Vegan Whole Wheat Banana Bread with Chocolate

Vegan Whole Wheat Banana Bread with Chocolate

Indulge in guilt-free whole wheat vegan banana bread, a healthier twist on the classic treat. Packed with wholesome ingredients, this banana bread recipe offers a deliciously moist crumb scented with nutmeg and cinnamon and dotted with rich chocolate chips.  Whether enjoyed for breakfast, as a snack, or as a sweet treat after dinner, this banana bread is sure to be a hit!

Banana bread is a beloved classic quick bread, prized for being delicious, easy and versatile.  In this vegan version of my original banana bread, the timeless treat is elevated into a healthier, plant-based version without sacrificing any of its deliciousness.  This banana bread is a testament to the fact that healthy eating can be satisfying and delicious. Seriously, you would never know it’s whole grain, egg-free and refined sugar-free.  That means I can justify serving this treat to my kids for an after-school snack.  Make a double batch so you can stock one in your freezer.  This amazing vegan banana bread recipe is one you’ll be turning to again and again. 

vegan whole wheat banana bread with chocolate

What’s to love about this healthy banana bread recipe?

Vegan

This plant-based banana bread uses flax eggs as the egg replacer, perfect for those looking for an eggless banana bread.  It’s also dairy-free, made with avocado oil instead of butter.

Full of Flavor

This delicious recipe features tons of banana flavor, scented with cinnamon and nutmeg and a little chocolate for good measure.  Yum!

So Easy

 It’s mixed by hand and the batter can be whipped up in 10 minutes.

Refined Sugar-Free

Less refined sugar in our lives is always a good thing!  You won’t miss the white sugar in this recipe – I promise!

100% Whole Grain

Whole what pastry flour replaces all purpose flour in this recipe, though it’s crumb is just as moist and tender as ‘regular’ banana bread recipes you love!  That’s the magic of whole wheat pastry flour (aka white whole wheat flour). 

vegan whole wheat banana bread

Ingredients & Substitution Notes 

  • Ripe bananas – The star of the show, ripe bananas provide natural sweetness and moisture to the bread while imparting flavor. 
  • Whole wheat pastry flour – aka white whole wheat flour – Opting for whole wheat flour adds fiber, B vitamins and folate, making it a healthier alternative to all-purpose white flour.
  • Avocado oil – Providing a neutral flavor, avocado oil helps keep the bread moist and tender and is also free of dairy. Substitute another neutral oil if you want.
  • Maple syrup – For added sweetness, maple syrup is a natural and unrefined sweetener that complements the bananas beautifully.  An equal amount of coconut sugar is also an option. 
  • Vanilla extract – Enhancing the flavor profile of the bread, vanilla extract adds depth and warmth to each bite.
  • Baking powder & baking soda – These leavening agents ensure that the bread rises evenly and achieves the perfect texture. 
  • Salt – A pinch of salt balances the sweetness of the bananas and chocolate chips, elevating the overall flavor of the bread.
  • Chocolate chips – Make sure to select a vegan chocolate chip if you’re avoiding dairy. There are some great refined-sugar free vegan chocolate chips in the baking aisle, like these.
  • Nutmeg & cinnamon – I know this seems surprising in banana bread, but it really makes the banana bread something special! 
  • Flax seed “egg” – This vegan banana bread recipe mixes ground flaxseed with water to create an egg substitute, replacing the moisture from the traditional eggs.  Flax seeds are a nutritional powerhouse with protein, omega-3 fatty acids and fiber.
  • Turbinado sugar (optional) – for topping the banana bread. This adds sparkle and texture to the top of the loaf.  Sunflower seeds make a pretty topping as well if you’d rather skip the sugar!

How to make vegan whole wheat banana bread

  1. Mix 2 tablespoon of ground flax seeds with 5 tablespoons of water. Allow the mixture to sit for a few minutes until it thickens to a gel-like consistency, resembling the texture of a traditional egg. 
  2. Center a rack in the oven and preheat to 350°F.  Lightly grease a loaf pan with coconut oil or line it with parchment paper.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, mash the ripe bananas until smooth using a fork or potato masher.
  4. Add the flax seed “eggs”, avocado oil, maple syrup, and vanilla extract to the mashed bananas, and whisk or stir with a spoon, until well combined.
  5. In a separate bowl, sift together the whole wheat flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg.
  6. Gradually add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, stirring until just combined. Be careful not to overmix, as this can result in a dense texture.
  7. Gently fold in the vegan chocolate chips.
  8. Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan, smoothing the top with a spatula.
  9. Sprinkle the turbinado sugar on top of the loaf.  
  10. Bake in the preheated oven for 50-60 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
  11. Once baked, remove the banana bread from the oven and allow it to cool in the pan for 10-15 minutes.  Remove from loaf pan and transfer to cooling rack to cool completely.
  12. Slice into thick slices and serve with a cup of coffee.  I like to spread a little peanut butter or almond butter on each slice for some extra protein. 
mix dry ingredients in mixing bowl
mix wet ingredients in large bowl

HOW TO STORE AND FREEZE EXTRA vegan BANANA BREAD

Store banana bread, covered well in the refrigerator or at room temperature for 3-4 days. To reheat, place individual slices in the microwave for 15-20 seconds.  To freeze banana bread, wrap (cooled) loaf well in plastic wrap and then wrap a second time in aluminum foil. Place in tightly-sealed freezer bag or airtight container and place in freezer for up to two months. To thaw, place at room temperature overnight. If you’d like, you can reheat the thawed loaf in the oven at 350 degrees for 10-15 minutes. 

how to freeze and store extra vegan whole wheat banana bread

Mixing things up

Versatile and customizable, feel free to get creative to suit your taste preferences. Add chopped nuts, dried fruit, or even a swirl of peanut butter for a fun twist on this classic treat. The possibilities are endless!

  • For vegan blueberry banana bread, swap the chocolate chips for 1 cup of blueberries. Gently stir into finished batter.
  • For vegan banana nut bread – Gently fold 1 cup of chopped walnuts or pecans (with or without the chocolate chips) into the finished batter.
serving vegan whole wheat banana bread with chocolate

CAN FROZEN BANANAS BE USED IN BANANA BREAD?

Absolutely!  You can save all ripe (and overripe!) bananas and collect them in your freezer until you’re ready to bake with them.  They work well in all kinds of banana baking recipes like banana chocolate caramel bundt cakebanana muffins, and, of course, this vegan chocolate chip banana bread.  I’ve found the flavor and texture of the bread to be just as good as the loaves made with fresh bananas.  You’ll just need to defrost the frozen bananas before you begin because they’ll need to be soft enough to mash for your baking recipes.  

YOU CAN THAW BANANAS ONE OF THREE WAYS:

  • Place them in a bowl (covered) or other container in the refrigerator overnight.  Don’t be concerned if they turn brown as they thaw. They are perfectly safe and delicious to use in your banana bread. Before using in recipe, pour off or drain (and discard) liquid. 
  • Defrost them in the microwave in 30 second intervals on high power. Drain and discard liquid before using. 
  • Defrost them in the microwave on 50-percent power for 2-3 minutes, until bananas are soft enough to mash and they have released some liquid. Drain and discard liquid before using.

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Did you love this recipe?  Please rate the recipe and let me know in the comments what you thought! Also, be sure to follow Lane Bakery on Instagram, and tag me when you try one of my recipes so I can see all your delicious creations!

Vegan Whole Wheat Banana Bread

Indulge in guilt-free whole wheat vegan banana bread, a healthier twist on the classic treat. Scented with nutmeg & cinnamon & dotted with rich chocolate chips.  Enjoy for breakfast, as a snack, or as a sweet treat after dinner!
Prep Time10 minutes
Cook Time50 minutes
Course: Breakfast, brunch, Snack
Keyword: vegan whole wheat banana bread
Servings: 8

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups whole wheat pastry flour (white whole wheat flour)
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 3/4 tsp kosher or sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 3/4 cup mashed bananas about 2 large bananas
  • 2 tbsp ground flax seed, plus 5 tbsp water makes 2 flax "eggs"
  • 1/2 cup avocado oil
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup dairy-free chocolate chips
  • turbinado or coconut sugar, to top loaf optional
  • coconut oil for greasing the loaf pan

Instructions

  • Mix 2 tablespoon of ground flax seeds with 5 tablespoons of water. Allow the mixture to sit for a few minutes until it thickens to a gel-like consistency, resembling the texture of a traditional egg. 
  • Center a rack in the oven and preheat to 350°F.  Lightly grease a loaf pan with coconut oil or line it with parchment paper.
  • In a large mixing bowl, mash the ripe bananas until smooth using a fork or potato masher.
  • Add the flax seed “eggs”, avocado oil, maple syrup, and vanilla extract to the mashed bananas, and whisk until well combined.
  • In a separate bowl, sift together the whole wheat flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg.
  • Gradually add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, stirring until just combined. Be careful not to overmix, as this can result in a dense texture.
  • Gently fold in the vegan chocolate chips.
  • Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan, smoothing the top with a spatula.
  • Sprinkle the turbinado sugar on top of the loaf.  
  • Bake in the preheated oven for 50-60 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
  • Remove the banana bread from the oven and allow it to cool in the pan for 10-15 minutes.  Remove from loaf pan and transfer to cooling rack to cool completely.
  • Slice into thick slices and serve.


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