crackly banana bread

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Crackly Banana Bread

The crackle comes from uncooked millet, a seed that can be cooked like a grain in pilafs, but here is left crunchy. It’s sold in health food, speciality stores and many larger ones (found mine at Whole Foods). If you don’t have t and don’t want to seek it out, however, the recipe absolutely works without it and makes a delightful, wholesome spin on banana bread with no less deliciousness than the original.

I suspect a gluten-free flour mix would work well here, but didn’t test it out in my kitchen. If you’d like to play around a mix of whole-grain flours would make a lovely partial swap too (perhaps some rye, buckwheat or barley flours).

Miss the bourbon and butter? You might like my Jacked-Up Banana Bread too!

3 large ripe-to-over-ripe bananas
1 large egg
1/3 cup (80 ml) virgin coconut oil, warmed until it liquefies, or olive oil
1/3 cup (65 grams) light brown sugar
1/4 to 1/3 cup (60 to 80 ml) maple syrup (less for less sweetness, of course)
1 teaspoon (5 ml) vanilla extract
1 teaspoon (5 grams) baking soda
1/4 teaspoon table salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
Pinch of ground cloves
1 1/2 cups (180 grams) white whole-wheat flour (or flour mixture of your choice, see Note up top)
1/4 cup (50 grams) uncooked millet

Preheat your oven to 350°F and butter a 9×5-inch loaf pan. In the bottom of a large bowl, mash bananas with a potato masher or the back of a wooden spoon until virtually smooth but a few tiny lumps remain. Whisk in egg, then oil, brown sugar, syrup and vanilla extract. Sprinkle baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves over mixture and stir until combined. Stir in flour until just combined, then millet.

Pour mixture into prepared pan and bake until a tester comes out clean, about 40 to 50 minutes. Cool loaf in pan on rack.

Do ahead: Loaves keep well in the freezer, wrapped tightly in plastic wrap, for a month or more. Ours kept at room temperature for a record week, becoming more moist each day.

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