I’ve made a lot of banana bread in my life! Never in the history of my grocery shopping trips have I ever purchased the correct number of bananas to get through a week. It doesn’t matter if I buy four bananas or forty, it always seems that at the end of the week we have exactly three speckled brown bananas left over, just asking to be made into banana bread.
That’s all to say that I make close to 30-40 loaves per year, and all that banana bread baking has made me into quite the banana bread connoisseur.
To me, perfect banana bread must be: (A) super, incredibly moist (B) dense as all get out—this is not the time for a light and fluffy texture, and (C) intensely banana-flavored. So when I set out to make a grain-free, dairy-free, paleo, one bowl banana bread recipe, it had an incredibly high standard to live up to!
Luckily, dense quick breads like banana bread are the perfect introduction to paleo baking. Grain-free flours, like the almond flour we use here, lend themselves to dense, moist breads and are easy to find at most major supermarkets. Getting fluffy, grain-free sandwich bread is an experiment in more advanced paleo baking, but getting perfect paleo banana bread? That’s easy as can be!
How do you make banana bread paleo?
Making banana bread paleo is as simple as swapping out a few key ingredients. In place of the typical all-purpose flour (or whole wheat flour, in the case of our whole wheat banana bread), we use grain-free and gluten-free almond flour and tapioca flour. In place of butter, we use melted coconut oil. And that’s it! Magically, your banana bread has become paleo and gluten-free.
Can you make this gluten-free banana bread vegan?
I have yet to try this recipe using an egg substitute instead of actual eggs. I have a hunch that using flax eggs or chia eggs (1 tablespoon chia seeds or ground flaxseed combined with 3 tablespoons of water per egg replaced) would work, but result in a more tender bread. If you try it, please report back with your results!!
How do you know when banana bread is done baking?
This is one of the trickiest parts of baking banana bread, and I’m going to let you in on a little secret—if you slightly underbake your banana bread, no one is going to mind. That just makes for a more moist and tender loaf!
Of course, you don’t want it raw and goopy on the inside, so a good test is to lightly press on the top of the loaf when the baking time is up—it should feel set up and not jiggly. You can also try the toothpick test. When a toothpick is inserted in the middle of loaf, does it come out (mostly) clean? Or does it look like it’s still stuck with wet batter? If it’s the latter, pop that baby back in the oven and continue checking with the toothpick test every 4-5 minutes.
A great benefit to baking paleo quick breads is that it’s really hard to overbake or dry them out when baking. The nature of the flours used makes for a more moist loaf—it’s not going to turn into a brick if you bake it for an extra five minutes.
What’s the best way to store paleo banana bread?
I always store my banana bread in the fridge. Not only does it extend the shelf life dramatically, but I love the texture of cold banana bread! I slice my loaves once they are completely cool, and then store them in a glass food storage container in the fridge.
How long is almond flour banana bread good for?
As the recipe is written, you’ll be able to get 5-6 days out of a loaf in the fridge. If you reduce the amount of added maple syrup, you may get slightly less time since sugar is a good preservative. I will say, you will KNOW when banana bread is ready for the trash. It will smell and taste bitter and sour—and it will make this change seemingly overnight. Trust your senses!
Can you freeze banana bread?
Since I make so much banana bread in my house, I also freeze a TON of it—banana bread is a great option for the freezer! You can freeze whole loaves or slices. I prefer slices, just because it’s easy to grab a slice or two and warm in the toaster oven before busy school mornings!
To freeze whole loaves: Let cool completely on a wire rack, then transfer to a zip top freezer bag or a glass food storage container, and freeze for up to three months. Let defrost at room temperature.
To freeze slices: Let cool completely on a wire rack, then slice into thick slices. Place the slices in one layer on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, wax paper, or a silicone baking mat. Freeze until frozen solid, about three hours. Transfer to a zip top freezer bag or a glass food storage container, and freeze for up to three months. Let defrost at room temperature, or pop frozen slices in the toaster oven until warm.
Can you make this almond flour banana bread into muffins?
Sure can! Any quick bread recipe (paleo or otherwise) can be easily made into muffins. We walk you through how to make almond flour banana muffins here— all you’re really changing is the pan and the bake time!
I made this today for my 3-year-old daughter’s lunch box. It worked out really well. I hope she enjoys it as much as I do. Thanks for sharing! x
Hello Cassie! I’ve been following your site for several years and absolutely appreciate all that you do!!! I decided to comment on your banana bread recipe because I’ve made it for the past 4 weekends and I just can’t get enough of it. I follow the recipe exactly as you listed and I add walnuts. It comes out perfectly every time. BEST BANANA BREAD EVER!!So thanks again!! Believe it or not I found tapioca flour at my local Big Lots.
This is always so great to hear!
Hi Cassie, I’m trying to make the gluten free banana bread, but I’m unable to find tapioca flour or arrowroot starch. Is there anything else I could sub in?
Thanks so much!
Hi Kara: I’m sorry, those two are pretty hard to substitute for.
I subbed tapioca for Rice Flour (half the quantity as what is stated to use for Tapioca) and it turned out brilliantly!
Preferably I would have liked to use Rice Flour but coincidentally I was out of that also as I was of Tapioca 🙁
Cassie, I made this banana bread this weekend for a family brunch, since a few family member are gluten and dairy free and WHOA, it was SO GOOD!!!! This is my new go-to even though I, myself, eat both gluten and dairy. I was so wowed!
So glad to hear it!