This is the perfect pantry banana bread recipe: dense, moist, and packed with banana, cinnamon, and walnuts. Plus, it uses regular pantry ingredients and those overripe bananas you have laying around.
Even if you’re not a regular baker, you’ll be amazed by how simple this pantry banana bread recipe is. If your house is anything like mine, you’ll be getting requests for more loaves of your signature banana bread every week.
Luckily, this recipe is designed to use ingredients that you already have on hand. So no need to head to the grocery store every time you have a hankering for freshly baked banana bread.
Ingredients For Easy Pantry Banana Bread
As the name suggests, all of the ingredients for this easy banana bread recipe are probably right in your pantry.
Start with the baking basics like baking soda, baking powder, sugar, and salt. I use whole wheat flour for this banana bread. I prefer the wheaty flavor to bread made with all-purpose flour. Plus, whole wheat is a whole lot healthier than processed white flour.
To keep the sugar lower in this pantry banana bread, I use a combination of maple and coconut sugars. They’re a bit more natural than processed white sugar. And they both add their own nice maple and coconut flavors. However, if your pantry only contains regular white sugar, that will work just as well.
When it comes to wet ingredients, you have the obligatory overripe mashed bananas. These pack natural sweetness so the recipe doesn’t need much more sugar.
To keep my pantry banana bread nice and moist, I add a bit of oil. I like a combination of avocado and refined coconut oils. Don’t worry, your bread won’t come out tasting like avocado, the oil is quite neutral. Olive oil or rice bran oil will also work in a pinch.
Finally, the flavor: I love to add a dash of cinnamon to the batter for my pantry banana bread. It’s warming and always fills my kitchen with the most comforting scent.
And for a bit of crunch, I fold in chopped walnuts. Be sure to fold them in well to disperse them evenly throughout your loaf of banana bread.
Tricks For Moist And Tender Banana Bread
One of the keys to perfectly spongey banana bread is not to overmix the batter. Start by combining the wet and dry ingredients separately. Then, as soon as you add the wets to your flour mixture, you will start activating the gluten in the whole wheat flour.
Gluten is a protein in wheat that creates delightfully chewy baguettes and sourdough loaves. however, you don’t want to turn your banana bread into a tough or chewy loaf. Quick breads and muffins should be mixed as little as possible to avoid activating too much gluten.
To make sure your loaves stay light, airy and tender, only mix your wet and dry ingredients a few times with a wooden spoon. Then gently fold in the walnuts or other inclusions until just combined, pour the batter into a loaf pan, and you’re done!
Optional Additions to Pantry Banana Bread
While my family loves cinnamon and walnuts in our banana bread, there are dozens of unique ways to dress up and flavor your homemade loaves.
Here are some delicious ways to mix up your banana bread:
- Swap the cinnamon for cardamom and fold in pistachios instead of walnuts
- Add your favorite dried fruit, such as raisins, dried cherries or chopped dates
- Fold in dark chocolate chips for a sweeter surprise
- Add coconut flakes for a tropical spin
More Delicious and Healthy Quick Bread Recipes to Try
Did this pantry banana bread recipe gets you in a making mood? If so, then give these other healthier quick breads a try:
- Blueberry Lemon Bread from the Healthy Seasonal Recipes blog is made with whole wheat flour, bright lemon and naturally sweet blueberries.
- This recipe for Carrot and Spice Quick Bread swaps out refined sugar for orange juice and adds plump golden raisins.
- For a savory spin, try Oatmeal Whole Wheat Quick Bread for wonderful sandwiches.
This is the perfect banana bread recipe: dense, moist, and packed with banana, cinnamon, and walnuts.
3 very ripe bananas, mashed
⅓ cup sugar (or a combination of maple sugar and coconut sugar)
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
⅓ cup oil (I use a combination of avocado oil and refined coconut oil)
1¾ cups white whole wheat flour
¼ teaspoon sea salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon, plus extra for the top
2 teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
½ cup walnuts, chopped
Additional options: ½ cup chocolate chips or raisins
- Preheat the oven to 350°F.
- Grease the bottom and the sides of an 8 x 4-inch loaf pan.
- Place the mashed bananas in a big bowl. Add the sugar, vanilla, and oil. Stir well.
- In a separate bowl, combine the flour, salt, cinnamon, baking powder and baking soda. Whisk to blend together.
- Add the banana mixture to the dry ingredients and stir until well combined. Then fold in the walnuts and any other additions.
- Pour the banana bread batter into the loaf pan and add a little extra cinnamon on top.
- Bake for 50 to 60 minutes, or until the top springs back to the touch.
- Let it cool before slicing.