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Thursday, February 21, 2013

Blythe's Sugar Free, All Natural, Lower Fat Banana Bread

Okay, I think I may get 30 minutes before the baby gets up! Let's hurry.

I made some amazing Banana Bread that doesn't taste low-fat or sugar free, but it is. I have recently been making a lot of Banana Bread because my baby, Blythe, wants a banana every day, but will only eat half of it. I cannot convince her that the second half of the banana is as good as the first half. So, rather than coming up with wonderfully creative ideas to persuade my toddler that all parts of the banana are created equally, I cut off half and stick it in a sandwich bag in the freezer. I use some for smoothies, but when the bag is full I sit it on the counter to defrost into a gooey Banana Bread worthy mess. Now Blythe's unreasonable inconsistent love of bananas brings joy to us all. It has so many virtues that I could not come up with a pithy title. So here is the uncompromising "Blythe's Sugar Free, All Natural, Lower Fat Banana Bread."

So, here we go:
This will make 2 9" loaves.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

You will need:
6-8 very ripe bananas (They need to be very ripe because then they are the sweetest. If your bananas aren't very ripe then stick them on a pan in the oven while you are preheating it. They will turn a nice black color on the outside, but the inside will be perfect. Be careful about the insides, they're hot!)
3 c. All Purpose Flour (I use unbleached, you can also use wheat, though it makes the loaf a bit denser. It's very filling.)
1 c. Cake Flour (This makes for a much lighter, better loaf. Trust me.)
1 T. Baking Powder
2 tsp. Baking Soda
1 tsp. Salt
1 c. Agave Nectar Syrup (I like the darker amber variety as opposed to the lighter syrup. Think of it as dark brown vs. light brown sugar.)
1/2 c. of lowfat yogurt (Use your discretion here. You can use, plain, vanilla, churros, whatever you have on hand that you can imagine would be good in banana bread! You can use Greek or regular, but that will make it contain a bit more fat. DO NOT USE LIGHT YOGURT VARIETIES!!! They contain artificial sweeteners, like sucrose, and will make your bread taste NASTY! Phew, glad we got that out in the open. My cooking angst is satisfied.)
1 T. Vanilla extract
6 T. Butter, softened (The real stuff always tastes the best. And compared to how much butter is regularly in 2 loaves, this isn't very much.)
4 large eggs or 2 large eggs & 4 egg whites
2 tsp. of cinnamon (optional)
1/2 tsp. of nutmeg (optional)
You can also sprinkle walnuts on top of the loaves just before baking. This way you add much less nuts than if you had put them in the batter, therefor reducing the amount of fat in your loaves. And putting the nuts on top roasts them as the bread cooks, making them taste even more flavorful!

Prepare your 2 pans by either spraying them generously with Vegetable Oil or rubbing it down with a tablespoon of butter. I like the way the butter makes the crust taste. This is worth the tad bit of extra fat, I think.

Whisk all your dry ingredients together in a very large bowl. In a separate bowl mash up your bananas and mix all the wet ingredients into it. When the wet ingredients are well combined, mix them into your dry ingredients in the very large bowl. (Do it by hand because over mixing it will cause little tunnels of air to form as it is baking. Not a pretty loaf and a bit rubbery in texture. You won't have a problem if you mix it by hand.) Divide the mixture evenly between the 2 pans. Bake for 50-55 minutes on the second to the top shelf because the will rise above the pan lip. You can insert a tooth pick in to test if it is ready, if you like. It will come out clean or with a few crumbs on it when the loaf is ready.

We dump ours out immediately onto the table and take a slice. So good!



  1. Thank you for linking up at Tasty Tuesdays last week! I am featuring this banana bread at today :) I can't wait to try it.