Every now and then I like to make different variations of banana bread. (Sometimes it’s fun to change things up a bit.) Aside from my favorite regular banana bread recipe, I really love this more tropical version prepared with shredded coconut, coconut milk, and coconut oil. Because there is no dairy, this version is lactose free.
For best results when baking banana bread (or any type of banana cake) use bananas that have started to spot and brown. The more ripe the banana, the more tender (and sweeter) your baked good will turn out. If you use under-ripe bananas that still have some green, or are a paler yellow… your banana bread will be less tender, and somewhat more dry.
You can add up to 1 c. chopped nuts in the batter in the last mixing step if you like – sometimes I add walnuts, but this time I decided to leave it plain. If you don’t have coconut oil or coconut milk, you can substitute with regular canola oil or regular milk – but if you can use the coconut versions, you will end up with more depth of flavor in the final loaf.
Banana Coconut Bread (Makes 2 loaves):
- 2 c. mashed banana (about 5-6 bananas)
- 4 c. flour
- 2 tsp. baking soda
- 1 tsp. baking powder
- 1 1/2 tsp. salt
- 2 c. sugar
- 1/2 c. coconut oil
- 1/2 c. canola oil
- 4 eggs
- 5 T. coconut milk (or regular milk)
- 1 T. vanilla extract
- 1 T. lemon juice
- 1 c. shredded coconut flakes
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray two 9″ X 5″ rectangular loaf pans with non-stick baking spray.
2. Sift the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt in a bowl. (I usually just dump it all in a bowl and use a wire whisk to combine all the ingredients thoroughly while breaking up any lumps.)
3. Mash the bananas. (I use a potato masher to make it easier… but you could just use the back of a fork.)
4. Mix the bananas, coconut oil, canola oil, and sugar until combined. (If your coconut oil is too solid… you may want to microwave it for 30 seconds to loosen up before adding to the bowl.)
5. Add the eggs and mix until well blended.
6. Add the coconut milk (or regular milk), vanilla, and lemon juice – mix well.
7. Add the wet ingredients to the dry, then use a silicone or rubber spatula to gently fold it all together until just combined. (Do not over mix!)
8. Quickly mix in the shredded coconut. Reserve about a tablespoonful to use as topping.
9. Divide the batter between the two loaf pans.
10. Sprinkle the tops with the reserved coconut flakes, then bake for 55 minutes to 1 hour.
11. Remove from the oven and cool 5 minutes before removing from the pan.
12. Cool completely before slicing.