Soft, moist and tasty – you will love my easy banana walnut bread. Plain banana bread is good, but add walnuts and it elevates to a whole new level.
Easy banana walnut bread
Hand on heart, you are going to love this banana walnut bread recipe. It has a soft, moist texture and is full of flavour from the bananas and the walnuts.
I grew up in South Africa, where bananas grow in abundance. Most of the banana plantations are along the eastern coast, where the high humidity provides the ideal environment for growning bananas. It’s a common sight to drive past a banana plantation and see the bunches of bananas covered in bright blue plastic bags.
I always thought that the bananas were covered in these blue bags to keep the wild monkeys away. However, on doing a bit of research for this post, I found that it was actually to aid the ripening process. As they ripen, bananas give off a gas called ethylene, and covering the bananas in this way keeps the ethylene near to the banana, which makes it ripen faster. Who’d have guessed?
Because bananas are so plentiful in South Africa, people tend to come up with different ways of using them. One particular recipe which springs to mind, is a recipe for a banana salad, made by mixing condensed milk, mayonnaise and curry powder with sliced bananas. I’ve never tried it myself, but I’ve heard it’s delicious. However, I doubt very much that it will ever find its way onto this website.
One banana recipe that I will share though, is this quick and easy recipe for banana bread with walnuts. It is so quick to mix, and has an amazingly soft, moist texture, with the additional flavour from the walnuts. I’ve seen people spread butter on banana bread, but believe me this recipe doesn’t need anything additional at all. One slice of this delicious banana walnut bread and you’ll be hooked, and be making it over and over again.
How to make banana walnut bread
Six steps is all it takes to make this delicious banana walnut bread.
You will need some very ripe bananas.
Now here’s a tip for ripening bananas. I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but bananas are normally sold pre-packed in plastic bags. This is for a reason. Bananas are harvested while they are still green, and left to ripen naturally in the air. The plastic keeps the oxygen away from the bananas, and actually prolongs the shelf-life. If you want your bananas to ripen faster, remove them from the plastic bag once you get them home. They’ll ripen within a couple of days.
Anyway – enough of that – let’s get on to the recipe. You can get a printable version of the recipe at the bottom of this post. I’ve also tried to give both the cup and metric measurements, but if there’s anything I’ve not included you can convert your measurements using my handy conversion calculator.
You can get the complete list of ingredients and full instructions on how to make this recipe on the printable recipe card at the end of this post.
- Take 4 small or 3 medium ripe bananas and mash them with a fork until most of the lumps are out. You should end up with about a cup and a half of mashed banana. Set the bananas aside while you mix the cake batter.
- Now cream together 1/3 cup of butter (75 grams) and 3/4 cup of sugar (150g) until all the sugar has been combined and there are no visible lumps of butter.
- Beat in one egg until the mixture become light and fluffy then mix in one teaspoon of vanilla essence.
- Sift in 1 and a 1/2 cups of plain all purpose flour (210g), 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1 teaspoon of baking powder. If you only have self-raising flour, that is perfectly fine, just omit the baking powder.
- Mix briefly, just to distribute the flour, then add the mashed bananas and mix well until all combined.
- And lastly, chop 3/4 cup walnuts (75g) quite finely (about 1/8″ to 1/4″), add to the batter and give it a final mix.
You will need a 10cm x 20cm (4″ x 8″) loaf tin. I lined mine with a loaf-tin liner, but you could use ordinary baking parchment to line the tin. Lining the tin with baking parchment makes it easier to remove the cake once it’s cooked. If you don’t happen to have baking parchment, you could just grease the loaf tin lightly with butter.
- Pour the batter into the lined loaf-tin.
- Bake for 1 hour in an oven that has been pre-heated to 190C / 375F, or until a wooden skewer inserted into the cake comes out without any batter sticking to it.
If you use the size of loaf tin that I recommend, the cake will rise to about 8cm (or 3″). If you use a larger tin, obviously the banana bread will not rise as much, and you will need a shorter cooking time.
This recipe has been made and tested at sea-level. See my post on baking at a high altitude for tips on how to adjust recipes to compensate for higher altitudes.
Can I freeze banana walnut bread?
Yes, you can freeze this.
Allow the banana bread to cool completely, then wrap in a layer of greaseproof or parchment paper, cover with a layer of tinfoil and place in a large plastic bag in the freezer.
The cake will keep for 6 months or longer.
To defrost, remove all the packaging, cover with a clean cloth and leave to defrost at room temperature
Convert grams to cups
To help you convert your recipes, I have created a handy Cookery Conversion Calculator which will convert ingredients between grams, ounces, tablespoons, cups and millilitres. I hope you will find it useful.
If you live at a high altitude you may find you need to adjust your baking recipes to compensate for this. You can read about how to do this in this post on baking at high altitudes.
Recipe – Easy banana walnut bread
Easy Banana Walnut Bread
- Mixing bowl
- Spatula OR wooden spoon
- Hand mixer or food processor
- 4" x 8" loaf tin (10cm x 20cm)
- Baking parchment
- 4 small ripe bananas mashed (1 to 1.5 cups)
- 1/3 cup butter (75g)
- 3/4 cup sugar (150g)
- 1 large egg
- 1 teaspoon vanilla essence
- 1½ cups plain all purpose flour 210g
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- ¾ cup chopped walnuts (approx 70 g)
- Prehead the oven to 190°C / 375°F
- Mash the bananas with a fork until most of the lumps have been removed.
- Chop the walnuts quite finely
- Cream 1/3 cup butter and 3/4 cup sugar in a mixing bowl until all the butter has been incorporated.
- Add one egg and the vanilla and beat until light and fluffy.
- Sift in the flour, salt and baking powder and stir briefly
- Add the bananas and mix until well combined.
- Add the chopped walnuts and stir to incorporate.
- Pour the batter into a lined 10cm x 20cm loaf tin
- Bake in the preheated oven for 1 hour, or until a wooden skewer inserted into the middle of the loaf comes out cleanly.
- Remove from the oven and allow to cool.
I am not a nutritionist. The nutrition information has been calculated using an on-line calculator, and is intended for information and guidance purposes only. If the nutrition information is important to you, you should consider calculating it yourself, using your preferred tool.
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