Low Temperature Banana Bread

Just when you think you’ve tried every banana bread recipe in the book, along comes this one from The Fairmont Hotel. Carolyn from Canada has been making it for years, and wanted to share it because it’s a little bit different.

Fairmont Hotel Banana Bread

What’s unique about this banana bread is that it’s baked at a very low temperature for 2 1/2 hours. It also calls for more baking soda than other recipes (a lot more) and instead of adding the flour alternately with the milk, you add the flour alternately with the eggs.

So what happens when you bake at a low temperature, use a lot of baking soda and add very little air to the batter? You get a really dense, sturdy, but moist banana bread that slices neatly and is great toasted. Another interesting change that occurs is the color. The bread appears to have cocoa powder or brown sugar in it, but the brown color is most likely due to the reaction of the baking soda.

Thanks to Carolyn for sharing this recipe. If you try it, make sure to really grease and flour the pan.

Low Temperature Banana Bread
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Low Temperature Banana Bread is based on a banana bread from The Fairmont Hotel.
Recipe type: Breakfast
Cuisine: American
Serves: 12
  • 2 large (8 oz total) bananas
  • 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons (8 ounces) of granulated sugar
  • 3 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons (8 ounces) all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla (optional)
  • 1/4 cup toasted and chopped walnuts
  1. Preheat oven to 275 degrees F. Grease and flour an 8 ½ x4 inch loaf pan , line with parchment paper and grease the parchment. This is important, because the loaf is rather sticky!
  2. In a blender, puree the bananas, sugar and baking soda.
  3. Empty banana mixture into a mixing bowl. Mix in the eggs and the flour alternately, stirring until well blended.
  4. Mix in the oil, buttermilk and salt, beating with a spoon until blended and smooth. Add the vanilla (if using) and the nuts.
  5. Pour batter into prepared loaf pan and bake for 2.5 hours. Let cool completely, then carefully remove from the pan.
The amount of baking soda seems like a lot, but it's what the recipe calls for and it's probably what creates the dark brown color.

Make sure to really grease and flour the pan well, as this bread is sticky! I used foil and nonstick spray, and still had some stickiness.

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  1. says

    How interesting! Does the time you add the flour really make such a difference? I have heard of cold oven pound cake, but never a slow oven banana bread. I must try this! And I love rich, dense banana bread.

    I usually put a strip of parchment paper at the bottom of my loaf cakes and breads if they have a sticky batter.

  2. says

    Can’t wait to hear your opinion! I really like this one. About the eggs and flour, my thought was that adding the eggs slowly with the flour prevents extra air from being whipped into the batter. That is, eggs hold a lot of air, so if you are stirring them gently (as you would flour), you add less air. But that’s just a guess.

  3. says

    I have a bunch of frozen bananas that I need to use up. I love banana bread, but have never heard of it being made this way before. I’m intrigued! Sounds like a good baking project for later this week.

  4. Carolyn says

    Hi Anna – I’m glad you like the recipe. It’s really good with chocolate chips, (about 1/4 cup), added!

  5. Kathy says

    The picture reminds me of a pecan bread that my mother used to make which also came out dark in color like that but I don’t think included brown sugar or any other caramel-colored ingredient…I’ve never found the recipe, and I’m not sure she had it written down.

  6. Jan Harris says

    Anna: I looked at the recipe on the link you provided and it calls for 7 tps of soda. I don’t know how to read metric. They don’t mean tsp do they? That’s a lot of baking soda, do you taste it?

  7. says

    Jan, I halved the recipe so I used 3 1/2 teaspoons. It’s a lot!! I think that’s what causes the bread to turn brown because baking soda enhances browning. I worried that I would taste the soda, but I really didn’t. I can sometimes taste the soda in ginger cookies or in other baked goods that call for a lot of it, but it just didn’t stand out to much (to me, at least) in this one.

  8. Jimmy says

    I just dumped all the stuff together and baked (as was I) at 2.5 hours. I let cool and then enjoyed a slice with my bhang chai before going into the arms of Morpheus until morning. This recipe is the one.

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