I’m just sitting here waiting for baby 2 to arrive and dreaming about banana bread everything and anything. I can’t describe my sweet tooth over these past few weeks, but it’s been ravenous. Pretty funny because I feel like I haven’t had one all pregnancy until now.
Feed me all the vegan banana bread please! I love toasting a slice, then slathering it with peanut butter and a drizzle of honey + of course, a generous sprinkle of sea salt. There’s nothing I love more for my 3pm HANGRY mama snack.
Anyway, this vegan banana bread truly is the best. It’s simple to make, customizable, easy and DAMN GOOD. Let me know how you like it by rating the recipe & leaving a comment. xo!
The BEST vegan banana bread
Oh yes, yes it does exist! I spent weeks perfecting this vegan banana bread recipe so that it had the right amount of sweetness, moisture and fluff factor. It’s safe to say you’re going to fall in love with this gorgeous loaf. So, what makes this vegan banana bread special?
- It doesn’t use alternative eggs. Instead of making this banana bread vegan by using flax eggs or chia eggs, I simplified it even further so that there are no special ingredients necessary. The bananas actually act as an egg alternative in this recipe, similar to my vegan banana bread cinnamon rolls!
- It can be made gluten free. I knew I’d get questions about making this vegan banana bread gluten free as well, so I provided some options for you in the notes section.
- You can easily jazz it up. I love adding walnuts and chocolate chips to this vegan banana bread, but the options are endless. It’s delicious as-is without any mix-ins, too!
Let’s talk ingredients
As I mentioned, this vegan banana bread recipe uses pantry staples to make it easy and accessible. You’ll make this one again and again! Here’s everything you need to make it:
- Bananas: you’ll need three RIPE bananas to sweeten this vegan banana bread. I love when my bananas have lots of brown spots. If you use frozen bananas, you’ll need to thaw them out completely then drain all of the liquid.
- Coconut oil: a little melted coconut oil gives the bread the perfect amount of moisture. Of course, you’re welcome to use vegan butter, olive oil, walnut oil, hazlenut oil, etc. However, I LOVE the flavor virgin coconut oil gives the bread.
- Brown sugar: I like to use regular brown sugar in this recipe for that delicious hint of molasses flavor, but you’re welcome to use coconut sugar as well.
- Dairy free milk: you’ll also need just a couple tablespoons of your fav dairy free milk for additional moisture.
- Flour: we’re using good old all purpose flour in this vegan banana bread to give it the perfect texture. Whole wheat pastry flour or white whole wheat flour will also work well, but please see the note section of the recipe. Also, see below for my recommended gluten free substitutions!
- Baking staples: all good banana breads have vanilla extract, baking soda, a pinch of cinnamon and salt.
- Optional add-ins: this vegan banana bread is amazing with chocolate chips (make sure they’re dairy free/vegan to keep the bread vegan) and chopped walnuts or pecans, but you do you!
AK approved substitutions
I always recommend following the recipe as-is for the best results, but if you’re out of any ingredients here are some easy swaps that should work well in this vegan banana bread:
- Swap the oil. If you don’t have any coconut oil or need to keep the bread nut free, feel free to use melted vegan butter (and omit the nuts). Other oils that work well include olive oil, hazelnut oil or walnut oil.
- Go refined sugar free. Coconut sugar will work well in place of the brown sugar in this recipe.
- Use whole grains. If you’d like, you can use whole wheat pastry flour or white whole wheat flour. Please note that if you use regular whole wheat flour you may need to add a couple more tablespoons of milk to provide a little extra moisture.
- Gluten free options. I think chickpea flour or a gluten free all purpose flour will work well in this vegan banana bread recipe. I do not recommend using almond flour or coconut flour in this recipe, instead feel free to try my vegan paleo banana muffins.
Follow these tips to make the best vegan banana bread
With a few tips & tricks you’ll make incredible vegan banana bread every time:
- Extra ripe bananas are best. The key to delicious banana bread flavor is to use bananas with lots of brown spots. They’re sweeter and give the bread the perfect flavor!
- Use room temp ingredients. Be sure to cool your coconut oil after melting it so that it doesn’t seize up when mixed with any of the other ingredients.
- Do not overmix. Overmixed batter results in a dense, gummy bread. Mix the vegan banana bread batter until just combined. It’s okay if there are still lumps of banana!
- Use fresh baking soda. The best way to ensure that your bread rises properly is to use fresh baking soda. If it’s older than 3 months you might want to grab a new one.
- Prep your pan properly (and use the correct size). Line your 8×4 inch loaf pan with parchment paper and spray it with nonstick cooking spray so that the banana bread comes out easily and doesn’t stick. Changing the size of the pan will alter the baking time, so be sure to watch your bread if you use a bigger pan!
Using frozen bananas? Don’t forget this tip
Yes, you can use frozen bananas to make this vegan banana bread! If you want to use frozen bananas, follow these steps:
- Step 1: thaw frozen bananas at room temperature in a large bowl or on a deep plate until they are completely defrosted.
- Step 2: after the bananas are at room temp and no longer frozen, drain the excess liquid that’s produced from thawing them. If you don’t do this, the bread will end up with too much moisture.
- Step 3: use in the recipe as directed.
How to store vegan banana bread
- At room temp: this vegan banana bread can be left wrapped at room temp for a day, and you can absolutely make it a day or two ahead of time. It is even more delicious the next day.
- In the fridge: after a day at room temp I’d recommend storing the bread sealed in the fridge for up to 5 days.
Freezing & thawing tips
Yes, you can easily freeze this vegan banana bread! Here’s the best way to freeze & thaw it:
- To freeze: let the bread cool completely and either cut it into slices before placing it in an airtight container or freezer-friendly bag in the fridge, or freeze the whole thing for up to 3 months.
- To thaw: you can thaw the whole loaf by simply letting it sit at room temp for a few hours. You can do the same with the individual slices, or you can reheat them in the microwave for about 30 seconds.
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More ways to use ripe bananas
- Healthy Gluten Free Banana Muffins (dairy free!)
- Healthy Banana Oatmeal Pancakes
- Healthier Carrot Cake Banana Bread with Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting
- Chunky Monkey Banana Oatmeal Bake
- Healthy Soft Banana Bread Cookies
I hope you love this amazing vegan banana bread recipe! If you make it be sure to leave a comment & a rating so I know how you liked it. Enjoy, xo!
The Best Vegan Banana Bread You’ll Ever Eat
The best vegan banana bread you'll ever eat is moist, flavorful and tastes like the nostalgic, traditional banana bread you know and love. This easy vegan banana bread recipe uses simple ingredients and makes an incredible brunch treat or snack. Options to add chocolate chips and nuts to make it extra special!
- For the wet ingredients:
- 3 medium to large extra ripe bananas, mashed (about 1 ⅓ cup mashed banana)
- ⅓ cup melted and cooled coconut oil
- ½ cup packed brown sugar (or coconut sugar)
- ½ tablespoon vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoons dairy free milk of choice
- For the dry ingredients:
- 1 ¾ cup all purpose flour (or sub whole wheat pastry flour, white whole wheat flour or chickpea flour for a GF option)
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon salt
- Optional add-ins:
- ½ cup chocolate chips
- ½ cup chopped walnuts (or pecans)
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. Line a 8 1/2 x 4 1/2 inch pan with parchment paper and grease the inside of the pan to prevent sticking. If you use a larger loaf pan, such as a 9x5, please know your bread will be much thinner and will take less time to cook.
In a large bowl mix together the mashed banana, brown sugar, coconut oil, vanilla extract and milk to a bowl until well combined.
In a large bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients: flour, baking soda, cinnamon and salt. Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients and mix until just combined. Do not overmix; it’s totally fine if there are some lumps of banana, etc. Feel free to fold in ½ cup chopped walnuts or ½ cup chocolate chips (or both!) if you’d like.
Add banana bread batter into the prepared pan. Bake for 40-50 minutes or until a tester inserted into the middle comes out clean or with just a few crumbs attached. Allow bread to cool in the pan for 5-10 minutes, then remove and transfer to a wire rack to finish cooling.
Once bread is cool, cut into 10 slices. Serve with nut butter spread on top for a healthy snack or breakfast on the go.
Frozen bananas should be thawed first and then drained of excess liquid before using in this recipe.
If you use whole wheat flour (I recommend whole wheat pastry or white whole wheat flour), you’ll likely need to add two more tablespoons of milk to the recipe.
To make gluten free: I suggest using chickpea flour or an all purpose gluten free flour. I do not recommend using almond flour or coconut flour in this recipe.
Recipe by: Monique Volz // Ambitious Kitchen | Photography by: Eat Love Eats