I’ve shared so many banana bread recipes over the years, but this is my favourite vegan (eggless, dairy-free) version to date. It’s uncomplicated, simple baking, and every home has their own go-to recipe or add-in must-have (growing up, my family had to have chocolate chips in the mix). Banana bread recipes are in the front of my mind because (they’re delicious and) over the holidays I had great success making an icing-free version of hummingbird cake, a banana and pineapple cake, banana bread-style in a loaf tin.
We grilled the hummingbird cake in a skillet with butter and topped it with yogurt for dessert, a trick taken from 26 Grains in Neal’s Yard, London, where they serve up grilled Buckwheat Banana Bread along with a menu of both sweet and savoury porridge in one of my favourite spaces in the city (obviously, a Scandinavian porridge restaurant is where I feel most at home in London!). This small step took the hummingbird cake to the next level, making it feel a touch more special, even something I’d serve to friends at a dinner party. And you can bet this vegan banana bread recipe will get the same grilled and garnished treatment, but, of course, it’s perfect without this step.
You can turn this into a vegan banana nut bread with the addition of toasted chopped walnuts, or turn it into the best vegan banana chocolate chip bread by stirring in semi-sweet chocolate chips. Blueberry banana, freeze-dried strawberry banana bread, marbled chocolate banana bread, chai-spiced banana bread, coffee banana bread–transform this loaf and spruce up the add-ins and flavours to your taste. I love a good “blank canvas” recipe. For breakfast, I enjoy a slice with a dollop of yogurt, fresh fruit, and more ground flaxseed on top, with a cup of coffee, always.
Vegan Banana Bread Recipe
A moist vegan banana bread recipe. Coconut oil and flaxseed add healthy fats, great flavour, and amazing texture. Easy, classic, and always delicious. I like to take a slice and grill it in a skillet with a bit of butter or coconut oil until gently crispy on the outside and warm on the inside–the perfect vehicle for a creamy dollop of yogurt or ice cream (plant-based and dairy-free, as you see fit).
Makes 1 loaf
2 Tbsp ground flaxseed
1/3 cup warm water
4 overripe bananas, preferably frozen and defrosted, peeled and mashed
1/2 cup coconut oil or vegan butter or dairy butter (it will no longer be vegan if using dairy butter, but still an eggless banana bread), melted, more for loaf tin
1/2 cup packed dark brown sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
2 cups organic, unbleached all-purpose flour or light spelt flour
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt (omit if using salted vegan butter or salted dairy butter)
1/2 cup to 3/4 cup add-ins such as chocolate chips, walnuts (my favourite for a vegan banana nut bread), raisins, chopped dates, fresh or frozen blueberries, etc.
- In a small bowl, stir together flaxseed and water. Set aside to soak and absorb for 5 to 8 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 325ºF. Line a standard loaf tin with parchment paper and lightly grease exposed sides.
- In a large bowl, mash bananas until smooth. Add soaked flaxseed including any unabsorbed water, melted coconut oil or butter, brown sugar, and vanilla, and stir until well combined. Stir in flour, nutmeg, baking soda, and salt, if using, all at once, mixing until just combined. If you’re using add-ins, quickly fold those in now, being sure not to over-mix.
- Bake for 20 minutes, rotate tin, and bake for a further 30 to 45 minutes longer (if you have a fan or convection oven, this will be done much more quickly than a traditional oven), until a toothpick inserted in the centre comes out clean with a few crumbs attached. Cool in pan for 5 minutes, then remove to a cooling rack to cool completely. Store airtight at room temperature for 4 days, or tightly wrap and freeze for up to 3 months.
Adapted from Martha Stewart’s Vegan Banana Bread recipe.