Classic Banana Bread

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<p>Classic Banana Bread</p>

Photo: Lee Harrelson; Styling: Jan Gautro, Laura Zapalowski

Put your overripe bananas to good use and make a loaf of banana bread. We love this bread's moist texture and simple flavor. Banana bread should form a crack down the center as it bakes--a sign the baking soda is doing its job. Serve toasted with a smear of cream cheese, greek yogurt, or peanut and top with mixed nuts, if desired. You can even customize your bread with a crunchy streusal topping that the kids will love.

1 loaf, 14 servings (serving size: 1 slice)

Cost per Serving:

$.27

Ingredients

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2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup sugar
1/4 cup butter, softened
2 large eggs
1 1/2 cups mashed ripe banana (about 3 bananas)
1/3 cup plain low-fat yogurt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Cooking spray

Preparation

Preheat oven to 350°.

Lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine the flour, baking soda, and salt, stirring with a whisk.

Place sugar and butter in a large bowl, and beat with a mixer at medium speed until well blended (about 1 minute). Add the eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Add banana, yogurt, and vanilla; beat until blended. Add flour mixture; beat at low speed just until moist. Spoon batter into an 8 1/2 x 4 1/2-inch loaf pan coated with cooking spray.

Bake at 350° for 1 hour or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes in pan on a wire rack; remove from pan. Cool completely on wire rack.

Kid-Friendly Upgrades:

Upgrade 1
Marble it. Stir 1 cup batter and 1/2 cup melted semisweet chocolate chips together in a small bowl. Spoon plain batter into pan, alternating with dollops of chocolate-chip batter. Drag a knife through batter to swirl. Bake as directed.

Upgrade 2
Berry it. Fold 1 cup fresh blueberries into batter. Bake as directed.

Upgrade 3
French-toast it. Cut bread into 3/4-inch slices. Toast until slightly crisp on both sides. Whisk together 2 eggs, 2 Tbsp. milk, ground cinnamon and nutmeg to taste as well as a pinch of salt in a shallow bowl. Dip bread in mixture, let excess drip off, then fry, turning once, in a nonstick skillet lightly coated with vegetable oil over medium-high heat.

Upgrade 4
Chocolate-chip it. Fold 1 cup dark chocolate chips into batter. Bake as directed.

Upgrade 5
Streusel it. Combine 2 Tbsp. rolled oats, 2 Tbsp. flour, 1 Tbsp. brown sugar, 1 Tbsp. butter, melted, and 1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg in a medium bowl. Divide batter among 12 paper-lined muffin cups. Top with streusel. Bake at 350°F until done, about 25 minutes.

Created date

November 2003

Nutritional Information

Calories 187
Caloriesfromfat 21 %
Fat 4.3 g
Satfat 2.4 g
Monofat 1.2 g
Polyfat 0.3 g
Protein 3.3 g
Carbohydrate 34.4 g
Fiber 1.1 g
Cholesterol 40 mg
Iron 1 mg
Sodium 198 mg
Calcium 20 mg