From childhood, I can remember my mother collecting the old squidgy bananas from the bottom of the fruit bowl, having been bruised and bashed by a stack of crisp red apples that’d been thrown in on top. Back then, I used to look at her in utter horror as she began to mash the sad-looking bananas on her quest to make a fresh loaf of banana bread. Onsight of what looked like “rotten” bananas to 8-year old me, I used to refuse even to try a slice.
Since then, my opinion has transformed. Firstly, I actually tried a god-damn slice of banana bread, which instantly made me fall in love with it’s rich, warming and delectable flavour. Secondly, I have realised what a fool I was for not seeing what very ripened (aka black) bananas had to offer — their syrup-like consistency, intense banana flavour and sweetness. What’s more, the riper a banana is, the more health benefits it has to offer. They’re not only easier to digest, but they also have a higher antioxidant content than your average yellow banana. So, it’s time to stop throwing out your old, black, squidgy bananas and start cherishing them instead, as they’ll take the flavour of your baked goods from zero to a hundred.
In an attempt to make up for my childhood ignorance and catch up on the numerous slices of banana bread I missed out on, I have created what I think to be the most indulgent banana bread out there — one that no child could ever refuse. It’s tough to resist coming back for a second (or even a cheeky third) slice with its triple chocolate element. It’s great for breakfast, a quick yummy snack, or warmed up with a dollop of ice cream in the evening.
With some creativity, I have made this recipe gluten-, dairy- and refined-sugar free. It’s hard to imagine, but this banana bread is jam-packed full of goodness, made entirely from unprocessed ingredients. This is my go-to recipe when I’m PMS-ing or just in the mood for a big old slice of chocolate cake.
I’ve actually got a slice in front of me now and I admiring its gooey, fudge-like consistency. I might have to sneak in another afternoon snack before dinner…
How to make this triple chocolate banana bread
Making this banana bread couldn’t be simpler, requiring two bowls, some staple ingredients, chocolate, and of course, some ripened bananas. The trick to getting the moistest, most gooey, melt-in-the-middle banana bread is to cook it for around 45 minutes, followed by a 10 minutes rest in the turned-off oven to finish it off. This process allows the banana bread to bake slowly without drying out or losing its extremely delightfully gooey texture.
To begin, preheat the oven to 180˚C and line a 9×5 loaf tin with baking paper. Add all the dry ingredients (flour, cacao, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, and sugar) to a bowl and mix thoroughly. If you now realise that you lack some of the ingredients, don’t worry, as this recipe is super versatile, and many of the dry ingredients can be substituted with alternatives. I used a mixture of almond and coconut flour to make it gluten-free, which I find are the best combo for GF baking. However, if you’re not GF, substituting them for spelt or plain white flour also works well. The cacao powder can also be substituted with unsweetened cocoa powder and coconut sugar with brown or white sugar.
The next step is to gather all you’re wet ingredients (mashed banana, coconut oil, vanilla essence, syrup, apple cider vinegar, and milk) and whisk them in a separate bowl. Similarly, many of the wet ingredients can be substituted. Whilst I prefer to bake with coconut oil, extra virgin olive oil or butter can also be used if you haven’t got any handy. Likewise, as I’m dairy-free, I always opt for almond or oat milk, but dairy milk would also work well in the batter. You’ll also need a liquid sweetener, with either maple syrup, honey, or agave syrup a safe bet.
Now the taste testing he can begin. Slowly pour the wet ingredients into the bowl containing the dry ingredients, mixing until everything is well combined. Now you should have a gooey, chocolatey batter. Utter heaven. At this point, I’m always eager to transfer the batter to the baking tin so that I can proceed with scraping out the bowl and licking the spatula. However, before I can do that, there’s one more important step left…
Time to add some chocolate chips. To me, banana bread isn’t complete without a big handful of chocolate chips, which melt to create a gooey centre. Yes, you could argue that this recipe is already chocolaty enough, and maybe for you it is, but for a chocaholic like me, there is never enough chocolate. I like to add dark DF chocolate chips, but sometimes I mix it up and add a combination of white, milk, and dark choc chips because, why not?
Now it’s time to transfer the banana bread mixture to a loaf tin, leaving just the right amount of batter behind for “taste testing”. Place the banana bread in the oven for around 40-45 minutes or until a toothpick comes out nearly clean. Don’t forget to leave the banana bread in the oven for an additional 10 minutes following baking, with the oven off.Print
Who new healthy could taste so good?
This healthy chocolate banana bread is incredibly indulgent, offering a perfectly moist texture and irresistible flavour. It’ll be hard to resist coming back for seconds! What’s more, it is gluten-, dairy- and refined-sugar free.
This recipe benefits from being dairy-free, gluten-free, vegan, paleo and free from any refined sugars.
- 3–4 overripe mashed bananas
- 2 1/2tsp pure vanilla extract
- 1Tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 1/4 Cup oil (or milk of choice)
- 2/4 Cup sweetener (maple syrup/agave/honey)
- 1 2/3 Cup GF flour (or spelt)
- 1/2 Cup cacao powder
- 2Tbsp regular cocoa powder
- 1/4 Cup coconut sugar (or brown sugar)
- 1Tsp baking soda
- 3/4Tsp baking powder
- 3/4Tsp salt
- 1/2 Cup chocolate chips (dairy-free)
- Preheat oven to 180˚C and line a loaf pan with baking paper
- Whisk together the wet ingredients into a bowel
- In a separate bowl, mix together the remaining dry ingredients
- Pour wet into dry and stir until just evenly combined
- Pour mixture into the loaf pan
- If desired, sprinkle some more choc chips on top and press down
- Bake for 45 minutes
- Turn oven off and let the loaf sit in the oven for an additional 10 minutes (DON’T OPEN THE DOOR)
- Remove and prick the centre of the loaf, it should come out nearly clean. If not, place back into the oven and cook for an additional 5-10 minutes (don’t forget to turn the oven back on!)
- Let the banana bread cool completely before slicing. The longer you can resist the banana bread, the more indulgent it’ll be!
1 Cup = 250ml (metric measure)
- Category: Sweet Treats