Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Banana Bread (Gluten-Free)

It’s speckled with brown spots where it was once gloriously yellow. It’s right at the point where fruit flies are about to infiltrate. I’m talking about the perfectly ripe banana. There are many ingredients that comprise a good banana bread recipe. The most important, in my humble opinion, are the bananas. Using ripe bananas is pivotal to the success of the recipe. If they are not ripe enough there will not be enough flavor in the bread.

Fortunately, I am never in short supply of ripe bananas. As I previously mentioned when I shared my standard banana bread recipe, I purchase my bananas in bulk which usually means there are just enough leftover that I can set a few aside to make my favorite quick bread.

Recently I’ve been working on taking my favorite “standard” recipes and tweaking them to be gluten-free. It is so rewarding to continue to open the door to the gluten-free world. As many gluten-free bloggers before me have described, venturing into the world of gluten-free baking can be overwhelming. There are so many ingredients to work with that I have never worked with before. The key to a successful recipe is to find the right combination of flours. I’ve been experimenting with various ways to combine them. I think I finally found a combination that works well in multiple recipes.

My blend is a mixture of brown rice flour, chickpea flour (a/k/a garbanzo flour) and tapioca flour. Use whatever blend you prefer. I’ve made this bread with a store bought flour blend and added some teff flour and it turned out fine.

I usually top my banana bread with a powdered sugar glaze or cream cheese frosting. Now and then I’ll also kick it up a notch and toast a slice and top it with some peanut butter which makes for an excellent breakfast on the go.

Gluten-Free Banana Bread


1 cup brown rice flour

2/3 cup chickpea flour (a/k/a garbanzo flour)

1/3 cup tapioca flour

1/2 teaspoon xanthan gum

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup salted butter, softened

1 cup granulated sugar

2 eggs

1/4 cup vanilla yogurt

1 teaspoon vanilla

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1 cup mashed bananas (approximately 3 bananas)

1/2 cup cacao chips, roughly chopped


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease your loaf pan. I used a mini 8-loaf pan.

Cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Add in the eggs, yogurt, vanilla, cinnamon and bananas to blend.

Whisk the flours together then add in the xanthan gum, baking soda and salt and whisk to blend in with the flour mixture.

Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients. Do not over mix. Fold in the cacao chips.

Divide the mixture into your loaf pan.

Bake at 350 F for 35 minutes for a mini 8-loaf pan. If using a regular loaf pan bake for approximately 1 hour. Baking times will vary based on the flour blend and loaf pan that you use. The bread is done when a toothpick inserted in the bread comes out clean and the bread is a nice golden brown.

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10 Responses to “Banana Bread (Gluten-Free)”

  1. 1

    Meg — February 1, 2011 @ 9:05 PM

    I cannot wait to try this out! Ripe to the point of putrefication is key, in my humble opinion. I will send my banana bread recipe next week, but I fear it will pale in comparison. Oh, and the shortbread-sugar cookie mashup recipe will be coming nest week, as well.
    I will add bananas, brown rice flour and chickpea flour to my shopping list. Super excited! It looks delicious.

  2. 2

    Medeja — February 2, 2011 @ 4:38 AM

    It looks lovely, I would try to add some dried fruit or nuts maybe :) anyway it looks soft and nice

  3. 3

    Jeanette — February 2, 2011 @ 9:59 AM

    Looks delicious. Since we are dairy/sugar free, will try this with virgin coconut oil and less/different sweetener.

  4. 4

    Stella — February 3, 2011 @ 3:38 PM

    Hey Wendy, this is a really beautiful loaf. I love that it is gluten-free too. I was wondering one thing though while looking at it. Do you think one could make this without the Xanthum gum, or would that be pushing it?
    BTW, glad to find you blog:-)

    • Wendy replied: — February 3rd, 2011 @ 7:14 PM

      Hi Stella, I’ve made this without the xanthum gum. It is a little more crumbly without it. Just grab an extra napkin and enjoy!

  5. 5

    irena — February 5, 2011 @ 1:07 AM

    Love the bread, looks fantastic:)
    Today I had guest blog post with interesting gluten free recipe…check it out….

  6. 6

    Cristina — February 9, 2011 @ 9:13 PM

    Looks like a good gluten-free banana bread recipe. I have looked into trying more gluten free baking, but as you mentioned, it’s a challenge with all the additional ingredients that are needed. Some ingredients are difficult to find. I wanted to do for more of a healthful choice not out of necessity. Thanks for sharing!

  7. 7

    Peanut Butter Banana Bread with Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup Cream Cheese Glaze (Gluten-free) | La Phemme Phoodie — February 10, 2011 @ 10:46 AM

    […] banana bread. I have my original banana bread recipe memorized. I’m working on memorizing my gluten-free version but the problem is I keep finding ways to tweak it to make it even better. My first round of test […]

  8. 8

    meg — September 9, 2012 @ 1:48 PM

    I am finally making this! I was asked to participate in a bake sale at work, and I thought this would be the perfect time to check this out. It is in the oven now, and it smells delicious!

    • Wendy replied: — September 9th, 2012 @ 1:58 PM

      Hooray! Definitely report back and let me know how it turns out.

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