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Chocolate Chip Banana Bread

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Banana bread, an American staple, because what else would you make with those bananas quickly darkening in the fruit bowl? While not an ancient recipe by any stretch of the imagination, banana bread has been loved by Americans since the Great Depression.

While my whole wheat chocolate chip banana bread isn’t what the housewives of the 1930’s were making, it’s still a cultural connection to the American past. So grab those overly ripe bananas and let’s get mashing!

chocolate chip banana bread

The History of Banana Bread

By the 1930’s bananas were commonly found in American kitchens and so was baking powder, a new and readily available leavener. Quick breads gained popularity, because you didn’t have wait for yeast to rise.

You probably remember from history class that the 1930’s put American in the dark period of the Great Depression. No food would go to waste, including black bananas.

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Thus the banana bread loaf was born. King Arthur Flour published a wonderful article on the history of banana bread, and the writer went through and baked recipes from each decade from the 30’s to now.

It’s amazing how different each one is, and how each recipe is affected by the economy of the time. You can grab a slice of chocolate chip banana bread and read it here.

Chocolate Chip Banana Bread Recipe

Just like bakers in the 1930’s, I’m not willing to let dark bananas go to waste. They are moist and sweet, the perfect addition to a quick bread loaf. Add to that freshly ground whole wheat flour and dark or semi-sweet chocolate chips, and you have a winner that still packs nutritional goodness. I love when chocolate meets health food, ha!

This recipe does call for whole wheat flour, which means your loaf will naturally be heavier than banana bread made with all purpose flour. If you want a taller loaf of banana bread, then swap out half of the whole wheat flour with all purpose. Here’s what you’ll need for Chocolate Chip Banana Bread:

  • 1 2/3 cups whole wheat flour (soft wheat, spelt, etc.) (Mill your own, or buy it here.)
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp mineral salt (or fine kosher)
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg (optional)
  • 1/4 cup oil (I use coconut)
  • 1/2 cup turbinado sugar or sugar of choice
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 egg
  • 3 bananas, mashed
  • 3/4 cup dark or semi-sweet chocolate chips
chocolate chip banana bread

Whole Grain Banana Bread

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine dry ingredients (flour, baking powder, baking soda, spices, and salt) in a large bowl. Whisk to combine.                                               chocolate chip banana bread
  2. In a medium sized bowl, combine oil, egg, and sugar. Whisk to combine. Stir in vanilla and mashed banana. Add wet mixture to flour mixture and stir just until combined.         chocolate chip banana bread
  3. Add the chocolate chips, and gently fold into the batter. Spoon batter into prepared loaf pan, and even out the top.                                                                                             chocolate chip banana bread
  4. Bake loaf in oven until golden brown and cracked on top, about 45 minutes. Let cool in the pan for at least five minutes, then remove to a wire cooling rack. Slice and serve warm.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        chocolate chip banana bread

This banana bread is the perfect breakfast with a hot cup of coffee or a fabulous gift for a new neighbor. Enjoy the goodness of whole grains and the rich chocolate-banana combination. And if the loaf happens to survive more than a few days, slice it up and use it for french toast!

I’d love to know if you grew up eating banana bread, and if so, what made that recipe unique? Have a great week and happy baking (and gardening)!

Whole Grain Banana Bread Tips

  • For a taller loaf of banana bread, substitute half of the whole grain flour for all purpose.
  • Need less sugar? Swap out some of the sugar for your favorite sugar substitute. Use the sugar substitution information on the package to determine how much you’ll need.
  • Add chopped walnuts to your banana bread for a bit of crunch and added healthy fats.
  • Don’t like coconut oil? Substitute with melted butter or cooking oil of your choice.

Other whole grain recipes:

Yield: 1

Chocolate Chip Banana Bread

chocolate chip banana bread

Whole grain flour, moist bananas, and rich chocolate chips come together in this delicious whole grain banana bread loaf. Make healthy and delicious banana bread at home in a flash.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 55 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 2/3 cups soft wheat flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp Baking Soda
  • 1/2 tsp mineral salt
  • 1 tsp Cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/4 cup Oil, I used coconut
  • 1/2 cup turbinado sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3 bananas, mashed
  • 3/4 cup semi-sweet or dark chocolate chips
  • 1 egg

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine dry ingredients (flour, baking powder, baking soda, spices, and salt) in a large bowl. Whisk to combine.       
  2. In a medium sized bowl, combine oil, egg, and sugar. Whisk to combine. Stir in vanilla and mashed banana. Add wet mixture to flour mixture and stir just until combined.   
  3. Add the chocolate chips, and gently fold into the batter. Spoon batter into prepared loaf pan, and even out the top.             
  4. Bake loaf in oven until golden brown and cracked on top, about 45 minutes. Let cool in the pan for at least five minutes, then remove to a wire cooling rack. Slice and serve warm.     

Notes

- Swap half of whole grain flour for half all purpose for a taller, lighter loaf of banana bread

- Add in a half cup of chopped walnuts for an extra crunch

- Substitute melted butter for coconut oil if needed.

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Nutrition Information:

Yield:

8

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 422Total Fat: 18gSaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 9gCholesterol: 25mgSodium: 392mgCarbohydrates: 62gFiber: 5gSugar: 32gProtein: 5g
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