Looking for a gluten-free treat for your next breakfast or brunch? Then you need my Healthy Banana Bread! This recipe amps up the familiar flavors of traditional banana bread with spicy cinnamon, warming nutmeg, and sweet cardamom. And can we talk about that topping?
Instead of simply laying a sliced banana on top (which can cause the fruit to become black and chewy) this bad boy gently caramelizes, resulting in a golden, gooey and sweet topping free of refined sugar.
Read on to learn how to make this easy, healthy banana bread recipe!
How To Make Healthy Banana Bread
The nuts and bolts of this recipe are simple: mix wet and dry ingredients separately, then combine and pour into a prepared pan. It doesn’t get much easier!
Almond flour: I wanted to make a gluten-free banana bread that was big on nutritional value. I chose to use almond flour because it’s rich in protein and healthy Omegas, making this banana bread recipe healthy and satisfying.
Coconut Sugar: This natural, unrefined sugar is lower on the glycemic index, so you don’t get the energy crash and hunger spike that you would with regular white sugar. You can read more about coconut sugar in my post about healthy baking.
Coconut Oil: When enjoyed in moderation and without refined sugar, this healthy fat is better for you than alternatives like corn and vegetable oil. I brush it on top at the very end to help create a golden-brown crust and caramelize the sliced banana.
Eggs: Nutrient-rich eggs work as a binder in this recipe. Vegan? I haven’t tried substituting flax eggs in this recipe, but there’s no reason why they shouldn’t work just fine.
Almond Butter: Using almond butter in addition to the coconut oil helps make this healthy banana bread taste buttery, while also upping the nutritional value.
Line your bread pan with parchment paper. Do NOT skip this step, otherwise your bread will likely stick! I like to neatly fold my parchment so it fits perfectly in the pan, using chip clips to secure the edges so it doesn’t move as I pour. This creates a more attractive-looking loaf.
This easy banana bread recipe is a great one to make with kids, especially if they’re old enough to mash the bananas. If you give them a large enough bowl, they smash, mash , and splatter to their hearts’ content. In fact, they may even improve the texture! When I bake with James, I often give him the bananas to mash while I’m dealing with the wet and dry ingredients. By the time I’m finished, he has them pureed to a perfect texture!
Whereas most banana bread recipes recommend simply whisking the dry ingredients together in a bowl, this can result in clumps of almond flour. That’s why I sift them together instead of whisking. This also creates a lighter, fluffier banana bread.
Now it’s time to mix the eggs, almond butter, and coconut sugar together. Be sure to give your AB a good stir before measuring and adding it to your bowl. It has a tendency to separate in the jar, which can mess with the fat balance within this recipe. Make sure the almond butter isn’t too oily or too dry before you add it.
Stir the wet and dry ingredients together with a wooden spoon. You can also do this with a mixer or even a blender, but why get one more bowl dirty? The batter should be thick and not too runny – like brownie or muffin batter.
Top with a sliced banana, brush on the coconut oil, and dust liberally with coconut sugar, and bake at 350 for 45-50 min. When it’s done, the top should be golden and a toothpick inserted into the center will come out clean. Let cool in the pan for 5 minutes, then carefully pinch edges if the parchment to ease it out of the pan. peel away the parchment and let cool on a wire rack.
Tips For Making The Best Gluten-Free Banana Bread
While my Healthy Banana Bread is totally delicious without the caramelized banana on top, its added sweetness is what takes this recipe to the next level!
When it comes to achieving the perfect golden banana topping, more is better. Don’t be afraid to really slather on that melted coconut oil! It’s okay if it oozes into the batter a bit; it won’t affect the overall texture. In fact, I think it helps to make the top brown even better. Ditto for the coconut sugar. While it won’t be as pretty if you’re intentionally sloppy, it’s okay if a few sugar crystals find their way onto your unbaked loaf.
Another word to the wise: don’t get lazy and let your banana bread cool in the pan. This will trap moisture and make the bread heavy and soggy. If you don’t have a wire baking rack, the wire top of a broiler pan works just fine!
More Healthy Breakfast Ideas Like This:
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Healthy Banana Bread With Nutmeg And Cardamom
With the rich and cozy flavors of cinnamon, cardamom and nutmeg, this loaf of golden goodness smells as good as it looks, and tastes even better. Bake one tonight and you’ll be winning at breakfast tomorrow morning!
- Prep Time: 15 Minutes
- Cook Time: 50 minutes
- Total Time: 65 minutes
- Yield: 12 1x
- 2c almond flour
- 2 ½ tbsp coconut sugar
- 1tsp baking powder
- 1 tbsp melted coconut oil
- ¼ tsp salt
- 4 large bananas
- 2 eggs
- 1/4c almond butter
- 1 tsp vanilla
- ½ tsp ground nutmeg
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- ½ tsp cardamom
- Line a bread pan with parchment paper, tucking and folding to ensure it fits as snugly as possible. Pro tip: use chip clips to secure it to the ends of my bread pan until after it’s filled with batter.
- In a bowl, mash 3 bananas until they’re creamy. A few chunks the size of small marbles are okay, but the texture should be mostly smooth.
- Sift all the dry ingredients except for the sugar into a bowl.
- In another bowl, whisk the eggs, almond butter, and 2 tbsp coconut sugar.
- Combine the dry ingredients with the wet and stir with a wooden spoon until smooth and completely incorporated. Pour the batter into the lined bread pan.
- Slice banana in half lengthwise and arrange cut side up on top. Brush liberally with coconut oil and sprinkle with remaining sugar.
- Bake at 350 for 45-50 min. It’s done when the top is golden and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
- Let cool in the pan for 10 minutes before removing to a wire rack. Slice and serve warm, or let cool completely. Store refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 4 days.