When it comes to deciding what is good enough to share here with you, 80% of the time I develop recipes from the depths of my brain, 15% of the time I share classic recipes that I make for my friends and family regularly and about 5% of the time, it is a happy accident that comes from fulfilling a craving.
This banana bread is definitely in that rare 5%.
Here is the situation I was in:
Andrew and I were on the last week of a 6-week fitness challenge at our gym, the home stretch if you will. I also happened to have a lot of smooshy bananas fragrancing (is this a word?) my kitchen because as much as I had great intentions of making breakfast smoothies, the 20* Michigan mornings always seemed to squash my desire in the moment. And the more I could smell those ripe bananas, I REALLY started craving a nice warm slice of banana bread. So rather than freezing the bananas like any good fitness challenger would do, I set out to bake the perfect loaf of banana bread with my 9 ripe bananas (you can thank Costco for that!)
Suffice it to say I basically tortured myself.
I baked several loaves over 2 days – some with chocolate chips and various other add-ins, tweaking the recipe until I got the perfect slice. And like a good fitness challenger, I only tasted a little sliver of each one. LOOK AT ME AND MY SELF CONTROL.
I’m so proud of me. Are you proud of me?
And then I nicely wrapped them up and proceeded to freeze half of each one for another time. Oh did I mention this freezes beautifully?
Who is this human with actual self control around a baked good?
Maybe, just maybe, I took some good habits away from this challenge after all!
Whatever the case, this bread is so good I challenge you to make it and try to share it, or store some away for later- it’s going to be tough. I promise you that!
Whole Wheat Chocolate Chunk Banana Bread
- 1 cup mashed banana (about 3 medium bananas)
- 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
- 1/4 cup coconut oil, melted
- 1/4 cup maple syrup
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
- 2 cups whole wheat flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2/3 cup chopped dark chocolate
Preheat oven to 350*
In a large bowl, beat together the banana, applesauce, coconut oil, maple syrup, brown sugar, eggs and vanilla bean paste until combined.
In a separate bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, cinnamon and salt. Once combined, slowly add dry ingredients to the banana mixture until both are combined. Then stir in dark chocolate pieces.
Pour batter into a greased 9x5 inch loaf pan and bake for about 50 minutes. Be careful not to over bake. Bread will be done when a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.