How to Make the Perfect Paleo Banana Bread

When you first decide to go grain-free, you might experience a phenomenon where all your favorite breads pass before your eyes, one by one, as if you’re saying goodbye to them forever. “Farewell!” you’ll cry out. “Thank you for your bready goodness all these years—I’ll never forget you!”

This reaction is only partially based in reality: No, you’re not saying goodbye to breads forever; but yes, you’re right that you won’t ever forget the breads you loved before you made the grain-free leap. In fact, if you’re anything like us, you’ll spend a good chunk of your time trying to replicate your favorite breads in a grain-free kitchen, over and over, until you get it just right.

We’re still working on a few of these (English muffins, anyone?) but here’s one we recently got down to a science: the perfect paleo banana bread. And I’m here to tell you how to make it.

Banana

It’s easy as pie…er, bread…to make this delicious, moist, sweet, banana-filled loaf, and you probably have most of the required ingredients just hangin’ out in your pantry already. But the first and most important step here is the main squeeze: the banana.

While most paleo banana bread recipes only call for a couple of bananas, I’ve found that the best paleo banana bread actually calls for double what you’d expect. Four large bananas do the trick, kicking up the banana flavor several notches while giving the bread that dense, doughy quality that paleo baked goods so often lack.

Once you have your bananas (yellow or brown, any variety of ripeness will do!) just raid your cupboard for those staples any home cook should always have on hand: nutmeg, cinnamon, baking powder, baking soda, and sea salt. The sweetness of this bread comes from the pure maple syrup and honey, while the consistency of the bread depends on coconut flour, so make sure you have those on hand, too. (Our favorite coconut flour is this kind by Let’s Do Organic—it *does* matter which kind you use, and I highly encourage you to use this! Other coconut flours are grainy, brown, and sometimes bland. This one ain’t.)

With the scrumptious batter made, the key to baking the perfect paleo banana bread is not to overcook it. A burned banana bread is a very, very sad sight indeed. Done right, this recipe will give you just what you’ve been craving: that golden-brown banana bread top that flashed before your eyes when you first decided to go grain-free…

Perfect Paleo Banana Bread
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • 4 large bananas
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. nutmeg
  • 4 Tbs. butter, softened
  • ½ Tbs. honey
  • 1 Tbs. pure maple syrup
  • ½ cup coconut flour (use this kind by Let’s Do Organic)
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • One pinch of sea salt
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Combine bananas, eggs, vanilla, butter, maple syrup, and honey in a food processor and pulse until smooth. If you don't have a food processor, combine ingredients in a large mixing bowl and use a hand-held mixer to beat until smooth.
  3. In a separate bowl, combine dry ingredients: cinnamon, nutmeg, coconut flour, baking soda, baking powder, and sea salt. Stir with a wooden spoon until combined.
  4. Pour dry ingredients into the wet ingredients. If using a food processor, pulse until wet and dry ingredients are thoroughly combined and mixture is smooth. If using a hand-held mixer, beat ingredients together until mixture is smooth.
  5. Grease a bread loaf pan with butter or cooking spray, and pour banana bread batter into the pan.
  6. Bake banana bread at 350 degrees for 55-60 minutes, or until the top of the bread is golden-brown and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out mostly clean.
  7. Let the cooked banana bread rest for about 5 minutes. Then transfer the bread to a cooling rack, and let it cool for another 5 minutes.
  8. Enjoy this perfect paleo banana bread with a slab of melted butter and a drizzle of maple syrup on top!

Bananana
Have fun learning how to make the perfect paleo banana bread? We’d love to hear your thoughts!

Xo,
S

Delicious Paleo Apple Crisp Recipe

Apple Crisp

A funny thing happens when you’re living through Snowmaggedon, sometime around the eighth blizzard in a row: You start to forget what colors, tastes, and aromas occur naturally in the world. Earth becomes a barren wasteland of muddy snow banks, black ice, and grey skies. “Do plants exist anymore?” you begin to wonder, in all seriousness. “Will I ever see fruit again?”

The answer is, of course you will. At the grocery store. When you go there to buy ingredients for this delicious paleo apple crisp, braving the bleak, frigid outdoors…

FullSizeRender (2)…to bring a little warmth and comfort home to your toasty kitchen.

As a girl without much of a sweet tooth, I’m constantly surprised by how much comfort I take in apple-based desserts. I never felt so warm this winter as I did on the night I first baked this recipe, with the sweet scents of cinnamon and nutmeg filling the kitchen, and the oven warming the entire apartment as ripe apples bubbled and crisped inside.

The secret to this paleo apple crisp is letting the fresh ingredients stand on their own, with just enough natural spice and sweetness added to bring out the best in what Mother Earth already cooked up on her own. Lemon juice, cinnamon, natural honey, and pure maple syrup coax a tangy-sweet taste from the red apples as they bake, while the topping—made of crushed pecans, tapioca flour, nutmeg, cinnamon, and a dash of honey and maple syrup—crisps up to a perfect golden-brown.

There’s something so therapeutic about a sizzling plate of apple crisp, just waiting to be devoured. In fact, simply bringing home a bounty of fresh red apples is deeply cathartic for the sun-starved soul.

Red Apples

Delicious Paleo Apple Crisp Recipe
 
Prep time
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Total time
 
Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • For topping:
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. nutmeg
  • 11/2 cups pecans, finely crushed
  • 1 tsp. honey
  • 1 tsp. pure maple syrup
  • ¾ cup tapioca flour
  • 4 Tbs. butter
  • For filling:
  • 6 large apples, peeled and thinly sliced (any variety of red apple will do)
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 Tbs. honey
  • ¼ cup maple syrup
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, combine thinly sliced apples, 1 tsp. cinnamon, 1 Tbs. honey, ¼ cup maple syrup, and the juice of 1 lemon. Mix thoroughly.
  3. Lightly grease a 9x12-inch baking pan with butter. Pour apple mixture into the pan, spreading mixture out evenly across the bottom of the pan.
  4. Next, make the topping for your apple crisp. In a large mixing bowl, combine 1 tsp. cinnamon, 1 tsp. nutmeg, 1.5 cups finely crushed pecans, 1 tsp. honey, 1 tsp. maple syrup, and ¾ cup tapioca flour. Mix well.
  5. Cut in 4 Tbs. butter using a pastry cutter, your fingers, or two sharp knives.
  6. Once butter is completely incorporated, sprinkle the topping evenly over the apple mixture, using your fingers to crumble it up as you go.
  7. Bake apple crisp for 35-40 minutes, or until the apple filling is bubbling and the topping begins to turn golden-brown.
  8. Remove crisp from the oven and drizzle some maple syrup evenly over the top, to taste, about 1 Tbs.
  9. Return crisp to the oven for 5 more minutes.
  10. Serve immediately, with a side of your favorite coconut ice cream!

Paleo Apple Crisp

 

How’d you like this delicious paleo apple crisp recipe? Let us know, and stay warm and toasty out there!

Xo,
S

 

Paleo Honey-Maple Pumpkin Banana Bread Recipe


Paleo Banana Bread Recipe

This October, as we prepared to host our first-ever Halloween party as Reno 911’s Lt. Dangle and Hollywood darling Marilyn Monroe, Marc and I realized we had forgotten the most important party decoration of all: a pumpkin. With minutes to spare before guests arrived, he rushed to our local neighborhood market and lugged home a monster gourd. It was impressive, if not half the size of our apartment. And so, after Halloween came to its usual sad end, we were left with a whole lotta pumpkin. Six pounds of it, to be exact. This melt-in-your-mouth pumpkin banana bread was our first foray into cooking with fresh pumpkin. Suffice it to say, now we’re totally hooked.

Paleo Banana Bread RecipeCan you blame us? I mean, could this recipe sound any more like a Starbucks holiday drink delicious? The answer, of course, is no. Sticky-sweet golden honey, pure maple syrup, fresh pumpkin, silky-smooth bananas…and yes, it tastes just as delicious as it sounds. I wouldn’t joke around about this sort of thing, so you can trust me.

Not only is this cinnamon-scented bread incredibly moist, but it’s also 100% gluten-free and paleo. If you’re like me—with some friends who avoid gluten, some who eat totally paleo, and others who balk at the idea of pretentious health nuts messing with their favorite foods—then you’ll want to add this crowd-pleasing pumpkin banana bread to your comfort-food rotation. But shhh…your grain-loving friends won’t be able to tell it’s grain-free, and they never have to know.

Paleo Honey-Maple Pumpkin Banana Bread
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Serves: 5 to 7
Ingredients
  • ½ cup coconut flour
  • ½ cup almond flour
  • 2 ripe bananas, mashed
  • ½ cup canned pumpkin puree OR ½ cup fresh pumpkin puree (see recipe below instructions)
  • ½ cup unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • ¼ cup honey
  • 2 Tbs. pure maple syrup
  • 4 eggs
  • ½ tsp. vanilla extract
  • ½ tsp. salt
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Lightly grease one large loaf pan with cooking spray.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, combine almond flour, coconut flour, baking soda, ground cinnamon, and salt. Whisk together until any lumps are gone.
  4. In another bowl, combine eggs, melted butter, honey, maple syrup, mashed bananas, pumpkin puree, and vanilla extract. Mix with a whisk or hand-mixer until smooth.
  5. Pour liquid ingredients into dry ingredients and mix with a wooden spoon until just combined. Do not overmix!
  6. Pour batter into the greased loaf pan.
  7. Bake for 50 minutes, or until the bread is golden-brown and slightly crisp around the edges.
  8. Let cool on a wire rack for about 15 minutes (yeah right, like you're going to wait) and then enjoy!

If you’re reading this recipe after making an ill-conceived purchase of a mammoth pumpkin, you’ll want to use fresh pumpkin puree instead of canned. The difference is slightly noticeable (a nuttier, earthier, fresher taste comes from using the fresh pumpkin) but the bread turns out well either way. If you’re up for tackling that pumpkin of yours and putting it all to good use, get ready for a slimy, messy, and ultimately scrumptious pumpkin extravaganza.
Homemade Fresh Pumpkin Puree
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Serves: Depends on size of pumpkin
Ingredients
  • Pumpkin...that's it!
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  3. Cut your pumpkin in half with a very sharp knife.
  4. Using a combination of your hands, a spoon, and a small knife, remove the innards of the pumpkin: seeds, stringy flesh, and slimy guts. Sounds like Halloween's not over quite yet.
  5. Once you've cleared out all the gunk inside, cut your pumpkin into wedges about 4 inches wide.
  6. Lay the wedges on the parchment-lined baking sheet, skin-side down.
  7. Bake at 350 degrees for about an hour, or until pumpkin flesh can be easily pierced with a fork.
  8. Let pumpkin wedges cool for about 10 minutes.
  9. Once pumpkin is cool enough to handle, gently peel the skin away from the flesh, discarding the skin.
  10. Working in batches, transfer baked pumpkin to a food processor and puree until smooth.
  11. For the pumpkin banana bread, reserve ½ a cup of pumpkin puree.
  12. Freeze the rest of the pumpkin puree for future use in standard freezer bags.

So there you have it: Our first and favorite recipe made from fresh pumpkin. We hope you enjoy it as much as we did…all five times we ate it, since that’s how many loaves we made.

Like I said, six pounds of pumpkin. Six. Pounds.

Let us know in the comments if you enjoyed this paleo pumpkin banana bread, and check back soon for another forthcoming fresh pumpkin recipe: Homemade Velvety Pumpkin Soup.

Xo,
S