One Bowl Banana Bread {Better than Starbucks}

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One Bowl Banana Bread Slices with Cream Cheese

Make easy one bowl banana bread with butter, instead of oil, to provide better flavor. Top with walnuts and sugar to mimic the yummy topping from Starbucks.

Ever had overripe bananas sitting on your counter and wondered what to do with them? Well, you’ve come to the right place! Instead of throwing those browned or blacked bananas away, make this One Bowl Banana Bread!

In the process of finding my favorite banana bread, I have made many, and this is my favorite one! Here’s a few reasons why:

  • It is made with a quick bread method meaning you only need one bowl, no mixer, and no yeast! Additionally, the ingredients are simple, and I usually always have them on hand.
  • The flavor of this banana bread is so much better because it uses butter instead of oil. I also love the hint of cinnamon.
  • If you decide to add the sugar and walnut topping, it tastes better than Starbuck’s Banana Bread. Plus, it’s a whole lot less expensive!

When I was in school, I made this one bowl banana bread on the weekends. That way, I would have a quick and easy breakfast during the week.

I still love making this for breakfast meal prep. And, I will often double the recipe, and freeze and save one loaf for later use!

Why is this One Bowl Banana Bread Better than Starbucks?

Honestly, I didn’t know Starbucks offered banana bread until my husband told me about his coworker who had an addiction to it. Every day, she would make a trip to Starbucks to get a slice of their banana bread. She couldn’t get enough! If she didn’t have it, she would crave it until she could go again. Even though she loved the banana bread, she lamented her habit was really hurting her budget!

So, Jonny and I decided to venture to Starbucks to try their banana bread. You know what happened? We were totally underwhelmed! The bread was moist, but it didn’t have enough banana flavor. Although, we both totally loved the crusty sugary, pecan-walnut crust.

In light of this discovery, I bet Jonny I could make a better banana bread than Starbucks by using my recipe and copying their topping. So, I whipped up a batch, and Jonny took it to work for his coworker to try. Following tasting my banana bread, his coworker exclaimed, “Oh, this is so much better than Starbucks!”

One Bowl Banana Bread Ingredients and Preparation

One Bowl Banana Bread Process

As the recipe name suggests, only one mixing bowl is need for this recipe. Additionally, no mixer or food processor is needed!

In addition, banana bread is a type of quick bread. Basically, quick breads are leavened with baking powder and baking soda instead of yeast. Since this bread is not made with yeast, it does not need to rest once the batter is mixed.

Both of these factors make preparation of this one bowl banana bread very simple. First, mix the wet ingredients together. Next, add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, and mix to combine. Then, add the batter to a loaf pan and bake.

Recommended Equipment

Since this recipe only requires one bowl, I recommend using this 2 1/2 quart glass bowl from Pyrex. I use this bowl all the time! It is the workhorse of my kitchen, and I love that it doesn’t stain or absorb food flavors from the food that is in it! For example, I love using it as a mixing bowl, or to store leftovers. I’m tempted to buy this Pyrex bowl set that comes with lids!

In addition to a mixing bowl, you will need either one 9″ x 5″ loaf pan or two or three of these Mini 5.75″ x 3″ loaf pans.

Wet Ingredients

The wet ingredients for this one bowl banana bread recipe include mashed bananas, softened butter, eggs, sugar, and vanilla extract.

TIP: The best way to soften butter is to put the butter on your kitchen counter 30 minutes prior to use. To soften your butter even more quickly, cut the butter into smaller pieces, or roll the stick of butter between two sheets of wax paper.

Ripe Bananas

Did you know, green or unripe bananas contain less sugar than yellow or ripe bananas? As they ripen, bananas get sweeter because their starch breaks down into sugar.

For comparison, lightly speckled bananas contain about 1.8% fructose. Whereas, a heavily speckled banana has 5.3% fructose! So, for this recipe, the riper the bananas used, the better!

In fact, I’ve used very heavily speckled (and even black skinned) bananas for this recipe, and the banana bread has always turned out great. So, don’t worry if your bananas are too ripe to eat. In that case, they will be perfect for this recipe!

Combining the Wet Ingredients

In a large bowl, mash the bananas with the back of a fork until the bananas are smooth. Next, add the butter, eggs, sugar, and vanilla to the mixing bowl. Then, mix/mash everything together until fully incorporated.

Note: After mixing the wet ingredients together, I usually have small chunks (size of a pea or less) of butter which is ok! The butter will be fully incorporated with the dry ingredients in the next step.

Dry Ingredients

The dry ingredients used in this recipe are all pantry ingredients: all-purpose flour, salt, baking soda, baking powder, and ground cinnamon.

To the bowl with the wet ingredients, add flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon. Avoid over-mixing the batter by stirring only until there are no more streaks of flour.

Next, spray the loaf pan(s) with cooking spray, and pour the batter into the loaf pan(s).

Copycat Starbuck’s Banana Bread Topping

Adding the copycat Starbucks’ banana bread topping is totally optional. But, if you do want to add it, it’s only two ingredients: sugar and walnuts.

Note: Starbucks also includes pecans in their topping, but I only use walnuts. Feel free to add pecans too!

If using walnuts and sugar, evenly sprinkle both ingredients on top of the batter. As the banana bread cooks, the walnuts and the sugar will roast and brown adding incredible flavor and crunch.

Baking, Serving, and Storage

One Bowl Banana Bread Loaf and Slices

In a preheated 350 degree oven, bake for about 45-50 minutes for one large loaf, or 30 minutes for two small loaves. For even cooking, rotate the pan(s) half-way through cooking. The banana bread will be done when a toothpick inserted into the center of the bread comes out clean. 

Let the bread cool in the pan for 5-10 minutes before removing from the pan. The banana bread can be served warm or at room temperature.

We love serving the banana bread plain or with butter. Or for an decadent treat, try serving your banana bread with plain or flavored cream cheese! This whipped cream cheese, mixed berry cream cheese, honey pecan cream cheese, or brown sugar cinnamon cream cheese are all delicious!

Store any leftover banana bread in an airtight container for up to a week. To freeze the banana bread, wrap the bread tightly in two layers of plastic wrap and freeze for up to 1 month. 

Want More Meal Prep or Copycat Recipes?

Thank you for stopping by and reading! Please be sure to save this recipe for later on FacebookInstagram, or Pinterest, or feel free to leave me a comment below! I’d love to know if you prefer this One Bowl Banana Bread or Starbuck’s Banana Bread!

By the way, I love copycat recipes. If you want to see more of my copycat recipes, click here!

You might also love this quick and easy recipe for Frozen Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana Pretzel Bites! They taste just like ice cream!

I also have lots of ideas for meal prep recipes, here.

Don’t forget to subscribe to never miss another recipe!

One Bowl Banana Bread

Make easy one bowl banana bread with butter, instead of oil, to provide better flavor. Top with walnuts and sugar to mimic the yummy topping from Starbucks.

Course Breakfast, Dessert, Snack
Cuisine American
Keyword Banana, Meal Prep
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 55 minutes
Servings 12
Calories 183kcal
Author Clean Fingers Laynie

Ingredients

  • 4 tbsp Butter, Salted Softened
  • 2 large Eggs
  • 2-3 Bananas, Ripe*
  • 2/3 cup Sugar
  • 1 tsp Vanilla
  • 1 1/3 cups All-Purpose Unbleached Four
  • 1/2 tsp Salt
  • 1/2 tsp Baking Soda
  • 1/4 tsp Baking Powder
  • 1 tsp Cinnamon, Ground
  • 1/2 cup Walnuts, Chopped (optional)
  • 1 tbsp Sugar (optional)

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray one large, or two small, loaf pans with cooking spray.
  • In a large bowl, mash bananas with a fork until smooth. 
  • Add butter, eggs, sugar, and vanilla to bowl, and mix/mash until fully incorporated. (I usually have small chunks [size of a pea or less] of butter after mixing which is ok!)
  • Add flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon to bowl, and mix until flour is barely incorporated, and you can no longer see streaks of flour.
  • Pour batter into prepared loaf pan(s). 
  • If using walnuts and additional tbsp of sugar, evenly sprinkle both ingredients on top of the batter. 
  • Bake for about 45-50 minutes for one large loaf, or 30 minutes for two small loaves, rotating pan half-way through cooking. The bread will be done when a toothpick inserted into the center of the bread comes out clean. 
  • Let the bread cool in the pan for 5-10 minutes before removing from the pan. The banana bread can be served warm or at room temperature.

Notes

Estimated Nutrition, Per Serving: Calories 183, Fat 8 g, Carbohydrate 27 g, Dietary Fiber g, Protein 3 g, Sodium 202 mg
*The riper the bananas, the sweeter and more flavorful your bread will be. 
Store leftover bread in an airtight container for up to a week. Or if desired, once the bread is cooled, wrap tightly in plastic wrap and freeze for up to 1 month. 
 

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