This healthy vegan banana bread is studded with blueberries, fluffy and tastes better than your local cafe's banana bread! It is sugar free and can be made gluten free!
I've refined this recipe over many years so can honestly say this is the best vegan banana bread. It has no dense spots (like other recipes), is moist and packed with banana. The recipe is also very customisable and almost fool-proof!
Step by step video of how to make this healthy banana bread recipe
Ingredients for vegan banana bread
Very ripe bananas. The spottier, the better! Ripe bananas are more flavoursome and higher in natural sugars which is perfect for banana bread. It also means we can add less sugar/sweeteners!
Dairy free milk such as almond, soy or coconut.
Light-tasting vegetable oil such as sunflower or olive. If you use olive, just make sure you pick one that doesn't have a strong flavour.
All-purpose flour, whole wheat flour or even spelt flour! I've tried all these flours and they all result in a fluffy and wholesome banana bread. The pictures in this post show a banana bread made with whole wheat spelt flour.
Coconut sugar, regular sugar or your choice of sugar replacer. Unrefined coconut sugar adds beautiful caramel note which complements the banana. If you want to make this banana bread sugar free, you can use erythritol or stevia. They do the trick but just don't add a caramel richness to the bread.
Note: you can reduce the amount of sugar. However, keep in mind that sugar adds moisture to the banana bread and makes it fluffier. Reducing the sugar will make a denser bread.
Chopped walnuts or pecans for that extra crunch! (not pictured)
Blueberries (fresh or frozen) which adds a little FUN to your healthy banana bread!
I also added a little apple cider vinegar which helps tenderise the banana bread and allows it to melt-in-your-mouth. And of course cinnamon for that nostalgic flavour and baking powder to make the banana bread FLUFFY!
Tip: to make a healthy vegan banana bread, use whole wheat or spelt flour, olive oil and coconut sugar.
ONE BOWL vegan banana bread
This is the best vegan banana bread because you only need one bowl! That means, less washing and more of doing the things you love (like eating)! You don't have to whisk any aquafaba or prepare any egg replacers. It's a very forgiving and customisable recipe :).
Simply, mash the banana in a bowl with a fork, masher or whatever you have. I personally like to mash my bananas roughly as it gives texture to the final banana bread. Then add all the wet ingredients and mix through.
Add all the dry ingredients and mix until just before it's combined. There should still be some 'pockets' of flour, oil or unmixed batter. We're not mixing the batter fully as we still need to fold through the blueberries!
Then add your blueberries and fold them into the banana bread mixture.
I'd recommend folding the blueberries into the batter as we don't want to overwork the batter. Overmixing any cake batter results in a less fluffy final cake which may even be chewy. No one wants that!
Baking the banana bread
Baking the banana bread is pretty straight forward!
However, I'd recommend checking it after 30-40 minutes. As banana bread is packed with fruit, it may brown quickly in the oven. If the outside of the bread is browning too quickly but the loaf hasn't baked through, simply:
- reduce the heat of the oven and/or
- cover the loaf pan with aluminium foil or
- cover the loaf pan with an oven safe bowl.
Methods 2 and 3 forces the oven to cook the middle of the banana bread and reduces the radiant heat which cooks the outside of the bread.
How to serve
This healthy vegan banana bread recipe is absolutely delicious by itself and doesn't need to be served with any toppings. However, if you still want to take the bread to the next level, you may:
- Top the banana bread with coconut yoghurt and even with some blueberry compote, like below! To make a berry compote, make ½ batch of the compote from my baked vegan cheesecake recipe using only blueberries.
- Serve a warm slice of banana bread with vegan ice cream, yoghurt or even vegan custard. Or spread some almond butter on it and top it with fresh berries!
- Toast a slice and marvel in its crispy exterior and soft interior. Spread some vegan butter on a slice and enjoy!
Some questions and answers!
Yes! Your banana bread will still be moist but a little more dense. The original recipe is very fluffy and using applesauce shouldn't give the bread any dense spots.
Yes go ahead! However, vegan butter is more solid than oil so your banana bread may feel a little dry when it cools down. I'd recommend reheating your banana bread when you want to enjoy/serve it!
Yes this recipe makes wonderful banana bread muffins! Or check out my Vegan banana bread, raspberry and white chocolate muffins.
Yes, I actually do this all the time!
Yes banana bread freezes very well! I'd recommend cutting up individual portions of banana bread and freezing them seperately or in a large airtight container with baking paper in between each slice.
Other vegan banana bread recipes
Banana and blueberry bread
- 2 x (~200g total) very ripe bananas
- ¾ cup (190g) dairy free milk, such as almond, soy or coconut
- 3 tbsp (45g) light-tasting vegetable oil, such as sunflower or rapeseed
- 1 tbsp white or apple cider vinegar, optional
- 2 cups (250g) plain or all-purpose flour, whole wheat flour or spelt flour (note 1 for gluten free)
- ¾ cup (120g) coconut sugar, regular sugar, brown sugar or granulated sweetener of choice e.g. erythritol
- ½ cup (60g) chopped walnuts, or pecans (optional)
- 2 ½ tsp baking powder
- 2 tsp ground cinnamon
- Pinch of any good quality salt
- ½ cup (75g) fresh or frozen blueberries, (note 2)
To decorate (optional)
- 1 (~100g) banana, sliced lengthways
- ¼ cup (40g) blueberries
- Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F). Line a 20 cm (8 inch) or longer loaf tin with baking paper. The longer your loaf tin, the shorter amount of time it'll take to bake the banana bread.
- Add the bananas to a mixing bowl and mash until it forms a thick lumpy paste. Add the rest of the wet ingredients and mix until thoroughly combined.
- Add all of the dry ingredients except the blueberries and mix until just before it's combined (there'll be a small amount of unmixed batter/flour). Add the blueberries and fold the batter until there are no more lumps of flour and the blueberries are incorporated.
- Pour the batter into your loaf tin. If desired, top with the extra sliced banana and blueberries.
- Bake in the oven for around 1 hour or until a knife can be inserted into the centre of the banana bread and it comes out clean. If the bread is browning too quickly on the outside and still uncooked inside, reduce the heat of your oven by 10°C (50°F) and/or cover the cake tin with aluminum foil (or an oven safe bowl) and continue baking until the banana bread is cooked through.
- Allow the it to cool in the tin for 10 minutes then cool on a wire rack.
- Enjoy the banana bread warm by itself, toasted, with butter, dairy free yoghurt or even with ice cream! Store leftovers in an airtight container at room temperature for 3 days, in the fridge for 5 days or in the freezer for up to 1 month. However, it usually doesn't last that long!
- To make vegan gluten free banana bread, substiute the flour with ¾ cup (120g) gluten free all-purpose flour and 1 ¼ cups (125g) almond flour (blanched almond meal).
- If you don't have access to blueberries, you can use raspberries, chopped strawberries, even vegan chocolate chips or simply omit. If you don't add extra fruit, your baking time will be shorter (and your loaf will be a little smaller).
This recipe was first published in July 2018 and updated in July 2021.
Please leave a comment below if you made this recipe, have any questions or thoughts! Your comment will help other readers and Rainbow Nourishments.