Healthy Banana Bread

Healthy Banana Bread

The Spruce / Kristina Vanni

  • Total: 70 mins
  • Prep: 15 mins
  • Cook: 55 mins
  • Yield: Serves 8-10

This recipe for healthy banana bread is prepared with several smart swaps as well as heart-healthy mix-ins for a hearty baked good that is sure to become a staple in your recipe box.

First, oil is used instead of butter and the amount is reduced by adding low-fat banana-flavored yogurt. Yogurt can add and maintain moisture in baked goods similar to the way oil can without adding fat. Vanilla-flavored or plain yogurt also work well. In addition, milled flaxseed is incorporated into the recipe. Ground flaxseed is a soluble fiber that absorbs moisture and forms a gel. This actually helps retain moisture in the quick bread while keeping it soft and moist.

While some of the fats are swapped out, good fats are mixed in. Fragrant and delicious toasted walnuts are added to the batter as a great source of omega-3 fatty acids.

Finally, this healthy banana bread has added fiber compared to traditional banana bread. Half of the all-purpose flour is swapped with whole wheat flour. Plus, there is additional fiber and texture from the whole flax seeds sprinkled on top.

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup walnuts (chopped)
  • 1 1/2 cups ripe bananas (mashed)
  • 1/3 cup low-fat banana-flavored yogurt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 cup oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2/3 cup brown sugar (firmly packed)
  • 3/4 cup whole wheat flour
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup flaxseeds (ground)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons flaxseeds (whole)

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients. Preheat the oven to 350 F.

    Ingredients for Healthy Banana Bread
    The Spruce / Kristina Vanni
  2. Toast the walnuts in a dry pan over medium heat until fragrant. Set aside to cool.

    Toast the walnuts
    The Spruce / Kristina Vanni
  3. In a large bowl combine the bananas, banana yogurt, eggs, oil, and vanilla. 

    Combine the wet ingredients
    The Spruce / Kristina Vanni
  4. Add the brown sugar and mix well.

    Add the brown sugar
    The Spruce / Kristina Vanni
  5. In another large bowl, combine the whole wheat flour, all-purpose flour, ground flaxseeds, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt. 

    Mix the dry ingredients
    The Spruce / Kristina Vanni
  6. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix until just combined. Do not overmix.

    Mix the dry and wet ingredients
    The Spruce / Kristina Vanni
  7. Fold the toasted walnuts into the batter.

    Fold in walnuts
    The Spruce / Kristina Vanni
  8. Pour into a greased 9 x 5-inch loaf pan. Sprinkle the top of the bread with the whole flaxseeds. Bake in the preheated oven for 50 to 55 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. 

    Sprinkle with flaxseeds and bake
    The Spruce / Kristina Vanni
  9. Cool in the pan for 10 minutes on a wire rack. Remove the bread from the pan and cool completely before slicing and serving.

    Healthy Banana Bread
    The Spruce / Kristina Vanni

Tip

  • Flaxseed can be purchased whole and ground. Whole flaxseed lasts longer, especially when stored in the refrigerator or freezer. Grind your own flaxseed using a spice or coffee grinder.