Cinnamon Swirl Banana Bread

Super-moist banana bread with a thick cinnamon swirl and topped with vanilla glaze.

Cinnamon Swirl Banana Bread - for those of you who love banana bread and warm, gooey cinnamon rolls!

 Early last week, I picked up a bunch of bananas and anxiously waited for them to turn the perfect shade of speckled brown. Sweet, over-ripened, and practically-rotten bananas are the force behind a spectacular banana bread. When it comes to bananas in banana bread, I like to say… the browner, the better.

Sunday morning, I woke up like a giddy little girl on Christmas morning and popped my head into the kitchen in hopes to find my perfect speckled bananas waiting for me.  I like to stick mine in a brown paper bag to speed up the process. Who has patience?  Not this girl.

Alas, the naners were ready.  50 quick minutes later, a star banana bread was born.

Amazing Cinnamon Swirl Banana Bread. Moist, tender, swirled with cinnamon, and topped with vanilla glaze. Recipe: sallysbakingaddiction.com

This is by far the easiest banana bread you’ll ever make. 5 minutes to mix together, pop in the oven, go back to sleep…

…at least that’s what I did. 😉

Soon enough, you’ll be graced with an alluring scent wafting through the house and one fine lookin’ bread ready in the oven.

Easy Cinnamon Swirl Banana Bread - a recipe for all of you who love banana bread and warm, gooey cinnamon rolls!

What you’ll love most is that there is only 1/2 stick butter in the entire recipe.  The bread is left moist and tender from the vanilla yogurt and bananas, so there really wasn’t any need for more artery clogging fat.

But there’s obviously a need for a sweet heavy cream/powdered sugar glaze. There’s always a need for that. Sure the drippy glaze is drool-worthy, but what I loved most about the banana bread is the pretty little cinnamon ribbon hiding inside.

Amazing Cinnamon Swirl Banana Bread. Moist, tender, swirled with cinnamon, and topped with vanilla glaze. Recipe: sallysbakingaddiction.com

I’m a true cinnamon fiend and love to sprinkle cinnamon sugar on just about anything these days. A thick layer of the good stuff peeking through the moist banana bread layers is to die for.

Because of the added sweetness in the glaze and cinnamon-sugar layer, I reduced the sugar in the actual bread itself. I don’t enjoy a sugar-bomb banana bread because it takes away from the most important part – the bananas. Unless of course it’s this banana bread.

Today’s bread is unreal. It’s like biting into a huge cinnamon bun but better. A beautiful merging of moist, dense banana bread with sticky, sweet cinnamon rolls.

Amazing Cinnamon Swirl Banana Bread. Moist, tender, swirled with cinnamon, and topped with vanilla glaze. Recipe: sallysbakingaddiction.com

Make this now. You’re welcome.

Cinnamon Swirl Banana Bread

Moist, flavorful banana bread swirled with a thick layer of cinnamon and topped with cream vanilla glaze.

Ingredients:

Banana Bread

  • 2 cups (250g) white whole wheat flour (or all-purpose flour)
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup (100g) light brown sugar, not packed
  • 4 Tablespoons (60g) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 and 1/2 cups mashed very ripe banana (about 3 bananas)
  • 1/3 cup (80g) plain or vanilla yogurt (I used greek yogurt)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Cinnamon Swirl

  • 1/4 cup (50g) granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Simple Glaze

  • 1/2 cup (60g) powdered sugar, sifted
  • 1 Tablespoon (15ml) heavy cream (or half-and-half or milk)

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Spray a 9×5-inch loaf pan with cooking spray. Set aside.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon. Set aside. In a separate large bowl, beat the brown sugar and butter with a stand or handheld mixer on medium speed until well blended – about 1 minute. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. With a wooden spoon, stir in the mashed banana, yogurt, and vanilla. Slowly add in the dry ingredients. Do NOT overmix. Batter will be thick.
  3. Spoon half of the batter into prepared loaf pan. Sprinkle with cinnamon-sugar swirl ingredients. Top with remaining batter. Bake for 40-45 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 15 minutes in the pan on a wire rack. Remove from pan and cool completely on the wire rack.
  4. While the bread is cooling, make the glaze in a small bowl by combining the powdered sugar and heavy cream. Add more powdered sugar until you reached desired thickness. Drizzle over banana bread. Bread will stay fresh and moist at room temperature for up to 10 days in an airtight container.

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© Sally’s Baking Addiction. All images & content are copyright protected. Please do not use my images without prior permission. If you want to republish this recipe, please re-write the recipe in your own words, or link back to this post for the recipe.

 

 

Here are my favorite banana bread recipes.

 

Dark Chocolate Raspberry Banana Bread

 

White Chocolate Chip Mango Banana Bread

 

Caramel Swirl Chocolate Chip Banana Bread

Caramel Swirl Chocolate Chip Banana Bread-7

 

Nutella Swirled Peanut Butter Banana Bread

 

 

261 comments

  1. Just made this this morning. What a treat! Used sour cream as did not have yoghurt. The swirl was a tiny bit crunchy in places, but I loved that. Added a touch of vanilla to the glaze.

    A wonderful recipe and the best banana bread I have ever had. Many thanks, this one is already in the file.

    • I’ve made this twice so far. Both times in two 7.5*3.5 loaf pans. 
      The first time one of the loaves had crunchy bits.. which I did not like. I think the problem was that the swirl was too close to the top when I was laying out the batter. The second time I made sure to retain half the batter for the second layer after I laid out the swirl and covered it completely, pushing the batter out into all four corners of the loaf pan with a spoon.

      The second time I made this I left it in the oven for an extra 5 minutes than it needed… harder and dry banana bread.. not fun. It’s alway confusing for me when the very tail end of the wooden pick has a crumb and the rest is clean.. what is one to do in such a scenario?

  2. Cinnamon Swirl Banana Bread looks amazing! I’m looking for a banana bread entry for my state fair this year, and half the sweetener needs to be honey. Could I just sub honey for half the sugar, or would I need to make other ingredient adjustments? Thanks!

  3. I normally make your “Best Ever Banana Bread” recipe, but decided to try something new yesterday – my family thanks you, Sally!!!!  The loaf is gone.  2 teenage boys and my husband standing at the counter devouring this bread is quite the testament to how much flavor is in this bread.  They all loved the cinnamon swirl in the middle – plus I sprinkled more on the top during baking.  It took a lot longer to cook than 45 minutes though, but the crunchy edges just added to the overall goodness!  Everyone’s waiting for the bunch of bananas on our counter to ripen for the next loaf!!!!  Thanks again Sally for this awesome recipe.

  4. Sally yours is my trusted go-to website for everything! I took up baking only a few months back but I have gotten so many compliments because of your recipes!
    The banana bread I made yesterday was beyond amazing!
    Just a perfect blend of flavors!
    You are so incredibly talented, and I’m a big fan!
    Thank you 🙂

  5. Hi Sally! I’m really excited to try this recipe tomorrow! I only have an 8×4 loaf pan so should I cook it a bit longer? And also the pan comes with this slide on cover thing (not the best description), so should I use that cover thing to prevent burning from the start or will that affect the cooking process? Sorry if that was confusing but I really want this bread to work:) thank you!!

    • You can use the 8×4 pan and yep, cook a little longer since it’s smaller. I wouldn’t bake it with that cover.

  6. Just made this and I couldn’t wait till its cooled to try some….AMAZING! best banana bread recipe ever! While it was in the oven it made the kitchen smell like a bakery

  7. Hey Sally- havr you ever made his with nuts? I have a ton of pecans, but I feel like walnuts might be better. How much would you suggest if I wanted to add?

  8. Sally, I was wondering if I could make this recipe with regular whole wheat flour or does it have to be white whole wheat?
    Thanks!

    • You could, yes. It will taste a little dense and have a heavier texture with whole wheat flour, so keep that in mind. 🙂

  9. I just made this recipe in the individual brownie pan because I wasn’t ambitious enough to go to the store to purchase the mini loaf pans. I made a brown sugar and oats crumble for an additional topping to lay down before the glaze and popped them in the oven for 20 minutes. My husband has already slammed down 4 and I think I hear him shuffling off into the kitchen for another. They came out wonderfully! Will definitely make again, but will have to hide them from my husband after so they last more than a day 😛 Thank you for the wonderful recipe.

  10. Would chocolate chips ruin this?

  11. I made this bread today and wow, fantastic. I didn’t have white whole wheat flour so I used half all purpose and half whole wheat which really worked. I also doubled the cinnamon for the swirl. This recipe is a keeper, much like the rest of Sally’s recipes.

  12. Hi can I make this without bananas and replace with nuts.

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