Award-Winning Banana Bread

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Treat yourself with a slice of thick, rich, and moist banana bread. This is the easiest way to make it! It’s full of flavor and always a hit with the family.

Banana bread is a must-make quick bread that’s so simple but SO delicious! You can also easily tweak it to create things like strawberry banana bread, blueberry banana bread, or chocolate chip banana bread!

Top-down view of banana bread cut into slices.

Banana Nut Bread Recipe

This recipe was submitted to me by one of my readers, Penny. She told me that I had to give it a try. It’s my go-to banana bread recipe now! It’s light, moist, and amazingly soft. Penny told me that this recipe has been in her family for 30 years. She sent me a picture of the recipe card and it looked used and like it was 30 years old! This recipe is definitely a keeper. It’s the best banana bread recipe that I’ve tried! I am so glad that I have it for those over-ripe bananas.

Ever since Penny gave me the recipe card for this banana bread I haven’t been able to stop making it. My friends and family are always raving about it! It is so moist every time and seriously the easiest quick bread I have ever made. Make this for a quick snack, breakfast or a side dish to any meal. Just know, it won’t last long!

Ingredients You’ll Need

The best thing about banana bread is the ingredient list is short and sweet. Nothing complicated here, just some over-ripe bananas and a handful of pantry staples! Check out the recipe card below for exact measurements.

  • Ripe Bananas: Make sure the bananas are at least spotted or a dark brown color. Mash them up with a fork or hand mixer.
  • Baking Soda: This helps the bread rise as it is baking.
  • Vegetable Oil: Keeps the bread moist.
  • Sugar: Adds a touch of sweetness.
  • Eggs: Eggs give the banana bread stability and structure.
  • Salt: Just a pinch is all you need to enhance the flavor of this bread!
  • All-Purpose Flour: This acts as the base of the dough. All-purpose flour works great! Avoid using flour with a high protein content to keep your bread from turning out hard and dense.
  • Walnuts: I LOVE adding chopped walnuts to my banana bread, but this is totally optional!

How Ripe Should My Bananas Be?

Once bananas start turning brown with small and large spots on them they become softer. After another day or two the bananas will turn to a dark brown or black coloring. This is the perfect banana bread banana! If you are not ready to make banana bread quite yet with the ripe bananas, simply peel the bananas and place in a ziplock bag and freeze them. Then they can stay frozen for a month at a time. Now, you will always be ready to make delicious homemade banana bread.

4-photo collage of bread dough being prepared and added to a loaf pan.

Mashing Your Bananas

Mashing bananas is simple as using a hand mixer and beating on low then increasing to medium-high speed once the bananas are mashed down enough.

How to Make the BEST Banana Bread

Mix it all together and place in a loaf pan for baking. It is literally that simple. This is the best dessert bread to make in a pinch!

  1. Combine: Mix together with a spatula or wooden spoon (all ingredients) mashed bananas, baking soda, oil, sugar, eggs, salt and flour in a large mixing bowl.
  2. Add Nuts: If you’re using walnuts, fold them into your banana mixture.
  3. Bake: Pour in a greased 9×5 loaf pan. Then bake in preheated oven at 350 degrees for 35 to 40 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean.
Front view of a loaf of banana bread.

Tips, Substitutions, and Extra Add-Ins

Here are a few simple substitutions so you can make this bread with whatever you have on hand!

  • Butter: Salted butter will also work for this. Just leave out the pinch of salt.
  • Sugar: If you love a little more sweetness, substitute white sugar for brown sugar, or for a healthier option try coconut sugar or monk fruit sweetener.
  • Frozen Bananas: Use frozen bananas by thawing them overnight at room temperature. If there is any liquid from the bananas, simply discard that before mashing.

What Can You Add to Banana Bread?

This is the fun part! You can mix in dried fruit, nuts, or even top your banana bread with a layer of frosting. The options are endless and have so much flavor to each of them. Making this bread over and over again just create more ideas for enhancing flavor in each loaf.

  • Chocolate Chips: Who can resist chocolate? Chocolate chips can be sprinkled on top, in the batter or both!
  • Nuts or Seeds: I do love walnuts but pecans, sunflower seeds or pecans make for an added soft crunch.
  • Dried Fruit: Cranberries, blueberries, raisins or apricots change this banana bread into something fresh and fruity!
  • Toppings: Cream cheese frosting, maple syrup or just a simple slice of butter spread over top makes for a delicious snack.
Closeup of a slice of banana bread.

How to Keep Banana Bread Moist

You guessed it! This bread freezes SO well! It is meant to be a freezer bread for sure. There are a few options on how to store it. Pick which one is best for your family, that is, if you have any leftover bread! I tend to triple this recipe just so I have one loaf I am able to place in the freezer for later.

  • At Room Temperature: This is an easy way of storing the bread that will be eaten quickly. Place the cooled bread in a ziplock bag or airtight container. Then store in the pantry or counter at room temperature. Always keep the bread wrapped or stored when not eating. This will lock in the flavor and keep it moist.
  • In the Freezer: Allow the bread to cool completely. Then wrap the entire loaf tightly using plastic wrap or aluminum foil. I recommend going around about 2 to 3 times. Place the wrapped bread in a large freezer ziplock bag and lay in the freezer. When ready to enjoy, thaw in the refrigerator or at room temperature.

Award Winning Banana Bread

4.91 from 10 votes
Treat yourself with a slice of thick, rich, and moist banana bread. This is the easiest way to make it! It's full of flavor and always a hit with the family.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes
Author Alyssa Rivers
Servings: 10 slices

Ingredients
  

  • 3 ripe bananas mashed about 1 cup
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/3 cup oil
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 2 large eggs beaten
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 and 1/3 cup all purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts optional

Instructions
 

  • Mix together with a spatula or wooden spoon (all ingredients) banana, baking soda, oil, sugar, eggs, salt and flour in a large mixing bowl.
  • Fold in the chopped walnuts if using.
  • Pour in a greased 9×5 loaf pan. Bake in preheated oven at 350 degrees for 35 to 40 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean.

Video

Notes

Updated on January 4, 2023
Originally Posted on October 24, 2012

Nutrition

Serves: 10

Calories229kcal (11%)Carbohydrates27g (9%)Protein4g (8%)Fat12g (18%)Saturated Fat1g (5%)Cholesterol33mg (11%)Sodium123mg (5%)Potassium56mg (2%)Fiber1g (4%)Sugar14g (16%)Vitamin A48IU (1%)Calcium13mg (1%)Iron1mg (6%)

All nutritional information is based on third party calculations and is only an estimate. Each recipe and nutritional value will vary depending on the brands you use, measuring methods and portion sizes per household.

Course Bread, Dessert, Snack
Cuisine American
Keyword banana bread, banana bread recipe, bread recipe
Tried this recipe?Mention @alyssa_therecipecritic or tag #therecipecritic

Alyssa Rivers

I am Alyssa and the blogger behind The Recipe Critic. I started my blog in June of 2012 as a place to share my passion for cooking. I love trying new things and testing them out with my family.

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  1. 5 stars
    I have several banana bread recipes that our my favorite, but this one by far is very good. My husband loves banana bread and he said that this by fair is the best. I don’t put nuts in my bread as several people can’t eat them but this was easy and tasted great. I made two loafs gave one to my daughter and she loved it. Thank you for sharing and looking forward to more of your recipes.
    Joan Brown

  2. My bake needed considerably more time (close to an hour), but I was using temperature (205°F) with a Thermapen, not the toothpick method. I was also using convection heat with a metal pan.

  3. 5 stars
    Made this for the first time last night, it is absolutely amazing. However I did do the sugar half white and half brown, again moist and wonderful. This will definitely be my go to recipe from this day forward!!!!!
    Thank you recipecritic

  4. 5 stars
    Very good recipe and so easy. I always add walnuts and sprinkle brown sugar on the top before I bake for added crunch and sweetness.

  5. 4 stars
    Good recipe, but my loaf was small. I wonder if using a 8 inch loaf pan would be better? My baking soda was good. I liked that it didn’t use much oil, yet was very tender and moist after baking.

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