With its super-moist and buttery texture, banana and brown sugar flavors, soft crumb, and 1,000+ reviews, this is a delicious AND undeniably popular banana bread recipe. You need 4 ripe bananas.
One reader, Michele, says: “Perfectly delish every time! Absolutely foolproof. Nuts, no nuts, smidge more or less of sour cream—no problem… bigger bananas, smaller—no worries, perfect, beyond delicious EVERY time.”
This is my favorite banana bread recipe, one that I’ve cherished for years. It’s one of those classic recipes that you start to know by heart, just like a good pie crust or chocolate chip cookies recipe. This bread comes to mind first when I have leftover spotty bananas on the counter, and it’s the bread that’s on constant rotation in my freezer stash.
It’s one of the most popular recipes I’ve published on this website, out of over 1,200.
One reader, Tricia, says: “I have this recipe on speed dial. LOL. It is so tasty and is always a crowd pleaser. My kids and entire family love it!!!”
Yes, I have this recipe on speed dial too! 😉
I’ve tried dozens of banana bread recipes over the years, and when I baked and originally published this recipe back in 2013, I never looked back.
Why You’ll Love This Banana Bread Recipe Too
- Mega banana flavor (from 2 cups/460g mashed bananas)
- Not overly sweet, so banana flavor shines
- Dense, but still quite tender & soft
- Buttery & stays moist for days
- Straightforward, simple recipe
- Freezes wonderfully
- Excellent plain or with nuts or chocolate chips
This bread uses more mashed bananas than similar recipes. Add 2 whole cups (460g) of mashed banana, which is about 4 large bananas. More banana = more moisture and flavor in the finished loaf.
How to Mash Bananas
Did you know you can use your electric mixer to mash bananas? Break or slice the spotty bananas into large pieces and place in the bowl of your stand mixer—or use a regular mixing bowl and your hand mixer. Begin beating on low, then gradually increase to medium-high speed as the bananas break down into mashed banana. Transfer the bananas to another bowl and use the mixing bowl for the butter and sugar. (No need to clean it—some mashed banana remnants is fine.)
I do this when I mash bananas for banana muffins and banana chocolate chip breakfast cookies too.
Other Banana Bread Ingredients
- Butter: Use softened butter for a soft texture and irresistible butter flavor.
- Brown Sugar: Use all brown sugar in this recipe. In the headnotes for this chocolate chip cookies recipe, I explain that brown sugar yields soft and moist cookies. Well, brown sugar works that same magic in banana bread, too. It also adds wonderful flavor.
- Eggs: Eggs supply cakes, cupcakes, breads, doughs, and cookies their stability and structure, as well as a tender texture. You’ll need 2 large eggs for this.
- Sour Cream or Yogurt: Sour cream or yogurt adds even more moisture to this banana bread. (You can use the 2 interchangeably in most baking recipes.)
For banana nut bread, add 3/4 cup of chopped nuts to the banana bread batter; I like using either pecans or walnuts. If you’re nuts for nuts (LOL), you’ll enjoy the toasty slight crunch nestled inside the soft crumbs. If you’re not a nut person, feel free to leave them out or replace with chocolate chips. For a whole wheat version, try my whole wheat banana bread.
Can I Use Frozen Bananas?
Yes and I do this often. Thaw the frozen bananas at room temperature. Drain off any excess liquid, mash, then use as instructed in the recipe below. See How to Freeze & Thaw Bananas for Baking. Try not to mash too much or else you’ll be left with 2 cups of banana-y liquid; some chunks are great.
Can I Turn This Into a Banana Bundt Cake?
I recommend using my extremely similar, scaled-up recipe for chocolate marble banana Bundt cake instead. You can leave out the chocolate swirl in that recipe.
How to Freeze Banana Bread
Freeze banana bread using these instructions to preserve its fresh flavor and texture for months:
- Cool baked banana bread completely.
- Tightly wrap the loaf or slices (individually or grouped) in 2–3 layers of plastic wrap or aluminum foil.
- Place wrapped banana bread in a large freezer-friendly storage bag or reusable container.
- Date the bag and freeze for up to 3–4 months. Thaw wrapped or unwrapped in the refrigerator or at room temperature. All methods work like a charm!
I like to freeze the quick bread in slices because slices thaw much quicker than a whole loaf.
Overall, this is an easy recipe for classic banana bread. The batter takes about 10 minutes to throw together, the bread stays moist for days, and nothing beats the smell of fresh banana bread in the oven. (Except for, maybe, zucchini bread or pumpkin bread… try those next!)
Other Favorite Banana Recipes:
- Banana Cake & Banana Cupcakes
- Cinnamon Swirl Banana Bread
- Banana Cream Pie & Banoffee Pie
- Banana Muffins or Healthier Chocolate Banana Muffins
- Banana Chocolate Chip Streusel Muffins
My Favorite Banana Bread
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 65 minutes
- Total Time: 3 hours
- Yield: 1 loaf
- Category: Bread
- Method: Baking
- Cuisine: American
With its super-moist and buttery texture, banana and brown sugar flavors, soft crumb, and 1,000+ reviews, this is a delicious AND undeniably popular banana bread recipe. You need 4 large ripe bananas.
- 2 cups (250g) all-purpose flour (spooned & leveled)
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 cup (1 stick or 115g) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
- 3/4 cup (150g) packed light or dark brown sugar (see Note)
- 2 large eggs, at room temperature
- 1/3 cup (80g) plain yogurt or sour cream, at room temperature
- 2 cups (460g) mashed bananas (about 4 large ripe bananas)
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- optional: 3/4 cup (100g) chopped pecans or walnuts
- Adjust the oven rack to the lower third position and preheat the oven to 350°F (177°C). Lowering the oven rack prevents the top of your bread from browning too much, too soon. Grease a metal 9×5-inch loaf pan with non-stick spray. Set aside.
- Whisk the flour, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon together in a medium bowl. Set aside.
- Using a handheld or stand mixer fitted with a paddle or whisk attachment, beat the butter and brown sugar together on high speed until smooth and creamy, about 2 minutes. With the mixer running on medium speed, add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Then beat in the yogurt, mashed bananas, and vanilla extract combined. With the mixer running on low speed, slowly beat the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients until no flour pockets remain. Do not over-mix. Fold in the nuts, if using.
- Pour and spread the batter into the prepared baking pan. Bake for 60–65 minutes, making sure to loosely cover the bread with aluminum foil halfway through to prevent the top from getting too brown. The bread is done when a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean with only a few small moist crumbs. This may be after 60–65 minutes depending on your oven, so begin checking every 5 minutes around the 60-minute mark.
- Remove bread from the oven and allow the bread to cool in the pan set on a wire rack for 1 hour. Remove bread from the pan and cool bread directly on the wire rack until ready to slice and serve.
- Cover and store banana bread at room temperature for 2 days or in the refrigerator for up to 1 week. Banana bread tastes best on day 2 after the flavors have settled together. See post above for freezing instructions.
- Special Tools (affiliate links): Whisk | Electric Mixer (Stand Mixer or Handheld) | Loaf Pan | Cooling Rack
- Butter: If needed, you can use salted butter in this recipe with no other changes needed. I’ve also successfully reduced the butter down to 6 Tablespoons (85g) with no issue (just as tasty).
- Brown Sugar: This is not an overly sweet quick bread. If you want a sweeter banana bread, increase to 1 cup (200g) brown sugar. Feel free to replace some or all of the brown sugar with regular white granulated sugar.
- Cream Cheese Frosting: This banana bread also tastes fantastic with cream cheese frosting on top! To make it, beat 4 ounces (112g) of softened cream cheese and 1/4 cup (60g) of softened unsalted butter together on medium speed until smooth. Beat in 1 cup (120g) of confectioners sugar, 1/2 teaspoon of pure vanilla extract, and a pinch of salt until combined. Spread on cooled loaf.
- Banana Bread Muffins: Use this banana bread recipe to make 2 dozen banana bread muffins. Pour the batter into a lined or greased muffin pan and bake for 5 minutes at 425°F (218°C); then, keeping the muffins in the oven, reduce the oven temperature to 350°F (177°C). Bake for an additional 16–17 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. The total bake time for the banana bread muffins is about 22–23 minutes. The initial burst of hot air helps those muffins rise nice and tall! Or try my quick & easy banana muffins.
- Brown Sugar: Feel free to substitute the same amount of regular white granulated sugar or coconut sugar. I do not recommend any liquid sweeteners.
- No Sour Cream or Yogurt? Feel free to use 1/3 cup mashed banana (in addition to the 2 cups), unsweetened applesauce, or even canned pumpkin puree.
- Frozen Bananas: You can use frozen bananas here. Thaw the frozen bananas. Drain off any excess liquid, mash, then use as instructed in the recipe. See How to Freeze & Thaw Bananas for Baking. Try not to mash too much or else you’ll be left with 2 cups of banana-y liquid; some chunks are great.
- Chocolate Chips: I love this bread with chocolate chips, too. Feel free to add 1 cup of your favorite chocolate chips. No need to leave out the nuts if you add the chocolate chips. Chocolate chips and nuts are both optional.
- Can I Turn This Into Banana Bundt Cake? There isn’t enough batter. I recommend using my extremely similar, scaled-up recipe for chocolate marble banana Bundt cake instead. You can leave out the chocolate swirl in that recipe.
Keywords: banana bread
Reader Comments & Reviews
Great recipe! I adore the substitutions section. Used a combo of applesauce, pumpkin puree, and bananas and it’s such a tasty bread. I adore your website! Thank you!
See above.. I forgot the word “sweet” This recipe is not sweet enough and I have been a conscientious whole foods baker for more than 40 years.. just sayin add more sweetener whatever that may be, raw honey, pure maple syrup, organic sugar, stevia… whatever you choose, just do it and it
Moist, but DEFINITELY not enough. For how long it took and according to the reviews, I was waiting to be “Wowed”. Double the sugar and hope for the best or revisit Grandma’s recipe…. Unfortunately less than impressed. Bummed 🙁
Felt the same, an overly moist unrisen mess!
Too much baking soda 🙁 it is almost inedible and I definitely used just one teaspoon. the flavor was noticeable. I’m surprised no one else has said anything. Maybe a mix of less baking soda and some baking powder instead?
Usually when the baking soda flavor is overpowering, baking soda has gone bad. It might be time to get a fresh container! Thanks for giving this recipe a try.
This is a truly excellent recipe. My husband loves banana bread and this one is his (and my) absolute favorite. I’ve made it with extra bananas bc did not have yogurt and have also made it with yogurt. I also added walnuts. I followed directions to the letter. Both times I’ve made this it was excellent. Note: I weigh out flour and brown sugar rather than use measuring cups.
I have this recipe on speed dial. LOL. It is so tasty and is always a crowd pleaser. My kids and entire family love it!!!
This was an excellent banana bread recipe, and I’ve made many. I used fat free greek yogurt and it came out fantastic. Thank you!
I love banana bread and have made many recipes over the years and this one was by far the worst. We tossed the majority of the loaf.
What!? Really? Im so sorry to hear that. This is my second round with using this recipe. I couldn’t find my usual one so tried this and my family LOVES it! Are you sure something didnt go wonky in the process? Anyhow, I usually dont try failed recipes twice, so dont blame you if you don’t, but I really encourage you to give this a second shot, because I feel like something must have been off!
Decided to give this recipe a try for my neighbor’s Christmas goodies. I got rave reviews from everyone! It’s moist and not overly sweet. Also added 3/4 cup of chocolate chips. Sorry you didn’t like it but it’s certainly a keeper in my book!
When you say • 2 cups (250g) all-purpose flour, do you mean 2 cups of 250g each or 2 cups totalling 250g?
Somewhere below, your 1/2 cup is 115g and 3/4 cup is 150g and 3/4 cup is 100g. So pretty confused. Am a beginner. Pls excuse.
It will be a disaster if I get it wrong 🙂
Hi Rajesh, you’ll want 250g total. Enjoy!
Can l use low fat natural yogurt? As a substitute to normal yogurt?
Hi Monica, that should work fine.
Has anyone used boba milk GF flour? If so, does it turn out and did you make any alterations?
Hi! Cami! I only use Gluten-Free flour – Bob’s Red Mill One to One and every recipe I make turns out perfectly. I cannot speak to any other G-F flour, as I have yet to try another. Yet! With Bob’s Red Mill, you cannot go wrong. Happy Baking!!
Easy and delicious, have made many many times, can swap out whole wheat flour for part of the AP flour, if desired for a more toothsome bread.
Made this recipe after a trip to Hawaii, they have some amazing banana bread and I was craving it. Decided to swap with gluten free flour and omg this is now my favorite ‘bread’. Thank you for a great recipe and detailed instructions, this is by far one of the best in my opinion.
Which gluten free flour did you use and did you make any other alterations?
King Arthur 1:1 GF flour is the best! Target carries it for a great price.
Question, can I use condensed milk instead of sugar?
Hi Kenya, we do not recommend that swap.
Hi! I loved this recipe! My only problem is that the bread did not rise as much as I thought it would. Could I have over mixed? Thank you!
Hi Priyanka, so glad you enjoyed it! A squat loaf can be caused by over-mixing, old baking soda, or too much flour in the batter. You can read more about properly measuring baking ingredients in this post.
Used Greek yogurt and 1/2 c sugar and they were the perfect sweetness for me. Easy, delicious and loaded with walnuts, what’s not to love about these!
I just made this morning- only had 3 ripe bananas but they made 2 cups mashed so went ahead with this recipe. I also used King Arthur All Purpose Gluten Free Flour instead of regular- 1:1 ratio, no sub besides the type of flour. This turned out delicious- a true banana loaf bread, maybe its the GF flour but it came out quite dense but still very tender/moist which I personally love for GF bread, it holds up rather than crumbles this way. Only learning, and again my guess is the GF flour I used- but I tented with foil mid-way and the top didn’t really get brown, so next time will just skip tenting it so it gets a richer brown crust. I baked in 9×5 pan lined in parchment and the sides browned up nicely. I added chocolate chips to mine. Will definitely be using this recipe again, I love the hold of the crumb so next time I think I’ll try adding in a cinnamon sugar swirl for more of a banana bread coffee cake, since it held up so well!
Won’t be making this again. I tried twice and it was bad both times — starting to burn on the outside, and raw in the centre. And it had no crumb or lift, just stodgy and thick. Waste of time and materials unfortunately, I threw half of it away.
Hi Lisa, Any chance you are using a smaller size pan or using a convection oven? All of our recipes are written for conventional ovens as the flow of air from convection heat can cause baked goods to rise and bake unevenly and it also pulls moisture out of the oven (which leads to over baked outside and under baked insides which is why I’m asking!). If you do use convection settings for baking, lower your temperature by 25 degrees F and keep in mind that things may still take less time to bake.
Hi Sally and all — I would like to do a Nutella swirl (without the peanut butter and Reese’s from your other recipe) or a ganache swirl (no frosting) with this recipe. (Kind of a mash-up * pun unintended* of a couple of your recipes) Which do you recommend?
Hi Linda, You can use this recipe and add a Nutella swirl. We haven’t tested it but you can try using the same quantities and layering technique that we use in this Nutella swirl pound cake. Let us know if you give it a try!
yo, I never comment but this recipe is effing crazy. literally insane, made it the other day and I’m still not over how amazing it is. my friends are also floored. maybe it’s the banana’s, maybe it’s sally – I think it’s sally. thank you queen!!! my go-to chef for everything baked
So, I made this again (see my July, 2022 review) with the proper number of bananas. I froze my bananas so they would keep while I went away for a long weekend – Sally’s tips for freezing & thawing bananas are invaluable; especially the admonition to not use the liquid that results from thawing (I would just dumped it into the batter with all the bad results Sally describes – thank you, Sally). My loaf came out perfect – beautiful color and an even “beautifuler” dome. I omitted nuts (it’s for guests and some don’t like nuts) and baked it in a metal loaf pan. I’ve baked this now in both a stoneware and a metal pan with the same results and the same bake time. I replied today to someone who asked about using a ceramic pan and I now realize that ceramic and stoneware are not the same – what can I say? I’m a guy. I know Sally advises against using ceramic for this loaf but with all due respect for Sally’s expertise (and I do respect it); baking for me is recreation and an adventure – I say, if ceramic is all you have, give it a try (so long as this is not a “it must turn out well” situation). You may be pleasantly surprised at your results…or not. But if it does turn out well, you’ll feel like your team just hit the winning three-pointer at the buzzer. Trust me, I’m a guy, I know these things…
This is the best banana bread ever; I always get rave reviews when I make
I want to make this bread in mini loaf pans, how long should I bake them?
Hi Marsha, it will depend on the size of the pan — the smaller the pan, the shorter the bake time. Keep a close eye on them and use a toothpick to test for doneness. So glad this is a favorite for you!
My new go-to banana bread, it’s absolutely delicious.
Hi, Can i use buttermilk in this instead of sour cream/ yoghurt?
Hi Sofia, You can use buttermilk instead of yogurt or sour cream (same amount), but the batter will be on the thinner side and, as a result, the baked bread will end up a little squat without as much rise. We recommend sticking to the recipe for best results.
If I were to make them in muffin trays, would the baking time be different?
Hi Lilly! See the recipe notes for detailed instructions on making muffins 🙂
I would update the recipe to say either bunt pan or 2 loaf pans as this is far too big of a batch for a single loaf pan thus leading to a much longer bake time than listed
Hi Brock, what size loaf pan are you using or did you happen to make any ingredient substitutions or additions? This batter was written to fit a 9×5 pan. If your pan is smaller, you may divide the batter between two loaves. While it can be used for a Bundt, it would be pretty short so we we recommend using this banana cake instead.
looking forward to making this – i’ve been looking for a recipe with cinnamon, brown sugar & vanilla & this has all 3!
Great recipe. Next time I make it, I plan to add some chocolate chips to send it way over the top!
Made this recipe today and it turned out pretty good. I moved to Uruguay South America this past August and have been living without all my baking equipment. It’s somewhere in Panama on a ship! So, I used what I had. Surprisingly, it turned out great! I had to use very basic tools and mix by hand. I used a round copper pot to bake. Would love to send you a picture. Thank you for all you advice and tips. I will continue to use as many of your recipes as I can. Love baking! And eating the end results of course!
Hi Marianne! We love to see baker’s photos – you can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org 🙂
Made this recipe. Flavour was delicious but it was quite heavy. Not sure what I did wrong. I used cake flour as I didn’t have all purpose and I used half treacle sugar, half caramel sugar. Other than that I followed the recipe.
Hi Kathryn! We don’t recommend using cake flour in this moist banana bread recipe. All purpose is best. And using different sweeteners will change the texture as well. It’s best to stick with the recipe as written for best and most predictable results.
This banana bread is moist and delicious! Thank you for a great go-to recipe..
Can I use vegetable oil instead of butter?
Hi Jenica, The bread will taste rubbery without the fat from the butter. We haven’t tried it ourselves, but you could try using melted coconut oil instead (taste and texture would be different). Or you may enjoy this whole wheat banana bread recipe instead.
This is literally the best banana bread recipe! My husband and I are a half a loaf in one sitting. Don’t change anything just follow the recipe. Trust me.