Last week, I wrote about my incessant habit of finding and saving things on Pinterest, but never quite following through with making them. Now I’m tackling (or trying to) my massive collection (seriously, y’all, I’m up to almost 1,000 pins) in an effort to feel less like I’m hoarding, and more like I’m actually doing something.
I came across this pin for banana bread a while ago. It was supposed to be a somewhat healthier alternative to regular banana bread by substituting oil and sugar with honey and applesauce. Naturally, because it was healthier in that aspect, I knew instantly that I wanted to add chocolate chips! That’s why healthier alternatives exist, right? So we can add chocolate to them and feel okay with our decisions?
Truthfully, I wasn’t sure if applesauce and honey would be enough to substitute oil and sugar. Would the bread taste like it was the healthier version? Or would it be just fine? Or maybe it wouldn’t work at all and it’d be too gross to even eat?
I ran into a couple of snafus, which I blame on the fact that I started this baking adventure at 9 p.m. on a Wednesday and I was pretty beat. First, I snapped photos of the ingredients… with the wrong ingredients. I couldn’t get it in my head that this recipe DID NOT need sugar. I kept slipping it into the photos! I also accidentally spilled egg on the counter, poured quite a bit more than a cup of chocolate chips into the mix, and ended up needing to bake the bread for 15 full minutes longer than the recipe said I’d need to.
That said… the bread was totally delicious. It was a bit spongier than I was used to — definitely more spongey and less cakey — BUT that was only true of the outside. The inside was very moist, springy, and the perfect amount of sweet (no added white sugar needed!).
My boyfriend said the bread was even better the next day. A lot of the “sponginess” that had been present the evening I’d cooked the bread had dissipated. Instead, when the bread was warmed up, it was nice and chewy. I only preserved it by wrapping it in aluminum foil, and it was still moist the next day!
Banana bread recipe with honey and applesauce
- 2 cups whole wheat flour (I went with white)
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup sugar free applesauce
- 3/4 cup honey
- 2 eggs, beaten
- 3 mashed overripe bananas
- 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips (optional)
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 9×5 inch loaf pan, although any pan will work.
2. In a large bowl, combine flour, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
4. Add eggs to the mashed bananas, and mix it up. It should resemble omelette mix.
5. Measure out apple sauce and honey and add it to your bowl with the eggs and bananas. Stir until well blended.
6. Take your flour, baking soda, and salt mixture and add that to your wet ingredients. Mix ONLY to moisten. It may be a bit “lumpy” depending on how well you were able to mash your bananas.
7. Add chocolate chips, if desired! (And of course you desire it, IT’S CHOCOLATE CHIPS.) Mix just till they are blended.
8. Pour batter into greased loaf pan.
9. Bake in the oven, which should be pre-heated by now. Set your oven for 65 minutes and then check on your mixture! This is really important. Stick a toothpick in — or a knife — and if it comes out clean, then you are all set. If it doesn’t come out clean, as was the case when I was baking, continue baking. This is what my knife looked like when I pulled it out the first time:
10. Let the bread cool for best results, but if you’re impatient like I am, it’s not really necessary. Cut it up, serve as desired (butter, peanut butter, or Nutella are some yummy toppings) and enjoy.
WIN. This pin was no harder to accomplish than I initially thought it would be, and any issues I ran into were results of my own impatience or clumsiness. The applesauce/honey substitute worked GREAT, and I think it’s a nice alternative to eating oil/sugar.