Banana Bread With Dates

Banana bread on a tray with butter.
Diana Rattray
  • Total: 85 mins
  • Prep: 15 mins
  • Cook: 70 mins
  • Yield: 12 servings
Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
178 Calories
8g Fat
26g Carbs
2g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 12 servings
Amount per serving
Calories 178
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 8g 10%
Saturated Fat 2g 12%
Cholesterol 36mg 12%
Sodium 243mg 11%
Total Carbohydrate 26g 10%
Dietary Fiber 2g 6%
Protein 2g
Calcium 87mg 7%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

This is a basic banana bread recipe, but it offers a sweet twist and extra texture with the addition of chopped dates. The dates lend an extra dash of sweetness to a classic, comforting baked banana bread. The dates are an excellent alternative to nuts, especially if you aren't a fan or have an allergy. Or replace some of the dates with chopped nuts if you crave the crunch.

The banana bread is perfect for breakfast, tea or coffee time or whenever your sweet tooth needs indulging!

Ingredients

  • 4 bananas (2 cups mashed, overripe)
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour (9 ounces)
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • Optional: 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 4 ounces unsalted butter (softened)
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar (packed)
  • 2 large eggs (lightly beaten)
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 4 bananas (2 cups mashed, over-ripe)
  • 1 1/2 cups dates (finely chopped)

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Ingredients for banana bread with dates.
    Diana Rattray
  2. Heat the oven to 350 F. Grease and flour a 9-by-5-by-3-inch loaf pan.

  3. In a bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, soda, salt, and cinnamon, if using. Stir or whisk to thoroughly blend the dry ingredients.

    Combine the dry ingredients.
    Diana Rattray
  4. In a mixing bowl with an electric mixer, beat the butter and sugars for about 3 to 4 minutes, or until light and fluffy. Add the lightly beaten eggs and beat until well blended. Add the vanilla and mashed bananas and beat until well blended.

    Banana bread batter.
    Diana Rattray
  5. Add the well-blended flour mixture and mix just until combined. Do not overmix.

  6. Fold in the chopped dates.

    Fold in the dates.
    Diana Rattray
  7. Spoon the batter into the prepared loaf pan and spread evenly.

    Banana bread ready to bake.
    Diana Rattray
  8. Bake the banana bread in the preheated oven for 60 to 70 minutes, or until a wooden pick inserted into the center comes out clean.

    Banana bread cooling.
    Diana Rattray
  9. Cool the banana bread in the pan on a rack for 20 minutes then turn out onto a rack to cool completely before serving.

    Banana bread with dates.
    Diana Rattray
  10. Slice and enjoy the bread with butter, cream cheese, or a flavored spread.

Tips

  • Because the leavening agents begin working quickly, have your oven preheated and pans ready before you combine the wet and dry ingredients.
  • Glass baking pans retain heat better than metal. If baking the banana bread in a glass loaf pan, reduce the baking temperature to 325 F.
  • If you have overripe bananas but no time to make banana bread, you can freeze them. Mash them by hand or in the blender and freeze them in airtight containers in 1 or 2-cup portions for up to 6 months.
  • Make two loaves and freeze one for another day. Wrap the banana bread—whole or individual slices—freeze for up to 6 months.
  • Oven temperatures can vary; check the bread about 10 minutes before the estimated baking time. When the banana bread is ready, a toothpick will come out clean or with very few crumbs when inserted in the center of a loaf.

Recipe Variations

  • Replace the dates with nuts, chocolate chips, raisins, or another kind of chopped dried fruit.
  • Replace 1/2 cup of the dates with toasted coconut. To toast coconut, spread it out in a dry skillet and place the pan over medium-low heat. Cook, stirring and tossing constantly, until the coconut is lightly browned and aromatic.