Don’t toss out those brown bananas! They make the BEST banana bread — and the riper the better! Use them to make Whole Grain Banana Nut Bread, a dense, yet moist, quick bread that’s great as a breakfast or brunch bread or as a coffee break dessert. Even though this whole wheat banana bread recipe doesn’t use buttermilk, the bread is plenty moist and sweet from the brown sugar and ripened bananas. A sugar-cinnamon mixture sprinkled over the batter before baking gives this banana bread a streusel-like crunch on top. Banana bread wrapped in plastic wrap will stay fresh for several days, so you can enjoy it all week long!
For years, I made banana bread from an old recipe that used shortening and white sugar, but it never seemed to have the taste or texture of banana bread that is served in a coffee shop. Recently, I started experimenting with recipes that used oil or butter in place of the shortening and also tried incorporating whole wheat flour into the mix. What I was looking for was a richer texture without sacrificing flavor or moistness.
I found that I didn’t love the banana bread I made with just whole wheat flour because it ended up being a bit dry and spongy (very possibly the baker’s error!). Then, I tried King Arthur Flour’s 2018 Recipe of the Year for Whole Grain Banana Bread which call for equal parts of white whole wheat and all-purpose flour. The result was much closer to my favorite coffee shop breads and was so good that I had to share it with you!
Remember these tips when making Whole Grain Banana Nut Bread
- Use very ripe bananas and mash them thoroughly before adding to the batter.
- When measuring the flour, spoon it into the measuring cup and level it with a knife.
- Before adding flour to the batter, whisk it in a separate bowl with the baking soda, baking powder, and salt.
- The bread is done when a thin knife inserted in the center comes out clean or with just a few moist crumbs (no wet batter).
- To avoid over browning on top, tent with aluminum foil during the last 15 minutes of baking.
- Let the bread cool for 15 minutes before removing the loaf from the pan.
More recipes you can make with ripe bananas!
- Banana Chocolate Chunk Cookie Butter Muffins
- Chocolate Banana Muffins
- Banana Chocolate Chip Coconut Muffins
- Banana Nut Muffins
Did you make this Whole Grain Banana Nut Bread recipe?
If you like this recipe, please do me a favor and give it a 5-star rating!
Whole Grain Banana Nut Bread
- 4-5 ripe bananas mashed
- 1/2 cup canola oil
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 cup white whole wheat flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 cup walnuts chopped
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly coat a 9x5 loaf pan with cooking spray.
- In a large mixing bowl, mash bananas with a fork, Add the oil, sugar, eggs, and vanilla and stir until well combined.
- In another bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Add to the wet ingredients and beat until all dry ingredients are combined, scraping down sides.
- Stir in the walnuts and spread the batter into the loaf pan. Mix together the sugar and cinnamon topping, and sprinkle over the batter.
- Bake for 60 - 75 minutes or until a thin knife inserted into the center comes out clean. If the bread appears to be browning too much, tent with aluminum foil for the last few minutes of baking.
- Remove the bread from the oven and cool in the loaf pan for 15 minutes before loosening the sides. Remove from pan and cool completely on a wire rack.