Jan 7, 2015

Mom's Super Easy, Flexible, and DELISH Banana Bread or Muffins Recipe

Growing up, this is the banana bread recipe my mom used:

Dontcha love the splattered, marked up paper? Sadly, the cookbook fell apart long ago, so I can't tell you where it originally came from.
banana bread recipe

But now that I'm the one doing the baking, I've found that even though we've tried many other banana bread or muffin recipes (including Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana Muffins - which are very good, too), my mom's recipe is the one that's everyone's favorite. I've only made one major change, which is to not use unhealthy shortening - and I always feel free to play around with the recipe with added ingredients. Here's how I do it.

Mom's Super Easy, Flexible, and Delish Banana Bread or Muffins

1 3/4 cups all purpose flour (or use 1 cup all purpose flour and 3/4 cup whole wheat flour)
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup of butter (room temperature) or coconut oil
2/3 cup granulated sugar
2 eggs
3 ripe bananas*

Optional ingredients:

chocolate chips
peanut butter chips
chopped walnuts

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. If making muffins: Put paper liners in a muffin tin, or lightly grease the tin with coconut oil; set aside. If making bread: Lightly grease a 9x5x3 in. loaf pan with coconut oil; set aside.

2. In a mixing bowl, combine all the ingredients except the eggs and bananas. Once the butter or coconut oil is thoroughly mixed in, add the eggs and beat until just incorporated. Finally, fold in the bananas and any of the optional ingredients, if using. (You'll notice there are no measurements for these optional ingredients. I just toss in a handful, stir, then add more until I like what the batter looks like! Bear in mind that adding berries - especially frozen ones - will make the batter more moist and will increase the baking time.)

Mixing in some chocolate chips. (Optional)
3. Spoon the batter into the prepared loaf pan or muffin tin. If making muffins, fill each cup about 3/4 full. Bake in the preheated oven. If making bread: bake for about 70 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. If making muffins: Bake for about 20-25 minutes, or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.
If baking muffins, fill the tins about 3/4 full.
* When making banana bread or muffins, the bananas should be well browned - even black. For me, this is no problem; when I buy bananas, one or two always seem to get overly brown before my family eats them. I pop these into a freezer bag and then into the freezer. Sometimes I take the time to peel them first, which means they can be popped into this recipe even while still frozen. Other times, I don't bother to peel them, so I defrost them for a bit on the counter, or microwave them for few seconds; you only need to defrost them enough that you can peel them.

If for some reason you don't have any ripe bananas in the freezer, you can instantly ripen them by putting them in your oven.

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