Oatmeal Banana Bread
I used to think the stockpile of ripe bananas that’s ever on our counter accumulated by accident, but I know myself better than that now. I overbuy intentionally, because my subconscious is hoping the bananas will be about to go bad, and I’ll have no choice but to turn them into Oatmeal Banana Bread!
This recipe is sponsored by Bob’s Red Mill.
This wholesome banana bread is perfect for busy, on-the-go mornings and happy afternoon snacks. It has a subtle, cozy amount of cinnamon, the banana flavor is pleasant and present, but not overpowering. You can fold in walnuts or chocolate chips if you like. It’s filling, moist and hearty, without being dense.
This easy banana oat bread recipe is healthy too. It’s made with 100% grains (whole wheat flour and rolled oats), sweetened with maple syrup or honey, swaps nonfat Greek yogurt for sour cream, and calls for a moderate amount of butter (you can use melted coconut oil or olive oil, if you prefer).
Thanks to my subconscious’ dedication to banana bread, I’ve baked dozens (hundreds?) of loaves of banana bread over the years. At least one dozen went into the testing of a very special banana bread recipe that will be in my upcoming cookbook.
Other documented banana bread favorites include Zucchini Banana Bread, Pumpkin Banana Bread, Paleo Banana Bread, and this classic Healthy Banana Bread recipe, to name but a few. Don’t even get me started on the collection of banana muffins (Healthy Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins, Chocolate Banana Muffins…)
No matter how many banana bread recipes I bake, every loaf has something special about it that makes it worthy of the time and ingredients that I (and more importantly, you) take to make it. This oatmeal banana bread is no exception.
Toasting the oatmeal in the oven before adding it to the bread deepens its flavor and transforms this banana oat bread from one you’ll enjoy very much into one you won’t be able to stop eating. It’s homey and comforting, and the texture is fabulous. This recipe has me smitten. I can’t wait for you to try it too!
How to Make Oatmeal Banana Bread
The ingredients for this recipe are simple and wholesome! If you have bananas about to go bad, I bet you have everything else you need to make oatmeal banana bread.
- Oats. I used Bob’s Red Mill Organic Rolled Oats. You’ll always find a bag (or three) of these in my pantry. I use them for healthy whole grain baking like in this banana bread, turn them into yummy warm oatmeal at breakfast, and use them to make no bake energy balls and Apple Cinnamon Overnight Oats. I love Bob’s products because they source their ingredients with care and strive to preserve their nutritional integrity. Plus, they taste wonderful, and I have consistent results every time I use them (extra important in baking!).
- Whole Wheat Flour. This oatmeal banana bread is 100% whole grain, meaning it’s richer in fiber and nutrients and can keep you fuller for longer. Again, I use Bob’s Red Mill Organic Whole Wheat Flour. The lightly nutty flavor of whole wheat tastes fantastic in banana bread. It’s the only way I bake mine now!
- Mashed Ripe Banana. The riper, the better! You’ll need 1 ½ cups of mashed banana total, which is about 4 medium bananas. The bananas make the bread naturally moist and sweet, without needing to add more butter or oil.
- Honey or Pure Maple Syrup. Making the banana bread with maple syrup or honey sweetens it naturally. Previously, I’d made my banana bread with brown sugar, but I love it with one of these two even more. Their flavor is lovely alongside the bananas and oats.
- Greek Yogurt. Many recipes call for banana bread with sour cream. Like sour cream, plain Greek yogurt is tangy, creamy, and makes the banana bread moist, but it’s much lower in fat and high in protein too.
- Unsalted Butter. Four tablespoons (a very moderate amount comparatively) is all you need to make the banana bread taste rich and satisfying. You can swap it for coconut oil or olive oil if you prefer (though personally, I love my oatmeal banana bread with butter best of all!)
- Cinnamon + Pure Vanilla Extract. To make the banana oatmeal bread extra warm and cozy.
- Milk. Any kind you like. I used unsweetened almond milk. You can use regular dairy milk or even make the oatmeal banana bread with buttermilk, if you have some left in the refrigerator.
- Baking Basics. Eggs, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. The usual suspects.
No mixer required for this easy recipe! Once you have your ingredients gathered, it comes together in a flash.
- First, toast your oats (Trust me, it’s worth it). Lay the oats in a single layer on your baking sheet, and toast in the oven at 350 degrees F for 8 to 10 minutes. They should be lightly golden. Now, set them aside to cool.
- Then, line a 9 x 5-inch loaf pan with parchment paper, and mist lightly with nonstick spray. Grab a medium-sized mixing bowl, and whisk together your dry ingredients. Add the toasted oats, and set aside.
- In a large mixing bowl, mash the banana (you should end up with 1 1/2 cups). Whisk in the honey, melted butter, milk, and Greek yogurt. If your butter starts to solidify, reheat it in 10-second increments. Then, add your eggs one at a time. Lastly, whisk in the vanilla.
- Now, add your dry ingredients mixture to your honey and banana mixture. Stir slowly and gently with a rubber spatula until the flour disappears. Pour the batter into your prepared loaf pan. Smooth the top, and sprinkle on oats for decoration (a.k.a. photo worthy bread).
- Bake at 350 degrees F for 30 minutes. Then, loosely cover the entire pan with foil. Continue baking for 35 to 45 additional minutes (65 to 75 minutes total). When a knife inserted in the middle comes out clean, it’s ready! (I suggest repeating this test a couple times to be sure.) You can also use an instant-read thermometer to check when the bread’s internal temperature reaches 200 to 210 degrees F.
- When it’s done baking, lay the pan on a wire rack to cool for 1 hour. Enjoy the incredible aromas that will fill your kitchen! Using your parchment paper to lift the bread out, and set it out on the rack to cool further. Slice, and ENJOY!
Oatmeal Banana Bread Recipe Tips and Variations
- Don’t Skip Toasting the Oats. The toasty flavor is nothing short of magnificent. I may never bake an oatmeal bread any other way again!
- Measure Your Banana. It’s important to have 1 ½ cups of mashed ripe banana, no more or less. The amount can look very different when it’s in the mixing bowl, so take time to double check.
- Don’t Over Mix. As soon as the flour disappears, your bread is ready to bake.
- Make It Pretty. After you pour the batter into the pan and smooth the top, sprinkle a few extra oats (and/or chocolate chips or nuts) onto the top prior to baking. It will taste delicious no matter what, but I do love the sprinkle.
- Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Banana Bread. Right after you’ve folded in the dry ingredients in step 4, fold ½ cup dark chocolate chips into the batter.
- Oatmeal Banana Nut Bread. Right after you’ve folded in the dry ingredients in step 4, fold ½ cup toasted and chopped walnuts or pecans.
- Gluten Free Oatmeal Banana Bread. Swap the whole wheat flour for a 1:1 GF baking flour. Be sure to use certified gluten free rolled oats.
- Oatmeal Banana Bread Muffins. Instead of a loaf pan, use a muffin tin like this one, and place paper liners in the wells. Pour the prepared batter into the paper liners. I suggest checking them after about 20 minutes, and then continue to bake longer if needed. Keep an eye on them, and once your muffins turn golden brown on top, check them for doneness.
Serving, Storing, and Reheating Oatmeal Banana Bread
Here’s what to do with leftover banana oatmeal bread, plus a few serving ideas.
- Serving Ideas. This bread is delicious spread with a nut butter like peanut butter or almond butter. I also love it topped with Slow Cooker Apple Butter.
- To Store. Once the bread has fully cooled, place it in an airtight storage container lined with a paper towel. Lay another paper towel over the top of the bread. Seal, and keep at room temperature for up to 1 week.
- To Freeze. Place the oatmeal banana bread slices in an airtight freezer-safe storage container, and freeze for up to 3 months. I like to freeze this bread in individual slices and thaw as needed for a delicious treat.
- To Reheat. Let the bread thaw overnight in the refrigerator. Rewarm gently in the microwave until warmed through.
- For more tips and suggestions about storing and freezing muffins and breads, check out my How To Store Muffins and Other Quick Breads guide.
Recommended Tools to Make Oatmeal Banana Bread
- Best Ever Loaf Pan. No sticking, even baking, perfect corners.
- New Favorite Spatula. It’s great for folding thick batters, smoothing the top of quick breads, and is super easy to clean and heatproof.
No matter how many loaves of banana bread you’ve tried in the past, I promise you will love this one.
It’s cozy and familiar, but a little bit unique; healthy without tasting like it’s skimping. Warm up a slice, spread it with some peanut butter or almond butter, or just enjoy it as is. You won’t be disappointed!
If you try this recipe, please let me know how it goes in the comments below. Your reviews are so helpful to me and to others. I strive to respond to every single one!
Oatmeal Banana Bread
- 1 1/2 cups Bob’s Red Mill Organic Rolled Oats — plus 1 tablespoon for sprinkling on top (do not use instant oatmeal; quick oats will work in a pinch)
- 1 cup Bob's Red Mill Organic Whole Wheat Flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 1/2 cups mashed very ripe bananas — about 4 medium bananas
- 2/3 cup honey or pure maple syrup
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter — melted
- 1/4 cup milk
- 3 tablespoons nonfat plain Greek yogurt
- 2 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Spread 1 1/2 cups oats in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet. Place in the oven and toast for 8 to 10 minutes, until very light golden and fragrant, stirring once halfway through. Set aside to cool. Line a 9 x 5-inch loaf pan with parchment paper so that two sides overhang like handles. Lightly mist with nonstick spray.
- In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together the whole wheat flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt. Stir in the toasted oats. Set aside.
- Mash the banana in the bottom of a large mixing bowl and double check to make sure you have 1 1/2 cups. Whisk in the honey, melted butter, milk, and Greek yogurt. If the butter resolidifies, warm the bowl in the microwave in 10-second bursts, just until it melts. One at a time, whisk in the eggs. Whisk in the vanilla extract.
- Add the dry ingredients to the banana-honey mixture. By hand with a rubber spatula, stir very slowly and gently, stopping as soon as the flour disappears. Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan and smooth the top. Sprinkle the batter with remaining 1 tablespoon oats for decoration.
Bake for 30 minutes, then loosely cover the pan with foil, making sure that the foil shields both ends of the pan (because the bread is sweetened with honey, it will caramelize and become dark at the corners). Continue baking for 35 to 45 additional minutes (65 to 75 minutes total) or until a small, thin knife inserted in the center of the loaf comes out without any wet batter clinging to it. Repeat the test once or twice. An even easier way to tell is to use an instant-read thermometer. When the bread reaches between 200 to 210 degrees F at the center, it’s done.
Place the pan on a wire rack, and let the bread cool in the pan for 1 hour. Using the parchment paper handles, lift the bread and set it out on the rack to finish cooling completely. Slice and enjoy!
- TO STORE: Once the bread has fully cooled, place it in an airtight storage container lined with a paper towel. Lay another paper towel over the top of the bread. Seal, and keep at room temperature for up to 1 week.
- TO FREEZE: Place the oatmeal banana bread slices in an airtight freezer-safe storage container, and freeze for up to 3 months.
Nutrition InformationAmount per serving (1 (of 10)) — Calories: 245, Fat: 7g, Saturated Fat: 3g, Cholesterol: 45mg, Potassium: 255mg, Carbohydrates: 44g, Fiber: 4g, Sugar: 23g, Protein: 5g, Vitamin A: 210%, Vitamin C: 3%, Calcium: 37%, Iron: 1%
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I am sharing this post in partnership with Bob’s Red Mill. As always, all opinions are my own. Thanks for supporting the brands and companies that make it possible for me to continue to create quality content for you!
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