Quick breads are one of my favorite things to bake, whether it be pumpkin bread, zucchini bread, or a delicious banana bread like this one. But in order to be able to enjoy it on a healthy diet, I always make sure the recipe isn't loaded with sugar and white flour.
When I saw the ingredients in this recipe from Faring Well, I knew it would become a new favorite of mine. A small dose of maple syrup acts as the sweetener, while spelt flour and oat flour add hearty whole-grains. Plump, antioxidant-rich blueberries add a beautiful pop of color, while shredded coconut brings a subtle depth of flavor. I even sprinkled in some flaxseed meal, which has a range of health benefits and is a good source of fiber. As a bonus, the bread is entirely vegan!
While recipes involving oat flour used to deter me, I now realize how simple it is to make your own at home. It's incredibly straightforward—just pulse old-fashioned oats in a food processor or blender until powdery and flour-like. I even did mine in my single-serving smoothie blender, and it worked great! It's about a 1:1 ratio, so 1/3 cup oats will become 1/3 cup oat flour.
Once you've made your oat flour, the rest of the batter comes together in a cinch. As the bread bakes, it develops a gorgeous, golden brown crust, while the inside remains incredibly moist. I ate this every morning for 5 days straight, and every slice was better than the last. It didn't dry out at all!
To sum it all up (so you can finally get to the recipe!), this bread feels like a treat while actually doing your body good. It's flavorful, hearty, and not too sweet, so eat it with your morning coffee or as an afternoon snack. Trust me, this one's a keeper.
Banana Blueberry Coconut Bread
Makes one 9×5 loaf.
- 1 cup mashed overripe banana (about 2 medium-sized bananas)
- 1/4 cup coconut oil, melted
- 1/2 cup maple syrup
- 1/2 cup plain unsweetened almond milk
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- 1 cup spelt flour
- 1/3 cup oat flour*
- 1/3 cup rolled oats
- 1 tsp. baking powder
- 1/2 tsp. baking soda
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
- 1/4 cup shredded unsweetened coconut
- 1/2 cup fresh blueberries (feel free to toss in a few more if you want!)
- 2 tbsp. flaxseed meal (optional)
*To make your own oat flour (which is much cheaper than buying it), simply process rolled oats in a food processor or blender until soft and powdery. It's a 1:1 conversion—1/3 cup rolled oats will equal about 1/3 cup oat flour.
Preheat the oven to 400F and line a 9x5 loaf pan with parchment paper. Spraying the pan with cooking spray first will help the parchment paper stick.
In the bowl of a stand mixer, mix together the banana, coconut oil, maple syrup, almond milk, and vanilla until combined. A hand mixer will also work fine.
In a medium sized bowl, stir together the spelt flour, oat flour, rolled oats, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon. Add to the wet ingredients and mix to combine.
Using a spatula, fold in the shredded coconut, blueberries, and flaxseed meal (if using). Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake ~40 minutes, or until the top is golden brown and a toothpick comes out clean. If the top of the bread is browning quickly and the inside needs more time to cook, cover the loaf with foil for the remainder of the baking time. Allow the loaf to cool in the pan for a few minutes, then transfer to a wire rack and let it cool fully before slicing and serving.
Recipe adapted from Faring Well.