Healthy Banana Bread with Chocolate Chips
I’m not sure what it is about back-to-back travel weeks (or in my current case, back to back to BACK travel weeks) that make me crave a slice of Healthy Banana Bread with Chocolate Chips, but it was just about the only thing I could think about the entire flight home from Kansas City last night.
Maybe it’s the predictable, homey comfort that banana bread embodies.
Maybe it’s that my favorite banana bread recipe happens to be a healthy banana bread with yogurt. Since I’m not always on my best eating behavior when I travel (all the name of vacation, of course), I more deeply appreciate a wholesome breakfast.
Maybe it’s the fact that being out of the house automatically means the bananas on my counter have not been eaten, which means they are brown and spotty, perfect for baking banana bread.
If you have similar over ripe fruit issues and need serious banana recipe inspiration, check out the banana recipes in my recipe index. Need even more? Dorothy’s post with 66 recipes using over ripe bananas should help bunches.
^^Did you see what I did there? Please have a slice of Healthy Banana Bread and forgive my unbridled affection for puns, particularly the terrible ones.
I first shared this healthy recipe for banana bread a little more than a year ago, and reading through the old post, I had to laugh. Essentially, I was writing about a situation in my life that was eerily similar to what I’m experiencing now: a long stint of travel in which I couldn’t wait to come home and bake a loaf of super healthy banana bread (with chocolate chips, naturally).
September so far has found me on the road more than it has in my own bed. My travel has been all for fun, joyful reasons (including my beautiful younger sister’s wedding!), but I’m happy to finally have a full week at home to reset, before taking off again.
Why Healthy Banana Bread with Chocolate Chips?
Baking this bread is my version of a personal reset. It puts me back in my kitchen with a warm, familiar comfort food of which I can never ever grow weary.
This recipe has become a reader favorite (many of you have commented that it’s the best banana bread you’ve ever baked, and I’m so glad!). It’s easy to make, marvelously moist, and I have yet to serve it to someone and not have them ask for a second slice.
I’m giving the post a little refresh today and adding a step by step video, which you can watch at the bottom of the post.
I hope that, decades from now, I’m still traveling. I also hope I’m still coming home to a countertop of spotty bananas, just waiting to be transformed into Healthy Banana Bread.
- Healthy Banana Bread without Chocolate Chips. If you’d like a more low-calorie banana bread recipe, you can omit the chocolate chips or swap them for chopped nuts, fresh or frozen blueberries, or chopped dried fruit.
- Healthy Banana Bread Muffins. You can also bake this exact recipe as healthy banana bread muffins. For more detail, please see the notes in the recipe directions below.
- This simple, healthy banana bread recipe is based off of my favorite Healthy Banana Muffins. As with that banana muffin recipe, the banana bread is made with Greek yogurt, sweetened with maple syrup, and is 100% whole wheat (I use white whole wheat flour, and you can’t taste the difference one bit!).
- To Make Vegan. For a vegan version, check out these Healthy Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins.
- Interested in adding more nutrients? Look at this Zucchini Banana Bread! Want a different mix-in? Try Blueberry Bread! Love oats in your bread? Try this Oatmeal Banana Bread!
Recommended Tools to Make this Banana Bread Recipe
Healthy Banana Bread with Chocolate Chips
- 1 1/2 cups mashed overripe bananas - about 11 ounces or 3 large
- 1 large egg
- 1/3 cup plain Greek yogurt - I used nonfat. OK to substitute vanilla, though the bread will be a bit sweeter.
- 2 tablespoons canola oil - or melted cooled coconut oil*
- 1/3 cup light brown sugar
- 1/4 cup pure maple syrup
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 1/2 cups white whole wheat flour
- 3/4 semisweet chocolate chips - or chopped dark chocolate
- Place the rack in the center of your oven and preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly grease an 8 x 4-inch loaf pan with nonstick spray and set aside.
- Mash the bananas in the bottom of a large bowl until mostly smooth. Whisk in the egg, then the yogurt and oil. Whisk in the brown sugar, maple syrup, and vanilla. Sprinkle the baking soda, cinnamon, and salt over the top, then stir until combined. Gently stir in the flour until barely combined, then fold in the chocolate chips.
- Scrape the mixture into the prepared pan. Bake for 50 to 60 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Check at the 35-minute mark and tent with foil if the bread is browning too quickly at the corners. Place the pan on a wire rack and let cool for 15 minutes. Remove from pan and place on rack to finish cooling completely (for neat slicing), or enjoy warm and don't worry if the slices are messy.
- *If using coconut oil, be sure all of the ingredients are at room temperature and the coconut oil has cooled, or it will resolidify when it touches the cold ingredients.
- To bake this recipe as 12 muffins instead of in a loaf pan, lightly grease a standard muffin tin, then divide the batter evenly among the cups. Bake at 350 degrees F for 20 to 22 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean and the muffins spring back lightly when touched.
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