The Best (In My Opinion) Banana Bread

A finished loaf of banana bread.Banana bread is one of those comfort foods that people like to say is healthy. Well, I wouldn’t go that far, but it is a delicious and kind of nutritious way to use up those spare bananas that the kids forgot to grab out of the fruit bowl.

Over the years, I’ve tried a number of recipes that have claimed to have the best taste or texture. Sadly, these have always fallen short and I’ve been left to continue my search in cookbooks and via Google. But that all changed when I came across the recipe that I adapted below several months ago.

I’ve been an avid viewer of America’s Test Kitchen for years. In thumbing through one of the anthologies I’d ordered from them, I found a very simple recipe for banana bread that piqued my interest. For some reason, I’d never tried this particular recipe and set out to test it with my daughter one Saturday morning. That was the day I saw the light and declared that I’d finally found a recipe worthy of the phase “The Best Banana Bread.”

Everyone is doing more baking right now – for obvious reasons – so why not give this recipe a try. It’s a great way to get the kids in the kitchen, while also enjoying some homemade deliciousness. Enjoy!

The Best (In My Opinion) Banana Bread

Recipe adapted from America’s Test Kitchen’s Classic Banana Bread recipe

Ingredients:

  • DRY:
    • 2 cups all-purpose flour (I prefer to use King Arthur-brand flower)
    • 3/4 cups granulated sugar
    • 3/4 tsp baking soda
    • 1/2 tsp fine sea salt
  • WET:
    • 4 overripe bananas (the darker, the better)
    • 1/4 cup plain Greek yogurt (I prefer Chobani or Organic Valley)
    • 2 large eggs (Please use free-range)
    • 6 Tbsp melted unsalted butter (Allow it to cool to room temperature)
    • 1 tsp vanilla extract
    • 1 1/2 cups toasted walnuts or pecans (either are good), chopped

Instructions:

  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Please the nuts on a parchment-lined baking sheet and toast them for 8-10 minutes, but watch that they don’t burn. Once toasted, remove from the oven and pour them into a bowl.
  3. Butter and flour a loaf pan (9″x5″) and set aside.
  4. Combine the dry ingredients in a medium bowl and whisk them together. Set the bowl aside.
  5. Place three of the peeled bananas in a large bowl and use a potato masher to completely mash them. Add the yogurt, eggs, cooled butter, and vanilla extract and mix to thoroughly combine.
  6. Pour the dry ingredients into the wet mixture and fold them together until just combined.
  7. Pour the nuts into the mixture and fold together.
  8. Pour the mixture into the prepared tin and smooth the top.
  9. With a very sharp knife, cut the fourth banana into thin slices in a bias. Once complete, place these slices in a shingle (one laying halfway on the other) pattern one each of the two longer sides of the pan. (NOTE: Only place the banana slices along the longer sides and not in the middle. Doing this would cause the loaf to not rise properly in the oven.)
  10. Bake in the middle of the oven for 65 minutes, or until a skewer comes out clean.
  11. Once finished, allow the load to rest in the pan for 10 minutes. Then, the loaf can be removed from the pan and placed on a wire rack to cool.
  12. Serve the finished loaf warm with salted butter.

If you have any questions, please leave them in the comments below or email forksandpassportsinfo@gmail.com. I hope you enjoy!

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