Healthy Chocolate Banana Bread that is sweetened with bananas, maple syrup, gluten-free friendly and loaded with chocolate chips! Dairy free banana bread recipe.
So this double chocolate banana bread is kind of amazing. One could argue this would be suitable for breakfast… or perhaps a healthy dessert. Either way it’s best you add this to your baking list as soon as possible.
Once you have a recipe like a classic banana bread down and you’re familiar with substitutions, making variations is fun (and delicious).
Healthy Chocolate Banana Bread
Ingredients Needed for chocolate banana bread
- 1:1 gluten-free baking flour or whole wheat white flour (see notes in recipe page)
- unsweetened cocoa powder
- baking soda
- maple syrup
- non-dairy milk (your choice)
- chocolate chips
Let’s chat about the process
With muffins and quick bread recipes using whole grain flours, it’s a good idea to mix together the dry and wet ingredients separately. This will ensure the ingredients are incorporated properly and the texture of the bread stays soft. There is a reason I write the directions in a certain way, so it’s best to stick to the steps as written.
Note: You can use an electric mixer or mix everything by hand with whisk and spatula.
First you’ll mix the dry ingredients separately and then set aside.
Next you’ll begin to incorporate the wet ingredients by starting with the (well) mashed banana, maple syrup, oil, vanilla and eggs. Then you’ll begin to slowly stir in the flour and gently add the milk to combine everything together. You can stop mixing when there are just bits of flour remaining, because everything will get fully mixed when you fold in the chocolate chips.
Some notes regarding this recipe
Flour – This recipe was tested with both 1:1 Gluten-Free Baking Flour and Whole Wheat Pastry Flour. You can also use half whole wheat, half all-purpose. All whole wheat white flour will also be fine, just slightly more dense in texture.
Sweetener – Maple syrup is the main sweetener here. You can also sub agave, honey and likely date syrup. I found I preferred the taste of this chocolate banana bread with an additional 1/3 cup of granulated sugar (i.e. cane, Swerve or coconut) but if you don’t have much of a sweet tooth, the added chocolate chips may be enough. Making sure you use really spotty bananas (black even) will help with not needing any additional dry sweetener.
Bananas – I did not test this with applesauce (it’s banana bread, duh) but if you’re short on bananas, you should be able to make up the difference with applesauce, more oil, or yogurt. For example, if you only have 3/4 cup mashed bananas just add 1/2 cup applesauce. Or greek yogurt. If adding oil I think you’d only need 1/2 cup total (not in addition to what’s already called for).
Banana bread recipes are often forgiving if you know how to substitute different wet ingredients into the mix.
Eggs – I did not test this recipe to be egg-free yet, but seeing that this recipe is adapted from the Simple Banana Muffins and Carrot Cake Banana Bread, you should be fine to use 2 TBPS flaxseed meal mixed with 6 TBSP water, let sit to gel and add as noted in recipe card where you’d add the eggs.
Can you make this bread into muffins?
Why YES! Yes you can 😀
This recipe will yield about 15 regular-sized muffins. Simply fill your muffin pan about 3/4 way full. Bake at 375ºF (a touch higher than what is used for the bread) for about 20-25 minutes. Every oven is different so you could even check at 18 minutes. Use the toothpick method. If the inserted toothpick comes out with wet batter, add another 3-5 minutes. Mine took 23 minutes.
Let me know if you try this recipe by leaving a comment and review below the recipe! I love hearing from you and it helps others find the recipe too!
- 1 cup gluten-free 1:1 baking flour + 2 TBSP* (see notes)
- 2/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 1/4 cups well mashed banana, equal to 3 medium extra ripe bananas
- 1/3 cup maple syrup
- 1/4 cup oil (i.e. melted and cooled coconut, avocado, etc.)
- 2 large eggs, room temp
- 1 TBSP vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup non-dairy milk of choice
- 1/2 cup mini chocolate chips (plus more for topping or add in chunks too)
- Preheat oven to 350ºF and line 9×5 baking pan with parchment paper; set aside.
- In a medium bowl mix together dry ingredients; set aside.
- In a large bow whisk mashed banana, maple syrup and oil until combined. Whisk in eggs and vanilla until combined.
- Begin to add about half of the dry ingredients to batter, gently stirring. Then pour in milk and rest of flour and stir until just combined, then fold in chocolate chips. Be careful not to over-mix, especially if using whole wheat flour.
- Pour batter in lined pan and add more chocolate chips/chunks for topping; bake for 45-55 minutes. Cover bread with foil at 25 minutes. Check bread at 45 minutes. Inserted toothpick should come out clean (no wet batter, crumb is okay). My bread took 50 minutes, uncovering for the last 5 minutes.
- Allow bread to cool in pan on wire rack completely before slicing. Store bread at room temperature or fridge in covered container, about 3-5 days.
*If using whole wheat pastry flour, whole wheat white or half all-purpose and half whole wheat, use 1 1/4 cups flour. To make muffins: fill muffin pan 3/4 full with batter – I got 15 muffins. Bake at 375ºF for 20-25 minutes, until inserted toothpick comes out clean. To make egg-free / vegan: You can likely sub the eggs for flaxseed meal. Use 2 TBSP flaxseed meal + 1/3 cup water and sit for 4-5 minutes. I did not test this way but this method works for many of my quick bread and muffin recipes. Let me know if you try!
- Serving Size: 1/15th
- Calories: 120
- Sugar: 7
- Sodium: 178
- Fat: 5
- Saturated Fat: 1
- Unsaturated Fat: 4
- Trans Fat: 0
- Carbohydrates: 18
- Fiber: 2
- Protein: 2
- Cholesterol: 025