Ultimate Banana Bread

Moist and delicious banana bread loaded with tons of banana flavor! This is the only banana bread recipe you’ll ever need. Packed full of mashed bananas, cinnamon and crunchy toasted walnuts. When I first saw this recipe and saw how many bananas it called for I knew that it would be a hit. Many banana bread recipes only use about 3 bananas total, but with this recipe 6 are used! You read that right-6 bananas!

In order to use so many bananas in the recipe without it turning into pudding, the excess moisture needed to be removed. In order to achieve the most banana flavor the bananas are heated in the microwave to release their juices. The banana juice is then reduced resulting in a concentrated banana liquor intensifying the banana flavor without making the bread too wet.

Ultimate Banana Bread

Moist and delicious banana bread loaded with tons of banana flavor! This is the only banana bread recipe you’ll ever need.

Yield: 1 (9inch) loaf


1 ¾ cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon table salt
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
6 large very ripe bananas (about 2 1/4 pounds), peeled
8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly
2 large eggs
3/4 cup packed light brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup walnuts, toasted and coarsely chopped
2 teaspoons granulated sugar


Adjust an oven rack to the middle position and heat oven to 350 degrees. Spray an 8½ by 4½-inch loaf pan with nonstick cooking spray.
In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon; set aside.
Spread the walnuts onto a baking sheet and place in preheated oven 5-7 minutes until fragrant. Shake the baking sheet halfway through baking so the nuts will toast evenly. Remove nuts from oven and set aside to cool completely.
In a large microwave-safe bowl, place 5 bananas in the bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Cut several steam vents in the plastic wrap with a paring knife. Microwave on high power until bananas are soft and have released liquid, about 5 minutes. Transfer bananas to fine-mesh strainer placed over medium bowl and allow to drain, stirring occasionally, 15 minutes (you will have ½ to ¾ cup liquid).
Transfer banana liquid to a medium saucepan and cook over medium-high heat until reduced to ¼ cup, about 5 minutes. Remove pan from heat, stir reduced liquid into bananas, and mash until somewhat smooth. Whisk in butter, eggs, brown sugar, and vanilla.
Pour banana mixture into flour mixture and stir until just combined with some streaks of flour remaining. Gently fold in walnuts. Scrape batter into prepared pan and smooth surface with a spatula.. Slice remaining banana into ¼-inch-thick slices. Place banana slices on top of either side of loaf, leaving 1½-inch-wide space down center to ensure an even rise. Sprinkle loaf with granulated sugar.
Bake in preheated oven 55-60 minutes until golden brown or toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean. Cool bread in pan on wire rack 15 minutes, then remove loaf from pan and continue to cool on wire rack. Serve warm or at room temperature. Store leftovers at room temperature wrapped in plastic wrap.

Recipe Notes: Be sure to use very ripe, heavily speckled (or even black) bananas in this recipe.
This recipe can be made using 5 thawed frozen bananas; since they release a lot of liquid naturally, they can bypass the microwaving in step 4 and go directly into the fine-mesh strainer.
If you use a 9 by 5-inch loaf pan, start checking for doneness five minutes earlier than advised in the recipe.

One Year Ago: Hearty Chili Con Carne 

22 Responses to “Ultimate Banana Bread”

  1. #
    Rufus' Food and Spirits Guide — September 29, 2011 @ 11:30 am

    Look how pretty that is with the row of bananas! Love the idea of toasting the nuts.

  2. #
    ChgoJohn — September 29, 2011 @ 12:27 pm

    You’re right. 6 bananas in 1 loaf makes this a killer banana bread recipe.

  3. #
    jennknee — September 29, 2011 @ 12:40 pm

    You are officially my hero.

  4. #
    geet — September 29, 2011 @ 1:10 pm

    Oh wow…I absolutely love banana. Your picture makes it even more tempting.

  5. #
    spiffycookie — September 29, 2011 @ 3:36 pm

    I absolutely love the little pieces of banana on top. So pretty!

  6. #
    KatsHealthCorner — September 29, 2011 @ 6:56 pm

    Banana Bread is the best! 😀

  7. #
    Kristy — September 29, 2011 @ 10:53 pm

    I was just thinking that we were getting close to wrapping up our quest for the best banana bread. Seems I have another one to try though! 🙂

  8. #
    chicaandaluza — September 30, 2011 @ 3:10 am

    That´´s a lot of bananas – bet it tastes great!

  9. #
    Kim @ Eat What Your've Got — September 30, 2011 @ 5:55 am

    I have some bananas that I froze because they were getting too ripe. I am going to give this recipe a try with those. It looks delicious!

  10. #
    Krista {Budget Gourmet Mom} — September 30, 2011 @ 11:18 am

    That looks great! I love the banana reduction…talk about intense flavor! Yum!!

  11. #
    Bake Your Day — October 1, 2011 @ 8:45 am

    Everyone needs a great banana bread recipe. This sounds delicious and looks perfect. Cook’s Illustrated is one of my favorite cookbooks!

  12. #
    Lisa — October 1, 2011 @ 12:11 pm

    I love your blog and recipes. Just made Pumpkin Scones–absolutely delicious! Can’t wait to try the banana bread!

    • Christina replied: — October 3rd, 2011 @ 9:29 pm

      I love that you enjoyed the pumpkin scones…Thanks so much for letting me know! I hope you enjoy the banana bread too…let me know how it turns out for you! 🙂

  13. #
    May Halliday Reid — October 3, 2011 @ 9:31 am

    Different from my basic receipe which doesn’t include all of the same ingredients. I’m looking forward to giving it a go.

  14. #
    Donalyn — October 3, 2011 @ 11:08 am

    That looks awesome – putting on my “to-try” list!

  15. #
    Karen — October 8, 2011 @ 12:21 pm

    I made the banana bread and, as promised, it was the ultimate. Thank you for the recipe. I am now eying the chili recipe… yummmmm

    • Christina replied: — October 9th, 2011 @ 9:42 pm

      I am so happy to hear that you enjoyed the banana bread! This recipe has definitely replaced all of my other banana bread recipes! 🙂

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  17. #
    Maria — April 5, 2012 @ 6:51 am

    I made the banana bread, but probably should have read the entire directions first! I ended up up mashing all 6 bananas and skipping the steps to microwave and cook the banana liquid. It still came out amazing!! Two thumbs up!!

    • Christina replied: — April 9th, 2012 @ 9:53 pm

      Ha! I admit I have gotten myself in some sticky situations by only skimming the recipe before starting. I am so glad to hear that it turned out for you though! 🙂

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  19. #
    Caroline — June 4, 2014 @ 12:43 pm

    Christina!! I made this last night and HOLY MOLY it really is the best banana bread I’ve ever tasted. I’ll be posting it soon. All I want to do is go home and eat the entire loaf…ha!

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