Celebrate Banana Bread: Our Recipe Roundup

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Banana bread is a beloved treat that combines the natural sweetness of ripe bananas with the comforting aroma of freshly baked bread. So why not celebrate banana bread? Whether you’re a seasoned baker or a kitchen novice, this banana bread is a go-to.

Picture warm slices of moist, tender bread, speckled with sweet banana chunks and a hint of cinnamon. Seriously, it’s the ultimate comfort food, perfect for breakfast, snack time, or any moment when you crave a little homemade goodness.

Snickerdoodle Banana Bread

Versatility is king with banana bread, and we’ve developed an array of variations over the years. Some are slight variations on the theme, such as honey whole wheat banana bread, but others push the banana peel, so to speak. And, from unexpected flavors (Red Velvet? Yes.) to different formats (can you say Banana Bread Donuts? YES!).

But first, let’s talk about that main ingredient. 🍌❤️🍞

Banana bread so moist and delicious, you'd never guess it's totally guilt free!

What Exactly Is Banana Bread?

Is it cake or is it bread? Well, banana bread strikes the perfect balance between cake and bread. It’s a moist, flavorful loaf that is easy to prepare like cake but has a dense chewiness that earns it the bread moniker.

  1. The Basics:
    • Ingredients: Ripe bananas are the star of the show. Their natural sweetness infuses the bread, while flour, eggs, butter (or oil), and sugar create the structure and flavor.
    • Texture: Banana bread is tender, slightly dense, and wonderfully moist. The banana chunks add delightful pockets of sweetness.
    • Flavor: Expect a warm, banana-forward taste with hints of vanilla and cinnamon. It’s like a cozy hug in every bite.
  2. Versatility:
    • Add-Ins: Get creative! Chocolate chips, chopped nuts (walnuts or pecans), or dried fruit (raisins or cranberries) can elevate your banana bread.
    • Variations: Try whole wheat banana bread, vegan versions, or even swirl in some Nutella for an indulgent twist. We’ll provide a lot of options.

Those Bananas

Choose Ripe Bananas: Start with bananas that are ripe or slightly overripe. The skin should be yellow with brown spots. The riper the banana, the sweeter and easier it will be to mash. And if you didn’t plan ahead, we wrote a post about how to ripen bananas quickly.

Can You Use Frozen Bananas? We get asked this so much that we wrote a whole post about it. Using frozen bananas for your banana bread is a great way to reduce food waste and ensure you always have the main ingredient on hand. And, when bananas have those brown spots, it’s a sign they’re at their sweetest.

How To Quickly Ripen Bananas

How to Store Banana Bread and for How Long

Your banana loaf stays good for three or four days on the counter as long as it’s wrapped up or stored in an airtight container. It will start to dry out after that, although it won’t actually start to taste bad for a week.

If you store it in the refrigerator, banana bread will last a full week before it starts to dry out. If you go with this option, though, make sure to heat it up in the microwave or oven before serving it.

And, you can freeze banana bread for four months and it will stay good. To do so, you should wrap it in a layer of tin foil and then stash it in a totally airtight container – I’d recommend a Ziploc bag with as much air sucked out of it as possible.

When you take your loaf out of the freezer, leave it on the counter to thaw. Before serving it, heat it in the microwave. You may also want to drizzle a bit of syrup over it to make sure it is as moist as when you baked it.

Our Favorite Banana Bread Recipes

First, we have to start with two recipes, one if the most popular recipe on our entire site, the other is the best classic banana bread … ever. As a result, we can’t celebrate banana bread without them!

Best Chocolate Chip Banana Bread Recipe

Chocolate Chip Banana Bread
This finely tuned recipe is a perennial favorite here at Something Swanky. And for good reason. This banana bread is moist, fluffy, and loaded with chocolate chips. Accordingly, it is perfect for breakfast, snack, or dessert. Plus, it is super simple to make with just a few ingredients and a bowl. 

The best EVER banana bread on Something Swanky

The BEST Banana Bread Ever
This is not just any banana bread. This is magic banana bread. THE BEST banana bread in the whole entire world ever. It has a moist, tender crumb that pairs with the crunch of walnuts in the most beautiful contrast of textures to have ever happened in a bread.

Variations on the Theme

Whole Grain Banana Bread

Whole-Grain Banana Bread
This Whole-Grain Banana Bread is the King Arthur Flour-declared 2018 Recipe of the Year! And for good reason. The whole wheat flour gives this bread a hearty texture and flavor.

Honey Whole Wheat Banana Bread
Whole wheat banana bread is a great healthy option that doesn’t compromise on taste. What’s healthy? Four bananas, NO OIL, whole wheat flour, and sweetened with honey.

One Banana Bread

One Banana Bread Recipe
Yes, you can make banana bread with only ONE BANANA!  This ONE Banana Bread recipe is our favorite for those times when you’re stuck with that one lonely, overripe banana on the counter.

Super moist banana bread made with peanut butter and Reese's cups. We loved every last crumb!

Reese’s Cup Peanut Butter Banana Bread
This bread is dangerously delicious. If you love peanut butter and chocolate (and banana bread!), then you are in the right place, friends. …or the wrong place. Depending on your self control.

My favorite classic banana bread recipe smothered in cream cheese frosting and chopped pecans.

Banana Bread with Cream Cheese Frosting
Moist, thick, and bursting with aromatic flavors like cinnamon and nutmeg. This family recipe has FOUR bananas, which adds a lot of moisture and is topped with cream cheese frosting and pecans.

Lemon Poppyseed Banana Bread
Somehow the flavors just marry together, and you get both the banana and lemon-y taste in every bite. It’s like eating spring-time in bread form! This bread would be delicious with a glaze or a dusting of powdered sugar too… you know, if you happen to like things extra suh-weet.

🍋🍋🍋 Lemon fan? Check out this roundup of our best LEMON DESSERTS! 🍋🍋🍋

Banana Bread: The Outliers

Chocolate Chip Banana Bread Recipe

Snickerdoodle Banana Bread
How do you improve on a classic banana bread loaf? Add a subtle swirl of cinnamon sugar through the center and a not-so-subtle crispy sugary coating on the outside.

Peanut Butter Oreo Banana Bread
Chocolate, peanut butter, Oreo, and banana lovers– this bread is for you! You can’t take a bite without getting a mouthful of cookies and cream.

This banana bread is perfect for a special birthday breakfast or just a fun way to use up those old bananas! Incredibly moist, easy to make, and so much fun.

Birthday Cake Banana Bread
This banana bread is perfect for a special birthday breakfast or just a fun way to use up those old bananas! Incredibly moist, easy to make, and so much fun.

Brownie Mix Banana Bread
Yes, you read that right. It’s fudgy. Really, really, brownie-like fudgy. But banana bread at the same time. Which is, of course, a match made in heaven! We hope you love this as much as we do! 🙂

Scotcheroo Banana Bread
Peanut butter + butterscotch + chocolate is like a million times better than just peanut butter OR butterscotch OR chocolate. More than mildly obsessed here.

Red Velvet Banana Bread | www.somethingswanky.com

Red Velvet Banana Bread
Like… where-have-you-been-all-my-life kind of good. Cake mix gives the bread a distinct red velvet flavor. And this bread so moist — not to mention beautiful!

Nutella Chocolate Chip Banana Bread
The Nutella flavor may be subtle (at least to Nutella enthusiasts like us), but it definitely adds an extra layer of chocolate flavor to the bread. Which makes it just perfect.

My favorite banana bread with a double batch of cinnamon streusel and icing on top. You won't want to eat banana bread any other way again!

Brown Sugar Banana Streusel
Brown sugar really amps up the moist factor, and it has a coffee cake-like streusel on top. Once you a little vanilla glaze drizzle to make it taste like you’re biting into a giant cinnamon roll.

The Donuts

These moist banana bread donuts are baked to perfection, dipped in chocolate, and smothered with coconut and caramel. The banana bread reincarnation of Samoas.

Samoas Banana Bread Donuts
Who says banana bread has to come in a loaf? These moist banana bread donuts are baked to perfection, dipped in chocolate, and smothered with coconut and caramel. The banana bread reincarnation of Samoas.

Banana Bread Donuts
Last, but SO NOT LEAST, these moist banana bread donuts are baked, not fried! So simple to make and so delicious with a rich chocolate glaze on top.

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