Functional Food Friday: Banana Bread (Gluten/Grain Free)

We recently shared how to make delicious ‘ice-cream’ from frozen bananas which is a great way to save and use bananas that get overripe before you can eat them. Another great way to use bananas that are ripe and need to be eaten as soon as possible is to make banana bread. The typical banana bread is made from highly refined wheat flour and sugar which, if you are trying to be a fit and functional authentic human, is not ideal nutrition. This version of banana bread substitutes almond and coconut flours for the wheat and honey with a little stevia for the sugar which makes it Paleo and Primal approved. While it is a healthier version, it should still not be a staple part of your daily diet which should be filled with nutrient dense proteins and vegetables. Save it for a weekly treat.

Besides the bananas and eggs, the health benefits of which we’ve discussed before, almond flour and coconut flour are the primary ingredients. Both are gluten free flours and are simply ground up versions of the original ie. ground up almonds (blanched/skin off) and dried coconut meat respectively.

Almond flour is ground up blanched (skin off) almonds. high in protein, manganese, potassium, copper, and vitamin E, as well as healthy monounsaturated fats. Like the almond which is really a seed and not a nut as most people believe, almond flour is high in protein and fiber, low in carbohydrates and sugar and a good source of some essential nutrients; manganese, magnesium, potassium, copper, and vitamin E, as well as healthy monounsaturated fats.

Coconut flour, like almond flour is low on the glycemic index due to its high protein (19g per 100g) and fiber and low carbohydrate content. Coconut flour can be considered a functional food because research has shown that it may provide some protection against chronic diseases such as diabetes, colon cancer and cardiovascular problems.

I like recipes that mix the two flours because almond flour is moist with a nice nutty flavor whereas coconut flour is very dry and requires a much greater ratio of wet ingredients but provides a good texture to baked goods.

As always, the quality of the ingredients does really count do if you can choose organic where possible.

Here’s the recipe:

Wet Ingredients:

2 Ripe Bananas (Medium to Large)
3 Eggs
2 Tbsp Olive Oil
1 Tbsp Honey (Raw is preferable)
1/2 Dropper Liquid Vanilla Stevia

Dry Ingredients:

3/4 Cup of Almond Flour
1/4 Cup of Coconut Flour
1/4 – 1/2 Tspn Real Salt
3/4 Tspn Baking Soda
1/4 Cup Pecan Nut or Walnut Pieces
Optional: Chocolate Chips or Raisins

How To:

  1. Preheat oven to 350°
  2. Mash the bananas
  3. Mix together the wet ingredients; eggs, olive oil, honey and stevia
  4. Mix together the dry ingredients; almond flour, coconut flour, salt, baking soda
  5. Blend the wet into the dry ingredients and then add the bananas
  6. Add in the nuts and chocolate chips/raisins
  7. Pour into an oven safe loaf pan or other baking dish
  8. Bake at 350° for around 20 minutes for a flat pan with larger surface area or 30-40 minutes for a loaf pan. When the top turns golden brown, use the toothpick check and remove if it comes out cleanly.
  9. Allow to cool before removing from the baking dish

We hope you enjoy this Stone Family Favorite.

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About the Author:

Candice is a certified Holistic Lifestyle Coach living in sunny San Diego, California with her husband and seven year old daughter. She is passionate about nutrition and holistic health and sharing what she has learned and continues to learn with others who want to achieve health and vitality.