Banana Bread for Dummies

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Anyone who knows me really well knows that the absolute one food I will not put in my mouth is a banana. I have never been able to stomach them (except apparently as a baby). I'm not exactly sure when this changed, but I'm guessing somewhere around 3, because I have really been disgusted by them as long as I can remember. In fact, I think Jonathan was sort of worried I wouldn't give them to our babies/children because we have never even had them in our house. (side note: my dear husband can stomach bananas but they are not his favorite by any stretch of the imagination--he can take them or leave them, mostly leave them. And to that I say whew...I've really lucked out of ever needing to fix banana pudding, bananas foster, etc., as long as we both shall live.)

Juliette, of course, loves them, as I imagine most babies do. The squishiness (ew) and sweetness are probably hard for any baby to resist. Since mashing them, pureeing them, cutting them, smelling them, etc. for Juliette, I have been able to get over myself somewhat and stomach the whole thing a little better (no way have any actually been ingested though).

Since we've had them around the house more over the past year, I've had some overripe bananas sitting around, as I guess most people do when they keep bananas around. Enter: banana bread.

This may seem weird, but I actually sort of like banana bread. I don't think it tastes like bananas at all. My mom made it frequently growing up, and I just never really got an overwhelming banana-smell/taste vibe from it. Banana popsicles, banana pudding, etc. are another story.

So the first time I had some old bananas in need of being folded into a bread where they belonged, I took to the internet to find a quick recipe, in which I had all the ingredients on-hand (very key).

I stumbled upon Martha Stewart's, and thought to myself, this must be a safe bet.

Well, I have made it probably 3-4 times now, and it does not disappoint! The addition of sour cream, or Greek yogurt, as I've done below, gives the bread a great texture (not too dense). And best of all, it doesn't taste like bananas (to me at least).

I am obviously not a banana bread connoisseur in any way (see the forty paragraphs above about banana hatred), and I understand banana bread is one of those nostalgic foods for many people, whose great-aunt had the best recipe, etc.... but this is a good, simple recipe if you're looking for one with good results and in which you most likely have all the ingredients already. Also, you can put nuts in if you want, but I don't.

Martha Stewart's Banana Bread, the Leslie Way
slightly adapted, from here

1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, at room temperature
1 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1 1/2 cups white whole wheat flour (or regular white flour if that's what you have)
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup mashed very ripe bananas (which ends up being about 2, I think)
1/2 cup Greek yogurt (or sour cream)
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 teaspoons cinnamon, optional

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter a 9-by-5-by-3-inch loaf pan (or 4 mini pans); set aside. In an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs, and beat to incorporate.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon if desired. Add to the butter mixture, and mix until just combined. Add bananas, Greek yogurt, and vanilla; mix to combine. Pour into prepared pan(s).
  3. Bake until a cake tester inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean, about 35 minutes for mini pans or 1 hour 10 minutes for large loaf pan. Let rest in pan for 10 minutes, then turn out onto a rack to cool.


  1. add to the irony, i LOVE LOVE LOVE bananas, and banana popsicles for that matter... oh and laffy taffy.... but i don't like banana bread! taste buds are funny!

  2. @Mary-Kathryn hahaha! hilarious

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