Gluten Free + Refined Sugar Free + Vegan
Is there anything better than a freshly baked banana bread? The sweet cinnamon-y smell as you open the oven door. The answer is yes. There is something better. Choc Banana Bread - the over-achieving sibling.
I think it is safe to say that banana bread is an emotion in itself. Those two words holds so many memories regardless of who you are. Everybody has a secret banana bread recipe stashed away somewhere - a family heirloom ready to be passed on to the next generation.
Banana is such an underrated fruit. It can be transformed in so many different ways! Freeze it and it can be vegan ice -cream, blend it and it provides you with a thick smoothie, mash it in your baked goods and it acts as a binder to replace egg, dip it in peanut butter and you have a perfect pre-workout snack. It is not only such a good source of fast acting carbs to provide you with energy but it is basically a magic weapon against cramps and muscle fatigue as it is very high in potassium and magnesium.
Okay enough on bananas - we've established they are great.
Onto its bread form. Obviously we all know the drill. You buy bananas, you put them in a fruit bowl with avos and then some amazing sciency stuff happen and in a few days they are beyond the smoothie kind and you make peace with the fact that you will be eating banana bread three times a day for a week (if you can ration it for that long I would be hella impressed and please share your ways with me).
So I bet you asking why change a good thing? Why add cacao? Cause chocolate my friend. Why wouldn't you want to make something taste like choc! It gives the bread a richness and then of course the anti-oxidant and magnesium benefits found in raw cacao are there too.
When I made this boy I thought it needed a sidekick something beyond the usual "lather it with peanut butter" - although don't get me wrong I probably have more peanut butter in my veins than blood. So the salted caramel protein spread was born and it changed the spread game (also protein!)
So without further ado the macro-balancing Choc Banana Bread with Salted Caramel Protein Spread.
Serves 10 - 12 slices
1 1/2 cups Buckwheat Flour*
1/2 cup raw cacao powder
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp vanilla powder
1/2 tsp cream of tar tar**
1/4 tsp baking soda**
1/2 tsp stevia powder (adjust this to your preferred sweetness or replace with preferred sweetener)
Pinch of pink Himalayan salt
1/4 cup desiccated coconut
5 dried dates (chopped)
1 Flax egg (1 tbsp freshly ground flax powder + 3 tbsp water and let it stand for 10 mins)
4 bananas (+1 for the topping)
1/4 cup macadamia butter (I used the ButtaNut brand but any nut butter can be used)
1/4 cup almond or any plant-milk
1. Preheat oven to 180 Celsius and grease a bread tin
2. Add all dry ingredients, except desiccated coconut and dates in a bowl and combine. Buckwheat flour can be made by grinding buckwheat groats in your Nutribullet or seed grinder.
3. Prepare flax egg and wait 10 mins for it to bind or until it is a gloopy, eggy consistency
4. Add all wet ingredients to dry ingredients and mix in thoroughly. If it is too dry add more almond milk - it should be a bread dough consistency more than a cake batter.
5. Once combined fold in the coconut and dates. Cut the last banana length-wise and press it down gently on top of the dough
6. Put it into the greased bread tin and bake in the oven for 45 - 50 mins or until the top is slightly browned and a a knife comes out clean when inserted into the middle
7. Once it is done remove from the oven and let it COOL COMPLETELY before cutting. This is important for the bread to stiffen and become dense.
8. Once cooled cut, top with all the nut butter or spread or things and enjoy!
Can be stored in the fridge for up to a week and is freezer friendly too!
* Buckwheat can be substituted with Gluten Free Oat flour or Brown Rice flour
** The cream of tar tar and baking soda combo equates to 1 tsp of baking powder so leave both these ingredients out if you are using baking powder. Baking powder is filled with many fillers and nasties so I try to stay away from it but if you can find a purer one you trust then go for it!
Salted Caramel Protein Spread:
3 Tbsp Coconut Oil
2 Tbsp natural peanut butter (crunchy gives it nice texture)
2 Tbsp Coconut Sugar
2 Tbsp date syrup (maple/coconut syrup can also be used)***
Tip of a tsp of stevia powder
A generous helping of pink Himalayan Salt
1/4 cup almond milk
1 scoop pure pea protein powder (mine is from Faithful to Nature)
1. Combine all ingredients (except almond milk and protein powder) in a sauce pan on a low heat - stirring constantly
2. Once everything has melted together take it off the stove and let it cool
(The more it cools the more it will stiffen up)
If you want it to be a runny sauce stop at this step. Store the sauce in a jar outside the fridge and use within a couple of days.
3. If making a spread add the almond milk and protein powder to the mix - combining it well. It should be a spread consistency. If it is too crumby add a bit more almond milk as pea protein powder can be super absorbent
4. Store the spread in a jar in the fridge and within a few days
***The syrup can also be omitted if you are sensitive to too much sugar or don't like something too sweet. I enjoy salty over sweet so I leave the syrup out on most occasions.