I don’t think I’ll ever find a “best ever” banana bread, but this one comes close! It’s the Best Ever Banana Bread from Taste of Home, and while I’m sure I’ve tried it, I couldn’t find the recipe in my files.
As I write this, the recipe has 5 well-deserved stars and 406 reviews. It’s a dense, neatly slicing loaf with a deep brown color (thanks to the low and slow cook time and the baking soda) and a tight crumbed, moist texture. It’s on the sweet side, but I wouldn’t tamper with the sugar because the sugar contributes to the texture. Also, the walnuts cut the sweetness somewhat, so in no way is it overly sweet. It’s just an all-around good recipe and you should try it if you have some ripe bananas. You only need two.
And speaking of bananas, here’s a trick I learned from Stella Parks. If you want to use your bananas but feel they could be a little riper and sweeter, mash them in the mixing bowl as the recipe directs, then crack the two eggs in a separate bowl and mix only the yolks in with the bananas. Allow the bananas and yolks to sit for 30 minutes. An enzyme in the egg yolks (amylase) converts the starch in the banana to sugar. Once your bananas looks a little darker, proceed with the recipe as written adding the whites etc.
- 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour (230 grams)
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 1/2 cups sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 2 medium size banana, very ripe (8 oz)
- 1/2 cup vegetable or canola oil (or use coconut oil)
- 1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon buttermilk (2 1/2 oz)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 cup chopped walnuts
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Grease and flour an 8 1/2 by 4 1/2 inch or a 9x5 inch loaf pan.
- In a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, salt and sugar. For best results, whisk for at least a minute to ensure all of the ingredients are thoroughly blended.
- In a mixing bowl, mash the bananas, then add the eggs, oil, buttermilk and vanilla.
- Add flour mixture to banana mixture and stir until combined. Fold in nuts.
- Pour into loaf pan. Bake at 325° for 1-1/4 to 1-1/2 hours or until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool on wire rack.