This is the BEST vegan banana bread recipe that I have ever tried. It is a true café style banana bread that is egg-free and dairy-free, with a crunchy top and soft, moist centre. It is so easy to make using everyday ingredients and makes the best breakfast, morning tea or delicious snack.
Banana bread is one of the greatest things to come from forgetting you bought bananas last week in an attempt to be healthy, only to have them turn brown and a bit gross in the bottom of your fruit bowl.
It’s the reason I sometimes buy bananas only to resist eating them all week so I am ready to bake come the weekend and enjoy banana bread for morning tea the following week. It’s very worth it.
So what makes me able to claim that this is the BEST vegan banana bread on the vast internet? Well, in my opinion it is really simple – this banana bread is not trying to be anything else. Most vegan banana bread recipes don’t tend to use sugar or are masquerading as healthy. This recipe is just banana bread in its truest, tastiest form. So yes, this recipe uses white flour and sugar (like a lot of sugar) and really has no nutritional benefit but it. tastes. good.
And yes, it is still vegan. No butter, no milk, no eggs.
So while I am all for the healthy version (if that’s what you’re looking for, try my banana and oat bread recipe), this is where I am at today.
This easy vegan banana bread recipe is made using pretty simple ingredients that you’ll either have in your pantry already, or will be able to easily pick up at the grocery store.
- Bananas – the browner and spottier the better for this one. You want to make sure the bananas are super sweet and soft for the best flavour and texture in this recipe, so that does mean leaving them past the point where you’d eat them on their own.
- Canola oil – the secret to a soft and moist banana bread. You can use any light tasting oil as a substitute. Melted coconut oil would also work.
- Brown sugar – for both a rich, caramelly flavour but also for extra moisture so your bread isn’t dry.
- Vanilla – adds extra flavour
- Plain flour – known as all purpose in the US, I find this gives the best result for flavour and texture but if you wanted you could use wholemeal instead, your bread will just be a little more dense. I haven’t tried this recipe with gluten free flour.
- Baking powder and bicarbonate of soda – both are essential in this recipe to help give our bread lift in the absence of egg and also make sure the bread is soft and light rather than dense.
- Cinnamon – gives that warm spiced flavour that pairs so well with banana.
- Walnuts – adds a bit of crunch and texture to the banana bread as well as a yummy nutty flavour. They are however not essential to the success of this recipe, so you can leave them out if you don’t have any/would prefer without.
- Ground flaxseed – mixed with a bit of water this becomes a gel-like consistency and works as an egg-replacer in this recipe to help bind the ingredients together so your banana bread won’t crumble and fall apart. This is also known as flaxseed meal, but if you can’t find it then you can also use chia seeds as a replacement as they work the same way when activated with water.
This is a two bowl recipe making clean up really, really simple. It could be a one bowl recipe if you really wanted to avoid washing up that extra bowl, but I do prefer to have my dry ingredients mixed together first before adding to the wet to make sure the baking powder and bicarb soda have been evenly dispersed.
You’ll also need a whisk, maybe a rubber spatula and a loaf pan. The one I use is 8 x 4 inches and I find this size helps ensure I get nice tall slices.
Start by making your flax-egg, which basically is just mixing together the ground flaxseed with water in a small bowl and setting aside. In about 5-10 minutes you’ll have a gel-like consistency which is exactly what we’re looking for.
Next, whisk together all of the dry ingredients and set aside.
In your large mixing bowl, mash the bananas. You can do this with a fork, or if they are ripe enough it’s easy enough to just use your whisk for this step.
Add in the oil, brown sugar, vanilla and your flax-egg and whisk together until combined. Add in your dry ingredients and again mix until everything is combined.
Finally use your spatula to fold through the chopped walnuts.
This is a sticky batter, so once everything has come together, pour it into your greased and lined loaf pan.
I also enjoy adding even more sugar by giving the top a quick sprinkle with white sugar before going in the oven to give the top some sparkle and a little sweet crunch. Not necessary but definitely a great addition.
Bake until the top is golden brown and a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. Ideally you should wait until the banana bread is cool before cutting into it so you get nice clean slices, but I totally understand if that’s not happening.
Warm, freshly baked banana bread is the best.
How To Freeze Banana Bread
To freeze, wrap each slice individually in plastic wrap and place in a zip lock bag in the freezer for up to three months.
When you are ready to eat, grab a slice, let it defrost on the bench until room temperature, or zap in the microwave for 30 seconds. I then often like to give it a little toast on the sandwich press.
You can store your banana bread, covered so it retains its moisture, for 2-3 days on the counter or a bit longer in the fridge. If you want to keep it even longer than that, see the above instructions for freezing.
Yes, you can replace the walnuts in this recipe with chocolate chips instead.
More banana recipes:
Still got some overripe bananas that need using? Why not give one of these other recipes a try.
The BEST Vegan Banana Bread
- 2 tablespoons ground flaxseed
- 5 tablespoons water
- 3 small or 2 large overripe bananas
- ½ cup canola oil
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1 ¾ cups plain flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ½ cup walnuts chopped
- 1 teaspoon white sugar optional
- Preheat oven to 180°C and grease and line a 8 x 4 inch loaf pan with baking paper. In a small bowl, mix together ground flaxseed and water and set aside for 5-10 minutes.
- In a large mixing bowl, add banana and mash with a fork until creamy. Add oil, brown sugar and vanilla and using a whisk, mix together. Add in flaxseed mix to the bowl and whisk to combine.
- In a medium bowl, sift flour, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda and cinnamon. Using a spatula, stir through to make sure everything is combined.
- Add dry ingredients to wet and use a spatula to mix through until completely combined. Add in chopped walnuts and fold through. The mixture will be quite sticky.
- Pour into the prepared pan evenly and sprinkle white sugar on top if desired. Bake in preheated oven for 50-55 minutes or until a skewer when inserted comes out clean. Turn out onto a wire rack to cool before slicing for serving or freezing.
Nutritional information is provided as a guide only and is calculated using automated online tools, therefore we cannot guarantee the accuracy. We encourage you to make your own calculations based on the actual ingredients used in your recipe.