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The Best Banana Nut Bread

If you’re looking for an easy Banana Nut Bread Recipe that comes out moist and perfect every time, then this is the best homemade recipe you’ll find! Golden brown outside with a soft texture inside, you’ll get both banana and nuts in every bite. Easily the best use of your cast iron loaf pan.

banana nut bread sliced on a wire cooling rack with cast iron loaf pan

Banana Walnut Bread

Do you have recipes that are passed down in your family from generation to generation? Those beloved cookbooks where the binding is gone, pages are missing, and the writing is hard to read? We do too. And this, this is one of those recipes that will be passed down for ages to come because it never fails and tastes fantastic every time.

There are many ways to make banana bread. Some like it with cinnamon and nutmeg. Some don’t want the nuts. Some have zucchini or chocolate chips. But no matter how you make it, there are a few things about a good banana bread that remain: it should be golden brown, and banana should be tasted and seen through little brown specks in every slice of bread.

banana nut bread cooling on a wire rack with a cast iron loaf pan in the back.

What is a quick bread?

There are many kinds of quick breads similar to banana bread. A quick bread is known for the use of baking powder and/or baking soda as a levening agent. That means there is no yeast in use in the dough or batter, thus making a bread quicker to prepare and bake. Quick breads can be anything such as Applesauce Bread, Maple Bacon Quick Bread with candied bacon, Zucchini Bread, of Muffins that use a batter or recipes such as Scones, and Biscuits that produce more of a dough.

Pro Tip: No matter the batter or dough you create, you’ll want to work the dough as little as possible to prohibit the gluten from developing. This is one of the aspects that leads to a softer, more delicate bread.

How to Make Banana Bread

Start by sifting together the dry ingredients. It’s really important that you truly sift here as it will prevent clumps, make the bread light and fluffy, and ensure all your leavening agent is dispersed properly.

Next, mash the bananas with the sugar and oil. I find it easiest to use a hand mixer for this step. Once combined, add one egg at a time and mix in.

To another large bowl add half of the dry ingredients, half of the wet ingredients, half of the milk, and half of the nuts. Use a hand mixer to quickly combine. Add the remaining ingredients and mix.

Pour into a greased cast iron loaf pan and bake in the oven for 1 hour at 325F. After that, do a toothpick test. If still not done in the middle, tent with a piece of tinfoil and bake for another 20 minutes. Allow the bread to cool in the loaf pan for another 20 minutes or so before removing to a wire rack to cool almost fully. Once mostly cooled, slice into 1/2 inch thick pieces and dollop with butter. There’s not much better than warm banana bread and a pad of butter.

The best banana nut bread in a cast iron loaf pan.

How to Store Banana Nut Bread

Once fully cooled, the banana bread can be stored wrapped in plastic wrap within a Ziploc bag, or tinfoil in a cool, dark place for up to 4 days at room temperature. The same method, but in the refrigerator will last you up to a week. Remember to remove as much air as possible from the bag to prohibit mold growth. Note that the refrigerator can dry out the banana nut bread slightly. Restore moisture by dampening a paper towel, wrapping the banana in it and microwaving for about 30 seconds.

To freeze the loaf, wrap in two layers of plastic wrap and freeze whole, or cut into slices with a piece of parchment paper in-between each slice so you can thaw as the craving strikes. Frozen loafs are good for up to 4 months. Always place a sticker on the plastic wrap and mark the date made. To thaw, simply leave it out on the counter overnight.

stack of banana nut bread slices with butter melting on top.

Tips and Tricks for Banana Nut Bread

Don’t throw away those blackened or even leaky bananas. The more ripe they are the sweeter and more moist your banana bread will be.

Got a hankering for banana bread and no ripened bananas? Stick the bananas in a brown paper bag with a citrus such as an orange. Wait a few days and they will be very tender. You can also place them in the refrigerator to quicken the process. And finally, if you just can’t wait, you can peel and microwave the bananas to get them softened enough to mash and incorporate.

Banana Bread needs to have a moist center. This recipe creates a rather large loaf and thus a longer bake time. However, no matter the recipe and size of your pan, if the top of your banana bread is as brown as you would like it but the center is not fully baked using the toothpick test, tent the banana bread with a piece of tinfoil and continue baking until you get a clean toothpick.

There are three methods, all of which are very easy when using ripe bananas. You can mash with a fork, a potato masher, or an electric mixer. I typically go for the hand or stand mixer.

The traditional options are pecans or walnuts. I usually default to walnuts.

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Breads Recipes

inside image of a loaf of banana nut bread and slices
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The Best Banana Nut Bread

This 1 loaf recipe bakes perfectly in a cast iron loaf pan or standard bread pan. The taste of banana and crunch of walnuts in every tender bite under a golden brown crust.
Print Recipe
Prep Time:10 mins
Cook Time:1 hr 20 mins
Cooling Time:40 mins
Total Time:2 hrs 10 mins

Equipment

  • Cast Iron Loaf Pan
  • rubber spatula
  • hand mixer
  • wire cooling rack
  • tin foil

Ingredients

  • 1-3/4 cups flour all-purpose and sifted
  • 1-1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt fine
  • 3 bananas very ripe
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 6 Tablespoons milk
  • 1/2 cup walnuts chopped

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 325F. Spray a loaf pan with PAM cooking spray and set aside.
  • Sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt into a large bowl.
    Flour, salt, baking soda, and baking powder being sifted into a bowl for banana nut bread
  • Use a hand mixer or stand mixer to combine the ripe bananas, sugar, and oil in another large bowl. Add the eggs and mix quickly.
    3 ripe bananas, sugar, and vegetable oil being mashed for banana nut bread
  • In a third large bowl, combine half of the dry ingredients, half of the wet ingredients, half of the milk, and half of the walnuts. Mix with the hand mixer until just combined. Add the remaining ingredients and mix again. Careful not to overmix the batter.
    Process shot of banana nut bread batter coming together.
  • Pour into the loaf pan and bake for 1 hour. Test with a toothpick in the center of the loaf. If it comes out clean, the bread is done. If it comes out wet with batter, tent a piece of tinfoil over the top of the banana bread and allow to bake for 20 more minutes.
    Banana nut bread batter being poured into a cast iron loaf pan.
  • Remove from the oven and allow to cool in the loaf pan for another 20 minutes. Remove from the loaf pan and allow to cool on a wire rack until ready to slice and serve. Serve with a pad of butter if desired.
    banana nut bread cooling on a wire rack with a cast iron loaf pan in the back.

Notes

Please see the accompanying blog post for more information, tips, and tricks. 
Please also rate this recipe after you make it so others can know how delicious and easy it is. Thank you! 
After you make it please tag us on Instagram @castironrecipesofficial or over on Facebook and share with your friends and family. 

Nutrition

Calories: 131kcal | Carbohydrates: 22g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 4g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 28mg | Sodium: 174mg | Potassium: 150mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 17g | Vitamin A: 72IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 29mg | Iron: 1mg
Course: Bread
Cuisine: American
Keyword: banana bread, bread, easy, quick bread, simple, walnuts
Servings: 12 slices
Calories: 131kcal
Author: Katie Chase

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