Some say, “When life hands you lemons, make lemonade.” I say, “When life hands you ripe bananas, make banana bread!” Making banana bread is a great way to use overly ripe bananas while filling your home with a beautiful sweet nutty essence. Making them in mini loafs is a perfect way to share the sweet love with friends and family and can be enjoyed at a slower pace. If desired, feel free to bake batter in a regular size loaf pan but watch the cooking time!
Yield: 3 small loafs (each loaf pan measures 5 1/2 x 3 x 2 1/4–inches)
Preparation Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: Approximately 40 – 42 minutes
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup granulated sugar
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cup mashed ripe bananas (approximately 3 whole bananas) – use a fork to mash
1/4 cup butter, room temperature
1/3 cup low fat sour cream or low fat Greek or plain yogurt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 large eggs
Optional - 1 cup walnut or pecan pieces, added in two additions (1/2 cup inside, 1/2 cup on top as garnish)
1. Preheat oven to 350ºF.
2. In a large bowl, add flour, sugar, baking soda, and salt. Whisk gently to combine and set to the side.
3. In a small bowl, add eggs and pierce with a fork to break the yolks. Set to the side.
4. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, or alternatively in a large bowl with a hand whisk, add bananas, butter, sour cream or yogurt, and vanilla extract until just incorporated.
5. Add eggs, one at a time scraping down the sides of the bowl before the next addition. Be careful to not over-mix.
6. Add dry ingredients to wet, mix until just combined.
7. Add 1/2 cup nuts, if using, and mix until just incorporated.
8. In 3 small loaf pans greased with cooking spray or melted butter, evenly divide the batter.
9. Evenly distribute the remaining 1/2 cup of pecans or walnuts on top of each.
10. Transfer the mini loaf pans to a baking tray and bake at 350ºF until an inserted toothpick comes back clean and they are golden brown, approximately 40 minutes.
11. Remove from oven and allow to cool in pans on a cooling rack for 20 minutes.
12. Remove loafs from pans and allow to cool on a wire rack until room temperature.
13. Store in an airtight container or tightly secured in plastic wrap at room temperature for 4 days or in the refrigerator for 7 days. Place wrapped loafs in plastic freezer bags if freezing.
14. For best results, bring loafs to room temperature and slightly heat through before enjoying.
Kitchen Note: If using nuts, don’t pre-toast them as the nuts on top will naturally toast as they bake.