I always eat breakfast but during the week, I need something quick and healthy. Normally, I eat overnight oats loaded with all kinds of good stuff (hemp seeds, flax seed, almond milk) but occasionally I like to switch things up. The grocery store I shop at has a reduced produce section for fruits and veggies that they can no longer sell. That is where I get bananas to make Vegan Banana Bread.
Food waste is a terrible problem in this country. I am happy that the grocery store I shop at is trying to reduce it by selling produce that can't be sold for it's regular price at a significantly reduced price. I bought 6 ripe bananas for $0.79 cents. What a deal! Plus, I didn't have to wait for the bananas to ripen, I brought them home and cooked the bread the same day. I only used 4 and 1/2 bananas, so I froze the remaining to add to smoothies.
When I make a quick bread recipe like this, I am always experimenting with making it vegetarian or vegan. I do this because it is healthier for us to avoid meat based products a majority of the time. Bananas, while they have gotten some bad press for sugar content, are the best source for potassium and vitamin B6. Also, the vitamin C and manganese provide antioxidant protection against free radicals. Since they are a great source of potassium, bananas help promote a healthy heart since potassium rich foods can help lower blood pressure.
This recipe is very easy to put together. Mix the wet ingredients first, then add the dry ingredients and pop it into the oven. I used dried figs as an add-in but you can use anything that is in the house. Chopped nuts, other dried fruits like dried cherries or raisins, and seeds, like pumpkin seeds. If you don't think you'll eat the loaf in one week, you can freeze it for up to a month.
I hope you like the recipe! If you make my vegan banana bread, don’t forget to tag me on Instagram as @heatherleehurst and use the #heathershealthhabits hashtag. I love seeing your takes on my recipes! If you would like to receive free recipes and healthy living tips, follow my blog on Bloglovin.
Vegan Banana Bread
For the wet ingredients:
1 1/3 cups mashed very ripe banana (about 4 medium or 3 large)
2 tablespoons ground flaxseed
1/3 cup plant-based milk
1/3 cup coconut oil, melted
2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
For the dry ingredients:
1/2 cup rolled oats
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 1/2 cups whole-wheat flour
7 dried figs chopped
Sliced banana, chopped walnuts, and/or chocolate chips, for topping (optional)
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly spray a 9x5-inch loaf pan with non-stick cooking spray.
In a large bowl, mash the banana until almost smooth.
Stir the wet ingredients (ground flax, milk, melted oil, maple syrup, and vanilla) into the banana until combined.
Stir the dry ingredients (oats, baking soda, baking powder, flour and figs) into the wet mixture. Stop stirring once incorporated.
Spoon the dough into the loaf pan and spread out evenly. Add your desired toppings and gently press them into the dough to adhere.
Bake the loaf, uncovered, for 45 to 55 minutes until a knife inserted into the middle comes out clean.
Place the loaf pan on a cooling rack for 30 minutes. Then, slide a knife around the loaf to loosen it and gently remove it from the pan, placing it directly onto the cooling rack until completely cooled.
Slice the loaf once cooled. The loaf will keep in the fridge tightly wrapped for 3 to 4 days, or it can be frozen for 4 to 6 weeks.