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Banana Bread Makeover!

Posted Nov 27 2012 11:26pm

We actually don't make banana bread very often, because we never have over ripe bananas. My kids can literally polish off every single banana I purchase, long before they go bad.  

But, last weekend I attended a nutrition conference, sponsored by Dole where we were able to attend a recipe makeover class and testing to see if we could taste the difference between the classic banana bread recipe, and a healthy banana bread.  They eliminated the margarine, added greek yogurt, and lowered the amount of sugar to make the healthier banana bread.  While there was a slight difference in bread, it was impossible for me to tell which one I liked better. They were both good!  So, I decided to put the taste test to my own kids.  Unfortunately, I had to use regular ripe bananas, instead of over ripe bananas! But both breads still turned out good.

 The Classic Banana Bread Recipe:

  • 2 extra-ripe, large DOLE® Bananas, peeled
  • 1/3 cup margarine
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 3/4 cup chopped nuts

 Puree bananas in blender (1-1/4 cups).  Cream margarine with sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in bananas and eggs.  Combine flour, baking powder and baking soda.   Add dry ingredients alternately in thirds with buttermilk, blending well after each addition.  Stir in nuts.  Pour into greased 9 x 5-inch loaf pan.  Bake in 350 F oven 50 to 60 minutes until tests done.  Cool in pan on a rack 10 minutes.  Turn out onto rack to complete cooling.  Makes 1 loaf,  (24 servings).

The Healthy Banana Bread Recipe

  • 1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 cup agave syrup
  • 1/2 cup non-fat Greek yogurt
  • 1 egg
  • 5 extra ripe DOLE® Bananas, mashed
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup chopped almonds or walnuts, toasted (optional)

Preheat oven to 350°F. Combine flours, baking powder, and baking soda in medium bowl; set aside. Whisk agave syrup, Greek yogurt and egg in medium bowl.  Beat in bananas and vanilla until blended.  Stir in flour mixture; beat until just blended.  Stir in nuts.  Pour into 9 x 5-inch baking pan sprayed with nonstick cooking spray.  Bake 55 to 65 minutes or until wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean.  Cool in pan 10 minutes.

And to my delight, the Healthy version actually won with my kids!  It was so much more moist than the classic version.  Sometimes when you make a healthy version of something, it tastes: healthified!  It's not something you would be excited about bringing to a neighbor. This one is different! The healthy version is just as good, if not better, than the classic!

I had my kids do a blind test and didn't tell them which was the healthier one.  Yet, they each preferred the healthier one!  I loved that the sugar was reduced by almost 20 grams and the fat was reduced by 24 grams!


While in California at the Dole Event, I was able to connect with some talented bloggers.  I met in real life:

This is me with Food Fresh

This is a grocery trip we took to learn about shopping for healthier food. (me with Yum Yucky )

I have always been a big fan of  Dole because their products make it easy to eat fruits and vegetables without adding sugar, chemicals, or other things.  I've always tried to promote that the best way to get your kids to get over their picky eating is to serve fruits and vegetables in a variety of ways.  Fresh, frozen, canned, dried, juiced, pureed, etc.  This helps them to discover new tastes and textures and to expand their palate   Dole has fruits and vegetables in all these varieties without adding sugar and other fillers.  Their  canned fruits are packed in juice, rather than syrup.  Their juices are 100% real juice.  They have a huge line of frozen fruits that are only fruit, and of course they have fresh fruits and vegetables, like bagged salads!

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