Naturally Sweetened Banana Bread

I tend to bake at least twice a week while we are in Italy, and lately I have been experimenting with a natural sweetener, date paste. This sweetener adds a subtle sweetness to baked goods and has become my new favorite sweetener to use in my baked goods. I love quick breads as they keep really well, come together quickly, and I can usually double the recipe and freeze one to be enjoyed in the future, and banana bread has always been a personal favorite of mine.

This moist, tasty banana bread was made with farro flour for added nutrition, heart healthy olive oil, and five very ripe bananas which help to create an extremely moist loaf. You can find farro (or spelt flour) at most health food stores, or in the organic section of many grocery stores. It comes in both white and whole grain varieties, and I chose to use the whole grain Farro flour in this recipe. The use of the whole grain flour gave this bread an earthy richness that complimented the flavor of the bananas really well.

Why Healthy

  • Dates are rich in several vitamins, minerals and fiber too. They contain calcium, sulfur, iron, potassium, phosphorous, manganese, copper and magnesium which are all beneficial for health.
  • Date paste is an all natural, plant based sweetener.
  • Farro flour adds whole grain goodness to these traditional cookies including added fiber and protein. Farro flour is rich in vitamins B and E, fiber, and in magnesium.
  • Bananas are one of our best sources of potassium, an essential mineral for maintaining normal blood pressure and heart function.
  • Olive oil is a heart healthy oil.

Print

Naturally Sweetened Banana Bread

Yield: Makes 1 (9 x 5 Inch Loaf)

Prep Time: 15 mins

Cook Time: 50 mins

Ingredients:

2 1/2 Cups Whole Grain Farro Flour
1 Teaspoon Baking Soda
1 Teaspoon Baking Powder
1/2 Teaspoon Salt
1 Teaspoon Ground Cinnamon
2 1/2 Cups Very Ripe Bananas (About 5 Medium), Mashed
3/4 Cup Homemade Date Paste
Homemade Date Paste
1/2 Cup Olive Oil
1/4 Cup Milk (I Used Almond Milk)
2 Large Eggs, At Room Temperature
1 Teaspoon Pure Vanilla Extract
1 Cup Chopped Walnuts, Divided

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. and lightly grease a 9x5 inch loaf pan.
In one bowl, combine the flour, baking soda and powder, salt, and cinnamon, and stir to mix well.
In another bowl, whisk together the bananas, date paste, olive oil, milk, eggs, and extract until blended.
Pour the wet ingredients into the dry, and stir with a wooden spoon just until mixed.
Stir in 3/4 cup of the walnuts.
Pour the batter into the prepared pan, and sprinkle the top with the walnuts.
Bake the loaf for 45 to 50 minutes, or until a cake tester or toothpick comes out clean when inserted into the center.
Cool for 15 minutes, then turn out of the pan and allow to cool completely on a wire rack.

 

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