Healthy Cinnamon Banana Bread is a lightened up version of traditional banana bread made with whole wheat flour, mashed bananas, maple syrup, honey, and lots of cinnamon.
This healthy banana bread with cinnamon should be your next baking project. It is loaded with banana flavor without all the fat and sugar of traditional banana bread. It's one of our favorites along with this Nutella Banana Bread.
The smell of banana bread slowly baking in the oven may be one of the best smells out there. Seriously if you have had a bad day and walk into a house that smells like freshly baked banana bread, it's impossible to stay upset. I would say that it should be bottled but what a tease! I think I would be angrier if I came home, smelled banana bread, only to find out there wasn't actually any waiting to be eaten.
Traditional banana bread recipes are packed with lots of butter, sour cream, sugar, and white flour making them delicious, but not the healthiest breakfast option. Luckily, it is pretty easy to make a few changes and make delicious and healthier banana bread.
First, we are going to switch out the traditional vegetable oil for coconut oil. Then we are going to use applesauce and extra bananas so that we can use less oil in the recipe overall and still end up with a moist bread. Finally, we are going to substitute maple syrup and honey for the white sugar and use whole wheat flour instead of white flour. The resulting bread is packed with banana flavor and will quickly become a favorite.
What makes this banana bread healthy?
This is definitely a healthier version of a traditional banana bread since it uses whole wheat flour, unrefined sugars, and healthier fats. Specifically,
- Coconut oil is a healthier option than traditional butter when it comes to fat. You could also use olive oil, avocado oil, or butter is that is all you have at home. On top of using a healthier fat, this recipe only uses 3 tablespoons instead of the stick of butter used in most recipes.
- Unsweetened applesauce is another trick to cut back on the oil. It adds some natural sweetness and moisture to the recipe.
- Honey and pure maple syrup are both unrefined sugar, that are a bit better for you than processed white or brown sugar. They offer some trace nutrients and don't cause blood sugar to spike in the same way as white sugar.
- White whole wheat flour is an alternative to traditional white flour and offers more fiber and nutrients. The "white" version of whole wheat flour has a milder flavor than traditional whole wheat flour but is just as healthy.
- Bananas may seem like an obvious ingredient in banana bread but this recipe uses a lot of bananas to add sweetness and moisture without oil and sugar.
Recipe Ideas and Add-Ins
It's hard to make banana bread without wanting to mix in a little something extra. Here are some favorites for this cinnamon banana bread.
- Chocolate chips. cinnamon chips, or peanut butter chips
- Chopped walnuts or pecans
- Fresh of frozen blueberries
- Dried fruit like cranberries, golden raisins, or chopped dried cherries or blueberries
How to freeze banana bread?
Banana bread can be frozen and kept in the freezer for up to three months as long as it is stored correctly. Always start by letting the bread cool completely. Then once it has fully cooled, it can be frozen whole or in slices. Slices are great to have in the freezer because you can pull out one serving at a time.
Once it is cooled, wrap in freezer safe plastic wrap and then place in a bag or wrap in foil. Label with the date. For defrosting a whole loaf, let it sit overnight in the fridge to defrost.
For individual slices, wrap the individual slices in plastic wrap. Then place in a larger bag. Defrost in the fridge overnight. You can also defrost in the microwave, toaster oven, or even in a skillet over low temperatures.
Can you make banana bread with fresh bananas?
For the very best banana bread, you want to use super ripe bananas. They should be very brown, almost black. These super ripe bananas have the most banana flavor and have the most natural sugars for a sweet bread without lots of added sugar.
However, that's not always possible. When you don't have ripe banana on hand, you can bake your bananas. This won't give you the exact same deep banana flavor but it is a pretty good alternative when you are craving banana bread but don't have any ripe bananas on hand. Here' what to do:
- Preheat the oven to 300 degrees.
- Place the bananas in a rimmed baking sheet or in a glass dish and bake for 20-30 minutes until the banana peels turn black.
- Carefully remove the peels and mash the banana inside.
More Baked Banana Recipes
Healthy Cinnamon Banana Bread
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- 3 tbsp. coconut oil, melted
- 1/4 cup unsweetened applesauce
- 3 tbsp. honey
- 3 tbsp. maple syrup
- 2 eggs
- 1.25 cups mashed bananas (around 3 bananas)
- 1/4 cup nonfat milk (or nut milk)
- 2 tsp. cinnamon
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1.75 cups white whole wheat flour
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* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
The Nutritional Values provided are estimates only and may vary based on the preparation method.
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