Banana Bread As Therapy

November 1, 2011

in Breads, Pumpkin


I’m having one of those days where I feel like I’m being punk’d by my co-workers. My initial reaction was to throw my hands up and get back in bed. After deleting all of the massive documents I’ve been working on and yelling a few key expletives, of course.


I got as far as the expletives and then spotted a couple of past-their-prime bananas out of the corner of my eye. Baking was a better idea, and what better way to take out a little frustration than by using way too much force to mash bananas? I can only hope no one saw this through my kitchen window. Scary.


I decided to get a little creative and thought I could cut down on the oil by subbing in some applesauce. Only, I didn’t have any. [enter another expletive]

What I did have was an odd amount of leftover canned pumpkin in my fridge, so into the batter it went. Molasses? Sure, why not! How about coconut oil? Perfect.


It’s an unusual take on banana bread for sure, but I found that I actually couldn’t taste the pumpkin at all. And the texture of this bread? Very moist and satisfyingly dense. Ideal for a chilly day or a near mental breakdown.


Secret Ingredient Banana Bread
Recipe type: Bread
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 1 loaf
This is not your traditional banana bread recipe, but it makes great use of fall's seasonal flavors. Plus, there's only a small amount of oil and sugar. So go ahead, enjoy a second slice!
  • 2 Large, Very Ripe Bananas
  • ¼ C. Brown Sugar (or sugar of your choice)
  • ¼ C. Coconut Oil, Melted (canola would also work)
  • ¼ C. Pumpkin Puree (or applesauce)
  • 1 Tbs. Molasses (optional)
  • 1 C. All Purpose Flour
  • 1 C. Whole Wheat Flour
  • 1 Tsp. Baking Soda
  • 1 Tsp. Cinnamon
  • ½ Tsp. Sea Salt
  1. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease a 9x5 inch loaf pan.
  2. In a large bowl, mash the bananas until very few lumps remain.
  3. Add the sugar, oil, pumpkin (or applesauce), and molasses, if using. Whisk to combine.
  4. Sift in flours, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt. Mix with a wooden spoon until just combined. The batter will be very thick.
  5. Transfer batter to loaf pan and bake for 30-35 minutes. A knife inserted in the center should come out clean when it's done.
  6. Allow to cool slightly (if you can!) and enjoy with a little of your favorite buttery spread.


{ 13 comments… read them below or add one }

Kris | November 2, 2011 at 5:13 am

YES!!!! OMG, I need to make more banana bread!! This usually becomes my sunday breakfasts during the fall and winter months because I love it so much warmed up in the oven with coconut oil all over it!!



Emmy (Wine and Butter) November 2, 2011 at 12:39 pm

I’ve just found your blog and I adore it! Im in a similar position where I just quit my full time job to pursue my studies in nutrition. Unfortunately, Ive realised that there are virtually no jobs as freelance nutritionists so I’m NOW about to start a cooking course – all the while getting poorer by the minute, but also feeling quite liberated. Whenever I get scared I just think ‘how would I want to look back on my life?’ – and I feel so much more confident in my choice. Also feel more confident when I’m doing things like abaking amazing banana bread! :) – have you tried the Chez us recipe with sour cream??


Amanda November 2, 2011 at 1:15 pm

Thanks, Emilia! I whole-heartedly agree with your question about how you’d want your life to look in retrospect, and using that to guide your decisions. It’s not easy (emotionally or financially), but I had a moment where I was sitting in my cubicle a while back and thought “this is it, this is my life. If I’m doing this at 40, I will be devastated.” It definitely lit a fire in me to live without regrets.

I haven’t heard of the banana bread recipe with sour cream. Feel free to leave a link and I’ll check it out!


Emily November 2, 2011 at 5:02 pm

Yay! I love banana bread and this recipe sounds delicious.
We all have days where throwing our hands in the air and giving up seems like the easiest option. It’s just a matter of overcoming those moments and finding the positive in every situation. Plus, having something like baking to escape to always helps. Being in the kitchen really is therapeutic. :)


Shannon @ Healthiful Balance November 2, 2011 at 6:15 pm

Banana bread is soo delicious! :)


Gena November 2, 2011 at 6:22 pm

This is beautiful. And therapeutic indeed.


Amanda November 2, 2011 at 9:59 pm

Thanks, Gena!


Averie @ Love Veggies and Yoga November 4, 2011 at 1:36 pm

this is amazing looking!

tried to get into your site yesterday and the day before and was getting a weird error msg. Im here now to say…yum!


Amanda November 4, 2011 at 1:50 pm

Thanks, Averie! Yeah, bluehost was having some issues with their servers the other day – very frustrating! Hopefully that doesn’t happen again.


Ragnhild November 5, 2011 at 8:56 am

Hi Amanda :)
I just found your blog, and I absolutely love it!! So many beautiful pictures, and wonderful recipes! I will definentely come back again and again and again.. ;)
I love banana bread, but I should make it way more often!
Have a lovely weekend :)


Amanda November 5, 2011 at 12:29 pm

Thanks, Ragnhild! :)


Lindsey @ Morningstar Project November 5, 2011 at 3:29 pm

That looks sooooo good! And the fact it’s free therapy, even better :)


Julie February 6, 2014 at 1:14 pm

I’m baking this bread right now! I used half whole wheat pastry flour and half AP flour and I didn’t have pumpkin, so I used an egg and chopped up 2 medjool dates for some extra sweetness :) The batter tastes delicious!
Thanks for sharing your recipe.


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