I love desserts based on the principle that the more chocolate there is, the better. Rich piles of hot fudge on chocolate ice cream, chocolate somehow nestled into sticky buns, and just a good old piece of dark chocolate on its own. What could be better? But I have to confess that even I sometimes hit my limit on richness. I don’t think I’ve ever been able to have a second slice of chocolate cheesecake shortly after the first. Sometimes you just need something light, something semi-redeeming. How about a nice, sturdy, unassuming slice of deliciousness? Enter peanut butter banana bread!
Is there anything homier than banana bread? I don’t know what kids ate on fifties sitcoms for snacks, but it was probably something wedged between two slices of Wonder bread, or banana bread. It brings to mind dogs running gleefully after children, the sun shining on a temperate July morning, and me absolutely filling my face.
This recipe is one that I don’t think you have to feel too guilty about having a second slice of. I’ve adapted it from a banana bread recipe I originally found on My Natural Family. I tinkered with the ingredient amounts slightly, and of course I added the joy of peanut butter. Because peanut butter=love. It took me a while to decide exactly how much peanut butter to use. The first couple of times I tried 1/2 cup, but this turned into peanut butter bread. And although that sounds like a nifty proposition now that I think about it, generally when you eat banana bread the unspoken idea is that you probably want it to taste at least a little like bananas. This did not. I reduced the amount to a 1/4 cup and had the exact opposite results. (Knock, knock. Peanut butter? Are you in there?)
I settled on 1/3 of peanut butter, and much like Little Red Riding Hood, I found that it was just right. A subtle hint of peanut butter, but still obviously banana bread. I had to eat a lot of banana bread to figure this out. I’m just a selfless person like that.
So start the coffee and have an extra big slice for me, because if it has fruit in it, it’s practically a health food.
- 2 cups all purpose flour
- 1 tsp. baking soda
- 1 tsp. cinnamon
- ½ cup unsweetened applesauce
- 4 large overripe bananas
- 2 large eggs
- ¾ cup dark brown sugar
- ⅓ peanut butter
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- ½ tsp. kosher salt
- Preheat oven to 350 Fahrenheit.
- Grease a 9x5 loaf pan
- In a medium bowl, mash the bananas. Set aside.
- In another medium bowl, mix flour, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt. Set aside.
- Mix together brown sugar and applesauce. When blended, add in the peanut butter.
- Add the peanut butter mixture to the bananas.
- Add eggs and vanilla extract to banana mixture.
- Pour the banana mixture into the dry ingredients and mix well.
- Pour the batter into the prepared pan.
- Cook 60-65 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into it comes out with just a couple crumbs.