Bunky, my very helpful and impish baking assistant, loves bananas. She also loves chocolate chips, in a slightly alarming addictive way. However, combining chips with fruit makes it go down easier (for me).
After spending an embarrassing amount of money on miniature GF banana bread loaves, I decided to make my own. Here are 3 tried-and-true (and easy!) banana-rific recipes I’ve recently made using Bob’s Red Mill all-purpose flour mix. One of these days when I have free time I would love to make my own, but until then, Bob is my man. I’m also a fan of the pretty pink box that Better Batter comes in, and a recent convert to Annalise Roberts’ Classic GF mix. Clearly a post about GF flour is in order.
Until then, pick your banana-treat, bread, muffins, or cookies. And don’t forget the chips!
(adapted from the recipe on the back of Bob’s Red Mill all-purpose baking flour)
This banana bread tastes very true to the traditional recipe I used to use, which thrilled my husband and daughter the first time they tried it. I know some people aren’t big fans of Bob’s bean flour mixture, but any residual flour flavor is completely hidden by the sweetness of the bananas. I like to use more bananas rather than less, because it seems to make a moister cake.
Pros: Easy to make, very traditional tasting, and delicious!
Cons: Requires an electric mixer, but only briefly
1/3 cup canola oil
2/3 cup brown sugar, packed
2 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 ¾ cups all purpose GF flour (I used Bob’s)
2 tsp baking powder
1 ¼ tsp cinnamon
1 tsp xanthan gum
½ tsp salt
1 ½ cups mashed ripe bananas (I try to use 2-3 bananas, depending on how many I have)
* as many chocolate chips as you enjoy, or raisins, chopped pecans or walnuts
Preheat oven to 350. Grease a 9 x 5 inch non-stick loaf pan. For smaller loaves use three 5 x 3 inch loaf pans. I use a high heat canola oil spray to grease the pan, but you can also use butter.
Cream together oil, sugar, eggs, and vanilla in a large bowl with an electric mixer. Add flour, xanthan gum, salt, baking powder and cinnamon to egg mixture, alternating with bananas. Beat with mixer or by hand until smooth. Stir in chips (or nuts or raisins). Batter will be somewhat soft. Transfer to pan. Bake 9 x 5 inch for about an hour (check at 45 minutes), for smaller loaves 45 minutes (check at 35).
For some reason, my first loaf (baked the recommended 1 hour) burned to a black crisp on the bottom. This could just be my oven, which tends to run hot. If yours also runs hot, slip a baking sheet under the loaf pan for the last 10 minutes of cooking so the bottom doesn’t burn. Works for me.
Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins
The original recipe on Nicole Hunn’s recipe blog Gluten Free on a Shoestring is solo bananas, but I added chocolate chips since that’s the way to my daughter’s heart, and belly. There’s also a slightly updated version with blueberries in her cookbook of the same name. I’ve made this recipe using both Bob’s and Better Batter. Both came out great.
Pros: Easy to make and fast to bake! 20 minutes versus an hour for the loaf
Cons: Honestly, I can’t think of any except that they go very fast!
* Use an ice-cream scooper to make more uniform muffins (or cupcakes). It’s also not as messy!
Banana Chocolate Chip Cookies
This cookie recipe, Going Bananas with Bananas, from the recipe blog Gluten Free Easily was a big hit with everyone who tried them, including a friend’s son who was so busy chowing down he didn’t notice they were GF.
Pros: Sweet and delicious!
Cons: They were a little soft, and after two days the remains fell apart, but that seems to happen to most GF baked goods. Throw the bits on top of ice cream and enjoy.
Tell me which way you like bananas best! I also enjoy them chocolate-dipped, yum.