.
However, if you aren’t a fan of baking with applesauce, you can go the traditional route and double the amount of butter or margarine.
Also, we raise bees. Therefore, I cook with honey in the place of sugar. If you don’t have honey on hand, you can take the traditional route and use plain sugar. If you’re diabetic or someone trying to avoid a high sugar intake, you can substitute artificial sweetener for the honey as well.
Next, crack an egg in a small cup to make sure it’s of good quality. When you know the egg is good, use a fork or a whisk to beat the egg.
After the egg is beaten, add it to the bowl of ingredients. Add the vanilla extract and drained crushed pineapple at this point. Mix all ingredients together until they’re well blended.
When everything has been mixed thoroughly, you’re ready for the dry ingredients.
4. Toss in the Dry Ingredients
The next step in the process is to add the dry ingredients to the mixture. Add the baking soda, salt, and all-purpose flour.
Mix well. Make sure you scrape the bottom of the bowl to ensure no flour is left unmixed. After everything has been mixed well, toss in the coconut.
Again, mix everything until the coconut has blended well with the rest of the batter. When everything is mixed well, you can move forward with the baking process.
5. Time to Bake
Once all the batter has been mixed, it’s time to pour it into the greased loaf pan. Pour the batter as evenly as possible and use a rubber spatula to smooth the top of the bread when finished.
Place the loaf pan in the oven and set the time for one hour. Keep an eye on the bread as it may cook faster or slower depending upon your oven.
When the bread begins to become a dark brown on top, pull it out of the oven and slide a toothpick in the center.
If the toothpick comes out clean, the bread is done. However, if it comes out with batter on it, the bread should be placed back in the oven for longer.
The more you make this recipe, the more you’ll learn how to change the times based on your appliances.
6. Let it Cool
After the bread is finished, it needs to be allowed to cool. If you pull it straight from the pan, the bread will crumble.
Allow the dessert to rest in the pan for approximately 10-15 minutes. When you feel you can slide the loaf of bread out of the pan, place the loaf on a cooling rack.
This is to help the loaf cool faster. Most of the time, I skip the cooling process and allow the banana bread to cool for a longer time in the pan because I have a hard time removing baked goods from pans and them coming out looking as I had hoped.
If you leave the banana bread in the pan, realize it’ll take a longer time to cool because of the thickness of the pan.
7. Serve It Up
After the banana bread has cooled, you can serve it. If you removed the bread from the loaf pan, gently slice it with a bread knife and serve it on a plate.
If you left the banana bread in the loaf pan, you can slice it in the pan, and serve it this way as well. When I eat banana bread as a dessert, I like to serve it with a scoop of vanilla ice cream and a dollop of whipped cream.
However, banana bread is also one of our family’s favorite breakfast recipes. When I serve it as a breakfast food, I’ll place a serving of fruit on the plate with it. Yogurt is another great side item for banana bread as a breakfast item too.
8. Other Variations
If you aren’t a fan of pineapple or coconut, you can leave those items out. Other variations of this recipe would be to add fruit to the batter, chocolate chips, or nuts.
My kids love when I add a ½ cup of chocolate chips to the recipe because it makes a tasty dessert or a great way to start a morning.
But one of the most common ways to enjoy banana bread is with the addition of nuts. You can choose any nut variety you desire to have a delightful dessert or breakfast food.
Plus, it’s inexpensive and a great way to utilize what you already have in your kitchen.
There you have it – how to make banana bread. I’ve given you multiple recipe variations to make the bread as healthy or as sweet as you desire.
I’ve also offered a few variations to make this bread taste different each time you make it. Hopefully, it’ll become a fun, easy, and frugal dessert you’ll enjoy for years to come.