(Recipe) The absolute Best Vegan Banana Bread

This vegan banana bread recipe is a reader favorite! After only 20 minutes of hands-on work, it emerges from the oven tender and moist, never dense or dry. Using fewer than 10 ingredients, it’s simple and extremely delicious.

 

(Recipe by Rainbowplantlife.com)

Absolute Best Vegan Banana Bread

Servings: 10
Prep time: 20 mins
Cook time: 50 mins

This vegan banana bread recipe is a reader favorite! After only 20 minutes of hands-on work, it emerges from the oven tender and moist, never dense or dry. Using fewer than 10 ingredients, it’s simple and extremely delicious.

Ingredients

  • 6 tablespoons (90 mL) aquafaba*
  • 3 medium very ripe bananas, plus 1 ripe banana for decoration (this last one is optional)
  • 1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons (90 mL) oat milk, or unsweetened plant-based milk of choice
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1/3 cup (75 mL) sunflower oil, olive oil, or any neutral-tasting oil
  • 3/4 cup (115g) organic brown sugar or coconut sugar ***
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 cups (240g) all-purpose flour, spooned and leveled (see tips above, as well as substitutes section)
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon (optional)
 
 

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F/176°C. Arrange a rack in the bottom third of the oven. Line a 9×5-inch (23×13 cm) loaf pan with parchment paper, letting the excess hang over the long sides to form a sling.
  2. Pour the aquafaba into a medium bowl. Using a handheld electric mixer, whip the aquafaba on medium speed for 45-60 seconds until uniformly foamy.
  3. Wipe out the bowl used for the aquafaba. Add the three bananas to the bowl and mash with a fork until smooth and no lumps remain (or, for a more rustic banana bread, leave a few chunks in). FYI: the 3 mashed bananas should weigh around 300g.
  4. Stir the lemon juice into the oat milk and set aside. This is the vegan “buttermilk.”
  5. In a large mixing bowl, add the sugar and oil. Mix using the electric mixer or a whisk until well combined.
  6. Add the whipped aquafaba and mix until well incorporated. Add in the vegan “buttermilk” and vanilla and mix until smooth. Add the mashed bananas and mix until well incorporated.
  7. Add the flour, salt, baking soda, and cinnamon to the wet ingredients. Switch to using a silicone spatula (if you don’t have one, use a large wooden spoon). Gently stir until the ingredients are just barely combined. It’s okay if you can see a few traces of flour.
  8. Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan and smooth out the top of the batter using a spatula or spoon.
  9. For the optional decoration, keep the peel on the reserved banana and slice it in half, lengthwise; then peel the banana. Sprinkle a little coconut sugar or brown sugar on the cut/interior sides of the banana. Gently arrange the bananas on top the batter, sugared side side up.
     

    NOTE: This might create a dome in the middle of the bananas, where the batter bunches up in the middle. Use a spoon to move some of the batter around the pan so that the bread doesn’t bake unevenly.

  10. Bake in the preheated oven for 45 to 55 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center top (insert the toothpick at a slight angle) comes out mostly clean. Transfer the pan to a wire rack and cool for 10 minutes. Then remove the bread from the pan and cool on the rack for at least 20-30 minutes before slicing (the bread is still cooking and setting up, so don’t slice too early).
  11. To store, place completely cooled banana bread in an airtight container or wrap tightly in plastic and leave on the counter for 2-4 days. If you don’t include the decorative banana on top, it will last longer.
  12. You can also freeze the banana bread. If you freeze the whole loaf, allow it to defrost on the countertop for 2-3 hours. If you freeze individual slices, defrost on the countertop for 20-30 minutes.
  13.  

Notes

* See notes on “customizations for this recipe” for more info.
 

** The lemon juice is optional, but I find that mixing a little bit into plant-based milks tends to make for baked goods that are a bit lighter in texture, and the acidity also helps the baking soda reaction take effect. With some plant-based milks, you’ll notice that the milk begins to curdle (a little bit with almond milk and a lot with soy milk, but none with oat milk). No fresh lemon juice? You can sub apple cider vinegar.

 

*** If using brown sugar, lightly pack it. If choosing between light and dark brown sugar, the dark variety has a deeper molasses flavor, so the bread will be richer in flavor (and darker in color). If you are limiting your sugar intake, you could use less sugar, as little as 1/4 cup (about 38g).

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