Better-For-You Blueberry and Walnut Banana Bread

Merry Christmas week everyone! I hope you’re having as much fun with your loved ones as I am! It’s been non stop back and forth from Columbus to Raleigh since Thanksgiving, but I’ve had so much fun seeing everyone and really just trying to soak up as much family time as possible. I had wanted to try a healthy holiday recipe to share with you all, but I needed to put that on hold because on my most recent trip to Raleigh my mom put in a special request for my banana bread. I had no idea she loved it enough to request it, so I figured I’d share it with you as well! Its super easy and I’ll even teach you a trick to ripen bananas if you’ve got the craving and no verge-of-death bananas in sight 🙂

What you’ll need:

  • 4 very ripe bananas
  • 1 and a 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 T cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 1 cup blueberries
  • 1 cup walnuts

You’re probably looking at this list wondering where all the oils and sugar are. No need! You won’t even miss them! On top of healthier whole wheat flour, the applesauce is the replacement for oil. You can try this in just about any baking recipe with a 1:1 ratio and this recipe has no added sugars! Feel free to add a little bit of honey if you try the batter and it’s just not as sweet as you’d like, but bananas, especially the super ripe ones, are filled with so much natural sweetness. Combine them with the blueberries and applesauce and I promise these will be all the sugar you need.

Now you’re probably like “sounds great, but my bananas aren’t ripe enough *sheds tear*.”

Stop it. Theres no crying in baseball baking! Go get a baking sheet and I’ll explain the rest.

  1. Turn oven to 300 degrees.
  2. Place bananas on sheet.
  3. Cook for about 25-30 minutes (flip over half way) Or until they’re black. They will be scary and it’ll look like we’ve gone too far, but trust me. Once they’re done just set them aside to cool and let’s get started on the bread!

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  1. Pre-heat oven to 350.
  2. Spray your loaf pan with non-stick spray.
  3. Mix your flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt in a bowl.
  4. In a separate bowl (I use my stand mixer) mix applesauce, eggs, vanilla, and bananas.
  5. Add your dry ingredients and mix well.
  6. Gently mix in blueberries and walnuts.
  7. Pour into pan, top with more blueberries and walnuts.
  8. Bake for 55 minutes or until knife comes out clean when tested. Serve warm and enjoy a guilt-free treat this holiday season!

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