Why exactly is banana bread called banana “bread?” There is no yeast in it. It doesn’t have the texture of bread. Why isn’t it called banana cake because that’s technically what it is. If you make it in a cupcake pan it can also be called banana muffin. However, no matter the form or name it takes – it is always moist and delicious. So when I find myself with three incredibly ripe bananas it’s no wonder I get all excited! Because ripe bananas only mean one thing in my household – time for banana bread!
However, if you look at the content of a typical banana muffin / bread, it is nothing more than a cupcake without the frosting. Not exactly part of a balanced diet and with my upcoming beach trip, not exactly the way I intend to fit into my swim suit. So I decided to make a healthier version of my beloved banana bread – sans the butter (YES! There is NO butter in this recipe!), less than half the sugar, substituting whole wheat flour and almond flour for all-purpose flour, and adding in some blueberries to make up for the sugar.
The result – AMAZING! Just slightly sweet, incredibly moist, with sweet blueberries, a hint of cinnamon and vanilla, and all the essence of banana without any of the fat. Good thing I made two loaves because I already ate half…
For the Whole Wheat Blueberry Banana Bread
Lou & Esi Original Recipe
(makes one 8.5 x 4.5 inch loaf or two 7 x 3.75 mini loaves)
Note: Yes, your eyes do not deceive you. And no, I did not forget an ingredient. There is no butter in this recipe and only 1/4 cup sugar. To make up for the butter and fat, I’ve added 1/4 cup low-fat milk, 1/3 cup low-fat plain yogurt (you can also use sour cream), and 3 whole bananas. And with the added blueberries, trust me, you won’t miss the sugar.
Prep Time: 8-10 minutes
Bake Time: 40-45 minutes for two mini loaves; or 55-60 minutes for one full-sized loaf
- 1 cup whole-wheat flour
- 1/4 cup almond flour (if you don’t have almond flour, replace with whole wheat is fine)
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 egg
- 1/3 cup low-fat plain yogurt (or sour cream)
- 1 tablespoon low-fat milk
- 3 ripe bananas; mashed
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
- 3/4 cup – 1 cup blueberries (frozen or fresh)
Preheat oven to 350°F. Lightly grease your cake pan(s) and line with parchment paper. Whisk together the whole-wheat flour, almond flour, sugar, salt, baking soda and set aside.
In a separate bowl, beat together the eggs, yogurt, milk, and mashed bananas to combine. Add in the vanilla extract and cinnamon. Slowly add the flour mixture and beat briefly on slow speed until all combined.
If using one full-sized loaf pan, pour half the batter into the bottom of the prepared loaf pan and spread half the blueberries on top. Press the blueberries into the batter. Pour in the remaining half of the batter and spread with the remaining blueberries and press into the batter.
Bake at 350 degrees for 55-60 minutes for a full-sized loaf pan or 40-45 minutes for two mini loaf pans, or until the banana bread is nicely golden and a tooth pick inserted into the center comes out clean.
Cool in the oven with the door open for 15 minutes (to prevent the bread from sinking). Transfer to a wire rack and cool completely before serving.