I don't often claim to make the best of anything, although there are exceptions: vegan pancakes (fluffy on the inside, golden crispy outside); and this Chunky Monkey Chocolate Chip Banana Bread. Fresh out of the oven, with a charming, craggy golden crust and moist, banana-flavored inside studded with chocolate chunks, there is no fancy cake or pastry that this humble loaf can't beat, for brunch or for snack. It's also unbelievably simple to make, and there's just one secret: leave some bits of banana chunky and not completely mashed, because that will turn all caramelized and wonderful inside the loaf. Also, don't substitute any good-for-you flours, because trust me, I tried. Usually I'd say go for it with whole wheat, buckwheat, oat flour, soy flour, almond flour, wheat bran, etc etc, but what works for this loaf is the classic all-purpose white. Finally, make sure to use nonstick or ceramic loaf pans and not disposable foil ones, because that affects the baking temperature. (Not to mention, better for the planet!)
Chunky Monkey Best Vegan Chocolate Chip Banana Bread
1 loaf (or 2 mini loaves)
2 cups all-purpose unbleached white flour
1/3 cup sugar
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
dash salt (optional)
3 medium very ripe bananas
juice of 1/2 lemon
1/2 cup coconut oil
1 cup vegan chocolate chips/chunks
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
2. In a big bowl, combine all dry ingredients and sift well with a fork or a whisk. In a medium bowl, mash the bananas, leaving some small chunky bits. Add the oil and lemon juice to the bananas, and combine well.
3. Add the wet ingredients and the chocolate chips to the big bowl with the dry ingredients, and combine well until just mixed. (Don't overmix-when in doubt, just stop, since it's better that two chocolate chips are touching than that your loaf is tough).
4. Pour the batter into a loaf pan or 2 mini loaf pans. Bake for 45-50 minutes (big loaf) or 25 minutes (small loaf). Since heat varies by the oven, you should check the loaves using the toothpick method. When it's golden on top and toothpick comes out clean, it's done. Enjoy!
This article was originally published on Peaceful Dumpling.
Photo: Peaceful Dumpling