I am a huge fan of sweet breads. The thing I love the most about them is that you can create myriads of various combinations and the result is always great. Just by looking at my blog archive we can find Pumpkin Mango Bread which was fantastic and Strawberry Rhubarb Bread which is a staple in my house every single spring. Combine all veggies, fruits and berries you like and you’ll find some awesome combos! Today I made a more simple and well known version – Banana Walnut Bread. It’s one of my family favorites. We make it every month I guess, so I thought why not to share it with you guys? I adapted this recipe from the Paula Deen’s Southern Cooking Bible. I love this book!
Walnuts are my favorite nuts, no doubt about it. If you are not a fan, better reconsider your position because they have countless benefits! A close second on the list are pecans, just because they look so similar to them. I love walnuts so much I asked my hubby to plant a walnut tree in his parents’ garden this year. Now we just have to wait for another 10-15 years (blink of an eye) and we’ll be able to enjoy our own organic nuts! How cool is that? Jokes aside, trees grow so slowly… When you think about it, it’s crazy that some of those trees we see in the forests are over 100 years old! It makes you appreciate all the goodies trees provide us with so much more.
Throughout all these years I tried many different banana walnut bread variations. With tons of different frostings. The one my family loves the most is the cream cheese frosting. It’s so creamy, and not so sweet as other frostings tend to be. Sometimes when I’m having a dessert, I don’t even want to touch a frosting because with the majority of them you get a week worth of sugar intake in one serving! It’s crazy. This one though is right up my alley!
If you have never tried banana walnut bread before, do it. You don’t know what you are missing. If you HAVE tried it, try this version with the cream cheese frosting. You’ll love it. Either way, you have no other choice than to try it! I still have few pieces of this goodness left that were supposed to be for tomorrow (I ate enough of this bread today) but after writing this post and describing how awesome this bread is, I want it now. Right now. Sorry, I have to go. Enjoy your bread!
For the bread:
- 1 1/4 cups mashed ripe bananas (about 2-3 bananas)
- 2/3 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup vegetable oil
- 2 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 3/4 cup chopped walnuts , lightly toasted
For the frosting:
- 4 oz. (115g) cream cheese
- 1/4 cup (60g) butter , softened
- 1 cup (120g) powdered sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- chopped walnuts , for sprinkling
- Preheat oven to 350°F (175°C). Grease a 9x5 inch loaf pan.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the bananas, sugar, oil, eggs, and vanilla extract.
- In another bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, salt, and soda. Fold the flour mixture into the banana mixture until just combined. Stir in the walnuts. Pour the batter into the loaf pan and bake for about 1 hour 10 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. When done, let cool for 10 minutes before taking the bread out of the pan.
- Beat the cream cheese and butter together for 2-3 minutes, until soft and creamy. Add the powdered sugar and beat until combined. Add the vanilla and beat for 1 minute more. Add more powdered sugar until you reach your desired thickness. Add the salt.
- Spread the frosting on the cooled bread. Sprinkle with some chopped walnuts. Enjoy!