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Brown Sugar Banana Bread

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Brown sugar banana bread is the best banana bread ever. This two bowl, one hour, moist banana bread recipe is the perfect use for your overripe bananas.

Have you read the satirical Beaverton article about the woman who died with a freezer full of bananas?

I felt... called out.

I'm famous for buying bananas and letting them turn brown on the counter. I can't help it, the texture of bananas is so off putting to me. Yet, I continue to buy them.

My 2021 resolution is to uses those bananas and this recipe will make it happen!

This brown sugar banana bread recipe is dedicated to saving bananas from a frosty fate.

4 slices of brown sugar banana bread stacked.

Jump to:

Tips + tricks

No. 1--> One of my favourite tricks with banana bread is to avoid overripe bananas. This isn't always possible, but I prefer my bananas to be quite spotty, but not completely goo. This gives my bananas more texture and less applesauce.

No. 2 --> Don't overmix. The dry ingredients should be mixed until JUST combined. You can use your mixer on low or a spatula to fold in the dry ingredients into the wet. If you're adding chocolate chips or nuts, add them when the dry ingredients are about halfway mixed in.

No. 3 --> If you're adding chocolate chips or nuts, keep either one, or both to under 1 cup. For example, use 1 cup chopped nuts, or 1 cup chocolate chips. If mixing both, use 1/2 cup chocolate chips and 1/2 cup chopped nuts.

No. 4 --> Brown sugar banana bread bakes for a LONG time - if you find that the top is browning too quickly, you can lay a sheet of tinfoil over the top, but ensure that you grease the foil or spray it with cooking oil to avoid it sticking to the top of your loaf.

No. 5 --> If you dig cinnamon in your banana bread, add 1/2 - 1 teaspoon into the dry ingredients before baking, it's delicious without, but I regularly add it to my banana bread!

Key ingredients

Brown sugar: When baking this bread, I usually use light brown sugar, because I prefer the more subtle caramel flavour. Dark brown sugar will also work!

Sour cream: The sour cream will not make your bread tangy, but it will make your bread incredibly moist and tender. Use it! If you don't have sour cream, plain yogurt or greek yogurt will work too - avoid anything sweetened, though.

Butter: Life's too short, eat butter. It's the key to better baking.

All ingredients premeasured and displayed.

How to make brown sugar banana bread

  1. Preheat the oven to 350f, and prepare a 9x5 loaf pan by greasing or spraying with cooking spray. Set aside.
  2. In a medium bowl, combine the dry ingredients and set aside.
  3. In the bowl of your stand mixer, add the brown sugar and butter and beat until light and airy. This will take about two minutes and the butter and sugar should be an opaque caramel colour.
  4. Add the eggs, one at a time and beat well after each addition.
  5. Add the bananas, breaking each into small pieces before adding to the bowl. If you prefer, you can mash the bananas before adding, but I find breaking the bananas into small pieces before adding to mixer is sufficient and saves a step (and a couple dishes). Once the bananas have been added, beat the bananas until the mixture is combined - don't worry if there are small chunks of banana.
  6. At this point, add the sour cream or yogurt and vanilla extract and beat well.
  7. Turn the mixer to low speed, and slowly add the dry ingredients and mix until just combined. If you're adding chocolate chips or nuts, add them when the dry ingredients are about half incorporated.
  8. Pour the banana bread batter into your prepared loaf pan. Bake at 350f, on the middle rack for approximately 60-65 minutes. If the top of your banana bread is browning too quickly, place a greased piece of tin foil loosely on the top of your loaf to slow the browning.
  9. Test the doneness of your brown sugar banana bread by inserting a toothpick or cake tester into the center of the loaf. If the toothpick comes out clean, the loaf is done, if it comes out gooey, it needs more time!
  10. Once the bread is done, remove the loaf pan from the oven and place it on a wire rack to cool completely before removing from loaf pan.

Double batch

This recipe can easily be doubled and baked in two 9x5 loaf pans. I would, however, avoid tripling the batch, sometimes with baking, things just go sideways when you increase the recipe too many times.

Hands slicing a loaf of banana bread.

Storage information

Room Temperature:

Brown sugar banana bread can be kept at room temperature in an air tight bag or container for up to 3 days - if it lasts that long!

Freezer Storage:

This banana bread can easily be stored in the freezer for 3-4 months; either whole or in slices.

  • Whole loaf: allow the loaf to cool on a wire rack until completely cooled, then carefully wrap in plastic wrap or tin foil. Place the wrapped loaf into a ziplock bag and store in the freezer for later enjoyment. To thaw, simply remove the loaf from the freezer and unwrap before thawing at room temperature.
  • Sliced: allow the loaf to cool on a wire rack until completely cooled, then slice into desired width slices, we like 1/2". Wrap 1-2 slices in plastic wrap before placing the slices into a ziplock bag and storing in the freezer for later. To thaw, remove the slices from the freezer and thaw, wrapped at room temperature.
A loaf of brown sugar banana bread cooling on a black wire mesh rack.

More treat recipes to love

9x5 loaf pan: This recipe bakes perfectly in a 9x5 loaf pan. For this recipe, I prefer a dark loaf pan as they tend to crisp the crust better. A dark pan will absorb more heat while a light pan reflects more heat.

Stand mixer: I use my KitchenAid mixer for so many things a it makes everything much easier - I couldn't live without it for my baking!

Hands holding a baking pan with baked banana bread.

📖 Printable Recipe

4 slices of brown sugar banana bread stacked.
Yield: 1 loaf

Brown Sugar Banana Bread

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour 5 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes

A rich, caramel-y brown sugar banana bread is exactly what you didn't know what you were missing!

Ingredients

  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon coarse kosher salt
  • 1/2 - 1 teaspoon cinnamon, optional
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 4 large ripe bananas
  • 1/3 cup sour cream or plain yogurt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350f, arrange the racks so that you can bake on the centre rack, and prepare a 9x5 loaf pan by greasing or spraying with cooking spray. Set aside.
  2. In a medium bowl, combine the dry ingredients and set aside.
  3. In the bowl of your stand mixer, add the brown sugar and butter and beat until light and airy, approximately 2 minutes.
  4. Add the eggs, one at a time and beat well after each addition.
  5. Add the bananas, breaking each into small pieces before adding to the bowl. If you prefer, you can mash the bananas before adding. Once the bananas have been added, beat the bananas until the mixture is combined.
  6. At this point, add the sour cream or yogurt and vanilla and beat well.
  7. Turn the mixer to low speed, and slowly add the dry ingredients and mix until just combined. If you're adding chocolate chips or nuts, add them when the dry ingredients are about half incorporated.
  8. Pour the banana bread batter into your prepared loaf pan.
  9. Bake at 350f for approximately 60-65 minutes. If the top of the banana bread is browning too quickly, place a greased piece of tin foil loosely on the top of of loaf to slow the browning.
  10. Test the doneness of the brown sugar banana bread by inserting a toothpick or cake tester into the center of the loaf. If the toothpick comes out clean, the loaf is done, if it comes out gooey, it needs more time!
  11. Once the bread is done, remove the loaf pan from the oven and place it on a wire rack to cool completely before removing from loaf pan.

Notes

Ingredient notes:


- Feel free to use salted or unsalted butter. If using salted butter, simply halve the salt in the recipe.

- Use homemade vanilla extract!

storage information

Room Temperature:

Brown sugar banana bread can be kept at room temperature in an air tight bag or container for up to 3 days - if it lasts that long!

Freezer Storage:

This banana bread can easily be stored in the freezer for 3-4 months; either whole or in slices.

  • Whole loaf: allow the loaf to cool on a wire rack until completely cooled, then carefully wrap in plastic wrap or tin foil. Place the wrapped loaf into a ziplock bag and store in the freezer for later enjoyment. To thaw, simply remove the loaf from the freezer and unwrap before thawing at room temperature.
  • Sliced: allow the loaf to cool on a wire rack until completely cooled, then slice into desired width slices, we like 1/2". Wrap 1-2 slices in plastic wrap before placing the slices into a ziplock bag and storing in the freezer for later. To thaw, remove the slices from the freezer and thaw, wrapped at room temperature.


Nutrition Information:

Yield:

10

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 314Total Fat: 12gSaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 4gCholesterol: 67mgSodium: 387mgCarbohydrates: 47gFiber: 2gSugar: 22gProtein: 6g

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