the best banana bread extraordinaire x infinity

March 14th, 2008 · 30 Comments


ok. i got it. finally. 347 banana breads later. dear readers, i’ve figured it out. so now you don’t have to. you’re welcome.

there’s a few key things here. ok one. well, one big one. because you can use all the vegetable type oils you want. but if you want it to be great, it’s all so very about the butter. butter is better in your batter. i made that up. maybe. so it’s the butter – and it’s the yogurt. and then it’s not too dry, not too moist, not too unbanana’y – it tastes juuuuust right. because it has butter in it. not oil. got it? good.

so i blended together eleventy hundred recipes and came up with this one. and don’t mess with it ok? well you could probably substitute walnuts for the chocolate. but that’s where i draw the line. you hear me? so do not cross that line. or i will be forced to turn this blog around AND tell your father. geeshk…

i personally have tailor made this recipe so it can be made it one bowl and mixed by hand. only because i care about you.

ceF’s banana bread
(adapted from eleventy hundred recipes over 25 years)

preheat oven to 350 and lightly grease a loaf pan

3 large ultra ripe spotty bananas
1/3 cup melted butter – cooled
1/3 cup plain yogurt or sour cream ( i use 2% greek style yogurt)
2 eggs – room temperature
1 tsp. vanilla
1 cup – sugar (ultra scant)
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
1/2 t baking soda
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1/2 cups whole wheat flour
3/4 cup chocolate chips

mash bananas well in a bowl – add eggs, melted butter, yogurt and vanilla – mix vigorously – add sugar and mix again add baking soda and powder directly to the wet ingredients – give a good mix and then add flours mixing until everything is incorporated. lastly mix in the chips. pour batter into the pan and bake for about 60 minutes. check for doneness using a toothpick/skewer. unmold after 10 minutes of cooling.

the main reason why having a recipe such as this is SO IMPORTANT is because inevitably your bananas don’t get eaten and start to go overly spotty on you. and unless you’re a smoothie making fool or a cold cereal eating maniac – you’re throwing away your bananas. and i know this because i’ve been checking on you. often.


sliced warm with melted chocolate streaks and an obligatory espresso….

Tags: baking

30 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Diana // Mar 14, 2008 at 7:30 pm

    This is one place I can’t go with you… Bananas I am allergic to, though not so severely. Lately I’ve been trying banana breads here and there (nibbling, not making — I haven’t ever, in my life, bought a banana). You make this look so scrumptious that I might attempt to reintroduce bananas into my life. If anaphlaxis sets in, at least I’ll die a well-fed woman.

  • 2 cookiecrumb // Mar 14, 2008 at 7:53 pm

    Well, I believe you that this is the best. If I asked my taste buds what would be the best grease with bananas, they’d probably say butter too. Or coconut oil.
    Isn’t it fabulous that we have all these ingredients to experiment with?

  • 3 Summer // Mar 14, 2008 at 8:00 pm

    Yummy. And printed. 🙂

    Thanks for sharing!!!

  • 4 Lesley // Mar 14, 2008 at 8:36 pm

    I wish I’d known you were looking for a good banana bread recipe. Banana bread is the first thing I ever perfected. I’ve been making them for years. My recipe calls for more butter (room temp, not melted) and an additional egg (and no sour cream), but is otherwise very similar. It’s fattening as all hell, but I use all wheat flour and add nuts to make it a little healthier. Though I made it with Smart Balance and egg whites for Chris’s dad and could hardly tell the difference. I get quite a few compliments on my bread, but I rarely have bananas to use. I prefer to eat my bananas far more ripe than the average person. If they can still remain upright after peeling, that’s all that’s required. Underripe bananas make my teeth hurt.

    Toasting the slices after the bread has cooled is also nice.

  • 5 Lauren // Mar 14, 2008 at 8:37 pm

    what’s really funny is…that’s pretty much the exact recipe we use, except that i like to split the sugar between regular and brown. gives it a rich taste. looks yummy though.

  • 6 Justin // Mar 15, 2008 at 5:53 am

    Oh I was going to make smitten kitchen’s banana bread for breakfasts on spring break this year (hungover or not, boys love them some banana bread), but I like what I’m reading here and think I’ll have to try yours, or both…yes, both.

  • 7 Donald // Mar 15, 2008 at 8:39 am

    Claudia, this looks great. I’ll be passing this on to the baker in the house.

    Impressive photography, by the way.

  • 8 lucyre // Mar 15, 2008 at 9:01 am

    well, shoot, claudia. two weeks ago i got an email from my sis touting to having just made “the best banana bread she’d ever had.” her’s uses applesauce instead of yogurt. looks like there’s going to be a face-off. (but based on my rudimentary knowledge of baked goods, i can almost guarantee the yogurt will win). oh, and, bonus points for using part whole wheat flour. because i so would have subbed some in (and not told you).

  • 9 Robert // Mar 15, 2008 at 9:51 am


    One bowl, by hand. You really do care…..

    Wonderful to get your perfected recipe that actually is comprised of stuff I have in my little kitchen. The walnuts are coming out of the freezer, along with the Bannanas in all of their black skin glory (you throw those wonderful mushy things out?).

    The kids volunteered to milk AND churn just to get some nanabread………………..

  • 10 amy @ minimally insvasive // Mar 15, 2008 at 10:11 am

    Lovely, lovely, lovely…

    Like Lauren commented, that’s basically the same recipe we use here, too! I tweaked mine from Cooking Light, so it uses less butter than yours, but still has that beautiful texture and moistness you’ve described so well.

    And now I think it’s time to check the state of our bananas…

  • 11 Mari // Mar 15, 2008 at 11:19 am

    licking my lips in anticipation…can’t wait to try this one out, and i’ve got some overly ripe frozen bananas in the freezer that’ll do just the trick. i’m going to use greek yogurt just to make even more fattening (insert maniacal laughter).

  • 12 leena! // Mar 15, 2008 at 10:19 pm

    Mmmmm, the warm chocolate streaks are my favorite part!

  • 13 democommied // Mar 15, 2008 at 11:21 pm


    That looks tastier than the recipe I have which has almost no leavening except that obtained by creaming the butter, sugar and eggs and then folding in the bananas and flour. I loves me some chocolate chips but the banana bread is just as good (imo) without them.

  • 14 robin (caviar and codfish) // Mar 16, 2008 at 11:32 am

    Claudia – I wouldn’t even let anyone exchange the chocolate if I were you— your bread is PERFECT!

  • 15 joycooks // Mar 16, 2008 at 1:05 pm

    Looks great, Claudia! The addition of the whole wheat flour to the a.p. is what makes the texture so nice in my opinion. I love a good banana bread, and I couldn’t agree with you more about the butter!

  • 16 Jessica // Mar 16, 2008 at 2:03 pm

    That looks great! I love banana bread!

  • 17 Meena // Mar 16, 2008 at 5:59 pm

    Oh yes, this must definitely be served with espresso! I absolutely love banana bread and can’t wait to try your recipe. It looks like the perfect thing to cheer me up for the harsh weather we’re having here!

  • 18 ts // Mar 16, 2008 at 6:42 pm

    A ONE-BOWL baking recipe! Wow. None of that wet ingredients bowl-dry ingredients bowl nonsense. ;D

  • 19 ts // Mar 16, 2008 at 11:10 pm

    A ONE-BOWL baking recipe! Wow! Finally, none of that wet ingredients bowl-dry ingredients bowl nonsense. ;D

  • 20 Robert // Mar 17, 2008 at 10:16 am


    Claudias recipe truely screams for that non-stick oven-safe mixing bowl.

  • 21 Meg // Mar 18, 2008 at 12:28 pm

    Can’t make it until we’re back from vacation (and have let the bananas we purchase upon returning get over-ripe), but especially since it’s a pain to find a nut-free banana bread recipe (and just omitting the nuts leaves you with a bread that tastes like it’s missing something), I will be trying this as soon as possible. Especially because, yes, we have a spotty banana issue. And I hate smoothies.

  • 22 Dana // Mar 19, 2008 at 9:21 am

    Great minds think alike, I guess, eh?? Two great banana breads, only a few weeks apart…and unbeknownst to both of us! I’ve been so bad about posting lately that I can see why you didn’t come across it until now… That post is only three posts ago, and yet it’s from February!!

  • 23 malia // Mar 19, 2008 at 9:25 pm

    thank you for allowing the walnut for chocolate substitution! I love me some chocolate and I love me some banana bread, but I’ve never been a fan of the two together!

  • 24 Scott // Mar 22, 2008 at 12:05 am

    This recipe looks great, I have a question about the baking soda:

    1/2 t baking soda

    Is the t a teaspoon or a tablespoon? Thanks!

  • 25 claudia // Mar 22, 2008 at 8:29 am

    t = teaspoon
    T = tablespoon

    i should have clarified this
    sorry and thanks for asking!

  • 26 ceeelcee // Mar 23, 2008 at 7:23 pm

    Here’s an interesting story of serendipity:

    If you’ve already had two bottles of wine before you start making this recipe, and you’re cooking at altitude so you’re unsure of specific baking times, and in your happily inebriated state you might accidentally leave out the sour cream and then you benevolently argue with your loved one about whether the skewer came out clean or not, you end up with a 3/4 cooked pan of mush.

    But it is an unbelievable chocolate banana bread pudding which is great heated up and topped with a dollop of good vanilla ice cream.

    Maybe we’ll try it again the right way sometime soon…

  • 27 Scott // Mar 26, 2008 at 9:58 pm

    I made this bread today and it turned great. It is really, really good. And I had all the ingredients laying around. Thanks Claudia!

  • 28 Alannisgj // Mar 27, 2008 at 12:56 am

    nice work, brother

  • 29 Susanne // Apr 8, 2008 at 2:10 pm


    This is the best banana bread recipe I’ve ever had, even better than my mom’s, which is fairly similar, though it calls for buttermilk. So thank you for sharing!

    I messed with it (but only a little bit) by adding a teaspoon of cinnamon.

    Take care,

  • 30 A break for banana bread | Lesley Eats // Jun 5, 2011 at 8:26 pm

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