This healthy banana bread with apple sauce and oats is seriously delicious AND full of nourishing ingredients. Whole wheat flour and honey round out some powerhouse healthy ingredients, and this banana bread is quick and easy to make and keeps really well in the freezer. A gift to future you!
You know that thing where your husband goes shopping with you and purchases bananas because OMG HE LOVES THEM SO MUCH and then doesn't eat a single one and then they turn black but they've been in the fridge so you're pretty sure they won't hurt anyone so you decide to make banana bread?
Anyway, we bought these bananas then WENT TO HAWAII. Of course. And they totes turned black, but I'm pretty sure that was because they were in the way top of the fridge which tends to freeze things. Then I moved them and they thawed?
Anyway. I peeled one and they were fine, and I remember my mom making banana bread with black bananas as a kid. I found THIS RECIPE and basically followed the recipe exactly, except for a few alterations noted below. The entire Ambitious Kitchen blog is stellar, so you're going to want to head over there and find a gazillion new recipes to try ASAP, mmkay?
I love using applesauce in place of butter or oil in baked goods, and that's one of the reasons that this recipe is so delicious. In general, you can swap in applesauce for the same volume as butter or oil and the baked good will still turn out really well.
Healthy Banana Bread Ingredients
You need bananas! The recipe says 1 heaping cup, I used 4 small bananas. Near-death color optional.
You also need cinnamon, baking soda and powder, an egg, applesauce (takes the place of oil, butter, AND extra sugar. boom.), oats, whole wheat flour, milk (or half and half if you're like me, no biggie), honey, and vanilla.
Preheat yo oven to 350F, and let's get to it.
Mash the bananas first! These were brown, but didn't taste a BIT different than they should have, so calm down and be respectful of my right to consume the food I purchase even if it's beyond the realm of being anywhere close to aesthetically pleasing. Gotta be me.
After the bananas are mushed, add the oil, eggs, milk, vanilla, and applesauce to the bowl.
Stir to combine, then add the dry ingredients to the mixture. Last, stir in the chocolate chips and a handful of chopped walnuts if you'd like (optional).
A spoon or whisk is fine for this recipe no need to disturb the mixer.
Now, pour the batter into a loaf pan sprayed with cooking spray. Sprinkle some oats over the top if you'd like - they're super pretty, but this is also an optional step.
Then we bake! 60-70 minutes in the oven until a toothpick or fork slid into the center comes out clean. You don't even KNOW what the smell is like in your house. It's perfect. So cozy and wonderful.
Take the whole wheat banana bread out of the oven and let cool in the pan to firm up just a bit for 5-10 minutes.
Then remove from the pan and let cool completely, orrrrrr you can absolutely slice while it's still warm.
You will LOVE this, friends. Super moist and decadent healthy banana bread with whole food ingredients that aren't expensive or fancy. Also....pieces grilled in some butter for dessert with a sprinkle of cinnamon? Not a terrible idea AT ALL.
Thanks Monique, for the recipe! It's a full-on fav in our house now.Print
The best ever HEALTHY BANANA BREAD! Oats, whole wheat flour, chocolate chips, and the most moist, chewy banana bread you've ever had. Pro tip: make two loaves and freeze one for later!
- 1 heaping cup mashed banana (3-4 medium bananas, very ripe)
- ⅓ cup honey
- ½ cup applesauce (one individual cup)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1 egg
- ¾ cup milk (almond, coconut, half and half...whatevs)
- 1.5 cups whole wheat flour
- 1 cup rolled oats
- 1.5 teaspoons baking powder
- ¾ teaspoon baking soda
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ½ cup dark chocolate chips, optional
- Preheat the oven to 350F and spray a loaf pan with cooking spray.
- In a large bowl combine the banana, applesauce, honey, egg, milk, and vanilla until creamy. Make a well in the center of the wet ingredients and add the remaining ingredients, reserving a few oats for sprinkling over the top if you'd like. Combine the dry ingredients gently in the well, then fold into the wet mixture until just mixed. Pour into a loaf pan and sprinkle with extra oats.
- Bake for 60-70 minutes until a toothpick inserted in the center of the loaf comes out clean. Let cool for 5 minutes in the pan, then remove from the pan to a rack to cool completely before covering or slicing and serving.
All-purpose flour works well in this recipe if you'd prefer to use that!
To freeze: Cool the banana bread loaf completely, then wrap with plastic wrap and place in a plastic bag (I save bags from sandwich bread loaves for this) and freeze for a gift to future you.
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