Baking Recipes,  Quickbreads & Loaves

A Chocolate Chip Banana Bread to make this weekend

A simple way to spruce up your classic banana bread? Turn it into a Chocolate Chip Banana Bread! This version has an amazing crumb and flavor too.



Whenever I make banana bread, it kind of shocks me that I managed to go so long without eating or making it. I always end up feeling like I don’t make it often enough. Truth be told, banana bread isn’t my favorite baked good of all time, but it’s the one that gives me the greatest comfort. It’s one of the few things in my life that has stayed constant in the sense that I liked it as a kid, and I still like it as an adult. Only difference is, now that I’m making it, I go ahead and add things in to make something like this Chocolate Chip Banana Bread.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m grateful for change. I believe that people and attitudes need to evolve with the times. I also believe that change allows you to leave bad memories behind. Still, it’s nice to have a handful of things that stay the same through the years. It’s nice to have some things that don’t make me cringe whenever I examine my memories lol.

As a kid I used to love store-bought banana bread. It was super sweet and nutty, with a banana scent that I now identify as artificial banana flavoring. Of course back then I didn’t know better. Even though I still have a special affection for banana bread now, you can’t feed the banana bread of my youth to me anymore. It was an inevitable conclusion the moment I started baking banana bread on my own. One cannot help but become more discerning of what a good banana bread constitutes.

This Chocolate Chip Banana Bread from I Am Baker is a REALLY good one. I brought a few slices to my gym and even my fitness coach could not stop himself from devouring his share. Not only does it turn out gorgeous, the crumb is gorgeous as well. Just the smell makes the mouth water! It’s moist like a good banana bread should be, with a top crust that is crunchy when warm. Those pockets of chocolate add a little something-something that proves just how well chocolate goes with bananas.

Recipe notes

Banana breads are always easy to make at home. You only really need to take note of three things: First, use overripe bananas. These are the bananas with peels that have developed those brownish spots. Super ripe bananas DO make a difference when it comes to the intensity of flavor and the sweetness of your banana bread. I’m not telling you to use moldy bananas, just overly ripe ones.

The second thing is to use a proper pan size. You don’t want to use a pan that is smaller than indicated (as I did), and then pray to the high heavens that the batter won’t spill out or the bread won’t collapse while baking. The recipe wants you to use a 9×5-inch pan. I think I used an 8×4-inch or something, and my Chocolate Chip Banana Bread rose so tall above the rim I was terrified that it was going to cave in. (It didn’t, thank God.)

Finally, the third thing to take note of is to never overwork your batter. DO NOT OVERMIX. The moment you get your dry ingredients in with the wet, you want to mix just until combined. Stop once the last big streak of flour disappears into the batter. The mixture will be lumpy. You will probably still see some tiny bits of flour here and there, but as long as most of the flour is incorporated, it should be fine. Especially in this case, since you will be folding in the chocolate chips too, try not to work the batter too much before then.

I can’t stress this point enough. You guys have no idea how many quickbreads and muffins I ruined when I was just starting with this whole baking thing. I kept mixing until the batter was smooth because I had no idea back then what “just combined” really meant. It still blows my mind how a few extra strokes could spell the difference between a lusciously soft bread and something so dense you could throw it at someone and it would hurt.

Basically, I want you to enjoy this amazing Chocolate Chip Banana Bread in its most glorious form. Slice into thick portions, and I highly recommend eating them warm. The chocolate will be melty, and the crust will crisp right back up. These provide great contrast to the tender and moist banana bread. UGH SO GOOD!

Chocolate Chip Banana Bread

A simple way to spruce up your classic banana bread? Add chocolate chips! This version has an amazing crumb and flavor.

Makes one 9x5-inch loaf

Ingredients

  • 2 cups 256 grams all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 5 very ripe or overripe medium bananas, roughly mashed
  • ½ cup 1 stick or 113 grams unsalted butter, room temperature
  • ½ cup 100 grams granulated sugar
  • ½ cup 100 grams brown sugar, packed
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup semisweet or bittersweet chocolate chips

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 325°F (165°C). Grease and lightly flour a 9x5-inch loaf pan. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Set aside for a moment.
  • In a large bowl, combine bananas, butter, both sugars, egg, and vanilla. Make sure to mix until the sugar is dissolved and everything else except the chunky mashed bananas is well-combined.
  • Slowly add in the flour mixture. Mix until just combined and you can still see streaks of flour in the batter. Fold in the chocolate chips just until distributed. Avoid overworking your batter at this point. Lumpy is fine.
  • Pour the batter in your prepared loaf pan. (You can add some more chocolate chips or sliced bananas on top if you wish.) Place pan on a rimmed baking sheet and bake in preheated oven for 55 to 70 minutes, or until toothpick or cake tester inserted into the center of the cake comes out mostly clean. A few moist crumbs on the tester is okay. If the top of the banana bread is browning too much to your liking, tent loosely with foil.
  • Allow bread to cool in the pan for 20 minutes. Run a thin knife around the edges of the loaf pan to loosen it, then invert onto cooling rack. Allow to cool on the rack before slicing. You can cool completely or cool until just warm to the touch. This is really good warm, however it might be a little more difficult to slice through compared to a banana bread that has cooled and set completely.

Notes

Adapted from I Am Baker blog

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