Years ago Starbucks gave out cards featuring a recipe for banana bread similar to the kind sold in the shop. It has made its rounds on the Internet and is known as “Starbucks Banana Bread Copycat”. But how close is it to the original? That’s what I wanted to know, so I bought a slice of Starbucks banana bread and did some comparisons.Jump to Recipe
Here’s a photo of a slice of banana bread I purchased at Starbucks.
True Starbucks vs. Starbucks Copycat
And here’s a photo of the real Starbucks banana bread next to a slice of the copycat. Pretty close! Theirs is a lot darker, but I’m happy with how close it is considering it’s my second try.
Here’s the loaf from the first try. It actually tasted great, but I’d be embarrased to serve it to anyone but myself (and Lizzie and HAL). One reason it came out so short was that I used an 8 1/2 by 4 1/2 inch loaf pan rather than an 8×4 inch. Big difference.
Starbucks Banana Bread Ingredients
The Starbucks ingredients list is similar to the one on the card, but not exactly the same. The coffee shop version also has a definite spice flavor — a hint of cinnamon maybe? Nutmeg? So I made the loaf again more carefully and with a few changes — I increased the salt, added a little baking powder in with the baking soda and threw in some spices. I also used the same size pan as Starbucks and mashed the bananas by hand. And I kept the buttermilk.
The Starbucks Copycat Banana Bread made a little too much batter to fit in the 8×4 inch pan, but that’s probably because most home cooks use slightly larger pans and whoever came up with the scaled down home cook version of the recipe took that into account. I just used the extra batter in muffins.
Overall I’d say the copycat version floating around is very, very similar to the real thing and might be one of my new favorites. And one last note — it freezes perfectly! In my opinion it’s even better after being frozen and thawed.
Update: If you enjoyed the Starbucks Banana Bread clone and want to try something a little different, please check out this White Whole Wheat Carrot Bread. It’s a great way to use white whole wheat flour, and extremely tasty.
Some More Fun Recipes
Starbucks Banana Bread Copycat
- 2 cups all-purpose flour 250 grams or bread flour**
- 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon and a pinch of nutmeg
- 1 large egg
- 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar 220 grams
- 1/2 cup vegetable oil 114 grams
- 2 tablespoons milk or buttermilk I used buttermilk
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 3 large very ripe bananas mashed (1 1/4 cup mashed/10 oz weight peeled)
- 1 cup chopped walnuts or use a mixture of walnuts and pecans
- Preheat oven to 325. Grease bottom and 1/2 inch up the sides of an 8×4 inch loaf pan and line with a strip of parchment. Also, grease a small 1 cup capacity custard cup for extra batter. Alternatively, skip this and use an 8 1/2 by 4 1/2 inch 6 cup capacity loaf pan.
- Put the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt and spices in a bowl and whisk for a minute.
- In a mixing bowl, whisk the egg, sugar, and vegetable oil until smooth, then whisk in the vanilla and the milk.
- Mash the banana with a fork or potato masher (or your whisk!), making sure you have 10 oz or 1 1/4 cups. Add to the batter and stir until blended.
- Add the flour mixture in 3 parts, stirring after each addition.
- Fold 1/2 cup of chopped walnuts. The batter should be fairly thick.
- Scrape batter into prepared loaf pan, but makes sure you leave room for it to climb up the sides. Try to keep it about an inch from the top. Put remaining batter in a custard cup.
- Draw a knife through it to release air bubbles. Sprinkle top with remaining nuts. Pour remaining batter into custard cup.
- Bake for about 65 minutes until a toothpick comes out clean. If using a larger loaf pan start checking at 45 minutes. The custard cup version should be done in 40.
- Loosen sides with a knife, but do not remove from pan. Let cool in pan for about 20 minutes, then remove from pan and let cool for several hours. Preferably, let cool then freeze and thaw. The bread has an even better texture after being frozen and thawed.
250 grams is how much flour I use, whether it’s bread or all-purpose. If you don’t have a scale and are using bread flour, Use 2 cups, but measure with a very light hand. Stir the bread flour up really well, then spoon it into the cup and level off. Generally, 2 cups of bread flour is 260 to 280 grams. So maybe shave off a tablespoon if you are using bread flour and don’t have a scale. It’s hard to be exact without a scale, but it’s also hard to go wrong when it comes to banana bread. Good luck!
Hello! Was just wondering how many cups of bread flour should I use? Is it 2 cups as well, or 250g? Thank you & can’t wait to try this recipe!
Thanks for sharing the exact number of bananas, Javi! Glad you liked the recipe.
I used 3.5 bananas since they weren’t as ripe. I’d say they were 40% brown.
It always feels good to use up those bananas. Glad you liked the recipe!
This is delicious! Best banana bread recipe and tastes just like Starbucks brand. I added chocolate chips instead of walnuts to mine and it was perfection!
My bananas we black and almost total mush when I added them, which helped I think.
Ive seen so many “copycat Starbucks banana bread” that doesn’t have any kind of spice and I found it hilarious since supposedly they ate it multiple times a week…. really? And yet they make the perfect copycat. Really infuriating actually… the cinnamon and nutmeg just pop in Starbucks bb. That’s why I like to make mine at home. I’m not a fan of it. So many people don’t have their own opinions even in this day and age apparently… I think your taste buds are excellent and thank you very much!
I just wanted to say thanks for posting the card … I had mine from years ago when Starbucks gave them out. It’s my favorite.. and yes it’s different from the one they sell in the shops …if you look on line at the Starbucks site it states its wheat flour that they use. Using wheat flour would make the bread darker in color..
Again thanks for posting
Thanks for your research I’ll try this one I’m spending way too much $ going there all the time!
Yes, I just let it sit. Also, if you have a toaster oven you may want to just warm it at 350 or 400 for a few minutes rather than toast it.
When you freeze and thaw the banana bread, do you just let it sit at room temperature to do that? I tried toasting it to thaw it and I found it got kind of dry, especially around the edges.
Glad you liked it! If you get a chance, try the one called Best Ever Banana Bread. I can’t decide which I like best.
I have been making banana bread for as long as I can remember… and this recipe by far is the absolute best. I came across this post when I searched for a copycat to the Starbucks banana bread my youngest son LOVED at the airport this past weekend, It is amazing… I made just as you instructed except I used 1 XL egg and I sprinkled Demerrara Sugar on top just before baking. Thank you!!! Perfection.
I use a rubber scraper (spatula) or spoon. I rarely use my stand mixer for banana bread.
Hi, do you use a stand up mixer or do you rather I corporate the ingredients using a spatula to avoid overworking the mixture? Thank you, it looks delicious!
I replied to you via email! Hope you got the email.
I am looking for a granola bar recipe ,could you help me? BRENDA BOLTON
Anna I have gotten some really great recipes from your site .I have a secret recipe given from my grand its the BEST EVER 45 MINUTE YEAST BUNS THATS 45 minutes to bite into the softest bunsever if you would like this recipe let me know!!
I did make a sling, but it’s not absolutely necessary. I’m always a little paranoid about getting things out of the pan, so I always make a sling.
Did you make a sling our of parchment? I notice paper jutting our of one end of the pan… thanks
I found that a pastry cutter is the perfect thing for mashing bananas or even boiled eggs for egg salad. 🙂
This is so cool! You nailed it!
I just bought 8 bananas yesterday. Impulse buy at Costco 🙂 I see a loaf of Starbucks Banana Bread Copycat baking in a few days 🙂
You’ll have to wait for them to ripen. Some people roast bananas. I tried that once but wasn’t impressed, so now I just wait around for them to turn brown.
I might try to get my hands on some bananas to make this. M will be here me this weekend and she likes banana bread. Who doesn’t?
No, it’s for after they are peeled. I put a measuring cup on the scale, set the tare to zero, filled it to about 1 1/4 cup with mashed bananas and got the weight. I’ll add “unpeeled” for clarification.
Anna, is that 10 oz weight on the banana’s with the peels on? Thank you.