The enticing aroma of bananas will permeate your kitchen with this Easy Banana Nut Bread. A warm slice of this slathered with butter is one of those comfort moments that will take you back to grandma’s breakfast nook. You’ll find this bread to be super moist, perfectly dense, and delightfully satisfying.
This old fashioned recipe is taken from a torn and tattered Hallmark Recipe Organizer that my mom wrote out for me years ago. So it’s been tried and true through several generations. I am so pleased to share one of my favorite family treasures with you here in this post.
Go Bananas! How to Choose the Best Ones.
The number one ingredient in this Easy Banana Nut Bread Recipe is obviously “BANANAS,” so picking the right ones is really the key to flavor and a moist outcome. Ripe bananas have more sugar and add more flavor. Choose brown spotted ones that show yellow peeking through. The ones pictured above could have even been a little darker. I probably should’ve waited another day but my impatience got the best of me.
If you’ve just purchase beautiful yellow bananas and now are craving banana bread, I’ve got good news on how to speed up the ripening process. Put the bananas in a brown paper bag and close it loosely. Bananas release a plant hormone called ethylene which builds up and circulates within the bag. This is what hurries along the process. It takes anywhere from 12-24 hours. You can also place an apple or a tomato in with it which helps as well.
Go nuts or not
The beauty of this bread recipe is you can “go nuts” or not. It doesn’t change the final product. People seem to be in the category of either “yes” or “absolutely no” when it comes to adding nuts. Some of my family would always fall into the latter column. So, I would make two loaves – one with and one without. Everyone was happy.
My “go-to” nut for this easy banana nut bread is walnuts. For me, it’s like peanut butter and jelly, peaches and cream, or maybe hugs and kisses. Banana bread and walnuts, they just seem to go together. But pecans work great as well.
Just be careful to use fresh nuts. They tend to go rancid when they are exposed over time to warm temperatures. If you plan on using them right away, store them in your refrigerator. For longer storage, place them in your freezer in an airtight container.
Mashing the Bananas
This recipe calls for two cups of mashed bananas which works out to be about four large bananas. I use more bananas than a lot of recipes call for, which in my opinion creates a more moist banana nut bread. If the bananas are good and ripe, all that is needed is a fork. Peel and slice in half, then use the fork to press down on them until they are nice and mushy. I like to leave some banana chunks in my bread, so I don’t mash them to a pulp. (You can see in the finished bread photos below the extra chunkiness.)
The batter – it takes less than 10 minutes to whisk together
The one thing I love about this quick bread recipe is, well, it’s “quick” … to prep that is. There’s no beating sugar and butter together. Mix the dry ingredients then the wet ingredients, combine the two, and add your bananas. Throw it in a loaf pan and let the oven do all the work. It’s that simple.
Other Ingredients for Easy Banana Nut Bread
Eggs and Buttermilk: Make sure these wet ingredients are at room temperature when you start. This creates an emulsion that traps air in the batter. Therefore, when the bread is baking, that trapped air will expand and produce a fluffier baked good. It takes a little forethought, but just remove these ingredients from the refrigerator and give them about 30 minutes to come to room temperature.
If you don’t have buttermilk on hand, don’t fret. There’s an easy solution. For each cup of buttermilk, use one tablespoon of either white vinegar or lemon juice and add enough whole milk to measure one cup. Let it stand for a good 5 or 10 minutes. You could also use one cup of plain yogurt as a substitute.
Butter: This recipe uses melted butter instead of softened butter. If you cream softened butter with sugar you will get a more cake-like and finer texture. The melted butter produces a denser bread that is less crumbly which is my preference for a loaf of banana nut bread.
Pure Vanilla Extract: Just like salt enhances all the other flavors in a savory dish, vanilla intensifies the flavors in baked goods. Without it, cookies and cakes would taste flat and boring. Pure vanilla extract comes with a heftier price tag than imitation. You can substitute imitation vanilla for most recipes but in my opinion, the added cost is well worth the deep, rich, authentic flavor this “real deal” brings.
The Dry Ingredients: Flour, baking powder, baking soda, sugar, and salt – these are the normal items that you’ll have in your pantry and are found in pretty much every banana nut bread recipe out there.
As a variation, you can add one cup of chocolate chips to the batter.
Baking this Easy Banana Nut Bread
This bread will bake in a 350°F oven in less than an hour. But timing it is definitely not the best option, because every oven temperature seems to be a little different. At about the 50-minute mark, stick a toothpick in the center and see if it comes out clean. If not, try it every five minutes until it does.
Another idea for baking: instead of using a loaf pan, pull out your muffin tins. Banana nut muffins will then be out of the oven in half the time.
When you pull the loaf out of the oven, let it sit for about 3-4 minutes before bringing it out of the pan. Then place on a metal wire rack to cool. If the bread sits too long in the pan, it will collect condensation and can become a little soggy on the sides and bottom. Also, the rack helps as well because of the air circulation.
Freezing this Easy Banana Nut Bread
This recipe is easily doubled which is always a good idea around my house. But in the unfathomable instance, one loaf is left untouched, freezing is a beautiful option. Just make sure you let it cool completely and wrap the loaf tightly several times in plastic wrap so that the shape is held together and the freshness is locked in. Then place the wrapped loaf into a large ziplock bag for extra protection. In this way, the banana nut bread will stay fresh for 2-4 months in your freezer.
And there you have it, warm banana nut bread fresh out of the oven ready for a brunch get-together, an afternoon break or midnight snack. There is nothing about this piece of heaven that is wrong, no matter how you slice it.
If you’re looking for some other fantastic bread recipes, check these out:
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Old Fashioned Easy Banana Nut Bread
A warm slice of this Banana Nut Bread slathered with butter is one of those comfort moments that will take you back to grandma’s breakfast nook. You’ll find this bread to be super moist, perfectly dense, and sure to satisfy.
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 60 minutes
- Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
- Yield: 1 Loaf 1x
- Category: Bread
- Method: Baking
- Cuisine: American
- 2 cups All-Purpose Flour
- 1 teaspoons Baking Powder
- 1 teaspoon Baking Soda
- 1/2 teaspoon Salt
- 1 1/4 cup Sugar
- 2 large Eggs, beaten (room temperature)
- 3/4 cup Buttermilk (room temperature)
- 1/2 cup Butter (melted)
- 2 cups ripe mashed Bananas (about 4 large)
- 1 teaspoon Pure Vanilla Extract
- 1 cups Walnuts, coarsely chopped
- Preheat oven to 350°F and grease a 9×5 inch loaf pan.
- In a large mixing bowl, whisk together 2 cups flour, 1 teaspoon baking powder, 1 teaspoon baking soda, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1 1/4 cup sugar.
- In a medium mixing bowl, Combine the 2 beaten eggs, 3/4 cup buttermilk, 1/2 cup melted butter and 1 teaspoon vanilla. Gently fold in 2 cups mashed bananas.
- Make a well in the middle of the flour mixture and pour in the buttermilk mixture. Gently fold the dry ingredients into the wet ones only until combined. Be careful not to overmix.
- Pour the batter into the greased loaf pan and bake for 45 minutes to one hour or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
- Remove from the oven and let sit for 3-5 minutes in the pan before turning it out. Place the loaf on a metal rack to cool slightly before slicing.
- Slather with butter and ENJOY!
- Choose brown spotted ripe bananas that show yellow peeking through.
- How to speed up the ripening process: put the bananas in a brown paper bag and close it loosely. It takes anywhere from 12-24 hours.
- Just be careful to use fresh nuts. They tend to go rancid when they are exposed over time to warm temperatures. If you plan on using them right away, store them in your refrigerator. For longer storage, place them in your freezer in an airtight container.
- Make sure buttermilk and eggs are at room temperature when you start. Remove these ingredients from the refrigerator and give them at least 30 minutes to come to room temperature.
- Substitute for buttermilk: use one tablespoon of either white vinegar or lemon juice and add enough whole milk to measure one cup. Let it stand for a good 5 or 10 minutes.
- Use melted butter instead of softened. It produces a denser bread that is less crumbly.
- To freeze: Let the loaf cool completely and wrap the loaf tightly several times in plastic wrap so that the shape is held together and the freshness is locked in. Then place the wrapped loaf into a large ziplock bag for extra protection. It will stay fresh for 2-4 months in your freezer.
- Serving Size: 1/10th of Loaf
- Calories: 414
- Sugar: 33 g
- Sodium: 249 mg
- Fat: 19 g
- Saturated Fat: 7 g
- Unsaturated Fat: 10 g
- Trans Fat: 0 g
- Carbohydrates: 58 g
- Fiber: 3 g
- Protein: 7 g
- Cholesterol: 62 mg
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